Like pretty much everyone this Autumn, Diva and her stablemates are seeing more than their fair share of mud. Good old Leicestershire clay means gateways and well-travelled areas can get poached and deep with mud.

So far, I have slipped onto my bottom only once and that was before the gateway got very muddy at all. I am sure that before the winter is out I will do a proper splash in the mud.

I am even considering using a motion-detecting camera so that should it happen, we can all have a laugh about it.

At this time of year people worry about mud fever, those horrible sore scabs usually on the lower limbs. Luckily, I have never had a problem with it despite muddy, and in the case of Mabel and Florence, white legs.

Personally, I tend to hose off with only cold water and not scrub at the mud with detergents.

Tails, however, are fair game!

Mabel’s short black tail needs little attention, but Florence rolls a lot and her white tail can get covered in mud. Diva’s tail, though black, gets very muddy as she is much lower to the ground and her tail is full length.

Last week I decided I couldn’t bear seeing their dirty tails a moment longer and decided to wash them. Being stabled on a competition yard, I am lucky to have access to a wash box.

Since Diva seems to think she is a sports horse and not a Shetland pony, I decided to see if she would mind being cross-tied like the big horses.

Of course, she didn’t.

It did make me chuckle to see the little thing standing there.

Oh, and following on from my last blog with Mabel being used as a model for Ruggles, the relentless rain prompted me to get Diva a 50g turnout rug, which no doubt pleased her!


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