I’ve ridden many horses. Ponies, Quarter horses, Thoroughbreds, Appaloosas (I cannot even remember all the breeds and crosses!) Obviously I've ridden Arabians now too. Love them! I’ve ridden mostly geldings and a few mares. There seems to be the opinion that mares are very testy, hormonal and act...well...“mareish”. I’ve had both sexes act up on me but my general opinion has been that I prefer geldings. Why? Cinnie was a mare in the first stable at which I rode. She would be pretty nasty when you tightened the girth, and try to reach around and bite you. The same thing occurred when you tried to mount her. I just chalked it up to being a mare or maybe mistreatment at the stable? I had no idea but I didn’t ride her that often anyways. Then again I was ten so I don't remember much about her, aside from the nippiness! I vaguely remember some mares from my various experiences riding and honestly can’t recall what I didn’t like about them. I do remember one at a trail riding company that was very sweet and had a nice trot, she was also blind in one eye and you couldn't really notice.
Perhaps I just have a propensity to like and acquire male animals? My dogs are male, my gerbil is male, I’ve had several male betas and then my goldfish that I have no idea what their actual sex is…well they “are male”. Why do I dislike my own sex, even in other species? I don’t really; I guess it’s just a stigma that society has for the females of any given species. Males are stronger and better able to perform more consistently, goes the sentiment.
My opinions for horse sex have definitely changed since riding Divine. She’s a very affectionate mare, and just like all females, a little sensitive. This can be a very positive feature though. She might have been sensitive to me brushing her rather quickly and acted accordingly….but heck, if I’m at the salon and someone is being brusque with my hair I’d be perturbed too! The sensitivity definitely comes into play while riding, she responds to subtle cues. This can be frustrating if one is still trying to iron out all the kinks in their riding, hence leading to confusion and “mare-like” behavior. Honestly this is not "mare-like" behavior, it’s a horse, which happens to be female, and it’s telling you it’s getting irritated at all the mixed messages. I’ve learned a lot from Divine, and I’m sure I’ll learn even more. She and the other horsie-gals at Laurie’s stable have made me see another side of what mares can be. Perhaps people are treating their mares the same as a gelding or stallion. A sensitive mare will act out to inform the human that they don’t said treatment. A silly human would just chalk that up to the horse being a mare and leave it at that. A good horse person would try to read the response and change how they approach the horse. As far as treatment goes I’m not discussing abuse, just mannerisms that often times the boys ignore and couldn’t care less about but that females pick up on and often react to if it’s not "proper", in their humble opinion.
I guess this latest blog didn’t really discuss much about my recent lesson. I worked on sitting trot and have to remember the Patrick Swayze dance moves from "Dirty Dancing" to help me follow the seat at the trot. That was a hilarious conversation on horseback with Laurie but hopefully I’ll get loosened up at the sitting trot as a result. Divine was also really easy to bridle today, my thumb was too short, so I just used my index finger to get her to open her mouth. Worked like a charm! Until next week!