Saturday, November 21, 2020

O'Grady

 

O' Grady


This past Sunday we lost our beloved horse O'Grady.  He was my daughter’s horse and she rescued him from a previous owner about twelve years ago.  Grady had some medical problems when he came to her, mainly shivers.  But he was a trooper and never complained, even when he had a cancerous third eyelid removed, a bout of pasture stringhalt, or his bladder flushed out with a huge catheter. They were a good team and enjoyed some very nice rides over the years.

Recently Grady was having problems emptying his bladder normally and had constant leakage. Each night my daughter had to wash his legs and other areas.  She didn’t mind and I’m sure he was appreciative of her special care. He was also mysteriously losing weight and, a few weeks ago was diagnosed with lymphoma. The vets had given him a few months to a year with medical treatment. She was waiting to start his chemotherapy which she had to hold off on because Grady developed a fever last week and the vet had her giving him antibiotic injections for a possible bladder infection.  He went off his feed.  There were also multiple ultrasounds, blood tests, and examinations. His fever was gone by Saturday and he started eating again, so we thought he was feeling much better. 

Sunday morning, he ate some feed, snacked on apple pieces and a carrot, and was eating his hay and drinking.  He got his antibiotic injection, and we went in to have breakfast.  When we came out, his condition had suddenly worsened. We could tell he was in terrible pain, looking at his sides like colic, and he went down.  We called the vet and did all we could to ease his pain, but it all happened so fast the vet never had time to come. He had what looked like a seizure, and then he was gone. 

We knew this day was coming when Grady was diagnosed, but we never expected it to be so soon, or so sudden. It has been a shock. The vets have offered some theories about what might have been the cause, and all of them sound reasonable, but no one can really say for sure. So, it is sort of a mystery why he declined so fast. We hoped he would have more time. But most of all, we hope that he had a good life, and that he enjoyed his years with us. We certainly enjoyed our time with Grady and are grateful that he came to us. 

Grady was the sweetest, kindest horse in the barn. We called him our Gentle Giant. Because he was always a perfect gentleman, Grady was the only horse on the farm who was allowed to wander loose around the barn, and to let himself in and out of his stall (with detours past the feed shed for a snack while feeds were made up.) He was known to stop in at the tack room door to ask for a treat, or to raid the apple bucket when no one was looking, but it was impossible to spoil Grady because he was always so good. He was also a horse who cared about all his herd-mates. He would never leave anyone behind. If I was riding Rosie in the indoor, he’d climb the hill beside it and look in the window to see where she was.  If I rode her outside, he stayed by the arena until she was done.  Then he’d follow us in for an after-lesson snack. When my daughter would hike out to the back field at night to bring them in, all the others would run ahead home, but Grady would stay and walk home with her. Being a big guy, at over 18hh, he would outpace her for a few strides and then stop, turn his head, and wait for her until she caught up before he would continue on home. As I said, he left no one behind. 

The farm won't be the same without Grady. We are heartbroken and will miss his kindness, gentleness, and friendliness around the barn. 
 



















Goodbye Grady—you were the best.
 
Quote for Today
 

Nothing is more sacred as the bond between a horse and a rider.   No other creature can ever become so emotionally close to a human as a horse. When a horse dies, the memory lives on, because an enormous part of his owner's heart, soul, and the very existence dies also.
 
- Stephanie M Thorn

20 comments:

  1. {{{hug}}} He was one in a million for sure :'-(.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. Grady was the absolute best and one in a million for sure. There aren't too many with his heart and soul.

      Delete
  2. I am so sorry you lost him so quickly. What a grand horse he was. ((((Hugs))))

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Teresa. Grady was the grandest of horses. I can honestly say that even though we love all of our animals he was the one who stole our hearts.

      Delete
  3. What a beautiful soul he was. My heart goes out to you and your daughter.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Shirley. He was a horse with a kind soul who cared about everyone in his family. Humans and animals alike.

      Delete
  4. Oh, my gosh, I am so so sad to read this. I assure you, Grady had his best life on your beautiful farm with two women who offer love and the very best of care. I can only imagine the shock of him going so suddenly but in a way, it seems like another example of his goodness to go quickly and spare you both a longer process of becoming sicker. What a handsome, wonderful guy he has been. I know all the time with him will stay with you and he’ll still be there in spirit, leaving no one behind. Big hugs to you and to J.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you billie. I feel that even though we will miss him terribly it was easier for him not to go through the chemotherapy and have to deal with extra symptoms from his disease. He didn't deserve to be as sick as he was. I also think it was better for him not to suffer and to just go on his own terms. We told him to go find his herd mates that went before him, Mellon, Nate, Dusty and Donnie. I hope they're all together in the great beyond.

      Delete
  5. Such a sweet tribute for a kind hearted beautiful boy!! I am so so sorry for your loss. Those walks back from the barn are going to be hard, bittersweet and healing all at the same time for your daughter. It takes a special soul to leave no one behind. So sweet how Grady did that especially for her. I love that last photo! I hope the fond memories of your gentle giant help you both some, as well as knowing how much he was loved and cared for. He knew.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you aurora. He was the best and we're still missing him around the barn. I think he knew he was everyone's favorite and how much he was loved.

      Delete
  6. What a beautiful, beautiful boy. I loved reading about him. Big heart, big soul. He did have a good life. The best. You guys are heaven for horses. It’s so hard to lose them, and I’ve found that the missing goes on and on. Hugs to you and your daughter. Hold his memories close. I hope they console you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Linda. Grady was a wonderful guy who will never be forgotten.

      Delete
  7. So sorry about dear Grady. He was a very special guy, who reflected back the love he was given.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much. He was special and much loved by everyone who knew him.

      Delete
  8. Sorry to be reading this sad news.

    It is obvious from this warm tribute, and so many posts with sweet stories about him, that Grady was a very special soul, and most of all - that he was greatly loved. (((❤️❤️❤️)))

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks C. He was one of the best and we will always remember his kindness and caring for all of us who loved him.

      Delete
  9. I'm so sorry to hear this Arlyne...he was truly a beautiful horse. He was well loved though, and what more can anyone ask for? We said good-bye to our old man in late October. My husband's horse, Shad. He was nearly 30 and we didn't want him to suffer a crisis, so chose a beautiful Autumn day, gave him all his favorite goodies and let him go to his eternal rest. It's always so hard. ((hugs))

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Lori. So sorry to hear about Shad. It is so hard to make a decision to let them go even though it is for the best. He didn't have to suffer and he ended his life with dignity and the love of his humans. Hugs to you too.

      Delete
  10. GHM, I'm so sorry about beautiful, gentle Grady. He was the best, so full of love and wonderfulness. I'm glad he was part of your lives, part of the wonderful love you surround your horses with. As hard as it was, I'm sure he was glad you were with him when he passed.
    Thank you for sharing his lovely photos (HUGS)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Joy. We were happy to have him with us for eleven years. He made life around the farm special.

      Delete

It's so nice of you to take the time to visit. I appreciate your stopping by and commenting on what I've written. Even though I sometimes don't have the time to reply to each comment, I do enjoy reading them.