Izzy and I had a much needed discussion last night about whether or not she had to canter when I asked her to. It went like this:
Me: "Ok, right lead canter... now."
Her: Trot a little quicker and otherwise ignore me.
Me: Smack her with the ends of the split reins pretty hard.
Her: Angry pony takes off bucking and galloping "Ouch, that bloody hurt."
Me: Pulls Izzy up and shouts, "Knock it off, you horrid horse!"
Unfortunately, the BO's husband walked in to feed just as I was shouting, so all he saw was the crazy b*tch who rides her warmblood western calling the poor thing a 'horrid horse'.
You just can't win some days.
Overall, she was pretty good, aside from being really, really distracted that everyone else was getting fed and she was not. That annoyed me, so I made her canter around the arena A LOT, then left her out there to roll while I put some stuff away, then tied her up outside the tackroom to groom and resaddle her (no way I'm toting that massive thing across the road alone), and then made her stand in the cross ties in her barn.
It wasn't all cold heartedness--she was soaked in sweat, and I put her new cooler on her.
It looks great and works really well. I let her eat her grain in the crossties, then left the cooler on her while I cleaned up the aisle, so about 20ish minutes probably. She was nice and warm and dry when I took it off before leaving for the night.
That makes me feel better. Before, I was nervous about working her very hard because I didn't want to make her sweat, then leave her wet and cold in her stall. No fun.
I'm looking forward to actually putting some english tack on and doing a real dressage ride this afternoon. I'm curious to see how it will go after our western work. (Plus, maybe the outdoor arena will finally be rideable).