Alice Dunsdon’s Adelaide blog: a whole new meaning to the phrase cattle class

  • As I write this blog I am sat in the lorry watching Coyote Ugly with my groom Jenny feeling positive and almost, dare I say it, relaxed.

    Before we left home everything was cleaned within a inch of it’s life. Everyone helped, even my boyfriend Dave cleaned the lorry! My other groom Georgia Hessey spent hours cleaning tack and Jenny has made Hilly look more shiny and sparkly than a diamond!

    Dave cleaning the lorry

    Dave cleaning the lorry

    I have not clipped Hilly yet as I don’t want to do this until he has flown. I want him to have a natural coat and warmth for the long flight. I have been managing him very carefully and I am happy with the condition of his coat. He could feature in the next Pantene advert!

    Alice Dunsdon blog 07

    Georgia cleaning tack

    Quarantine is based in Newmarket and Hilly looks at home straight away. All the staff here are very hospitable and we have use of their wifi, kitchen and lounge area.

    The facilities are also extremely good for Hilly! Fantastic grazing is available and we are able to use their fields for hacking. I have even been given permission to put up a couple of showjumps and a dressage arena.

    Hilly's surroundings in quarantine

    Hilly’s surroundings in quarantine

    I have to remind myself the four-star competition in Adelaide is still seven weeks away and I must not over do Hilly’s work. You have to be careful at a three-day event or a situation like the one we are in while in quarantine, when you only have one horse not to get too carried away. You may find yourself getting bored and ride them too often or work them for too long as you end up having a lot of time on your hands. I’m a great believer in horses having their own space and not to pester them too much.

    There is also a horse walker and a possibility of gallops near by but obviously we have to stay in the strict quarantine regulation. Hilly must have no contact with man or beast who has not been quarantine regulated.

    Hilly tucking into his dinner in quarantine

    Hilly tucking into his dinner in quarantine

    The three of us (Jenny, Hilly and I) are here until 15 October, this is also the date we fly. I fly with Hilly on a cargo flight and Jenny will be on the next flight out. I have never flown cargo before and as my dear friend Francesca Leyland said: “I’m sure this will bring a whole new meaning to the phrase ‘cattle class!'”

    I want to fly with Hilly in case there are any complications; I want to be able to make any final decisions there and then.

    All packed and ready to go

    All packed and ready to go

    I took Hilly for a walk in hand this evening, or I should say he took me for a walk! He has always been a curious, inquisitive horse and he loves to go exploring. His stable is huge, with a huge comfy bed (which I love). If I wouldn’t sleep in it, then neither should my horse. I know it’s time and money with horse’s beds but after a long day’s hunting or competing there’s no greater feeling for me, than putting your horse in a warm stable with a deep clean bed, knowing they will have a good night’s sleep.

    Hilly's lovely bed

    Hilly’s lovely bed

    On that note, time for Jenny and I to do lates, check our dear friend and go to bed.

    Until next time (hopefully cabin fever won’t have set in)…

    Alice xx

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