Tuesday, January 31, 2012

One Away

I try to post on the blog and on Facebook. I'll admit I don't stay "up" on the latest technology to really spread our cause. But tonight we reached 99 likes on our Facebook page. Who wants to make it 100???

King. Love those partial blues.

Monday, January 30, 2012


I stepped outside this morning at 5:30am. The sky was filled with stars and Tommy let out a whinny to say he was ready for his breakfast. As I looked over to the barn to see if anyone from the big herd was standing their patiently waiting for their morning grain, I saw Sam, the Belgian. I knew it couldn’t be but he was there.

I’ve had it happen before. It seems to happen more often now than ever before. I guess it’s due to the number of losses we’ve had over the past few years. A quick glance turns one horse into another horse. It always causes me to do a double take because I know my eyes are deceiving me. It’s simply my brain registering what used to be rather than what really is.

What I saw this morning was a combination of King and Dude in the yard light reflection. I’d seen a two-toned horse. With the light shining the way it did and the combination of how King and Dude we standing made it look like Sam was still with us. It’s hard to believe that today marks the one month passing of Sam. I didn’t realize it until just now. Maybe that’s why I thought I saw him this morning. I never did see a sign for Sam when he crossed over, not like I did for Dick the Percheron we lost back in August (when I saw a shooting star that night). Maybe Sam was giving me a sign, I don’t know.

I’ve had the same double take happen a few other times. Earlier this summer I was in the blind pen and I happened to glance up and see my very first horse, Tiny Dictator. I did a double take. Of course it wasn’t Dictator, it was Ivan. If Ivan were to sport a star and a huge snip, along with two hind white socks and a brand, they’d be spitting images of each other. Oh sure, the body shapes are a little different but it’s still fairly the same.

Same goes for Maverick. I’d taken a picture of Maverick at a weird angle. When I was flipping through the photos, I thought it was my beloved Arabian, Ace. Again, I had to do a double take, almost the exact same coloring and almost the exact same stripe. Maverick’s is a little straighter than Ace’s was. Ace also had a little white on his back leg which made his hoof a different color. But at a quick glance, my heart skipped a beat.

The double takes also happen with the dogs. We lost an amazing dog a few years back on Christmas day. Knowing Farley couldn’t be alone, we went to the Humane Society and adopted Gypsy. She has very similar markings to our beloved LeRoy. I guess I have a thing for black and tan dogs. I was cleaning the stalls in the barn and looked up to see LeRoy standing in the doorway. Again, I did a double take. Of course it wasn’t LeRoy, he’d been gone for a few months. It was Gypsy checking out my progress and doing her imitation of supervising.

It’s those quick glances that sometimes make my heart skip a beat. It’s those fleeting images that make me remember those that have gone before us. The other day I was thinking about one my fears. I know, it’s silly. But one of my fears is being forgotten. What will happen when I am gone? Who will remember me? But then a very calming thought came over me. It won’t matter who remembers me on earth, because I will (hopefully) be greeted by all the wonderful animals and people that have gone before me. It’s a little hard to explain; my logic doesn’t always make sense once I type it out.

I’m taking the “Sam Sighting” as a sign that Sam has settled in to Heaven and that he’s found all his friends that have gone before him. It is never easy saying goodbye but knowing that we were able to give them a safe home, love, and a dignified passing is all that I can ask for in life. I only wish that we had the capacity to do the same for more. I’ll be thinking of Sam today.

Light A Candle

I couldn't have said it better myself:


Sunday, January 29, 2012

Lack of Posts

Sorry for the lack of posts. I've been fighting a losing battle with a chest cold. Me + chest cold = nothing getting done except minimal chores. I'll be glad for spring and green pastures. I'm not sure who'll be more happy, me or the horses when spring/summer rolls around.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Tuesday, January 24, 2012


When she wants to, Rabbit can actually move out. She's loving the retirement life.

The Weatherman Was Wrong

The weatherman was wrong, real shocker there. Luckily he was wrong for the better, no below zero temps overnight. I couldn’t figure out how the cold air could possibly come in while we were out doing chores last night. It was so nice without much wind. Because we have drill practice tonight, I decided I’d be proactive and get some of tonight’s chores done last night. I piled extra hay on my wheelbarrow for the mares and I threw an extra sliver of hay on the sled for the ponies. I love being proactive and cutting down on chores when I know I’ll only have a few minutes the next day. I need to be more proactive.

I was digging around in my tack room for a different bit for Jim and I came across an almost new waterproof canvas sheet. I forgot that I even had one, let alone where it went. I guess it’s a sign I need to do some cleaning and organizing to figure out what all I have.

I figured this morning would be cold and the air would practically take my breath away. Nope, I was pleasantly surprised by the damp warmish air that greeted me as I walked out the door. I love still mornings with nothing stirring the air. Of course with the warmer weather we have fog, but it wasn’t too bad. The fog actually made the morning air quieter. Everyone seemed to be fairly calm this morning too. The fog, temps, and quiet really has a calming effect on the herd (or maybe it’s just me). But it was nice to toss out hay and not deal with crabby horses. I love it when everyone gets along.

I counted 90 days from today and we are into April for any precipitation. The last time we had fog was back around Christmas so that puts any precip the end of March. I expect we’ll make up for the lack of snow at the beginning of the winter season at the end of the winter season. But I can definitely handle that instead of the other way around. Luckily this winter hasn’t been as hard as the past two.

Tonight we have drill team practice and I’ll be hauling Maverick this time around. We’ll see if he’s still the same, bored horse he was the last time I started riding him around in circles. He gets so bored riding in an arena but that’s exactly what I need and want. I won’t be using him for drill team but need/want to see what he does. It’ll be nice to have a couple of sanctuary horses representing during practices, at the very least.

Monday, January 23, 2012

The Weekend In Review

We spent last week fighting the cold weather and even colder wind chills. I’ll be glad to see that type of weather disappears. I wasn’t sure what the weather was going to bring us Friday morning as the weatherman had been talking snow and slick roads.

We didn’t have time or energy to unload the stock trailer and decided that the enclosed gooseneck would be the better bet to keep the horses warm while hauling. I hate hauling in the winter but the gooseneck really has been a blessing. I managed to oversleep but still wake up in time to load the horses and hit the road for our 9:30am appointment. Unfortunately Mother Nature and people were against us. We got behind the snow plow going 25mph. Luckily we’d already called the vet to say we were going to be late. Apparently I need to start planning better so I’m not late any more. We lucked out that the vet wasn’t busy due to the weather.

I am cautious when pulling the big gooseneck. I’m still getting used to it, although I’m pulling it every week for drill team practice. But it’s going to take me a while to feel comfortable knowing where everything is at (it was the same when I started pulling the bumper pull stock trailer). After five miles of going 25mph, we finally had a break and I was able to pass. Talk about white knuckles for me. Snowy, slippery roads, pulling a six horse trailer loaded with my kids trying to pass a snow plow with his blade down.

Luckily we made it to the vets’ in one piece and unloaded. We decided to start on Jim first so that we would have plenty of time to work on Thor. We put Thor in a stall because I was worried the noise would upset Thor. Thor was pretty pleased with himself eating hay while Jim got his teeth floated.

Unfortunately, I didn’t think before the vet tranquillized Jim that Jim is actually much smaller than he looks. After the tranq, we all realized that Jim is a light weight. Luckily the vet worked fast and kept a close eye on Jim to make sure he wouldn’t go down. It took until after Thor’s float and hoof trim to wake up. Glad we did Jim first. It didn’t sound like Jim had too many sharp points but I wanted to make sure that he was good to go know that we are using him for drill team practice (and we can show off what a rescue horse can do).

After we pulled Jim out, he took a few wobbly steps and I went back to get Thor. Thor was happily eating away. After the last episode with a different vet, we warned our vet that Thor is a lightweight and it doesn’t take much to knock him out. Because Thor is blind, I wanted to do a hand float instead of a power float. I think the noise would have upset Thor too much and my goal is to keep Thor as calm as possible. It didn’t take long for the vet to float Thor’s teeth. He only had one sharp point and the rest were ok. While Thor was still out of it from the tranq, Mike and I went after Thor’s hooves. When Thor went blind in March, Thor wasn’t adjusting well. He was adjusting better than others and could handle some situations but I knew he couldn’t handle having his feet trimmed in stocks like we’ve done in the past. So I took advantage of the tranquillizers and the stocks and worked at Thor’s feet. He stood without moving (thank you drugs!) and were able to get his feet back to some semblance of normal. I’ll continue to work on his feet while he’s eating his grain but I wanted to spend some time really going after his hooves. Hopefully now we can manage his hooves a little bit better. We’ll see how it goes.

Luckily Jim woke up about the time we were finishing up Thor’s hooves. Thor was pretty much awake by the time we finished. Thank you half dose of tranquillizer. They loaded into the trailer like champs and then we headed home.

I ended up leaving Jim in the barn to have his morning hay. When I went to let Thor back into his pen, Queen decided she wanted to escape and started wandering around. I had the barn door open so she wandered in there to see if there was any leftover grain in her stall. I decided I’d leave Queen in with Jim for the afternoon to munch on the leftover hay from a previous night.

When I did let Jim out, we went straight over to Maverick and started playing. It was rather cute to watch those two. Who would have thought that those two would best of friends. It’s an odd combination. But were playing and rearing up. I so wish I would have had a camera. I rarely see the horses play like that. I guess Maverick missed Jim and Jim missed Maverick. Such an odd friendship.

I ended up doing chores early Friday afternoon so that I could make it to the Mitchell Horse Sale. But by the time 5:30pm rolled around, I was exhausted. I hadn’t hardened my heart to what I would see and couldn’t face it. I feel guilty that I didn’t go. Even watching them to remember them is better than not being remembered or forgotten. But I couldn’t bring anyone home and I couldn’t bring myself to deal with knowing that my hands are tied. Maybe next month I’ll attend but we’ll see. I need a few days to harden my heart against the cruelties people dole out.

What I can’t understand is how cruel people can be. Thor, who is completely blind, trusted me to load him into trailer, lead him into a new area, and protect him during all of it. He trusted me to keep him safe. And yet, there are so many people who don’t even think twice about beating a horse, starving a horse, etc. I can’t fathom it. It’s beyond my comprehension. The trust the horses put into us and the deception people deliver to the horse is beyond what I can handle these days.

Saturday was a terribly nasty day. Blowing snow and terrible winds kept me inside for the majority of the day. We rushed through the evening chores so that we could attend the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation Banquet. It was nice to get away for a little while and be surrounded by good people fighting for a good cause (even if it wasn’t horses). I had debated on putting the horses in Friday night as the temps were supposed to plummet and the winds were still fierce but I didn’t think standing in a barn for that long a period would do anyone good.

Sunday was warm and quiet when we woke. I can’t believe what a difference no wind makes. Of course, the temps were warmer too! I’d left my phone in the truck on Friday and didn’t think to grab it until Sunday morning. Sure enough, lots of messages. We hooked the trailer up and headed to drill team practice at 2pm. As always, I was running late so we didn’t start practice on time. I need to start telling myself to be at places an hour earlier so that I am not late any more! We practiced for a little while and then headed home to do chores.

We pushed a round bale in to the blind pen. The bale only lasted two weeks. I think the previous bale wasn’t as good (too stemmy). We pushed the remaining portion of the old bale over the fence line for the big herd to rummage through to see what was good. Those old horses in the blind pen are sweethearts. I threw some alfalfa for them and they happily munched on that while we had the gate wide opened pushing snow, the old bale, and then the new bale around. I don’t even think any of the three picked up their heads to see what was going on. They do love their food.

I know it doesn’t sound like we did that much this weekend but after fighting the cold temps all last week, having a quiet weekend was necessary. I don’t think the weather is supposed to be too bad this week, except for tonight’s below zero temps . But it’s only for tonight and the weather looks good the rest of the week. I’m anxious for spring now that we have a few inches of snow. But on the bright side, maybe now the horses won’t roll in the pen and pick up cockleburs!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Busy Days

Exhausted. The last few days have been jam packed with activities. When I have more energy tomorrow, I'll post what all we've been doing. Until then, here's a few pictures to tide you over.




Thor (with the eye that was already blind when we got him. Sorry, not as flattering of a picture of Thor as I should probably post).





Maverick (with Brego and Zeke in the background)

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Blankets, blankets, and more blankets

It’s a good thing I didn’t hit snooze one extra time. I was hoofing it to get everything done this morning even with getting up earlier than normal (ok, getting up when I should be getting up). I’m glad that I had the stalls ready the night before, otherwise chores would have taken over two hours to finish last night. As it was, we walked through the door two hours almost on the dot after getting everyone settled for the long night. Let me just say, I am not fond of this cold weather. Everyone seemed pretty chipper last night doing chores.

I pulled the more delicate flowers into the barn and then went about blanketing everyone else (who I had blankets for). I wish I would have had the good sense to try on blankets this past weekend when the weather was nice. I had to do some fast adjusting last night to get some of the blankets right. Luckily Sam’s old blanket fits Thor almost to a T. I was pretty shocked. Those two have such different body shapes/sizes but Sam’s blanket works perfectly for Thor, so now it’s Thor’s blanket. Thor was pretty content to eat his alfalfa while I messed with the blanket. Babe gave me some trouble because I couldn’t get the front chest buckles buckled. She wouldn’t lift her head from her alfalfa, the stinker! I also put a blanket on Brego since he wasn’t going into the barn. He’s a little bit thinner skinned but he’s young. He does like to hang out in the new leanto. I figured he’d be happier with a blanket and hanging outside with Ivan than between two grumpy horses in the barn. I wasn’t sure how well blanketing Brego would go. I haven’t really done too much with him in the form of handling, saddling, blanketing, etc. But he took it like a pro. I think he knew what I was trying to do.

This morning when I went out to do chores, I was surprised that the wind wasn’t more fierce. But the temps were below zero and I guess with just a little bit of a breeze we were dealing with twenty below zero wind chills. I guess I was rushing around so much that I didn’t feel the cold too much. I did manage to get a different blanket on Flower. She is definitely NOT a 72. I’ll have to figure out a different blanket for her but I didn’t want her to go without for today’s cold weather. Bo is also NOT a 72. I put the brand new blanket on him this morning too. I love trying out new blankets but I wish I would have had more time to play. Zeke got his old blanket with the tail flap that’s half ripped off. Hopefully Maverick leaves it alone. I put Jim in Rain’s green blanket after I fixed the belly clip. I should have switched Jim and Rain’s blankets so that Rain could be better covered but he’d been wearing his old heavy canvas blanket for the past couple days so I didn’t want to do any swapping since rain was warm. I don’t like the canvas blanket as well since it doesn’t protect as much of the belly but it’s sure heavy and that’s what Rain needs right now. I also threw the old red canvas blanket on Rabbit. I wasn’t sure how well she would handle the blanket but she wore one all last winter. I think she appreciated it. Queen was already tucked in her blanket and was happy to get into the barn last night. I think she just wanted her grain.

I do hate letting the horses out of the barn after putting blankets on. The horses act like it’s new horses instead of the same horses just wearing different colors. I swear they all freak out and act like I’m putting new horses into the herd. Even Mayhem got squirrely after I put the red canvas blanket on Rabbit. Luckily Rabbit wont’ take any gruff and has a fairly big bubble. She put Mayhem in her place pretty quick.

I wanted to leave everyone in blankets today because the high for today is only 1 degree above with wind chills still in the 20 below zone. I’m not too thrilled with this type of weather and I don’t think the horses are either. But I’ll rest easy knowing that they are staying warm (as long as Maverick keeps his grubby hooves of the blankets!)

Luckily the low for tonight isn’t supposed to be as cold and I don’t think they are predicting the wind chills like they were for last night and today. I still evening is so much easier to do chores in. Unfortunately, the weatherman is now calling for 100% chance of snow tomorrow. It’ll make the trek to the vet a little bit interesting. Hopefully the snow will hold off until after we get home. I would prefer to take the big trailer but I am not good at maneuvering around the vet’s parking lot; it’s pretty small as far as I’m concerned. I don’t think I can get the big trailer turned around without risking hitting a vehicle. Instead I’ll use the stock trailer and keep the blankets on. I’m not happy about it but that’s about my only option. Unfortunately the stock trailer is full. I scored a deal a couple weeks ago when someone was selling stall doors. I picked up three for less than the price of one! But we’ve never unloaded the doors and they are super heavy. I guess we’ll be unloading doors tonight.

The weatherman also said that Friday night’s temps are supposed to be about nine below zero. I have no idea about the wind chill. I took all of Friday off to go to the vet, get chores done early, and head to the Mitchell Horse Sale. I’m worried about the weather. No one is going to want to be sitting in the stands when they start the loose horses because the doors are pretty much open the entire time. Loose horses only get about 30 seconds in the ring (at the most). I guess I’ll just do chores early, put horses in the barn and head to the sale wearing layers. I hope the weatherman changes their tune but we’ll see. An evening sale with super cold temps doesn’t mean there’s much hope for those poor loose horses. I’m more than worried for them. I sure wish we were in a position to take one or two in.

I’m hoping tonight’s chores don’t take two hours to finish. With the colder temps though, I wouldn’t doubt that it takes that long. Last night as Mike and I were walking to the house after wrapping up chores, we started taking bets on how late it really was. I expect we’ll do the same thing tonight.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Cold Temps On Their Way

Well, I opened my big fat trap and sure enough the quiet disolves. I looked at the weather forecast yesterday before heading out to do chores. It's a good thing because we are dropping into some nasty weather. Luckily the high today is 29 but there's a wind chill. I have Rain and Queen snug in their blankets for the day but I'll have to do some rearranging tonight to figure out who goes where.

I've lost three stalls and haven't had time to repair for this winter. I'm really kicking myself right now too. But I did do a lot of prep work last night to make tonight's chores a little bit easier, knowing that the weather was going to be bitterly cold by the time I get out to do chores. I like having happy horses, not grumpy horses.

I prepped the stalls and threw out extra straw in the new leanto, "Habitat for Horses" shelter, and with the ponies. I should probably be throwing out new bales of straw every week or so just to make life that much more comfortable.

This morning I couldn't find Queen. I assume she was in the shelter, snoozing on the straw. I noticed Brego was in the leanto. He even decided to go for a roll in the straw before coming up for breakfast. The ponies didn't care at all for my extra efforts but I'm not surprised.

I'm anxious and a little nervous about this weather. The way I have the stalls set up and the pens set up aren't as ideal as I'd like them to be so I'm struggling with who should go where. It's going to be a guessing game tonight.

I expect I'll be blanketing the horses in the barn for tomorrow's weather. I'm going to have to do some fast thinking to get a few of the blankets repaired tonight and on different horses. It's all stuff I wanted to do months ago but never had the time or energy.

With the high tomorrow being only 4 degrees, I want to make sure all the "delicate flowers" are covered and stay warm to avoid the wind chill. Thank goodness we haven't had to deal with this type of weather for the past month. I am guessing I would still be as ill-prepared as I am.

I do get to try out the two brand new blankets I bought at TSC, yet another clearance find! I don't have the corral panels set up yet to put Maverick in (he demolishes everyone else's blankets) so I'm going to keep my fingers crossed that he doesn't decide to rip up a blanket during this cold snap. That gelding drives me nuts some days. This morning Maverick and Rain got in to it. They were just playing but to stand and watch those two play made me appreciate the little things in life.

Keep your fingers crossed that the weatherman is wrong and we won't get the wind chills like they are prediciting. The older the herd gets, the more I worry.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Winter, Candy Canes, Vet, and Cinderblocks

Sorry, I couldn't think of anything to name this post.

Knock on wood, we haven’t had too much excitement lately. I almost consider that a victory! The weather was beautiful this weekend so I snuck out for a few hours Sunday to do some cleanup in the hay shed. I’ve been neglecting the loose hay and thought it best to get it cleaned up before the predicted snow started to fly. We also spent a good portion of that time moving and stacking pallets that the hay used to sit on. The horses were happy to get a midafternoon snack and I was happy to get everything cleaned up.

In our efforts to get things cleaned up, we needed to park the big trailer. No problem, park it by the barn so it’s out of the way of snow but can easily pull it out for drill team practice. I’m now taking Zeke (non-rescue) and Jim (rescue) to practices so at least we’ll have one representing the sanctuary! We unhooked the trailer, parked the truck, and I started chores Sunday evening. I scored a Weatherbetta fly sheet for $15 at Tractor Supply. Hellooooo clearance! So glad I checked. I’m not sure who will wear it but I couldn’t pass up that deal. It was originally $64. Crazy! I’ll admit that I’m a total clearance/deal shopper! We unloaded the grain and I asked Mike to put the flysheet in the trailer. I was too lazy to find a spot in the messy tack room (it needs a severe cleaning overhaul). Well, as I’m dumping grain into the barrels, Mike asked if he could get my help right away. Apparently, the ground was thawing and along with the placement of the concrete cinderblock, the cinderblock broke into five different pieces. It’s a good thing Mike saw the broken cinderblock when he did. I can’t imagine what kind of damage we would have been dealing with had the trailer fallen. I’m guessing we would have been facing replacing or repairing the jack. We were both thanking our lucky stars that Mike caught it when he did. It sure didn’t take long for that cinderblock to break. So for those that may possibly use a cinderblock to hold up your trailer, put a piece of wood underneath the cinderblock so there’s less strain when the ground freezes and thaws.

It’s a good thing we spent the time on Sunday cleaning. We had to run errands all day Monday and dealt with dropping temps and wind during evening chores last night. I decided that I better get a blanket on Rain because the winds were strong and the weatherman predicted snow. I had a different blanket on Rain earlier but he managed to break one of the belly band clips so I switched him over to his old blanket (that Jim now uses). It needs to be repaired but I figured it would hold well enough for this cold snap. Hopefully I’ll have time to figure out how to even repair the darn thing (either of the blankets for that matter). I swear I’m not allowed to have anything nice!

The wind was pretty fierce last night while doing evening chores. I wasn’t sure the “Habitat for Horses” shelter was going to survive the east wind. Luckily it did but it’s already taken a beating. I guess I should have put it in a different spot. Mike contacted the manufacturer to get new parts already. Hopefully next summer we can come up with a better location or better anchoring system. I’m sure he’ll put his skills to good use and figure something out. Last night when I went to feed Babe, Thor, and Queen, I couldn’t find Babe. I couldn’t imagine Babe being in the shelter what with the wind blowing and making such a racket in the shelter. So I climbed over the gate to investigate, thinking maybe she’d gone down and I couldn’t see her. Nope, she’d been in the shelter with all that racket and hadn’t heard me hollering for her. When she emerged, she started in on her whinnying telling me I should have come and got her sooner! That girl cracks me up.

I was in Walmart and went through the clearance section. They had boxes and boxes of left over candy canes. I stocked up. I think we are set now for a long time. Babe’s owner told me that Babe loves candy canes so I had to stock up on them. I wanted to see if some of the other herd liked candy canes too. It’s about half and half. But we are stocked up for a little while anyway. I’ll never be able to look at candy canes again without thinking of Babe!

Thor and Jim have an appointment with the vet this Friday. I want to get their teeth floated. Since bringing Thor home last summer, I haven’t had his teeth floated. He’d dropped some weight earlier this winter but I’m now graining him. But I don’t want to take any chances so I’m hauling him in to get his teeth floated. It’ll have to be a hand float instead of a power float. I don’t want to upset him. We are also going to work on his hooves. Ever since he went totally blind, he’s been really uncomfortable. It’s only been in the last month that he’s settled down to the way he used to be. I didn’t want to stress him out by trying to load him into the farrier’s stocks to trim his feet so I had to make the decision to let his feet go longer than what I want. But since he’ll be tranquilized for his float, we’ll be able to work on his feet and not worry about getting stopped on or kicked. Now that we are using Jim for the drill team, I want to make sure that he’s ready for the extra work. Jim has a tendency to lose weight over the winter. It’s nothing drastic but because I always keep a close eye on everyone, I could tell that he’d lost a few pounds. He’s on grain and he’s packed the pounds back on but if there’s any chance the weight loss is due to his teeth I want to nip that in the bud right away. Jim likes beet pulp but only in moderation. I guess he doesn’t like the amount I typically give to Flower. Last night he turned up his nose at it. I guess I have to put it in Sam’s old beet pulp dish for him to like it. Go figure. If they can snitch it, it’s a wonderful treat. If it’s something I give them, they aren’t interested.

This Friday is also the Mitchell Horse Sale. I’m planning on attending. I can’t bring anyone home. I promised Mike that I would sit on my hands. But I didn’t promise that I wouldn’t be waving my butt in the air to bid! If anyone wants to go with, I’d sure love the company. They are expecting 40 horses through the consigned section and who knows how many through the loose section. I’ll be there with pen and paper in hand to write down stats. It’ll be an exhausting night. I’m sure to drive home in tears. The consigned horses start at 6:30pm followed by the loose horses. I sure hope I’m not one of the few people left in the stands at the very end.

I had thought winter was here but the colder temps and snow finally made it last night. I guess I need to start paying attention to the weatherman now that winter is finally here. At least it waited until mid-January before coming. On the bright side, it’ll be moisture into the pastures, which we greatly need.

I’m not sure if I’ll post again this week or not. There really hasn’t been anything too exciting as of late to report, which is exactly what I like and need right now. Luckily 2012 has been a fairly quiet year so far with no emergencies. I think it’s about time we finally get a break.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Pro-Slaughter Challenge

Absolutely love this guy! He's put up a challenge and I thought I would spread his challenge.


Save a Horse. Be Bold.

Wow is all I have to say:


What a well written piece. Everything he says rings true in my heart. I do love the part about horses never lying to you, never running you down to others, never cheating on you, never leaving you for more money, etc.

Project Sage, another fantastic hores rescue, is having a fundraiser. You can buy a t-shirt that says "save a horse. be bold."

Those two thoughts really ring true. It's time we all stepped up and did our part. Lets make 2012 the year we all did our part to better the world for horses.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Bo - Then and Now

As promised, here are pics of Bo. Since Blogger is hating me and my pictures, I posted the first month and ten months later.

The first five pictures are of Bo the day after the auction. He'd spent the night in the barn. The pictures don't show how bad he really is. The winter coat hides a lot too.

(sorry, blogger hating on my pictures)

The next set of pictures are of Bo a week later on 3/20/2011. He'd been wearing a blanket to it's a little bit easier to tell how thin he really was at the time but the pictures are still deceiving. Even after groomings and blanketing, the crusted hair was still so thick.

(stupid blogger)

The following are five days later on 3/25/2011 after still wearing a blanket every day to ward against even the slightest bit of cold.

The following set of pictures are from just the other day (just shy of 10 months). My apologizes for the cockleburs.

Winter Has Arrived

Amazing what a difference 24 hours makes. Yesterday morning I woke to blustery winds. I figured I’d be doing morning chores in the cold but was pleasantly surprised to be greeted with warm temps, no snow, and water bucks completely free of ice. When I left for the paying job, I saw a few snowflakes and by the time I’d traversed three of the four corridors of the I90 corridor, it was snowing pretty well.

Fast forward to last night’s chores. Cold temps, blustery winds whipping everything around, and grumpy horses. I didn’t get out to do chores until after dark so there was the added bonus of the ever dropping temperatures after the sun set. I was none too pleased and frankly exhausted by the time I had everyone fed. Luckily the snow had stopped falling (horizontally) but the winds were still strong. The poor little “Habitat for Horses” shelter isn’t fairing very well. The winds really beat it up last night. Hopefully after the wind dies down, we can go and re-secure everything so there’s less flapping. Thor, Babe, and Queen were content to keep their heads buried in the round bale and ignore our efforts with the shelter…figures.

This morning was an even bigger wake up call. Frozen water buckets, hungry horses, wind, and snow. I thought I saw Rain shivering but when I pulled his blanket out, he decided he didn’t want to wear it. I guess he knows when he wants the blanket and when he doesn’t. Darn kid. I guess I should have pulled the other blanket that was quieter but I’m sure he still wouldn’t have had anything to do with it.

Bo on the other hand came up when I was walking away to see what I had. Today marks our 10 month anniversary together. I’ll post pictures (hopefully tonight). He’s still thinner than I prefer but I like my horses fat in the winter. He’s overly vocal about his evening grain. This morning he met me at the fence and let out a huge whinny to tell me he was anxious for his breakfast. I may need to increase his grain ration or add in something else. I have a few ideas up my sleeve I’ll try before deciding on his new and improved diet. For his sake, I’m glad that we have had such a nice winter so far. Bo has heart and a strong will to live. I can’t imagine any other horse (besides Savanna) that has that strong a will to live. Just remembering how thin he was amazes me to think that he survived. I’m so glad that he’s now safe at Borderlands. He will be a constant figure at Borderlands until the last day of his life and a symbol of why we need to do what we do. Whoever thinks it’s just the old and crippled horses going to slaughter need to do some research. Had Bo had any weight on him, he would have gone to the feedlot and we wouldn’t have been blessed with his presence. It would have been a shame to lose such a fantastic horse. Even the well broke horses (the ones everyone is looking for) can end up at slaughter if they don’t have someone looking out for them.

I heard a nasty rumor that the temps are going to stay in the single digits for most of the day and our low will be zero. I’m not looking forward to tonight’s chores. I plan on tossing out extra hay again to make sure everyone is happy and full. I’m ready for spring.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

A Good Blog Post

Another good horse sanctuary asking for help: http://homeatlastsanctuary.blogspot.com/2012/01/fund-raising.html

Other than not being tax deductable, I thing Borderlands is similar to Home At Last. Most of the horses at Borderlands didn't have a future. The animals at Home at Last were at the end of the line. I hope that we are never forced to see the same hardships as they are.

Much of what the founders of Home At Last say is echoed at Borderlands. I'm amazed at how closely we think on the same lines. If you are looking to donate to a 501c3 rescue, Home At Last is a sanctuary Borderlands approves (not that we have much weight but what we've seen has been very up front with nothing but the care and love of the animals as their number one concern.)

Sunday, January 8, 2012

2012 Cheat Sheet

Let me say just one thing before going any farther. I've been under the weather for the entire month of December so the place and the horses don't look at nice as they should. But I did want to finally add some pictures and thought I could give everyone a cheat sheet so you know who I'm talking about all the time. It'll also help me remember how old everyone is.


9 year old registered mini gelding


11-12 year old shetland gelding (guessing at the age)

34 year old appaloosa mare


24 year old belgian gelding


30 year old appaloosa mare


7 year old breeding stock paint gelding

Dude (My Blazing Skip)

15 year old registered quarter horse gelding


14 year old arabian gelding

King (Peppy Cutter King)

14 year old registered paint gelding


11 year old thoroughbred gelding


23-24 year old tennesee walker gelding


19 year old arabian gelding


7 year old quarter horse gelding


11 year old national show horse gelding


7 year old quarter horse gelding


2 year old quarter horse filly (still need to register her)

Rabbit (Rabbit Choker Niki)

19 year old registered quarter horse mare


25 year old appaloosa mare