Here is what I was greeted with at the barn today:
Good thing I know how to sew so I can just shorten the nose area, but I'm still thinking about what to do with the other part. It's hard to know if the damage was all him or all a friend, but Max's mask has both ears ripped off, and Gunner is on his 3rd fly mask in three weeks. Those rowdy boys! Gunner isn't as chewed up as Junior, but as I was sitting on Junior in the arena and Gunner was led out of his stall and I had to hold Junior back because he wanted to go see Gunner so badly. I guess he likes the abuse! I put a fly sheet on Junior last night and it is very dirty but survived the first night at least. We'll see how long it lasts.... I didn't see ANY new wounds on him so maybe the sheet will be a tooth guard, too, at least for a while.
The saddle and girth didn't seem to bother his wounds so I think we're all good to go back into a riding routine. My plan is to ride English only for a while so I've left the western saddles at home. I'm going to work on my seat and strength. I've lost most of the little I had by not riding for a whole month. I was riding well in my western saddle without stirrups but I know perfectly well that's WAY easier than in an English saddle Once I feel like I'm back in business (today was NOT that day) I will take off my stirrups for a month and see how that goes.... might want to invest in some full-seat breeches before that starts.....