Thursday, February 27, 2014

Fundraiser Items for Sale

I finally had a chance to take pictures of some of our fundraiser items that will be for sale at the Easter Fundraiser set for Saturday, April 12th from 1-4pm.

I'm still figuring out actual prices but if you have any questions, just let me know and I'll be happy to answer them. Hopefully some of these items will peek your interest in coming out to the fundraiser!

 Bridle/saddle/purse charm

  Bridle/saddle/purse charm

  Bridle/saddle/purse charm

  Bridle/saddle/purse charm

  Bridle/saddle/purse charm

  Bridle/saddle/purse charm

  Bridle/saddle/purse charm

 Horseshoe cross

 Hores shoe cross
Grain Bags


I keep feeling like I'm behind. There's too many cliches to use about being go far behind. I haven't been paying any attention to the weather. Frankly I'm just trying to get through each day. And then I hear that we are supposed to get more snow. And not just snow, double digit subzero temps. Let me tell you, I was NOT prepared to hear that news.

I've had the horses in for the past two nights because its' been teens below zero. Dude is starting to get naughty. He's figured out how to pop the handle open on the barn door and walk in. So while I was getting stalls ready, Dude walked in. I was irritated with him but decided to stick him in a different stall just to keep him quiet. The problem with the stall he went into is he's the first one in the barn but also the last one out of the barn. That'll teach him to try and get in the barn. Hopefully it wont' be as frigid cold tonight but I have no idea. The weatherman keeps changing his outlook on the forcast.

I do know we are supposed to get snow tomorrow night and then Sat and Sun we are going to be dealing with terribly cold weather. I need to get everything done in the next two days so that I don't have to be out for very long over the weekend. The highs for Sat and Sunday are 1 and 2 degrees. Oh yippee.

On the bright side, with the colder weather, I have been able to work on a few items that will be for sale at the Easter Fundraiser. I've posted pictures on our Facebook page. They are bridle/purse charms or keychain rings...however you want to look at it. I also posted pictures of two crosses Mike made with horse shoes. I'll keep posting pictures as long as we continue to make items for sale at the fundraiser. There's just so much that needs to be done I feel like I'm not able to keep my head above water on this fundraiser for some reason.  Maybe after the Tri State Horse Expo I'll feel like I have more tme to get things done. We'll see.

Until then, go check out the pictures. And if you see something, come to our fundraiser, April 12th!!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Dog Rescue In Action

Please read the following. I know it's not horse related but just because we arent' talking horses, doesn't mean we shouldn't help. The Pine Ridge Reservation is across the state from Borderlands but it's still in our state. If you can help....

Subject: UPDATE: Rez dog SWEEP, S. DAKOTA - Oglala Sioux Tribe, Pine Ridge Rez - # 1

K C Willis, his friends from the Lakotas and Oglala Sioux and the non-tribal folks are moving along with solid plans and great intentions.
What they need is the support of us distant from the scene:

* deliver food, vet supplies, crates [debit cards are great because they can be exchanged for what is needed in nearby towns];
* be willing to pull dogz for care until rescue groups come in to take them [unless some of you are allowed to rescue]
* help with transport;


From: KC Willis >
Date: Mon, Feb 24, 2014 at 5:37 PM

Hello my friends..... In the next month or so the Oglala Sioux Tribe of the Pine Ridge Reservation will begin their bi-annual "sweep" of the Rez Villages. We are grateful for the reprieve, as they were supposed to start a few weeks ago. Stray dogs will be gathered up and killed....shot. The recent maulings by packs and the suffering of the starving and injured strays (of which there are hundreds and hundreds) are prompting this action to take place earlier than usual. The tribe has reached out to us and given us the OK to begin rounding up stray dogs or litters of puppies. We will be doing this with the help of some Lakota friends involved in our program. This is an effort on the tribe's part to save some of the dogs...although many will be killed. In the future we will put together a long-term plan to change the way the tribe (who has no animal control/vet/ shelter etc) does this and to put spay and neuter programs in place.

If you know anyone who could transport dogs, or if you know any shelters or rescues who could take a few or many...please contact me right away at lightshinelakota@ (<@yahoo. com) We have rescued over 40 dogs in the past 10 days. If you would like to help with food and meds for the dogs that are rescued, please Paypal us at the same e-mail address.

Message me if you are in the Boulder County area in Colorado and can donate a carrier or food or anything. I will give you my street address. Let's all network like crazy and see if we can get this done. We have been given the OK by the tribe to get the dogs....what we need is

* help with the care of the dogs and puppies until we can transport to other rescues AND
* we need help with transport and
* we need rescues and shelters to take some of them as soon after we rescue them as possible.
Please let me know if you have any thoughts or can help in any way with connections you might have etc.

We do not just rescue puppies....we rescue any dog in any condition that is in distress. If they need help our motto is "That&# 39;s our dog!" If you are a breed specific rescue, we are probably not the organization for you as we get very, very few pure bred anything on the Reservation. ...and if you are only interested in fluffy puppies....we are definitely not the place for you. We are looking for people who want to save dogs that are on death row....period.' s just this death row is the size of the state of Rhode Island.

Thank you so much! Please share......KC Willis

wil j wellisch
2201 lamar street
edgewater, colorado, 80214
303-235-0550< tel:303-235- 0550>

2nd Annual Easter Fundraiser

Sorry the text is so small. I wanted to get all the information without having to retype it. Ok, call me lazy. I'll get all the info posted again so it's easier to read but I wanted to get the specifics out so you all can see what fun we have scheduled for April 12th!!

Don't forget to mark your calendars! Can't wait to see you all there!

Interesting Post

Another interesting read

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Seven Years Ago

Seven years ago today I lost my first horse, my dream horse. He was the first horse we said goodbye to. In losing Dictator I realized I wanted to change our perspective and focus on the old horses. Of course it took me a bit to actually get to that point but that's our focus as of today, seven years later. We want to offer a permanent home to old horses so that they may live out their golden years in retirement. It could be that these old warriors are with us for years to come or it could be that they are with us for only a few short months. But no matter the length of time, we want to offer a safe sanctuary for those that have worked their entire life and deserve a chance to relax.

My one regret with Dictator's passing is that I wasn't with him at the time. He went in the middle of the night, which was his way. He always wanted to do things his way. But after knowing that I wasn't there, I vowed that for the rest, I would be with them until their last breath and that they would know love and kindness.

I consider each horse who has passed through our barn to be a blessing. It is an honor to say that we were the caretakers of these magnificent animals who gave their all to please others. It is an honor and a privilege to care for these horses. Some might question why I prefer the old horses. It's their wisdom and their knowledge that I can turn to.

So although the passing of Dictator is as hard today as it was seven years ago, I will not cry today but rejoice in knowing that I was the privileged one to have known Dictator, and to have known all those that have stayed at the Sanctuary.

You may not be on this earth, but you are in my heart and soul. We miss you Tiny Dictator.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Onward and Upward

I love when the county right next to us is in a Winter Weather Advisory and the county that we live in is only in a Wind Chill Advisory. The only problem is, we live three miles from the county line and no one tells Mother Nature she’s supposed to turn off the bad weather right at the county line.  I’m not too thrilled with doing chores tonight but it’s only going to get worse the rest of this week.
This entire week we are supposed to have lows in the subzero range. So much for having spring. Sure hope those robins find some place warm and out of the wind to protect themselves during this latest cold snap. Although it is the end of February so there’s hope that spring will be around the corner shortly.
I’m debating on putting horses in tonight. We are supposed to be below zero but I’m getting conflicting reports on how cold it’s going to actually be (and when those subzero temps are going to arrive). I’m sure when I go out to do chores, I’ll decide to put them in anyway. I’d rather have them happy and warm in a stall than grumpy and standing out in the wind. Ok, so they won’t actually be in the wind but they somehow know that being in a stall is way better during this type of weather.
I don’t have stalls ready because I wasn’t expecting cold weather. I haven’t seen a weather report in about a week. Oops, that’ll teach me!
On Saturday we went and picked up three round bales that were donated. I’m excited to use them. We’ll probably push those bales in when the Tri State Horse Expo arrives. I’ll be scrambling to get everywhere I need to so won’t have a lot of time to get home and do chores. It’ll be nice to let the horses gorge themselves.
Speaking of hay, we finally went through all the big squares in the barn. I always forget how spoiled I am to have the big squares in the barn. The big squares in the hay shed are ok but I don’t have a light overhead to help shine light over everything. So now I’m trying to manhandle hay in the dark or by the light of the flashlight. I’ll have to wait until the weekends to pick up the loose hay. There’s no sense in letting that good hay to go waste! I’ve threatened to put up a couple of corral panels and run a couple horses on the concrete around the hayshed, hay barn, and pens so that the horses can eat up all the loose hay that floats around when I toss the hay over the fence.
I’m hoping for a fairly quiet week where we just deal with cold temps and that’s about it. I’m trying to work on Sanctuary fundraiser stuff every night. But last night I petered out and fell asleep by 9:30pm with all the lights on and tv blaring. Some days I wonder how I make it through the day. We have 49 days until the Easter Fundraiser and I’m starting to get frantic over making sure everything is done and we have plenty of time to advertise. Hopefully advertising will be my goal this week. There’s just one area of question I have to figure out before moving forward.
I guess we’ll continue, onward and upward (otherwise we’ll freeze to the ground).

Winter Returns

So much for the lovely weather we had for the past few days. We are going back down into subzero temps at night all week. That means the hard keepers are going in every night this week. If I thought I was exhausted from this weekend, I'll be even more exhausted by Friday night after chores.

Here's what NOAA is saying:

  • Today Snow, mainly after 9am. High near 15. Light east wind increasing to 5 to 10 mph in the afternoon. Chance of precipitation is 100%. Total daytime snow accumulation of around 2 inches.
  • Tonight Snow, mainly before 11pm. Low around -7. Wind chill values as low as -22. Northeast wind around 10 mph becoming northwest after midnight. Chance of precipitation is 100%. New snow accumulation of around an inch possible.
  • Tuesday Areas of blowing snow after noon. Mostly sunny, with a high near 12. Wind chill values as low as -23. Blustery, with a northwest wind 10 to 15 mph increasing to 15 to 20 mph in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 30 mph.
  • Tuesday Night Patchy blowing snow before 9pm. Mostly clear, with a low around -8. Wind chill values as low as -23. North northwest wind 5 to 15 mph becoming west after midnight.
  • Wednesday Patchy blowing snow after noon. Sunny, with a high near 24. West southwest wind 10 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 25 mph.
  • Wednesday Night Mostly clear, with a low around -6.
  • Thursday Sunny, with a high near 5.
  • Thursday Night Partly cloudy, with a low around -7.
  • Friday Partly sunny, with a high near 11.
  • Friday Night Mostly cloudy, with a low around -5.
  • Saturday Partly sunny, with a high near 5.
  • Saturday Night A chance of snow. Mostly cloudy, with a low around -3. Chance of precipitation is 30%.
  • Sunday A chance of snow. Cloudy, with a high near 9. Chance of precipitation is 30%.

Oh goodie... :-(

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Busy Work

Mike and I have been busy today working on fundraiser items for sale. I'll have to post pictures. Mike made a beautiful horseshoe cross. It's bigger than the other horseshoe crosses that he's made. It's actually a different design. I'm going to have to have him make me one because I love the design so much.

I've also been working on bridle and purse charms. I'm not sure if they are turning out ok or not. I'll post pictures and let you be the judge of them. Mike has also been working on making horse shoe nail crosses. He's been pretty productive these last couple of days!

I also came up with another idea for an easter basket. Coming up with ideas for Easter baskets is really fun!

And we also have a wonderful volunteer who is making bags and aprons out of grain bags. Lucky for her, we just went to Tractor Supply last night and stocked up on grain. Ok, so not really stocked up, just had enough grain to get us through this next cold snap, but I won't even talk about the weather.

Hopefully tomorrow I can find the camera and get a few good pictures of some of the fundraiser items we've been working on! Until then, here's some pictures from last years.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Fundraiser Prep Work

I have our April 12th Easter fundraiser on the brain. Last night I decided I would start fiddling around with making some items that will be up for sale. It's a definate learning curve in making certain things but hopefully I'll get the hang of it pretty quick. I decided that each evening, I'll work on making one item for the fundraiser or work on some other project for the fundraiser.

I made a bridle/purse charm. I'll have to post pictures this weekend. When I finished up with the charm, Mike decided that he'd try his hand at making a horseshoe nail cross. It turned out pretty darn good for his first try! I'm excited to have extra items at the fundraiser. We have an extra month to prepare (and no hospital stays) so I can focus more on getting stuff ready.

My only worry is that I haven't started advertising. But that'll be one of my goals for this weekend. I'll start getting posters/fliers ready.  I'm still working out the final details but hopefully it'll come together pretty soon so I can sit back and relax. Hahaha, there's no way to relax when there's an upcoming fundraiser, even if it's a month and a half away!

If you want to help, we are looking for volunteers to get things ready for the fundraiser. Just leave a comment here or post a comment on our Facebook page!

Good Post

Here's an interesting read...

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Crying Wolf

Well, either I didn't pay close enough to the weather, or the weatherman missed his mark. Either way, I'm thankful. We are missing a major storm, by only a few miles it seems. I was worried that we would get some terrible weather, so I blanketed those that needed to be blanketed and prepared myself for a morning full of soaked and grumpy horses. What we woke to was just a little bit of snow falling and not much else. The horses were dry so it hadn't been snowing for very long (or very hard). This morning was actually rather nice. There was absolutely no wind, which I take as a blessing every time. Now last night doing chores in the dark and wind was not such a blessing. I had hay all over and it seemed every time I moved, I had more hay poking me in unpleasant places.

The weather is supposed to progressively get worse but for now, I'll be thankful that we aren't in a Blizzard Warning or even a Winter Weather Advisory. I am ready for spring and I think the horses are too! Unfortunately, we have a minimum of two and a half more months of throwing hay. And now that the temps are warming, we'll be dealing with....mud!

Speaking of warmer weather. While we had gorgeous weather earlier this week and past weekend, the snow really started to melt. Unfortunately, the way the Sanctuary is set up, much of the runoff from the snow is now going directly into the barn (or dog pen). I can't open the big door on the west side of the barn because it's frozen shut. There's also a frozen pool in one of the stalls now that the water is starting to run in. Pretty soon we'll be dealing with humidity and everything being soaked. Luckily I have all the important stuff up on pallets in the barn. Thank goodness Mike found me some more barrels to put grain in. Now I can seal it up after every use so that I don't have to worry about the moisture ruining a large quantity of grain.  Oh what I would give for a brand new barn that's set up so I can easily run horses in to stalls and not have to go through each stall to get to a specific horse. To have a barn big enough that there's be aisles. Our barn is not the norm. We had to retrofit the stalls to make it work. But I guess that's what happens when you move into an old farmstead.

I'm hoping with the cool down, that the melting will slow but not stop. Slower melting might mean less flooding in the barn. And hopefully there will be less mud to contend with. I'm not looking forward to the ankle deep mud that is fast approaching. But at this point, I'd rather contend with mud rather than subzero temperatures!

This weekend we are supposed to pick up a few bales of hay a fellow supporter donated. We are always so grateful for the additional hay. I was (and still am) worried that we are going to be short. Our hay supplier fell short on the amount of hay that he could get us. So the additional hay we are going to pick up is a definite blessing.

Good Post

I was reading on the Horse Plus Humane Society's latest blog post. They rescued 14 horses at an auction. Unfortunately 2 had to be euthanized. Here's the story.

I have a similar thinking pattern as they do when it comes to rescuing horses at auction. I typically only go for those that are thin and no one wants. It would be so nice to go to auctions this summer and pull horses, those that are easily adoptable, those that deserve a retirement home, and those that simply need to end their suffering. It is very rare for terribly lame horses to run through auctions these days but it would be nice to have an open door policy where we could offer a cheap alternative to auction. I would much prefer to have a euthanasia clinic rather than see these injured horses run through an auction. I guess that'll be my long term goal, to set up a euthanasia clinic in the fall so people can take advantage of the opportunity. If more people would do the right thing (even if it's difficult), this world would be a better place.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014


Looks like today is the last of the nice weather. I guess it is a February thaw instead of a January thaw. Temps are supposed to be in the low 50s today but then we’ll plummet back into winter starting tomorrow. Even the robins are confused with this weather. I’ve already seen a dozen robins and it’s nowhere near the beginning of spring!
I’d pulled blankets yesterday morning and figured that it was supposed to be warm enough last night. So I decided to forgo blanketing anyone last night and having to pull blankets this morning. I was already running late this morning and the horses were anxious for their morning hay. But as I looked, I was one horse short! I counted a couple of times to make sure I hadn’t missed one but I kept coming up with nine instead of ten.
I figured out that it was Bo that I was missing. Of course, the worst thoughts come rushing through my head when I have a missing horse (yes, we occasionally have a missing horse but only because he’s not with the rest of the herd). After throwing hay out for everyone, I decided that I’d better go and look for Bo. It’s not like he would jump the fence or someone would steal him. The herd was calm so I knew he had to be close by. My worry was that he’d hurt himself and was down or caught up in something. I’d called for Bo a couple of times but never got a response.
Luckily we have mostly a full moon so I wouldn’t trip over snow piles and hoof prints divots in the snow. I made it out to the pasture. I didn’t have to go far to see the black against the skyline. There Bo was, doing a little bit of grazing out in the pasture. I have no idea why he was out in the pasture instead of near the barns waiting like the rest of them.
When Bo saw me, he came at an amble up to me and we walked back to the drylot. It was almost as if I had a halter and lead rope on him. He stayed by my side the entire way (a little closer than most horses would even walk). He kept his head right at my shoulder until we got in to the drylot and he could see the hay. It was an odd experience to not have him up with the rest and then to have him stay with me.  It’s not uncommon for the horses to walk with me or by me when we come in from pasture but to have Bo the only one out in the pasture and then not go trotting in when he knows there’s food makes me wonder what type of argument Bo had with the rest of the herd.
I really figured that Bo would take off once we reached the lane from the pasture to the drylot but he kept walking. That desire to walk with me instead of past me is an amazing feeling. I wish that I would have been able to mess around with Bo more but the paying job was calling (well, not literally).  But Bo’s willingness to walk with me back to the barns instead of running ahead made me realize that he too is one of my heart horses. I believe I am blessed to have him in my life and as a part of the Sanctuary.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

One Year Ago

I realized that today marks the one year anniversary of Mike having his heart surgery. I'm sure  most people wouldn't be as scared from the ordeal but I'm still traumatized by it all. I wanted to remember the date, not because of the stressed that we experienced before and after the surgery but to see if we could stay out of the hospital. At least Mike has now stayed out of the hospital for one year. We are still paying off the surgery but steady as she goes, we'll get it done.

The next milestone is to make it past the middle of June, when we spent a week in the Children's Hospital with Garrett and his bout with meningitis. I will be happy to be one year free of all hospital visits. Now to get past the hospital bills that we are still trying to pay off.

So if you happen to see Mike, wish him a happy anniversary with his fixed heart. Well, maybe not. I'm not sure that he wants to remember that time but I'm counting my blessings that we haven't visited the hospital on Mike's account. Come on June!

Trust, a Beautiful Thing

I know I shouldn’t be, but I am always surprised and shocked by the extent of trust these horses give me. I am no horse whisperer, I am not a teacher. I do not give off the vibe of a leader. I am me but the horses at the Sanctuary trust me. I ask them to perform a simple task, and they do it. Sometimes with a little bit of hesitation but they still do it.  Why? Because they trust me. And not just me, they trust people.
I am always left speechless when I’m messing around with a horse and they do something that I’ve asked them, which happens to be out of their normal routine. Take for example Rabbit. I hate to even admit that I’d not had her in a trailer since we brought her home in 2010. It’s a bit of an embarrassment to admit it but it is what it is. Rabbit didn’t even want to go in the trailer when we were bringing her home. We had to load Mayhem first to get Rabbit to go in. But yesterday, with just a bit of coaxing (and some grain), she loaded into the trailer. She also unloaded without much hesitation. Not only did she load and unload once, she loaded and unloaded a total of three times yesterday. Each time she loaded more quickly. Given that she hadn’t been on a trailer in over three years, the little bit of time she needed to think, was amazing. Once she had her front feet in the trailer, she stood there figuring out where her back legs were. We didn’t rush her and she didn’t get upset.
With trust comes patience. I guess I’m learning that the horses are trusting me so I need to give them patience in figuring out exactly what I’m asking of them and knowing that I’m not asking them to do anything that will put them in to harm’s way.
Then I think about Mayhem. I tried messing with her last year in getting her accustomed to a saddle. She freaked out so I figured I’d leave it to the trainer (when the time finally came), to get her accustomed to a saddle and all that. But when we had the polar vortex blow through, I KNEW she needed a blanket. Wouldn’t you know, she trusted me to put a blanket on. She’d never had one on before and she didn’t flinch when I put the blanket on or pulled the straps around to adjust them. She trusted me to protect her from harm.
It’s the trust that these horses have in me that blows me away. They trust me to protect them, to feed them, and keep them safe. They trust me to keep them cool in the summer and warm in the winter. They trust me beyond anything else. I can walk up to them carrying a blanket without having to halter and hold them. They trust me to mess with them, to walk in between herd mates, they trust me to come when I call (which is pretty neat to have them come galloping up from the pasture).
The trust these horses has in me is beyond words. I can’t explain the feeling I get knowing that the Sanctuary horses trust in me. I might not technically be the boss mare, but they know that I am there to protected them.
So the next time you ask your horse to do something, be patient and consider the trust that they have in you. You are there to protect them. They are putting their life in your hands. They are trusting you.
Trust, it’s a beautiful thing.

Good Results from the Vet Appointment

The last few days have been a blur, which seems to be the norm these days. With the President’s Day holiday, I was able to schedule a vet appointment. Originally it was to do a follow up on our little minpin, Trouble. But I also decided to schedule a float for Brego. About this time every year, he starts to drop weight and doesn’t pick up the weight again until he’s out on pasture. It’s been like this for the past few years so I decided to have his teeth floated and do a quick overall exam on him.
Yesterday morning, I decided I would push my luck and see if Rabbit would load. The last time we tried to load her, she wouldn’t have anything to do with the trailer. But this past winter, I’ve been messing with Rabbit a bit more and within about 10 minutes, she was loaded and standing patiently in the trailer. I take that is a huge accomplishment because we hadn’t had her off the place since we brought her home three years before. I’ll take full blame and responsibility for my negligence in not taking her to the vet sooner.  Brego of course loaded like a dream. I threw the lead rope over him and told him to get in, which he promptly did. He’s such a sweet horse.
We had to drive slow because the roads were terrible. I’m not sure why I insist on vet appointments in the middle of winter. The weather was starting to warm so the roads were slushy. We’d gotten rain, and then freezing rain and snow during the night (I slept through it).  The sidewalk was super slick but maintenance had been out plowing the snow and throwing salt/sand on the roads so they weren’t as bad. We couldn’t go more than about 50mph otherwise the truck would get sucked into the slush. I’m perfectly happy going slow. I ended up taking the stock trailer instead of the 6-horse trailer. I’m glad I took the smaller trailer because of the road conditions but I felt bad that the horses had to ride in a more open trailer. I double blanketed Brego to make sure he was ok. Rabbit was tucked in to the front of the trailer, out of the wind. I was worried they would be soaked when we got to Madison, what with all the semis throwing slush up onto us. But they didn’t seem the worse for wear.
Amazingly, Trouble cured herself of diabetes. Or at least we joke that she did. She had other issues that were triggering the problems but she got a clean bill of health from the vet. Then it was on to Brego and Rabbit. We brought Brego in first. He wasn’t too sure about the vet but we’d never had him in for a float before. He wasn’t too keen on the idea of being at the vets but he behaved and followed me. When the vet checked him, he said Brego’s teeth weren’t all that bad. I had expected with his weight loss that his teeth, even for a nine year old, would be terrible. Nope. They were good enough that the vet just did a hand float with a little bit of sedation. Of course the sedation really kicked Brego’s butt but we weren’t in any hurry to leave. The vet also listened to Brego’s heart, which sounded perfectly fine, no heart murmur. So when I asked about the weight loss, he said Brego is a nervous horse (which I almost busted out laughing), and said that he’ll just be harder to keep the weight on. But the more I think about it, the more that makes sense. Brego isn’t high strung like I think of normally. He’s not like Zeke or Bo but he is anxious. And being at the bottom of the pecking order, he does have to watch himself a bit more than some of the more aggressive horses. So the nervousness isn’t external, it’s internal. And that makes more sense. So I guess we’ll be pumping him full of high fat foods, like we do with Bo. I don’t know what it is with those bays, but I have no luck with them! I’m going to have to avoid bays from now on!
Rabbit was next. I really figured she would have terrible teeth, what with not having taken her in before. I pulled her blanket off and put her in the stocks. The vet sedated her and went to work checking her out. She too wasn’t bad, which threw me for a loop. I figured with as messy of an eater as she is, throwing grain everywhere that she needed a float. The vet decided that all she needed was a hand float as well. I was flabbergasted. Rabbit wasn’t as willing a patient as Brego but she got her float done. What a difference some sedative does. Rabbit was a completely different horse during her dentistry work. Of course, she was born with a lot more white showing in her eyes, which throws a lot of people, but I’ve learned that is just part of her beauty. The vet looked Rabbit over and said she had really amazing teeth for being 21 years old. All of her teeth were there and in really good shape, so we’ll have Rabbit for a number of years still!!! I’m afraid that her teeth won’t be what gives out (I expect it’ll be her heaves that will be the death of her). I also had the vet take a look at her right eye. I know she has uveitis in it. That right eye will weep all summer.  I also figured she was going blind in that eye because it’s a bit more fogged over. The vet said, nope. There are a couple of scratches on the surface, but she’s not blind. She just has to look through those scratches so it’s tougher to see. It would be like looking through Plexiglas that’s about three inches from your face.  So on the bright side, she’s not blind and she’s already adjusted to looking through her “Plexiglas” eye (at least that’s what I’ll call it). So it’s good news that she’s not blind and has wonderful teeth.
When we pulled in to mom and dad’s after the vet’s Mike heard a hissing noise and looked at the back tire on the truck. Sure enough, I’d driven over a piece of wire that had punctured the tire. I unloaded the horses and threw them in the pen. I’d never had Brego and Rabbit together before in a pen but they behaved themselves and just wandered around for a bit. Mike couldn’t get the spare off the truck (we’ve never had to change a tire on the truck and the truck is now 10 years old….sigh). So Mike ran back in to Madison to get the tire fixed. Luckily it was a fix that the tire shop could fix instead of me having to buy a brand new tire. I’m thankful that we weren’t on the way home when the tire blew. We would never have gotten the spare down. The tire shop had to take a sledge hammer to the spare tire! That’ll teach me not to check my spare more often. So even though we had a puncture, it was more of a blessing. Apparently there were two spots in that particular tire that were bad, the wire that punctured the tire and then the slow leak that Mike knew about but couldn’t find (the air stem, or whatever it’s called, had corroded and was causing the problem.)
So all in all, odd news but it all turned out pretty well. I honestly wasn’t sure if Rabbit would load again at the vets but with just a little bit of hesitation (and patience), she loaded.  I love the trust that these horses give me.  After unloaded the horses at mom and dad’s, I again wasn’t sure if Rabbit would load. But with just a little bit of time and patience (less than the other two times), she was loaded up and ready to roll.
I was excited to get home to make sure that Rabbit understood that we were just going for a quick appointment, and that the trailer doesn’t mean you’re leaving forever. Half of the horses already know that the trailer just means a fun trip somewhere (ok, maybe not fun). But they know the trailer leaves with a herd mate, but it always comes back with the same herd mates. So I was happy to get Rabbit unloaded and back into her pen. She let out a low nicker to Mayhem and the ponies. I think she was happy too. I’m sure she was exhausted after her trip.  I really do think that Rabbit too could be a heart horse.  When I was unchaining the gate, Mayhem came up to me and bumped me in the back with her head. I have yet to figure out why it is that the mares always bump me (of course I think Ivan bumped me in the butt the other day too.)
This morning I pulled blankets, much to the herd’s dismay. No one wanted me near them long enough to pull blankets. I don’t tend to halter anyone to pull blankets but I was almost to that point. I had to chase everyone around, except for Rain. Stubborn horses. When I got to Rabbit, she could care less.  I pulled her blanket off and gave her a great big hug. I really do want to get her to be a heart horse too. I think she was handed a hard lot in life and wasn’t ever given the opportunity to be pampered.  So from here on out, I’m going to pamper her even if she is standoffish.  I’ll fix that. I’ve also figured out what makes a heart horse. But I’ll blog about that later.

Congrats GSH

I just wanted to send my heartfelt congratulations to Gentle Spirits Horse (GSH) Rescue and Sanctuary. They took the next step in rescue by submitting the non-profit (501c3) paperwork. To acquire that status takes a lot of time, paperwork, money, and dedication. For those that think it's easy to do, please rethink that idea. There is a lot more to obtaining 501c3 status than meets the eye.  There are many hoops to jump through and unfortunately, Borderlands hasn't had the time to figure out those hoops. But we do want to share in their excitment and wish them well in obtaining this new status. The 501c3 status will give them more opportunities to help the local horses.  Maybe Borderlands can follow in a not so timely manner but for now, please check out GSH, their adoptable horses, and all that they have done for the horse!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day

Hope you all have a Happy Valentine's Day and get to spend time with your loved ones. I'll post more this weekend but going to enjoy some family time on this Valentine's Day!

I'll leave you with some of our engagement pictures with the Sanctuary horses. Oh for green pastures.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Good post

I know this blog post is about dogs, but you can always take it a step further with horses.

Even in their golden years, horses are the same. They live each day to the fullest and their wisdom shows in their expressions. I guess that's why I like the older animals. All that wisdom wrapped up in a furry body.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

So Long Slap on the Wrist

Our local news reported the following....a good sign! Hopefully people will think twice about the abuse they inflict on animals.

SD Panel Approves Making Animal Cruelty A Felony

A South Dakota legislative panel has endorsed a measure that would make animal cruelty a felony in South Dakota, the only state without felony penalties for serious animal abuse.

Similar bills have failed in past years. But this year's bill was written with input from livestock producers and animal welfare groups.

South Dakota law currently makes inhumane treatment of animals a misdemeanor.

The bill would make it a felony to commit malicious, intentional acts of abuse that cause prolonged pain, serious physical injury or death of an animal. It also clarifies that standard accepted livestock-raising practices are not mistreatment.

The Senate Agriculture Committee rejected a similar measure last year amid worries it could interfere with the livestock industry. The panel voted unanimously Tuesday to pass the compromise bill.


My mind is in overdrive. I'm not exactly sure why. But I'm brainstorming and coming up with ideas. Now the hard part is the follow through. I'm trying to come up with ideas for the upcoming Easter Fundraiser. I'm also brainstorming for our now "Annual" Playday. Ideas are popping into my head. I'm not sure they will all work but it's fun to come up with ideas. If you have any ideas for either fundraiser, I'd love to hear them.

Keep an eye on this blog and Facebook. In the coming weeks I'll announce the date of our playday. I'm trying to get everything scheduled now before everyone else plans events.

Call it cabin fever, call it Type A, call it whatever you want. But I'm happy to get things planned. I also love seeing the weekends filling up with lots of fun horse activities (even if they aren't all Sanctuary related).

So much going on and so little time to get everything accomplished. I could sure use some help with the upcoming fundraiser. I have a few ideas on items that I want to make and sell. If anyone is bored or has some free time, I could sure use the help!

Just leave a comment on this blog post or post a comment on our Facebook page!

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Surprise...More Cold Weather

These are pictures from last year but I haven't taken any in such a long time. Our little camera is broken and I keep forgetting to take the good camera out to snap a few shots.

The horses are tucked in the barn tonight. Odd that it's in the teens right now (after chores) and the weatherman is calling for teens below zero tonight. I sure hope they are wrong but I didn't want to jinx it by keeping the horses out. I think they were all confused that I was out earlier than normal (out before dark) and that I was putting them in the barn when the weather wasn't bad (no wind and not really all that cold).

But Dude and I had a HUGE disagreement tonight. He decided to come into the barn (he can open the door if I don't have it latched properly) and decided to cause problems. Unfortunately Mike and Garrett were in the barn too at the time. But they were able to lock themselves into Jim's stall and stay away from Dude's antics until I could get him out and everything back in proper order. Stupid gelding. Some days he really knows how to push my buttons.

Tomorrow is supposed to be super cold so I'm guessing the horses are going to be crabby too. I will be so happy when we are headed into spring. We did get snow last night but it's the light and fluffy stuff so if we get any wind, I expect we'll get a ground blizzard. This weather sure is making it tough to get anything extra done.

I'm counting my hay supply already. I think we are going to be short on hay before summer finally arrives. With the colder than normal temperatures and with less bales arriving this past fall, I'm afraid we are a few bales short. I guess once we get through February, I'll have a better idea of how much hay we'll need to get us through until I can start using the pasture again. I keep thinking about bringing Jackie from Gentle Spirits Horse Rescue and Sanctuary but with the hay issue, I'm not sure we can. And I'm still on the fence on justifying bringing another horse in when we've had to turn so many away. It's all so difficult.

I guess instead of complaining about our predicament, I'll leave you with pictures from last year.




 Brego and Little One

King and Jim

Friday, February 7, 2014

Thinking About Fundraiser

I was just  thinking about our upcoming Easter Fundraiser. It seems so far away (more than two months), and yet those two months are going to fly by. So I'm going to start focusing more on our fundraiser event. I'm sure you'll be tired of listening to me ramble on about that.

Mark your calendars for Saturday, April 12th from 1-4 at the Methodist Church (Celebrate or Celebration not sure what the name is). We'll have easter baskets on a silent auction, an indoor easter egg hunt, and pictures with the easter bunny.

If you want to donate an easter basket for the silent auction, that would be greatly appreciated. It's really fun coming up with ideas to fill a basket. We are looking more towards kids related baskets but anything is good.  We'll also have other items for sale along with baked goods.

All proceeds will go toward feeding and caring for the Sanctuary horses!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Too Cold

Darn weather. I just looked at the weather report to see how cold it's supposed to be for tonight. Darn it! Eight below with a wind chill of 22 below. Too darn cold. I guess the horses are going in AGAIN tonight! I also looked at the upcoming forecast because I thought the weatherman said it was supposed to be warming up. They were wrong. At least for the weekend it's going to be FREEZING. Twelve below for the low both Saturday and Sunday night. I know where I'll be...outside making sure all the horses are comfortable during this next cold snap.

Oh I am SO ready for spring. And I'm sure you're all tired of me complaining about the cold too. At least I did see 30s for the high next week so hopefully there is light at the end of the tunnel.

Catching Up

Well, I’m finally over whatever weird bug that was and am back into the old routine of standard chores in the middle of winter. The last two nights I’ve put the horses in because the temps were in the subzero temps…again.  I knew  I needed to put everyone in last night because the temps were supposed to be teens below zero but there was very little breeze. Although even with very little breeze, the wind chill is in the twenty below zero mark.  This morning when I went out, there was still very little breeze so even though it was in the teens below zero, it didn’t feel as cold as the morning before when the temps were warmer (haha), single digits below zero and windy. I guess it’s all in your perspective of “cold”.
I was at the vet earlier this week to pick up yet more medicine for our little inside dog, Trouble, and made an appointment for Brego to go in and get his teeth floated.  Hopefully that’s the only reason he’s losing weight but we’ll do a thorough exam to make sure there’s no underlying problems.  He always seems to drop weight about this time every year and I want that problem resolved immediately.
Someone asked me just yesterday about the Sanctuary and mentioned that we have mostly old horses. Unfortunately, at this point in time, the oldest horse we have is Jim at the ripe old age of 26 (which I don’t consider old). We’ve lost all of our really old horses over the past few years and with the hospital bills piling up, we haven’t been able to take in any old warriors like I would desperately love to do. I’m hoping in another year we’ll get out from under these bills and can start back into providing homes for horses.  The average age of the Sanctuary horse is in the teens.  Of course, when I first got into horses, my first horse was “old” at the age of 16. I still chuckle over that. I consider 16 a prime age.
I realized the other day I need to pick a horse for this month’s “Horse of the Month”. Hopefully I’ll be able to post this weekend. I also need to do a 2014 cheat sheet of the horses.  I haven’t taken the camera out to take pictures for a very long time. Everyone is wrapped up in a blanket anyway so there’s not much point in taking pictures to see markings and such unless you want to see a herd of green. I will be SO happy when spring arrives, even when we have to deal with mud.
We are just two months away from our Easter fundraiser and to be honest, I haven’t really started anything. I know I need to be planning but by the end of the day after working all day and coming home to do chores in the dark, I tend to fall asleep about ten minutes after sitting down. Last night was a prime example. While trying to get our son to fall asleep I fell asleep on the couch and ended up sleeping on the couch all night. You know the best part, I didn’t mind one bit. I’ll take a nap wherever I can these days!
I’m hearing mixed reports on the upcoming weather for next week. One time I hear that it’ll be warmer and then the next I hear that it’ll be like this week and in the subzero mark for temps. I’ve given up looking at the weather quite frankly. The only time I really pay any attention is when I see that it’s below zero and even then I sometimes miss that part. Hopefully there are no storms on the horizon because I haven’t paid any attention.
My mind seems to be going in about ten different directions so I apologize for the scattered thoughts. I’ll try to post more later now that I’m feeling better.

Harwood Case Continues

From our local news.....

Rapid City Man Arrested At Canistota In Horse Case

February 6, 2014, 5:37 AM 

Authorities in eastern South Dakota have arrested a Rapid City man convicted of neglecting horses.

Donald Harwood and his wife, Terry Harwood, were sentenced Oct. 9 at a hearing they didn't attend.

Warrants were issued for their arrest and on Wednesday Donald Harwood was found at a farm near Canistota.

He's being held at the jail in Sioux Falls.

The Pennington County Sheriff's Office seized 69 horses in January 2013 on the leased Rapid Valley property of the Harwoods. Many of the animals had not been fed or given water.

A jury in August convicted the Harwoods on nine counts each of inhumane treatment of an animal. He got five years in prison and she received a one-year jail sentence.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

I Am a Warrior

17855.6842 in reply to 17855.6784 
By Jeanne M. Mirabito
I am a warrior
I tramp through mud and snow
 To find the beating hearts that wait for me.
I fight for those who need me
And pray for those beyond my reach.
My body bears scars most cringe to see.
My bones ache for warmth in bitter cold.
The sun blisters my skin.
But the visible in no way equal the wounds to my heart,
The pain in my soul.
I am a warrior.
I have seen the battles with death.
I have cried for the lost and rejoiced in life renewed.
I have witnessed the proud equine humbled for a friend,
play with wild abandon and drop her head for a child’s kiss.
I have watched the strong grow weak, the young grow old
And the last of life drain from muscled flesh.
My life is laid out before me. My mission is clear.
The cost is high but the rewards are grand.
I am at peace when touched with soft muzzle, warm breath,
and held dear in liquid eyes.
For this I shall fight until the lost herd thunders to my rescue
And we fly away together into the night.
I am a warrior.