Another awesome pic courtesy of Lauren.
- Although I've ridden since I was 13, Cash is my first horse. I bought him for $1 when I graduated from college.
- He's a registered American Paint Horse. He's dual-registered as a Pinto.
- His registered APHA name is Midnight Dollar. I thought this was the dumbest name ever, so I showed him in eventing and dressage as Black Tie Affair.
- He started out life as a reining horse, and won ROM points in the 2 and 3 year old APHA divisions. This early start in life came back to haunt him in later years.
- When I met him, he was trying to be a child's all-around horse. He was terrible at Western Pleasure.
- He used to absolutely lose his marbles when you went into an arena at a show. Sidepassing, half-rearing, bolting... it was truly a special thing. Getting into the dressage arena without blowing a gasket was challenging for quite a while!
- Cash used to be terrified of men. I remember one clinic we attended, the male clinician went to pat him on the neck and Cash bolted sideways/backwards without warning. I'm pretty sure he thought the guy was going to hit him.
- When I first got him, he didn't understand that he could go more than one speed within a gait. The day he figured out he could do an extended trot, it was all he would do for a week! He was so proud of himself for figuring it out, lol!
- You could not touch his mouth, ever. We did dressage in a Happy Mouth eggbutt snaffle and getting even the lightest contact was always a challenge.
- Early on, I couldn't take Cash on trail rides. I remember one ride where we literally cantered at a walking speed for an hour, bouncing off of trees and nearly getting ourselves killed. Even now, Cash can only go out with one or two other horses, and starts to lose it if he's not in the front.
- He's an incredibly sensitive horse to ride. The tiniest shift of weight, or tilting of your head, and he'd respond. It taught me to be a very quiet rider.
- He never learned to trot through trot poles. He would canter them, every time, and he never touched a single pole.
- We never had a rail down in stadium, ever. NO TOUCHY THE JUMPS!!!
- Cash can't stand being clean. He is a professional roller and will often flip over multiple times to make sure he's completely covered. For shows, I would scrub and scrub and use QuickColor shampoo and blueing to make him white, then keep him wrapped and blanketed, which he hated. As soon as we were done with the show, I'd make a mud puddle in his pasture for him to roll in - and he always got as dirty as possible!
- He only refused a fence once in his entire career. It was a Training level down bank into the water that took our half of our division. I was so surprised I forgot to ride and got us eliminated. Oops!
- Remember that arena thing? I could barely get Cash into the start box XC for more than a second. Fun times!
- I once took him foxhunting. I thought it wasn't the best idea ever, but I really REALLY wanted to go. As it turns out, I was right and it was a terrible idea - we spent the entire time fighting. We've never been again.
- Cash doesn't know how to eat a whole apple. He will only eat it if you cut it up into bit-sized pieces. Anything else would be uncivilized, clearly.
- We retired from jumping after an incredibly successful year in 1999, where we went from Beginner Novice to Training and were planning to move up to Prelim. Toward the end of the year, he was NQR behind, and one of the best vets in the country diagnosed him with arthritis in his hock. I spent several years trying to treat the arthritis, but nothing ever helped.
- Cash is not a snuggly horse, but every so often he'll asked to be scratched - usually right around dusk, just after being turned out or as I'm finishing up barn chores. He follows me around oh-so-politely, as if to say, "Excuse me...?" He will actually show me (with his nose) where the itchy spots are (usually his sides or legs), and then he'll sidle up to me so that I'm right next to the itchy spot - usually his withers or his butt. He'll spend 30 minutes or more pointing out the itchy spots, and when he's done, he walks away without so much as a thank-you.
- We showed second level once, at a schooling show, but we could do all the movements through fourth level with the exception of flying lead changes. He never quite understood how to do those. We also schooled baby piaffe a few times - so cool!
- Cash has 7 spots on his nose. I count them regularly (and poke them as I do), which he puts up with.
- Three years after being diagnosed with arthritis, I took him to a different vet for a second opinion, since nothing I was doing seemed to make him any more comfortable. This time, we got a REAL diagnosis - a bone lesion under the suspensory on his RH. The vet suspected it had started as a 2/3 year old during reining training, and it only flared up when the work was hard enough (i.e. jumping 3'+ and doing extended gaits). Despite 9 months off, it never fully healed, but he was still comfortable doing Training level dressage.
- Cash was a dressage schoolmaster until he retired at 19, with a mystery lameness high up in his hind end. He lived for three years an at amazing retirement facility called Paint Creek Ranch, and after two years miraculously came back sound.
- Cash has always - ALWAYS - been at the very bottom of the pecking order at every barn I've ever been at. Most of the time I had to have him on private or semi-private turnout so he wouldn't get the crap beat out of him. The only horse he's ever been friends with (where said friend didn't beat the crap out of him) was Saga, who would even share his grain with Cash.
- Cash usually waits at the gate for a bedtime treat. He just stands politely and looks cute until someone notices him and gives him something. So adorable!
Jumping out of the water was fine, however.