Miss Scarlett: March

Follow AQHYA member Tara Osburn as she raises her AQHA Young Horse Development Program filly.

By Tara Osburn
The American Quarter Horse Journal
April 3, 2013

Tara Osburn and KT Docs Mamba, aka "Miss Scarlett"

Learn more about the AQHA Young Horse Development Program through Tara’s adventures with Scarlett. (Photo courtesy of Tara Osburn)

Editor’s note: Tara Osburn received KT Docs Mamba, aka “Scarlett,” in fall 2013 through the AQHA Young Horse Development Program from AQHA Ranching Heritage Breeder KT Ranch. The following report is what Tara and Scarlett have been up to in the past month.

This was quite a busy month for us. A lot has gone on in such a short time; it’s crazy! Scarlett’s diet has been pretty consistent, and she has been eating all of her food really well. Scarlett is growing and starting to fill out some more. Lately, we have had such nice weather that Scarlett has gotten to go outside and eat grass a lot, which she loves.

I had my veterinarian out to look at Scarlett again because she had a strange wound around her throat latch that she has had since I got her. My vet has checked the wound before and thought it would go away on its own, but it didn’t. So my vet came back to see what he could do. We ended up sedating her and he flushed out the wound to make sure it would go away, and it is now all healed. I am just waiting for the hair to grow back!

This month, I made a breakthrough with clipping Scarlett. She was pretty shy before when I brought the clippers near her face, and I tried and tried to get her to let me clip her but I wasn’t getting anywhere. Since what I was doing didn’t seem to be working, I decided to try starting by her throat latch with the clippers working backward instead of starting directly on her face since she doesn’t like that. When I worked backward, she was OK with the clippers! Scarlett even seemed to like it, but she still doesn’t quite like the clippers on her nose.

I had my trainer out for a riding lesson and he got to meet Scarlett for the first time. Normally, it wouldn’t be a big step for me, but I haven’t talked to my trainer much since my aunt died and I haven’t had a riding lesson since before it happened. It was really nice to have him back out and he really liked Scarlett and agreed with me that she is exactly the type of horse my aunt would love!

We had quite a little scare a couple of weeks ago. I turned Scarlett out in her pasture, like normal, and went to go feed the other horses outside. On my way back to the barn, Scarlett whinnied a soft whinny, which didn’t sound normal for her. I looked up to see where she was in her pasture, but I couldn’t see exactly where she was except it looked like she was lying down in a corner, which was strange, as well.  So I left the wheelbarrow and ran up to her side to find her stuck upside down in the corner of the pasture. She whinnied again and I climbed the fence to decide what I should do. I wasn’t sure if she would flail her legs around if I tried to move them since they were a little bit stuck in the fence, but they were not too stuck, so I decided to pull her legs over and flip her. After I did, she took a second to sort of wake up, but then she got up and galloped and bucked away! I was very lucky for that to happen while I was there and nearby, instead of having Scarlett stuck for a long time.

I went on vacation to Arizona over my spring break and we drove down some roads where all the houses had horses. We looked in one that was an open house; it had a backyard you could keep a horse in! I thought it was really cool and that maybe someday I’d move down there with Scarlett, if I got the chance. I was gone for a week and it was hard for me because I missed my filly so much! I texted and called everyone to check up on her and I had them all sending me pictures of her so I would be OK. I was very happy when I got home and was reunited with Scarlett.

On March 29, Scarlett turned 1! I was on vacation all week last week, but I got home at 4:30 a.m. on Scarlett’s birthday, and I gave Scarlett a birthday party that night. I invited my 6-year-old cousin over because she loves Scarlett (and bought a little bay, plastic horse and named it after Scarlett). We decorated the front of Scarlett’s stall with red streamers and a poster we made for her. After Scarlett saw her stall, I turned her loose in the arena to play for a little while and we played our game where I start running and she races me. Scarlett got to say “Hi” to our pony and my Appendix mare, as well, because my sister was out riding. Scarlett even got to open her birthday present from our friend, Patti, who takes care of her when I am away. Patti gave Scarlett some new shampoo and conditioner, along with some new brushes! After all of this, my cousin and I gave Scarlett a nice long warm bath. Scarlett was very clean and very soft!

The next day, it was very nice outside, so I decided it was a good time to work Scarlett in and out of the trailer. I am hoping to go to a show this coming weekend, but I’m not sure if it will work out yet. We will attend a show in the very near future, I’m sure! I didn’t know how well Scarlett would go into the trailer after her first experience, when it took us about 40 minutes to load. I was very proud of Scarlett this last time when she followed me right in. I had Scarlett’s grain waiting inside for her as a reward when she came in. We went in and out three or four times. However, the last time she decided she didn’t want to go back in and it took us another 20 minutes to get her in one last time. We ended on a good note instead of her getting a reward for not going in. She didn’t want to go in, but when I lifted up one of her front hooves and put it in the trailer for her, she was happy to go back inside for me. We practiced our trailering again on Saturday and she was just a jewel and went in and out very obediently!

On Easter, after church, we had our good friend, Lesley Martin, over to take pictures of us for our blog! Lesley is a former AQHA Publications intern and lives close to us in northwest Oregon. It was cool to talk to Lesley because it has been a few months since I have seen her. We had a great time taking pictures, and Scarlett had a ton of fun! It was really nice to hear Lesley say that she thought that Scarlett and I were the “perfect pair.”  It was cool to get some new pictures since we hadn’t taken any good pictures together since Thanksgiving. We got some really awesome pictures, too, since we had perfect weather!

I’m more thankful than ever for the AQHA Young Horse Development Program and all that is has done for me! Scarlett is, I think, the biggest blessing in my life and I look forward to seeing her every day that I can.

Learn more about the AQHA Young Horse Development Program through Tara’s adventures with Scarlett.