Last week, on a rainy Monday, Tina and I braved the British Spring weather for our shoot with her two girls, Keira and Liberty. Luckily, we managed to mostly dodge the showers and didn’t get too soggy.
Tina has owned thirteen year-old Keira for ten years. She is a New Forest cross Warmblood and was originally purchased as a project, to bring on and sell, so that Tina could then buy herself a bigger, non-bay gelding. Yet, within just four weeks, Keira had Tina wrapped around her little finger and had herself a forever home. Her showname is Take 2, after Tina’s salon!
Tina tells me that she has had plenty of falls and injuries, thanks to this little mare. “She’s me in horse form; feisty, independent, and if she likes you, loving!” she says. But in 2015, Keira really came into her own and the pair affiliated at dressage, with plenty of success, including attending the Petplan Area Festival.
Sadly, Keira then went lame last August and after much investigation, it was discovered that she had torn both hind suspensory ligaments and the decision was made to operate. All was not smooth sailing, when Keira’s heart than had an adverse reaction to the drugs and her operation was delayed for four weeks and would depend on how her heart recovered. Luckily the operation was able to go ahead at the end of November and all went well. Keira is now back in work and is currently rehabbing back to her old self. Tina tells me that she just wants to do right by her and have fun with her.
“She is my fun pony, it’s like being a teenager again when I ride her!”
Next up was Libby. ‘Wolfgang Liberty’ is a fourteen year-old, 17.3hh, lemon and white ‘Barbie horse’! Her sire was a Warmblood x Paint Horse and her dam was a Thoroughbred x Trakehner and Tina has owned her for almost six years.
Tina bought Libby with the intention of her being her competition horse. After spending the first year competing at BD and getting to know one another, it quickly became clear that Libby wasn’t really a dressage fan.
In 2015 Tina thought she might lose Libby when she suffered a severe case of Lymphangitis. It took twelve weeks of rehab for her to finally turn a corner, and even then, it’s been a long road to recovery. She has long term damage to her lymph glands, which Tina has to manage and Libby has to be kept active to help this.
With her dislike for dressage, Tina and Libby have taken to jumping and this is their new favourite thing to do. In fact, they’ve got their first ever three day event coming up, at Keysoe, for the Horse and Hound Grassroots competition, next week, so wishing them lots of luck for that. In addition to this, the pair have just been accepted on to the British Eventing “This Girl Can” programme, for training, throughout the summer, which sounds super exciting!
And I can’t not mention little Beau, Tina’s eighteen month-old, completely adorable miniature Schnauzer who faithfully followed us wherever we went, on the shoot. What a sweetie!
Thank you so much, Tina, for having me and for being such a great sport, in the rain. Your girls are both so beautiful and a pleasure to work with.