Monday, August 31, 2020

Rosie & Grady

Over the weekend I began to work with Rosie again.  Basically, she’s been having the summer off because of our extremely hot and humid weather.  I’ve started by simple longeing in both directions to get her head back in the game so to speak. She looks really good and it seems her work ethic is still intact.  She’s such a good girl.

While I was longeing her all the other horses were turned out and beat feet to the back pasture.  Well, all except for Grady, who grazed outside the arena and waited for Rosie to be done. Grady's the guy who cares about the other horses in the herd and he didn’t want to leave her behind.  Which I was grateful for because it let Rosie focus on her work and not on everyone being out of sight. He’s probably the sweetest horse in the barn.

Here are a few pictures of the two of them together after her lesson:
Waiting for the "Treat Store" to open

" Please hurry, I worked hard for this treat and don't forget my buddy Grady, I'm buying this round"

Quote for Today
 He knows when you are happy.  He knows when you are proud. He also knows when you have a carrot.

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

It Is What It Is

So, it’s almost the end of August and autumn can’t get here soon enough with cooler weather.  Our temps were basically in the 90’s with high humidity for the entire summer. There was almost no riding or schooling the horses; they were as miserable as we were. The good news is that it is starting to cool off now and we can start working with our horses again.

That said we’ve been busy caring for Sami and Blue’s medical issues.  Sami was diagnosed with a mild case of laminitis in July.  He had to spend a few weeks in his stall which was no picnic for him or us.  Every time the herd left his sight to graze in further pastures, he’d go a little crazy.  Luckily, my daughter was able to give him a little bit of Ace to calm him down.  After a few weeks he was allowed out into a pen we made for him in the “horse port” attached to the shed.  This worked out much better.  The change of scenery helped a lot.   The plus side to this was his best friend Hanz could come and keep him company.  When he wasn’t around Sami would call for him and he’d come trotting up to spend some time.  Hay nets were put on the outside of the pen for any friends who dropped by for a visit.  Grady and Rosie did say hello once in a while and were happy to share his complimentary hay.  In the past week he’s been allowed out with the herd wearing his new grazing muzzle, he’s much happier now and seems better.
Sami in the "horse-port"
  He even has a ceiling fan!
Blue on the other hand is still suffering with his abscessed hoof. It has been two weeks since he’s been a three-legged horse walking on the toe on his left hind.  He seemed to be in so much pain he could barely hop around in the beginning.  The vet took x-rays etc. The best we can do for him is soak it and then put Animalintex on it and wrap it for the day.  He seems to be getting around a little better in the past few days and we’re hopeful it will blow out soon.  Looks like there’s one on his heel and possibly another exit in front by the coronary band.  Fingers crossed it will let loose soon and he will feel better.  He doesn’t go out with the herd, but he’s got the option of staying in his stall or roaming around the fenced lawn area around the barn.  He doesn’t venture out much but when he does, he grazes for a while, lifting his leg every few minutes to take the painful pressure off. He gets a little Bute when he looks very sad.  In true Blue dramatic fashion he’s been known to lay in his stall moaning and sighing and made my daughter hold the bucket of feed for him for his breakfast. He’s a real drama queen and he is still my favorite character in the barn.
"Where have all my friends gone"
A little grazing time
Trying it without the bandaged hoof for a bit
We also had no working automatic waterers on the farm for a few weeks.  Called the plumber who diagnosed it as an underground leak somewhere.  Then he had to find it by digging up most of the yard around the barn to find it.  He did and repaired it.  The waterers work again, and we’ve filled in all the trenches and planted grass seed.  Filling buckets everyday was just one more brick on the load to deal with but we managed.

To add to all this nonsense my shoulder had been painful for months.  I finally got an appointment with an orthopedic shoulder doctor and had an MRI last week. He diagnosed a rotator cuff injury and I will most likely go to physical therapy. He doesn’t think surgery is indicated.  

Hopefully, all the drama will be over soon, and we can get back to a normal routine around the barn sooner than later.

Quote for Today
When you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot in it and hang on.

Franklin D. Roosevelt

Saturday, August 1, 2020

A Sad Goodbye

" Ginger"

We recently had to say goodbye to our girl Ginger.  She was only four years old but the last year and a half was very hard on her health.   At three years she started having seizures and was diagnosed with idiopathic epilepsy.  Over time as her seizures got worse and more frequent, the vets just kept prescribing more medication for her.  We tried everything in the hope it would help, even CBD oil, but nothing seemed to work for her in controlling her seizures.   Ginger was a fun-loving frisky girl before her illness started but as her seizures became more frequent her zest for living seemed to wane.  It didn't seem her quality of life was the way it should be for her.  So, with her last round of multiple violent seizures which were coming one right after the other, I made the decision to let her go and end her suffering.  

Ginger was a happy girl who loved her family and such a little sweetheart. Of course, we all miss her terribly.  She will never be forgotten for her antics and personality.

Here’s a short slideshow of her life:

         I know that you must miss me,
By the tears rolling down your face.
But believe me when I tell you that,
I'm in a very good place.
There are meadows here to run in,
And plenty of rabbits to chase.
There are other dogs to play with,
To frolic with and race.
So please don't worry about me,
My spirit feels light as can be.
There's no more pain to plague me,
I'm young again and free.
And I'll be watching over you still,
of that you can be sure.
I'm your canine guardian angel,
And my love for you remains pure.

Thursday, June 11, 2020

It’s Been A While

We have been busy around the farm getting ready for the warmer weather and hopefully more riding. There have been a lot of projects to keep us busy. We had a line of new fencing installed down one side of the farm. This particular side of the farm is on a well-traveled road and we just feel better that the horses are safer with an extra fence to shield them from the traffic.  In the past we have had people stop and feed them, which I don’t mind really, except I don’t want to have anyone get hurt. Having the extra fence also helps keep the garbage in one area. The slobs around here throw all kinds of cans and paper bags out their windows when they drive past the farm, which inevitably winds up in the pastures. Nice. Then we have to go out and pick it all up; it’s like being on a prison chain gang cleaning up the highways.

The double-fence also provides a wide alleyway that will let us ride without being harassed by the herd.  It has happened in the past and it’s not a lot of fun.  The alleyway now leads to a gate into the trails in the woods and another gate leads into the grass dressage arena under the trees on the hill.  By the time we walk up to the arena it’s has the added benefit of being a good warm up for us.  I like riding up there in the summer, as it’s a lot cooler.   We haven’t had a chance to ride there yet. As soon as the fence was up, we had a lot of rain and some hurricane force winds that knocked trees down which blocked the alleyway and took out two sections of the new fence…of course it did! Now we’re waiting for someone to actually show up and fix the fence and cut the trees off of it.

New fencing and ,yes, I have to power wash the old fence! That's on the list...

We replaced the split rail in this arena, seems there are a lot of resident beavers who like to snack on wood sometimes! They absolutely wrecked it.
They've got a tough life

As for the herd, during the month of May we started the horses back to work with a gradual training program.  They had not worked basically for the entire winter, so we felt it wasn’t fair to them to drag them out and just hop on and expect them to be fit and ready to go.  They’ve sort of been couch potatoes stuffing their faces with hay most of the winter. So, the plan was for all of them to have as many short longeing sessions as they needed before they were fit enough to ride.  Then we planned to saddle up and see what they’re ready for. 

" Blue"

Blue celebrated his 23rd birthday March 26th with carrots and Stud Muffins. He’s now officially the oldest guy in the barn.  Blue is still in very good condition and can benefit from some light work.  Saturday, I longed him at the walk in one direction and then we reversed directions. He went around twice then took himself into a trot then down to the walk, stopped and came in to tell me, “that’s a wrap for today, lady.”  You gotta love him. He probably thought I forgot to longe the trot in the first direction, so he’d have to do it for me. I think he figures I could use some advanced schooling and he’s just the guy to show me how!

I did take him for a walk around the arena and although he’s always good…well mostly good…he just didn’t seem to be into being ridden.  He’s got a bit of a stubborn streak and he put it to full use in counter bending and no steering.  I didn’t push it and we had a short ride.  I think he doesn’t mind longeing for a few minutes and he likes being groomed but he seems to want to punch his retirement card in my opinion.  We’ll have another discussion about it soon.
Blue & Rosie are inseparable, she's kind of a stalker, she won't leave his side

Rosie has been doing very well with her get in shape program.  She’s been walking and trotting with energy and seems eager to get back to work.  She even took herself into a short canter on the longe. So I decided to ride her at the walk  a few times around the arena and she’s been a super star.  I’m also trying to get myself back in riding shape so I’ve been positioning myself in a half-seat at the walk before we even think about trotting again.  Rosie’s not the only one who could use a little conditioning after this winter!

I hope everyone is staying safe and healthy and we can all get back to not living in a bad “B” movie sooner than later. 

Quote For Today
Life is short.  Hug your horse.

Monday, June 8, 2020

Free Horses...False Alarm

So I posted this earlier today and thanks to some commenters in the know I was happy to hear that this is a false alarm.  It was originally posted in 2011 and all the horses were adopted. Apparently, it makes the rounds on a regular basis and they've added the covid crisis to it. Can't wrap my head around why someone would do this but I guess it takes all kinds in this crazy world. Sorry for the misinformation.
Original Post
A friend of mine sent me this piece she saw on Facebook today.  I don’t know who this person is and I don’t have Facebook.  I have no idea if re-posting this is allowed or not. If it isn’t I’ll take it down if I have to. 

If anyone were interested in helping these horses I would guess you could call the number below.  It’s a shame, but unfortunately in a crisis this is what happens to horses that people don’t want or can no longer care for. It is sad and a shame that these beautiful animals have to pay the ultimate price with their lives.  I know many lesson horses are also facing being slaughtered because they can no longer pull their weight and make money for their barns. 

Here’s the post if anyone is interested:

FREE HORSES!!!! 52 thoroughbred horses need homes. Will go to Sugarcreek this Sat. for slaughter. Gentleman died due to COVID-19 and his son wants nothing to do with them. Most broodmares are broke and some are in foal weanling, yearlings, 2 yrs. and 3 yrs. old most are gelded. FREE and papered. Friend of the deceased is trying to find homes. (757) 337-4878 Barnesville, OH.
I would hate to see all these horses put down. PLEASE someone help they are FREE and papered!!!!!!!!

Sunday, January 19, 2020

The Week In Pictures

" The Geese"
No idea what they're all looking at in the hay field next door but I'm sure it's very interesting

"Where have you been? Don't you know it's cold and snowing out here!"

" Come on step it up"

Waiting for Dinner

Blue taking a break in the sun today

They've got a rough life

Blue always makes me smile, what a character!

And, that's a wrap, he's out for the count

Quote for Today
Our perfect companions never have fewer than four feet.

Saturday, December 28, 2019

Holiday Thoughts

" Erik "

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday and enjoyed spending time with family and friends.  We celebrated with family and extended family on Christmas Eve.  It’s always nice to have everyone together and catch up with them.  Now that the holidays are over and we’re heading for a new year I’d like to wish everyone a Happy New Year and extend a wish that all you hope to achieve in the new year becomes a reality for you.

The thought occurred to me that in the current times in this country we need to be grateful for family and friends who make us laugh and love each other no matter what’s happening in the world.  I was very touched with a gift my ten year old granddaughter made for me.  She is such a thoughtful and sweet girl.  A while ago I mentioned that I would like to someday have a painting of my first horse Erik. She took one of my favorite pictures of him and surprised me with a painting of him on Christmas Eve.  She did it in pastels in art class and really worked hard on it.  My other granddaughter baked a special apple cake and cookies and the boys made their version of homemade soap.  Everything was made with love and I’m a very lucky Grandma to have such wonderful grand kids and a lucky Mom to have my children grown into successful caring adults. 

So that’s what I’m thankful for in my life.  I’m sure we can all find things to be grateful for and look for the good in our lives.  It might sound a little kum ba yah but in these uncertain times I’m going to try to look for the bright side of things in the coming year.

Quote for Today 

I get up every morning both determined to change the world and have one hell of a good time.  Sometimes this makes planning the day difficult.