Introducing CWS’ New Vet

CWS is very lucky to have been able to hire Meg as our new vet. Meg was born in Ireland, but moved to America with her parents when she was three. She has a very interesting accent, mostly American but with a hint of Irish, and her family has been breeding Irish Draughts and Irish Sporthorses since the 1920’s. Meg has been around horses all her life, and certainly knows her way around them. She had a promising career as a cross-country rider, but that was tragically ended when she was 15. Her horse fell and rolled on her, damaging her spine. Luckily the horse was fine, and Meg did mostly recover from the injury. She can still ride (and does so a lot) but found a career as an equine vet. She graduated veteninary college and earnt a Docter of Veteninary Medicine (DVM). Meg came to us with many credentials and we are so glad to have her here as a member of the CWS staff!  

   Poor Meg ended up worming our most difficult horse, Souraja, and she was completely unfazed by his usual antics. Afterwards, she spotted Harley in the Lesson Horse paddock, and the sweet gelding immediately cantered over. After a few weeks, the pair had formed a strong bond and Meg now owns the gelding, but she will board him at CWS and has given permission to be used by other staff and riders, which was very generous of her. Here are some pictures of Meg and Harley’s most recent ride! 





The UK Classic

This is photostory that TBF (Trail Blazer Farms) and I have been collaborating on. It features our two stables, TBF and CWS competing in the UK, in the UK Classic! Hope you enjoy!

Cedar Wood Stables:

Ashleigh, Brooke, and Mrs Sheppard had travelled with their three horses, Harley, Chess and Athas to the UK for the very exciting UK Classic. Ashleigh was definitely the most nervous of the three, as this was her first major showjumping competition, but she trusted that Harley would get them through the Novice Showjumping course. She tried to swallow her nerves and gave Harley a good groom, before Mrs Sheppard came over and gave her a pep talk. “Just do you best, Ashleigh, that’s all I want from you! Oh, and don’t forget to have fun too!” Ashleigh was called into the arena to start her round, and took a deep breath before she pressed Harley into a smooth canter. The pair jumped everything beautifully, and even took the most challenging course, the wall, with natural style. 

 Ashleigh gave Harley a slappy pat on the neck as they excited the arena, and smiled at the next girl waiting to go in for the Novice Showjumping class.

Trail Blazer Farms

When Mia and Jake arrived in the UK they hurried to the show grounds and set up. Mia was a bit nervous about such a large show but Jake reassured her. “It’s no different than being at home. Don’t worry. You and Gypsy will do great!” 

  Mia rode Gypsy Leader to a wonderful first place! Gypsy had a lot of faith in Mia and handled the jumps perfectly. Mia smiled happily as she was handed the beautiful silky rosette and silver trophy. As soon as the awards ceremony was finished, Ashleigh ran over with her 4th place trophy and gave Mia a hug. They walked back to TBF’s trailer and had a nice packed lunch while they swapped stories of funny riding experiences. Ashleigh and Mia tied up their horses and walked over to watch the Showjumping, which Jake and Brooke were competing head-to-head in.

Cedar Wood Stables

Brooke nervously walked Chess into the arena for her showjumping class. She had seen the rider, Jake from Trail Blazer Farms compete just moments before her, and it had set her stomach in knots. Jake’s horse, American War Hero, had knocked down several jumps and reared and bucked throughout his whole round, and she was worried that Chess, her high-strung black thoroughbred would act the same. Luckily he didn’t and they only had a few spooky moments, and he pulled through to get the pair 3rd place!


Trail Blazer Farms

Jake patted American War Hero’s neck comfortingly as the stallion pranced on the spot. It was their turn very soon, and the stallion could sense the tension in the air. The bell rung, and the pair quickly cantered into the arena. Jake tried his best to get the stallion under control, but American War Hero reared at the first jump, and scattered the red and white poles.


The rest of the course went the same way, and it earned them 5th place, the last in their class.

Cedar Wood Stables

Mrs Sheppard anxiously held the reins of the feisty young stallion, Athas. The bell for the Young Horse Cross Country class would sound any moment, and the Gypsy Vanner was wound as right as a coiled spring.  The British green hills rolled in the horizon, and the grassy area in font of her was scattered with difficult XC jumps. Mrs Sheppard was a seasoned competitor, and this was her home country, but this would be Athas’s first competition. The bell rang, and the galloped towards the first jump. Surprisingly the course was going very well, until they reached the last jump. Athas did an almighty buck, and Mrs Sheppard sailed over his head and into a ditch. His bridle was still in her hands, Mrs Sheppard realised it must have come off when he bucked. It was too late to stop him though,and he wheeled around and tore across the field back to the starting box!  

Trail Blazer Farms and Cedar Wood Stables

All the riders from both stables walked over to TBF’s truck to have a chat and some well-deserved drinks. Everyone swapped contact details and promised to keep in touch, and their horses nickered at each other. Everything was going along fine until Athas decided to challenge American War Hero. The two stallions broke free from their tethers and rose up on their hind legs. A red-faced Jake and Mrs Sheppard pulled the horses away from each other and everyone started to get their horses ready for the long flight home.

Hope you enjoyed this photo story!

Training For The Show

The show was in a few days, and since CWS had just gotten a new arena, Brooke needed to train Harley, and Koi. Brooke urged her first horse, Harley, into a working trot and turned him towards the trotting poles. His timing was perfect and he didn’t clip a pole as he trotted over.  

She turned him down the side of the arena, and pushed him into a canter.  Brooke worked on some flatwork and small jumps for half an hour until Harley was responding nicely and was prepared for the show. After doing a few circles and diagonals, she brought him back to walk and dismounted. 


Brooke untacked him and brought him into the Lesson Barn paddock, and went to fetch her next horse, Koi. Koi was an experienced and powerful showjumper/hunter, but all three times Brooke had ridden him she had fallen off. The horse had a massive jump and was very strong to ride, and he had a tendency to buck, especially just before the jump. Shrugging off her fears, she grabbed his tack and saddled him up. Mrs Sheppard and Jessie had set up the stone wall jump in the arena for her and Koi to practice on. 

She cantered Koi around the arena and tried to get him to listen to her. The gelding tossed his head and surged forward, and his massive stride made Brooke lose her seat. After doing three circles around the arena, Koi decided he was bored and took the jump. Brooke, of course, wasn’t ready and lost her reins as he flew over the jump. As he landed, she fell off and rolled away from his hooves. 

Mrs Sheppard came running over and managed to catch the fiery gelding, as Brooke dusted the arena shavings out of her hair and off her clothes. Instead of feeling scared and nervous to get back on, like the last three times, she felt like he was an exciting challenge for her. Mrs Sheppard legged her up and Brooke tightened her reins and turned Koi up the centre line.


Koi seemed a little startled by his rider’s change of attitude, and started working with her, not fighting her. Brooke cantered him around the arena, and pointed him towards the jump. He leapt perfectly and landed without a single buck! Brooke asked Mrs Sheppard to put the rail on the jump, which made it a lot higher. Koi was listening to her and responded when Brooke asked him to shorten his stride, and jumped the wall brilliantly.    

   “Well done! End it on a good note!” Mrs Sheppard called, and Brooke patted Koi and dismounted. She had a massive grin on her face as she led the pinto back to the stable. “1st place ribbon, here we come!” She exclaimed, and Koi snorted in agreement. 


Photo story!

Brooke was stressed. Really stressed. CWS was leaving for a horse show soon, and she couldn’t find any of her tack.  The others were waiting impatiently, their assigned horse rugged up and travel ready, while she hunted high and low for her gear.  Brooke definately had a type A personality, and all of her gear would have been organised the night before, but Souraja, the horse she had been assigned for the show, had decided to roll just after she had spent hours grooming and preparing him for the show. By the time she had finished grooming the Marwari for the second time that night, it was really late and she had to get home.  “Brooke!! We need to go now!” Mrs Shepard, the stable owner’s loud voice shook her to her senses. She finally found her blue endurance bridle and bareback pad, and hurried to the crossties. Souraja flicked his ears and swished his tail when he saw the tack.    Brooke quickly placed the pad on his back, managing to avoid his bites when she did up the girth. The bridle was a different story though, as Souraja liked to put his head up, prance about and basically try to make life difficult for anyone trying to put a bridle on him.       Finally she managed to get the bridle on the moody stallion. Sighing, she quickly led the palomino out to the waiting group of horses and riders.   Souraja danced up to them with his usual flamboyant style, and gave a loud, proud whinny to announce he had arrived.   “Well, now that you’re finally here, let’s get them loaded up!” Brooke gulped, just remembering that Souraja was even more of a diva when he had to be loaded. Prepare for Souraja’s Drama, Part 2 she thought dryly.

The Horse’s Rights

1: I have the right to knock my food bucket over if I deem it’s contents is not suitable for consumption.

image image

2: I have the right to refuse a jump if I deem it is too high.


3: I have the right to spook at the scary plastic-bag monster that could possibly eat me.


4: I have the right to ignore your calls if I believe there is the possibility if being ridden.


5: I have the right to refuse to go outside if it is too hot, foggy, rainy, cold or if I can’t be bothered.


Thanks for reading!!!

Note: sorry about number 3 and 4, I really wanted to take them outside but… It was raining. 😦


“Bye Mrs. Sheppard, see you tomorrow!” Ashleigh called as she gave Tokyo one final pat.


“Wait- Ash, could you please bring Winter out from the paddock and pop him in a stall?” Mrs Sheppard asked. Ashleigh sighed- she needed to get home, but Mrs Sheppard was letting her lease Tokyo for free so the least she could do was help out.


“Ashleigh- before you go, could you just give him some extra hay?” Mrs Sheppard waved good bye and headed home.


Ashleigh patted Winter on the nose and double checked the stall doors. “See you tomorrow, guys.” She said quietly, then walked home, humming pleasantly. She woke at 2AM, blinking fuzzily. Her phone was ringing incessantly. Anxiously, she picked it up.


“Hello Ashleigh. Look- do you think you could come to the stable? It’s Winter- he’s got colic.”


Winter was in his stall, kicking at his stomach.  “Is he going to be alright?” Ashleigh sobbed. “Yes, the vet came and said it was a very mild colic- but Ashleigh, did you feed him anything different?” Ashleigh shook her head emphatically “No, I just gave him some extra hay from the barrel.”


“The hay is for senior horses, it’s full of minerals and nutrients that Winter doesn’t need. Where were you when I told everyone what’s in the different feeds?” Ashleigh gulped “I was riding Tokyo… I missed it.” Mrs Sheppard gave Ashleigh a comforting pat. “It happens to everyone lovey. Luckily tonight it wasn’t serious- but make sure your here for the announcements!” Ashleigh smiled through her tears and said “I will- I’m so glad Winter’s going to be alright!”