Friday, November 30, 2012

Stud Pony

I was checking my mail this afternoon and noticed that the stud pony is no longer in his cage.  He is out with the other horses.  He doesn't seem to care about messing with the herd he lives with, he is just happy to not be alone.  The rest of the herd were all resting just about ten feet in front of him .

Now if she would just get that little tiny halter off of him. 
Can you see his cage in the back ground?

My Find of The Week

I have no news about my herd today, other than that they all seem to be fat and happy.  Killian poops more than any horse I have ever seen, Sassy is doing much better on her bad foot, Trax still follows me around like a lost puppy, and Danny gets mad if I don't bring his food into his stall where he is waiting. Today I put it out in the run and he refused to come out to eat.  He just stood there pawing at the mat.  I finally went in and pushed him out.
Silly old man!
Anyway, lunch breaks are probably bad for me, because it seems to be when I get myself into the most on-line trouble.  I found this website called  which all different kinds of western accessories for your home, your horse and for you and your kids.  While browsing the new arrivals I saw "FarmGirl Gracie Jean"
Farm Girl Makes Jeans?????
I love Farm Girl Brand clothing.  The hats, the shirts, the sweatshirts....ALL of it!  I buy them at the local feed store, preferably off the closeout racks, as I try hard to be frugal.
First I tried to google
just for the record
DON'T DO IT!!!!!!! 
I found myself at some very disturbing websites
which even just the titles were enough to make me ill.
So I tried again
Yup!  There they were and OMG how cute!  Look at the little snaps at the bottom.
 (these pics came from Rods, but FG has a better selection of sizes)

Not a lot of bling which is what I usually prefer, just a nice simple boot cut pair of jeans. 
I am also a lover of cool hats. And then I saw these.
I actually have a red and black plaid version of this which I love but it doesn't go with much of my wardrobe.  This will go with most of what hangs in my closet.
I'm calling this a "must have" .

Some days when I ride in the winter, it really is just wicked cold. 
This would be perfect.
THEN I started looking at the prices.  I can buy direct on-line for the same price I pay on the closeouts and actually get the sizes I want.  AWESOME!
I am thrilled to have found this website and can't wait until I can afford to buy a couple of things.  
I wonder what I will find at today's lunch break.
Have a great day everyone!  

Thursday, November 29, 2012

The old guy

I took Old Butchy to the vet today.

He has been holding one eye shut for a few weeks now.  I could not see anything visibly wrong other than that it was a little red where it should have been white.  I decided to watch it for a while to see if it got better on its own or not.   It didn't seem like it was so I finally got a little time off of work to go take  him it.  This morning before I took him I saw that there is actually a red spot on the cornea.

Turns out he has an ulcerated cornea, probably from Smarty jumping on on him. 

In the mornings, Mason and Smarty wake up first and ask to go out. Then when we get up about an hour later,  Butch likes to go out. When Butch goes out the door Smarty is waiting there to jump and play and I think maybe he got him in the eye with a toenail. 

The vet says the red spot is where it is trying to heal, but it needs some help.  So now he is on antibiotics, drops and an ointment.  Then we also got a bottle of Rhimodyl (sp?) for his arthritis

We also found that he has lost 14lbs in a year, which seems like a lot to me. The vet says if it was gradual then it isn't that big of a deal, but if this is a sudden onset of weight loss then blood tests will be required.  Since I'm pretty broke right now, we decided to take the realistic approach.  He has to go back in 7 days, and then again 7 days after that.  We will weight him each time and see if there is any noticeable change.  Then we will decide if he needs something more. 

I love Butch dearly, but I also brought him home last Christmas knowing that he is a very old dog, and with the understanding that I am not willing to sink a bunch of money into a dog this old. When it is time for him to go, it is time.  My goal was to save him from the pound and to make his last days his best.  I think that I have done that. 

But now here I am with big old tears in my eyes even at the suggestion that a year is all we get to have with him in our lives.  He is such a special dog.  I know now, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that when ever the time does come, it will be much harder for me than I originally expected.

And why am I crying now?  I don't even know if there is anything wrong with him, other than an enlarged prostate (common in old dogs) and some arthritis.  I mean he is pretty darn happy and active most of the time, especially for a guy as old as he is.   

Gosh, I am just such a crybaby sometimes!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Random Photo Montage

 The sky is on Fire
 My sweet old dog Butch, all cozy and comfy....
 ....the rest of the picture, "A boy and his dog"  (well my dog really)
 Mr Smarty Pants and Butchy
 Mason is trying to hypnotize Tom into sharing his crackers with him.
 "You are getting hungry, you will go the cabinet and bring back food...."
 Note the bent fence and the perfectly grazed line- I keep telling  my neighbor he does not need to waste time mowing, my "yard crew" would do it for free!
 I took this last night.  There was a thick fog over all of Casper, but from our house
it looks like the whole city is engulfed in smoke. The pic does not do it justice.
Here are a few of Sassy's deer friends.  They were in the neighbors yard this morning.
She will not get to vist with them any more as they would have to go past my dog yard to get to her. 
They are friendly but not that friendly.

I tried to get a picture of them going over the fence but I was just a second too late. 
They can seriously fly when they want too! 

Funny of the week.

A friend sent this to me on Face Book.
Thought I would share it with you all.

Gotta love it!
Since it does not belong to me, and was passed around on FB that makes it fair game.  Feel free to borrow or send to others if you so desire.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Two rides for the price of one

I got to go ride again on Sunday.  This time I took Trax and Danny, and even put a saddle on Danny and rode him around a little bit. 
You can read all about Danny's wild ride on his blog here which even has a couple of pictures, although not ones of him working. I was by myself so picture taking wasn't really an option. 

I didn't have Jay there to yell at me, ok "instruct" me, on what I was doing wrong. But that may have been a good thing as it really forced me to pay attention to what I was doing with my seat and my hands. 

Trax did wonderfully, although he was actually a little more wound up this time, than he was on Friday, which I thought was interesting.  I truly expected a lot more fight out of him on Friday after not being touched in three months, than I did on the second ride.  Instead I got more...not fight....but we will the second ride.  He is an odd horse.

We did the serpentine drill two laps around, he was pretty soft right from the start.  We did the stand still lateral bends which he gave to me with only a few spins.  We did the leg yield exercise at the wall, and he only tried to back up on me a couple of times to the right, to the left he was perfect every time.  Well except for the times that I caught myself giving the wrong signals, then he was confused and it was my fault. That was when I knew I needed to slow down and think about what I was doing.

I asked him to get soft with two reins and a stand still, which he took as asking him to back up.  I am trying to teach him that backing up isn't until I ask with my legs.  Eventually I was able to get him to stand still, drop his head and then I'd release.  We did that several times until I felt that he had it figured out, then I showed him what the back up command was with my leg, which he did just fine.  I am pleasantly surprised by how well I can move my horses body parts with my legs.

He really had a lot of energy so I went ahead and let him canter around the arena, I could feel him wanting to take off but did my best to keep him in check without pulling on his mouth.  That is really hard for me to do.  I knew that I could not do a two rein stop so when it came time to stop I asked with my seat and my voice, and low and behold he kind of tucked himself under and gave a little stop but then kept moving forward, which is when I hit him with that one rein, and he stopped pretty quickly.  I was kind of impressed with that try.  It showed me that he really is paying attention to me.

We ended with one more leg yield exercise which he did flawlessly so I stopped right there.  
All in all it was a good ride, although when we were cantering I was trying to pay attention to his leads and get some lead changes out of him. I could feel that we were all over the place though, and since I was not sure how to correct it, I went back to just forward cantering in one direction.

What I learned about my horse is that he wants to get along, and he wants to give me what I ask, but gets confused by my signals which are often awkward, or even wrong all together.   As usual the problem is not really the horse, but me.  I am okay with that today because "me" is the one thing I have total control over!

We did get our pens completely done and just in time too!  I drove home yesterday to see Killian pushing against the vinyl fence with the hot wire that isn't hot anymore.  Apparently Sassy's deer friend (still trying to get pics of them)  told the horses that there was no shock anymore.  He was trying to get to the grass on the other side.

 We do still have to put some small posts next to where they panels join at.
Some of them can move back and forth about 6 inches.  Most of them are pretty tight.
I am also coming up with a plan to cover those loops at the bottom.   I don't like them.

Last night all four horses spent the night in the barn.  I think Sassy might have been a little stressed because her piles of poop were a little loose. Not runny, just not nicely formed like usual.  I will keep a good eye on that though. It also could be the difference between the Hay cubes.  They all just started the Utah Cubes last night. Before they were all eating the WY cubes.

Also Sassy is limping again.  When I moved her and Killian over, I put the lead rope on him and she just followed like I knew she would.  The minute I opened the gate to the bigger pasture she was off like a shot, racing around and bucking and just being the kid that she is.  Trax went out with her, as he loves to run and play as well.   I watched her run up to the pen and land on her front feet at a quick stop, and then she started limping.   Damn it!!!!!  I got her in the pen, cleaned her feet out, felt her joints, no heat.  When she was eating and while I was cleaning her feet she had no issue with putting weight on her right front, which is the one with broken coffin bone.  So I don't know what she did.

When I went out this morning, Killian was waiting at the gate to the food for me, and everyone seemed fine.  I checked Sassy again, she is putting weight on both fronts, and there is still no heat or swelling.  She will stay in for a few days.  And we will keep a close eye on her. :(

Tom just called and told me that even though I opened the gate for two horses to go out, they chose to stay inside.  It snowed about 3 inches last night.  I think they like the barn.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

I love My Crazy Paint Horse!!!!

My Trainer...Not so Much!

I'm kidding, of course, about my trainer.  I really just hate it when he is right, which is pretty much all the time.

I finally got off work about 12:30 and headed home to hook up my trailer, called my trainer/friend, Jay and told him I'd be ready in an hour.  Promptly managed to dent the front fender on Toms brand new pick up trying to squeeze my way out of the pasture gate and past the semi that was parked in front of it.  Backed the trailer back into the pasture and called Jay to come and pick Trax and I up.

Of course in between that came the call to Tom to tell him what I had done.  A conversation we won't bother repeating here as we like to keep this G-rated.  But it ended with me promising to pay to get it fixed and lots and lots of, "I'm so sorry"  and "Its just a little dent"

Anyway, we got to the arena, Jay was working his horse, I did some ground work with Trax.  He was not near as grumpy as I expected (he had even been easy to catch) and was actually quite soft on the ground.

I put the snaffle on him, mounted up and we did some lateral bends which took about fifty spins before he would stand still, but once he did several times, we did a walking lap around the arena. then I switched to the hackamore.  We did two laps like that, then Jay saw what Trax was wearing....the conversation went something like this.

"What is that crap on his face?"

"Its what we are using today, leave me alone" (hurt feelings face)

"Why are you using that? What is it that he does better with that?"


So I showed him a few things, and he said, "What he does has nothing to do with the bit and everything to do with you..  Go put your snaffle back on and I will prove it to you."

So I stuck my tongue out at him in a purely adult manner, and grudgingly put the snaffle back on Trax.

Since Trax wants to move his feet when I ask him to bend laterally, Jay decided that we would not ask him to stand still but continue to ask him to move his feet.   The exercise went like this.

Walk 2 steps, pick up on the right rein, bump with the right heel, full circle, take 2 steps, left rein, bump with the left heel, and back and forth for about 15 min.  When he started trying to stop we pushed him a little harder. Then we switched to 1/2 turns so we did s-shapes all the way around the arena.   Pretty soon Trax was moving with a low head (instead of his usual straight up) and was soft in every turn.  I was able to sit still ask him to drop his head with both reins, and then back him up, IN A SNAFFLE! (not one of his strong points)

Next exercise was to ride him up to the wall and face it. Then with some work ask him to move off my leg to the side.  So it was lateral flex to the right without motion, then bump with the heel to get motion ride out of it to the middle of the arena, pick up the right rein bump with the heel, turn him back towards the wall. Ride up to wall, slight pick up on right rein, bump with my right let and ask for leg yield.  Two steps to the side, take that as good, relax, then ask for two rein softness, as soon as he gave it, back up three steps and then rest.

Then we repeated to the left. The hardest part was when it came to the leg yield, keeping him straight, but I have found that I can actually move his hind end quite nicely with my heel, so now the trick is for me to let go of my natural tendency to try to move him with my hands. 

He really did very well.  After that we worked with him moving a big rubber ball around, which he really didn't care for.  However we did get him to actually move it a couple of times and so we let it go at that.  it was kind of fun doing that because Jay and his horse Poncho would get it going and then we would come up behind and take a turn.  It was cool watching Poncho push that thing all over the arena.

We did a couple of trips over the bridge, which was nothing to Trax.

Ok so after we were done, we took a couple of pics, but all we had was my cell.

 Forward motion (never an issue)  nice loose rein, terrible quality pics

 Backing up.  Pretty nice for him, although hard to tell with the picture quality

 Lateral to the right- he was kind of fighting me on that one. 

 lateral to the left- look how loose my left rein is. This was a first for him. 

 Another terrible picture but you can see that my body is saying stop and Trax is totally ignoring me.  It took a one rein stop to get him to oblige. 

 We decided to end with something he does very best of all.  Go forward over anything. 

 Taaa Daaa!

 Jay and his most awesome horse Poncho,  Talk about a horse who is
soft and responsive. Jay can do just about anything on this big guy.

All in all it was an awesome ride with a nice lesson that I had not even known I was going to get.  Trax did so well, even Jay said so.   I heard alot of , "Where are your hands?" because they are rarely where they are supposed to be. When I can keep them in the right spot and keep my body relaxed, my horse turns into someone completely different.  Which takes me right back to one of the things I learned from my experience with Brickster.  "If I think I need a better horse, the problem is me, not the horse."  

The ride was yesterday, Friday.  Today we put up 9 tons of hay cubes and almost got the pens done. With any luck I can get my paperwork done tonight, the pens finished in the morning and another ride tomorrow! 

(keeping all my body parts crossed!)

Friday, November 23, 2012


(picture robot with flailing arms rolling through out the room)

Ok so maybe it wasn't quite like that, but pretty close in my mind. 
I went out to ask each horse what they were thankful for and get a pose from each one for my Thanksgiving Day post.  I got one pic snapped (of a fence) and my camera went all robotic on me, telling be to delete some pictures.


Um....yeah, I don't ever delete pictures, so I need to run and buy a new card. 
Oh awesome....its Black Friday!  Just the day I DO NOT want to grace a store with my presence. 

So I did ask the horses what they were thankful for, and this is what I got.
(sorry I don't have pics to back it up)

Killian-  "I am thankful for food, and rest.  Lots and lots of rest"

Sassy-  "I am thankful that my front foot doesn't hurt anymore" (then she demonstrated by running around and kicking her heels up)

Trax-  "I am thankful that you haven't put a saddle on me in FOREVER!"
(he said this over his shoulder, as he took off just in case I was going to catch him)

Danny-  "I am thankful for warm sunshine and a soft place to lay in my pasture"
                "Oh and senior feed- I am soooo thankful for Senior feed!"

So I had to ask, "Are any of you thankful for your new barn?"

Danny said, "Yeah its alright"
Trax said, "No, cuz you built cages, and I just know you are going to catch me in one."

Trax was right.  I fed him this morning and then penned him in.  He is getting ridden today.
My trainer/friend stopped by yesterday after being down at the arena all morning.  He made sure I knew how awesome it was.  We are going to meet up there today.  Providing I only have to work till noon. (yes I am "working" right now)

I will do my best to have pics, with any luck they will not be pictures of me doing a face plant!

Hope everyone is having a great day!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

My Gratitude List

Thank to Marissa, I have been thinking about my gratitude list and thought I would share it with you all today.

Ten things I am grateful for:

1. My boys...all of them, young, old and in between.

2. My family, close and extended, and especially the ones who were brave enough to marry into this family!

3. dog hair on my floor(and every where else)- for it means I am lucky enough to have three wonderful Labradors.

4. Horse poop- because with that comes my equine friends, fleet of feet and a soft look in their eyes to greet me every morning. (saying "where is our food lady?")

5. good friends, that I have known for years and whom I have recently met.  You have all touched my life in wonderful ways.

6. A long list of things to do.  It means I'm still capable of getting up off my butt and taking care of life, and still capable of setting and meeting goals.

7. dirty dishes- because it means we have food to eat.

8. An outrageous fuel bill, because it means I have vehicles to drive (which has not always been the case)

9. bills to pay because I have a wonderful home to live in, and I know where I will lay my head each night. (which has not always been the case)

10. My recovery- still going strong and damn proud of it! it will be ten years in May!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


I Looked out the window this morning and saw that someone was up to no good last night.

Luckily no one was out roaming the neighborhood.

My neighbor across the road is not a horse person at all.  The last time my horses got out, he shooed them off his perfectly manicured 3 acre lawn and then watched as I chased them down the road. 

Thanks Mister.

Luckily the guy down the road who has horses had me chase them into his lot and then shut his front gate.  After that it was easy. 

That was a year ago. 

I'm so glad we didn't have to go through that again. 

I do not care for vinyl fencing. 

Well except for the time when Gambler chased poor old Danny through the fence. Because it was vinyl it just broke and out he went.  No real damage, just a few scratches.  Had he had to go through something stronger it would have required a trip to the vet.   He stayed close to home and was happily grazing at the next neighbors house when I got home.  He is a good boy.  We don't have Gambler anymore.  He was mean to my Danny.

I actually think it was deer and not horses that messed with my fence this time.  I have a hot wire on that fence now, and even though it isn't on right now, the horses think it is.  The Deer have no clue about hot wire and they seem to like hanging out by our water tub. Sometimes when I get home from work they are there visiting with Sassy.  She seems to have a relationship with them. (note to self: get pics of Sassy with her deer friends)

I like deer, I love to watch them bound across the yard.  Not my yard, the neighbors yard. 

I especially like to see them across the street chowing down on that guys perfectly manicured 3 acres!!!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Another Plan Gets the Boot

Don't you just love it when a plan does everything EXCEPT for come together????

We managed to get ONE lousy post set Saturday.  It took us all day to work out the gates and how they were going to fit just right, and of course 4 more trips to town....I swear the most expensive part of the is barn is the fuel we burn up driving back and forth to town! We also lost a lot of time looking for misplaced tools.  We are nothing if not completely unorganized! LOL

I told Tom I would try to ride on Sunday instead. (I'm pretty sure Trax knew I had planned on riding because he made a point of stay as far away from as he could all weekend)  So we got up early, grabbed some breakfast and went straight to work.  The wind was only blowing about 40 mph, so we considered ourselves lucky that it wasn't 60 and kept forging ahead.  Then Tom's 91 year old mom called. She was headed to Casper with her nephew from Buffalo, and would be there in 2 hours.  She asked if it would be okay if she came to visit while he went to the heifer sale.  Well of course. 

As much as I really wanted to work on the barn and get it done and then go for a ride, it all seems very trivial when stacked up against a visit with a very sweet 91 year old woman.  Tom's mom is very spry for her age, gets around quite nicely, but even with that, at her age we never know if today's visit will be the last one, so we never pass on the chance to visit.

We took her shopping to a few different stores, and then went back to the house and visited some more.  Then when Jimmy called we went out for a bite to eat before the headed home.  It was a good time and I was so glad that Tom got to spend some time with her. 

I have to give some great kudos to my 13 year old son.  He decided it was his job to help her in and out of the car each time, and open her doors for her, and get the carts for her so she had something to lean on while she walked through the stores. I did not tell him he needed to, and neither did Tom.  He just did it.  Its funny, just about the time I start feeling like a total failure as a mom, he goes and does something like this that makes me so darn proud!

Also I managed to find these

For almost 50% off!!!
I'm funny about boots.  I love boots more than any other shoes in the world. I have many many pairs of boots,  dressy, comfy and cowgirl.  When it comes to dressy, I only shop the sales.  When it comes to comfy (like Uggs) I prefer to shop sales but will let myself out of the constraint if I find something I really like.  When it comes to Cowgirl boots, I do not care how much they cost. If I need them or I want them I buy them. 
I spent a little contemplation time on this yesterday, and I now understand why I am that way. 
Dressy boots, I do wear them to work, or when I go out to dinner or to other special events. But as a general rule, I rarely wear them out before they get given away or donated to goodwill.
My comfy boots, my ugg's and my bear claws, I like them, but they are not that flattering so I do not wear them as often either.
 My Ariats, and my Justin's, and my Twisted X boots.  I wear them until they literally fall apart.  Even then I still keep them in case I need to go out and do some really icky work and don't want to ruin my "new" boots.  I generally spend between 80 and 125 dollars on my cowgirls boots.  I get every pennies worth out of them and then some!
I have to say that these boots I just bought are quite comfy for heeled boots.  That makes them keepers in my book!
So our stall project is put on hold until Thanksgiving day.  (I know I know)  We planned on staying  home anyway.  I can throw a hunk of meat in the smoker and work through the morning and then we can eat.  With any luck at all I will only have to work half a day Friday and then load up and go ride.   I just don't know, what I do know is that getting upset over waylaid plans does me no good at all. It will get done when it gets done. 
I will  get to ride eventually.  When I do it will be without stress or regret.
Hope everyone has a great week. 

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Final Update

Well I did finally manage to catch up with the owner of the stud pony last night. She was out there feeding and watering in the dark. 

We spoke for a bit, I asked her what the story was behind the little guy, and she said that she hates having to keep him there but it is what she has to work with right now.  I asked why he was tied to the fence and it was obvious from her tone that she was furious about that.  Not that I had asked, but that some one else had gone in and done that. She came out to feed and found the gate open and him tied.  She closed him back in and got him untied.  She said that the week before she came out there to find that one of her dogs had been cross tied and could not get to food or water.  Why she has the dogs out there I do not know. 

I did offer her the free fencing, but I told her that she will have to make the effort to come and take it down.  It is heavy wire Hog panels and capped T-Posts, with RR tie corners.  It will come down easily and is easily re-usable.  I gave her my number and she said she would call. I want to go over and put the fence up for her, but I cannot. I have my own horses to care for too.  If she really wants him to have a bigger dwelling then she will come and get it.  If not then she deserves to have him taken from her.

I would like to get to know her better, find out what the real story is behind this ordeal.  Is she just going through a rough patch right now?  Is she always this irresponsible of a pet owner?  For all I know she is blowing smoke up my skirt, or maybe she is being honest.  My problem is that I tend to take people at their word until I have proof that they are liars.  Sometimes, it gets me into situations I'd rather not be in.

The main thing is this, I don't have any control over what she does and doesn't do with her animals, regardless of whether or not I agree with her methods. What I do have control over is me, and how I react to what I see.  I feel like offering assistance to her was the right thing to do.  It made me feel right about what I am willing to do to help another horse lover.  I would like to offer to bring him to my house where the pen is, then he would have shelter too.  BUT I have to consider the safety and health of my own horses, plus if her little stud got hurt by one of my horses, then I would be liable. So I have to draw the line as well.  Its a funny place to be on a tight rope of wanting to treat others as I would like to be treated, and being the protector of my own herd. 

Now I am off to work on my own stalls and then Tom says he is going to make me ride to day!  Cleared it with the arena owner today, he says nothing is going on down there, so to come on down.  I will take Trax and Danny, and see how Danny does on a short ride in some nice dirt. I will try to get pictures.

Have a great Saturday everyone.

Friday, November 16, 2012


I just got off the phone with the brand inspector, (who happens to be best buds with my boss) he says that he has been watching these horses too and especially the one in the pen. He cannot do anything as he can only identify, he cannot remove or write citations.

But I did find out that he is not a colt but a stud pony.  So I can see where separation is necessary, but even the BI agreed that the pen was way to small and when I told him the pony was tied in there now, he told me to call metro and to keep calling until they get fed up and do something.

He says that Metro has been out to talk to her, he said that he has talked to her and that she has no business having those horses.  She has no money, and can barely afford to feed them. She is feeding them though, so that is good.   I have not seen her in days, but I could just be missing her too. The fact is, even if she cares about these horses and wants to do better by them, she is in over her head. 

Apparently she is one of those people who fancies herself a "breeder" and was going to make a lot of money off of this batch of foals.  Guess that plan did not work out.

So still not sure how this is going to play out.  I do not know how I can help her with this issue that she seems to have.  Other than offer her some t-posts and fencing that I have from my old pens. At least then she could make a bigger pen for him.  I have a bigger pen with shelter at my house where he could stay, but then I also have a mare and a big old grumpy red horse who thinks the mare is his, so maybe bringing over a stud, even a little one, is a really bad idea.

I may just have to resign myself to the fact that I cannot save every horse I see.  But I will keep trying to make contact with her and see if there is anything I can do that would help her help those horses.

Neglected Colt update

I ran home for lunch today to check on Simon who is home with a belly ache.
On my way back Istopped to check on that little colt in the tiny pen.
I have not been able to catch anyone there since my last post, although I look everytime I drive by.
Today I was really angry
Not only is he in the little pen still but they have opened one side of it so all the horses can get in but they tied him to the fence right over the water tub.  So he can get his head down to drink, but he can't even take a step.
First I called my neighbor who knows someone who might know the owner of this horse.  She was going to try to get a contact number for me.
Then I called animal control again, they said they would go out again.
Neighbor called back and said according to the person she knows, several authorities are after this lady.  BUT I consider the source, the person is a known story teller.
So, if I go home tonight if he is still that way I will have to call the brand inspector and see if there is anything he can do.
Maybe I will call him today, while it is light out to see if he can go by. 
Here are my fears....If one of the mares goes in and tries to hurt him, he cannot run away.
He is just tied to a panel, which could easily move, so if he pulled on it, it could come down on top of him.  Being tied to the panel, if the panel moves he could get caught up in it and get hurt.
I really dont like this.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

More on Killian

I've really been doing a lot of thinking about the big red horse and him kicking me the other day.  Yes I accept that sometimes horses do things that are totally out of character, with no warning what so ever.   But there are other things about him that have been nagging at me for a long time, so I feel it is time to line them up and see what I come up with.

Exhibit A
This is Killian the day I brought him home. (Jan 2012)  His previous owner let him eat 24/7.  He has a huge hay belly (looked pregnant almost) but no crest on the neck.  His butt was pretty well rounded. 
His hooves had some obvious rings and waves from nutrition issues.

Exhibit B

This was taken in March or April of 2012 He was still pretty big.  Still had some winter coat on him, On this particular ride which was done at a walk or slow trot the entire way, he spent a good amount of time groaning as he walked, like he really didn't want to be there, or that maybe he was hurting.  Although once we headed towards home he seemed to be ok. He groans for almost every ride though.

Exhibit C
This one was taken during the summer. Right before he went to Riverton for a week.  His weight looks pretty good to me here.  Still a bit of a pot belly. but if you click on the picture and enlarge it, you can really see where his tailbone is starting to stick up above his rump.
Killian is an energy conservationist, to the point of being almost letheargic. To get a canter out of him for any length of time is almost impossible.  When I took him to the Ranch Horse clinic, after I forced him to run after cows, he got down right unruly.  Not so much hot and excited, as he was grumpy.  Not wanting to mind, not wanting to do anything I asked of him. I have to ask myself, was he in pain or just being lazy?

Exhibit D
I took this one this morning.  He actually weighs much less but that pot belly never does really go away.  He is losing muscle tone on his rump, even though he eats much higher quality food.  This summer when he shedded out, there were a couple of spots on his withers and butt that stayed a little long and coarse.  He never did shed out totally smooth like my others. Which of course brings to mind Cushings...early stages. But I could be over reacting too.

Killian has never had a real check up. Except very briefly by one vet who came out to give shots.  I do not care for that vet, and he won't be seeing him again. He briefly looked at his teeth, gave him some shots and then moved on to the next.  I am really starting to wonder if maybe he has some sort of underlying issue that is causing him some pain, hence the constant slow motion.  I know he needs to be ridden more, which could be the lack of muscle tone, since he is 17 now.   There aren't any big red flags with Killian, just little things that make me wonder about him.  Is he just lazy or is there something going on that we aren't catching.

The day he kicked me it was wicked cold and windy, was that cold making him hurt and grumpy? Was it intended for Sassy?   Who knows?

I'm thinking that it is a good time to schedule a check up for the big guy. Just to rule out any serious issues.

Repost- not acceptable

I had posted once this morning, but decided I was not being fair, I do not know what the owner of this horses issues are. So I deleted it and am starting over with a new frame of mind.

This little guy has been locked in this little pen for 3 or 4 months.  It has bothered me since the beginning, but I was waiting to see if it was a temporary arrangement or what.  He never gets out.  Not for walks, not for grooming, not for anything.  Meanwhile there is a whole herd of mares and foals roaming the pasture around him.

I did call animal control, but they cannot do anything as he has food and water.  Livestock are not required to have shelter or a specific pen size in WY.

I am going to watch for the owner and see if she will talk to me. I would like to know why she has him locked up like that.  Then I would like to explain to her why it is so unhealthy for a young horse, to never get any exercise.  I will do this in a constructive, non aggressive manner.  Maybe she needs help with something.  I do not know, but I know that going in guns blazing would not have been the right answer. 

See, if nothing else, blogging helps me see when I am wrong.  :)

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Killian learns to undress himself

I had the blankets on the ponies for a couple of days.  It was only 30 out this morning so I knew it was time to get them off. With as thick as their coats are it is easy for them to get too warm underneath.
I decided it would be a good time to get some pics of them in their "jackets".
 Here is Sassy wearing hers.  It is more of a dress than a jacket.  I do not care for this one, I bought it in a pinch from the feed store, although this is the 3rd winter and it has held up well.  I just don't care for the style or the fit.  I have to tell you that the first winter was a treat getting her to let me put it on.  She was halter and trailer broke and that was it. Now she stands quietly for me, while I get her dressed.  She has come a long long ways.
 Note the smug look on Killian's face as I asked him where his blanket was.  His basic response was, "I'm not telling."
 Sassy took me right to it.  She wanted him to get in trouble I'm sure, although I suspect that she was instrumental in helping him get it off.  Here's the thing.  The surcingled strap is still in tact but un-hooked.  The front of this style is closed, so you have to slide it over his head to get it on or off.  When I imagine that whole scenario of him and Sassy getting that over his head...well I'd pay big bucks to see that show!!!!
 Simon blanketed Danny and put the wrong blanket on him, but it has a belly band so I left it. He likes wearing blankets I think.  He never messes with them, Here he is at the gate to greet me.  Do you see the big hole in the bottom corner?  I don't like that the horses can get up there where that is at.  This weekend the gate is getting moved down to block them from the sides or back of the barn, which is dug into the hill.
 I think Danny looks good in red, don't you?  But see the leg strap hanging down?  Somehow he keeps getting his stringhalt leg through that strap. I never have that problem with his regular blanket.  So from now on he will have to look good in green.
 I forgot to take Trax's picture before I took his blanket off.  Can you see him watching me through the slats?  He never takes his eyes off of me when I am out there. I'm not sure if it is because he likes me or because he wants to make sure I'm not coming with a halter to catch him.  Probably option 2.
 He stopped eating to pose for this picture. Every time I see him I fall in love with him all over again. 
He is not the horse that everyone falls in love with.  
But I think I understand him better than most.  
 Killian's future stall is still being used as tractor storage so I found a great new way to store my blankets, temporarily.  But it gave me a great idea to add blanket hangers in the storage area.  Putting that on the list for this weekend. I tried to fold them up neatly first, they were not cooperating and I was late for work.
 This is Karney.  He is an 8 week old Irish Wolfhound puppy.  My neighbor just got back from Oregon with him.  I cannot wait till we can start taking him to shows. (I love dogs shows)  He is going to be a big winner.  Both his parents are champions, and I can tell already he has wonderful conformation.
But for now he is just 30 pounds of cute cute cute! These pics were taken with my cell in a dark room and then I had to try to light them.  So they are not very good.
So I am out of my funk, which is good.  I hate being that way.  I'm wondering if it is directly related to the weather. It is warming up again and I am feeling better about life in general. 

Monday, November 12, 2012

Proactive vs. Reactive

Reactive = Sitting around grumbling about my broken straps on my blanket.  Phrases like, "I'll never shop there again."  or " Those Blankets suck"  tend to go along with being reactive.

Proactive = Going on line to search my order history, getting the exact model of blanket and calling SStack and explaining what happened. I was kind and curtious as was the young lady on the other end.  My new clippy thingies are on their way. 

So, I will shop there again, as I really like the blankets and obviously they stand behind their products.

I also have to tell you that I have hung my head in terrible shame today.  As my friend has spent the weekend trying to help his children deal with the suicide of their mother, I had the audacity to whine and complain about the stupidest most petty things in the world.  I just found this out today.  
I am so lucky that my life is so easy. Many prayers go out to this great guy and his family as they try to sort through this.  May God bless them with light and help them reach some sort of understanding.

Nuthin about nuthin and gratitude

The weekend was a drag...freezing butt cold (high of 26 low of 6) and I spent 2 days pretty much trapped inside trying to get caught up on Tom's paperwork which put me in a really bad mood!
Not having to do his paperwork, but we have one company who makes it as hard as they can to get their bills figured up. They stall on giving me the weights for the materials (yet insist that we bill by the ton) and then they stall on giving me the rates per ton.  So what should take a few hours to do, ends up taking all day....after several months of just trying to get the proper information to do the job.
It is sooooooo frustrating!

Then to top it off my carpet shampooer quit working.....ARGH!

OH!  AND I got kicked by the one horse I never thought would...KILLIAN!  I couldn't beleive it!  All I was doing was dumping his food out and walked past him to feed Sassy.  I think he might have been kicking at her, but still he got me in the hip.  I was close enough that he didn't good a full on hit, but I have a bruise for sure.  BAD BAD PONY!   I yelled at him and threw the bucket at him and made him move a way.  He needs some work, getting grumpy and rude.

I did finally insist on getting out of the house and took this lovely picture

All I can say is Brrrrrr!

My dilemna over the stall size ended up being pointless, as it was so cold we were unable to do anything with them.  So everyone still has free run of their perspective pastures.  It is supposed to be bearable next weekend, so the plan is to just finish them properly.  I like that idea much better anyway, so THAT all worked out ok! :)

I wanted to get some pics of the ponies in their blankets this morning but my son called and begged me to come jump start his car, which put some serious time constraints on me today.

I also found that one of my blankets that I had just bought last year from SStack has not one but two broken leg  straps.  I was not happy about that, as it has barely been used.  The straps held but the "buckles" broke.  }:-( 

When it warms up I will have to bring it in and see if it is repairable.  Interestingly enough, I thought my horses were fat fat fat (except Danny) But these blankets show that they are all thinner than last winter! So that is good. 

I apologize for my post being such a bummer.  In reality I know I am lucky to have the minor problems that I do.  I do not have to stress over how I will pay my bills, I always know I have a place to lay my head at night.  I am healthy, as is the rest of my family.  If I am cold when I go outside, it means that my legs work and I am capable of walking outside.  If I have to go jump start my son's car, it means he is working and being self sufficient, which is more than some kids his age.  If I have to sit all day and figure out stupid paperwork, it means I still have my wits about me, I am smart enough to do these things, and I am valuable to the trucking company.  
I am so lucky to live in wide open spaces where I am happy, and have dog hair to clean up, and horse poop to shovel.  I am lucky to always have so much to do for it means that I shall never be bored!  I am lucky to have a bruise on my hip and not a broken hip or leg.   I have much to be grateful for so I need to stop my really is good. is good!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Word Verification

I just tried to comment in response to other comments on my own post and was forced to do a word verification.  I thought I had it turned off, and if everyone has been having to deal with that nonsense just to comment on my blog, I sincerely apologize. 
It is possible when I was messing with my layout the other day it set to defaults and I didn't realize it. 
Anyway, it is off again. 
Please if anyone ever tries to comment and that comes up again, let me know so I can turn it off.
I personally could care less if you are a robot or not! LOL!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Advice Please?????

Hello Friends and fellow horse women and men (and best bloggers in the world)

I have a question I am hoping to get some advice on. 

We have reached the point with my pens where we need to decided if we are going to add more panels or leave them as is.  It is the impending storm due to hit this weekend that has brought us to this dilemma.

As they stand now, if we just threw on the gates for now, each horse would have a 9 x 40 run to his or herself.  24 outside 16 inside. 

Is that enough room for a horse to reside in and remain emotionally and physically healthy?  Keeping in mind that 2 horses a day get let out to the pasture for exercise.  No one would spend more than 24 hours at a time in those runs. 

Once we put the gates up they will stay that way till next spring when it warms up.  Then we can continue our project and extend the runs another 24 feet.   We could have them done in a few hours and be totally prepared for the storm 

Plan b is wait out the storm and hope for one more weekend afterwards that will allow us to finish the original design.  (another 24 feet)

It seems to me that it should be big enough for now, but I don't KNOW that it is so I worry, I guess.

I would sure appreciate any input anyone has for me. 

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

A Nation Divided


What I have learned today is that when an election is as close as this one was
it cannot be good for our country.
The winner has just alienated almost half the country
without even trying
Now we are a nation divided
 What we really are is a nation stuck in a rut
 actually 2 ruts
and until someone can find a way
 to transcend those ruts to political unity between both sides
we are a nation going no where.

I normally avoid the topic of politics on my blog, and this will probably be the only time I ever do this, but I really feel like this message is important.  Please understand that this is not a statement of who is right and who is wrong, because truthfully I have no clue who is right and who is wrong.  This is just my observation I see from all the bickering going on all around me.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Handsome Danny

I was on FB this morning and decided I needed to change my profile pic. 
I ran across this picture taken of me on Danny about 3 years ago.  He was not being very coopertative that day. I just wanted him to stand still and he kept wanting to take off. 

He sure is handsome even for an old guy!
I don't care for how I am pulling on his mouth in this picture.  I have learned a lot more about riding since then, but truthfully sometimes I still am kind of heavy handed.
Working on it though.
My goal is to do everything in my power to take him and Trax to the arena Friday night and do some riding on them both.  It has been too long.

Monday, November 5, 2012

photo edits

I did a little bit of editing with the pic from my last post.....What do you guys think?
Constructive critisism is welcomed!
I will call it Danny's Halo.

Weekend Photo Montage (with captions!!!)

Well I/we did get quite a bit of my list done this weekend. 
We were a little set back behind schedule on Saturday because Tom had to go haul some asphalt first.  I wanted to complain but asphalt and clean fill dirt paid for our barn, so I kept my mouth shut. 
Sometimes I'm smarter than I look!
While he was doing that (and fighting dead batteries on his dump truck) I went ahead and got other stuff done that did not require his dog poop, and horse poop,
 and construction trash, and laundry and some house work.
 I also made about 500 hundred (okay so it was really only like 30) trips up and down the 20 foot ladder screwing pieces of plywood to the "snow holes" between the top of the barn wall and the roof.  Oh and I sealed the entire floor of the storage area so hopefully when the snow melts or it rains it will not flood. (10 cans of expanding spray foam, and 5 tubes of caulk)
The dogs were quite helpful while cleaning up the poop with my brand new fancy pooper scooper. 
(I will spare you pictures of the poop)
 They weren't quite sure what my obsession was with all this poop, but since I obviously had a use for it, they were nice enough to make 3 new piles for me while I was scooping...what good boys!!!

Smarty:  I'm not sure why you are doing this, but I will stand guard and keep you protected.

Butch (not to be outdone):  I too shall stand guard
I see deer- I will watch them closely for I am sure they are after the poop too.
Me:  Mason stop eating the poop, you are not starving! 
Mason: What poop?  I wasn't eating poop, I'm just sniffing it out for you, I SWEAR!!!!

Smarty:  I Found some more!!! Over here Mom, Over here!
Mason; Shut up Smarty, I was saving that for a snack!

Mason:  Wheewwww, this yard work is tiring, I'll wait here, you guys go ahead.
After that little event it was time to work on the horse pens.
Trax:  Hmmmm, there is some interesting stuff on this truck.
Oh look!  Straw!
Danny:  Hey lady, what are ya building this time?

Danny: Hey Trax!  I think it's cages...THEY ARE BUILDING HORSE CAGES!
I took this on the guys' trip number 4 to the hardware store.  (I stayed behind) As it turns out our 12 foot panels are a tad shy of that actual measurement, which meant our posts were in the wrong spot.  We had to get creative with our "attachment plan". We scrapped plan A, and then Plan B, and Plan C.  Finally Plan D seemed to do the trick.  This was taken shortly after we scrapped plan C. (you can almost see that I am laying on Danny's new stall mats)

This is my attempt at some abstract photography with an Iphone.
I think it would look cool in b&w.
(I was still waiting for  plan D to formulate)
This is after we perfected plan D which required some creative engineering on Tom's part.  It looks kind of funny but they are sturdy, and as my friend Jay told me once..."it's not very often that horses excape under a fence"  Plus I have a mountain of clean fill dirt I can use to build that up some.
We still have another section to add below this, as well. The "pens" will be 48' long plus the stall.
Sometimes it seems like we will never get this done.
It took me a little bit to explain the concept of one horse per stall to them,
 but they finally got the idea.
Trax:  I claim this stall as MINE!!!
Me:  Trax the rubber mats are for Danny.
Trax:  Tell Danny to get his own mats these are mine.
Me: Danny has the bad leg, Trax, you need to be fair to the cripple guy.
Danny:  nom nom nom, Lady, I could care less about mats, just give me food.
Me:  Trax you are getting so big I'm gonna change your name to "Beefcake"
Trax:  Lady , I'm not fat, I'm getting ready for winter!
Its hard to believe my horses can get so fat on such a small amount of food. 
 (of course this does have a few bites out of it already)
Danny:  HEY!  Who are you calling fat....I'm the perfect model of equine fitness!
Me:  Danny, do I need to bring up the "man boobs" again?
Mr Sun;  Oh yeah, going down in style tonight!
(I'm kind of diggin my camera angle)