Looks like winter will be here tonight. 80% chance of rain/snow for tonight and then a 70% chance of rain on Tuesday and Wednesday. I’m already starting to worry about the hay supply. I’m not sure if we have enough. I have been throwing out hay since the first of October (in the evenings) but this morning I started throwing out hay in the mornings as well. Only Zeke was up to snag all the hay but hopefully someone else will come up to enjoy. I don’t want anyone to lose weight before going into winter.
I am going to have to cut back on the ponies’ hay. They are fat. I’m always worried about Bo (and probably always will) but Rabbit is not to the weight that I’d prefer her to be also. She may go in the barn tonight. Now that she’s older, she has a harder time warming up. I can’t put a blanket or sheet on her while she’s in the pasture because she tears them to shreds. I would rather keep them out of the drylot for a little bit longer so they can graze. I don’t really like that small drylot because there’s not as much protection from the wind. I’m hoping that maybe I can convince Mike to help put up a better wind break. There’s always so much that needs to get done before winter hits.
I am definitely not ready for winter. I need to repair the two stalls in the hay shed before winter and get corral panels set up also so that we have an extra temporary stall in the hay shed. I have a terrible feeling that if we don’t have a bad winter, we will at the very least have a bitterly cold winter, which makes life miserable for everyone. I want to make sure everyone can be snug in a stall and out of any fierce winds that we may get. I worry for those horses that can’t find protection from the wind and cold this winter but at this point, there’s really nothing more I can do.
I was just thinking back to last year. It was a year ago this past weekend that saw me in the Emergency Room. I am happy to say I didn’t go back this year to make it a yearly event. I am hoping that our hospital visits are over and that everyone in the family stays healthy. I keep thinking that the other shoe will drop and we’ll have to go in for another major health scare. Hopefully I am just oversensitive to all the hospital visits. I would much prefer a quiet winter this year!
I’m hoping that the weather doesn’t turn too quickly. We still need to clean out the drylot and spread the manure in the farmer’s field. I’m not sure there’s enough time though so we’ll see. There’s also the big barn door that requires repair before we get too much more wind. I’m afraid between the horses and the wind, the barn door isn’t going to stay on for very much longer!
I did get to enjoy some time outside yesterday after a day of riding with friends. Mike and Garrett were in Madison for the day so I had a couple of hours to mess around outside. I decided that I better take care of some cocklebur issues. I know, I’m a terrible horsey mom for doing it but…I roached Mayhem, Rabbit, Tommy, and Skippy. Tommy and Skippy look rather cute in their new haircuts. I feel bad for having to roach them but there really wasn’t much of an option other than to spend a good couple of hours pulling cockleburs. I decided that they could go with a shorter look for the winter. I forget that the ponies have different patterns on the other side of their neck so it’s fun to see. Skippy doesn’t look like a total hairball now that he isn’t sporting an afro forlock. Same goes for Tommy!
I was worried about Rabbit’s eye. I think she has uveitis in the right eye so we keep a fly mask on her almost all the time. I decided that with the haircut that we would pull the fly mask and keep it off for a while. I need to see if I can get a better flymask for her to protect her eye from the blinding sun on the snow. I’ve also taken to graining her now that the cooler weather has set in. That means, I have to halter Mayhem so that Rabbit gets all her grain along with her heaves medication. I should have been doing it all along but figure now is better than later. Mayhem surprisingly stands patiently while I hang over the gate to get the halter on. In the past she started getting naughty and running away from me when she saw the halter. Now she patiently waits while I fumble with the halter and hang all over her. I’m calling it “training” but in reality it’s just me being awkward about getting a halter on. I’m hoping that the heaves medicine will help Rabbit. She always has heaves but it seems like it’s actually worse when I grain her. I always turn her grain into a mash so the heaves aren’t caused by any dust. Rabbit definitely has some health issues (heaves, uveitis, and a lame/weak back end).
I also figured that I’d better top out the water tanks while the weather was fairly nice. Apparently I ruined a hose by leaving it out. It was taking FOREVER to fill a water tank. I thought we were having a water pressure issue. No, just a hose issue. So now we need to go buy another 300 foot hose to replace the one that I ruined.
While I was out doing chores last night, around 6pm, you could tell that the cold front was coming through. Just before I was going to throw out hay, the wind picked up. I forget how much I loathe wind and hay (at the same time). Luckily I was able to be up wind when throwing the hay (except this morning when I got a face full). I’m already dreading the daily dose of hay in the face, down the shirt, and in my ears! I got spoiled with round bales last year. We may be in search of more hay in the middle of winter so we may very well go with round bales.