Friday, January 29, 2010
Thursday, January 21, 2010
Horsenaltiy is starting to emerge. Once Autumn must have been a princess horse. She loves the better things that life has to offer, stinky ole regular grass hay is NOT in that category. Peppermints, carrots, and alfalfa are. Scratches are much appreciated. I hate leaving any horse in a box but the rain continues. She is a sweet, sweet mare.
Monday, January 18, 2010
Autumn is an eating machine. Her spirits are good, eyes again bright. The desparate, searching behavior with her muzzle has disappeared. Our vet visited tonight. Lots of good news. She has moved away from "the edge" and I can keep feeding her the regime I had started. She was wormed. Back in June she was SUPPOSED TO GET HER TEETH DONE!!!! She really needs it but Dr. Carlyle wants to wait for a couple of weeks until she has more weight. He did not give any vaccinations for the same reason.
Last night Red Horse went with me to get Autumn from the stall - his stall actually. His eyes literally bugged out when he saw ANOTHER horse in it. He hates his stall - throws his body against the wall whenever I leave him there. No matter, how DARE I share his territory with another horse!
Mosley AKA Elko also had his vet visit. The dude is a TANK. I suspect insulin resistance will be his main issue because in the middle of winter he still has a huge fatty crest in his neck. If I am long in his life he will have a crash course in ground manners. Kept pushing into the vet and doing some inventive head shakes to try to keep the Doc out of his mouth.
Saturday, January 16, 2010
When I made an appointment for a vet exam, the clinic checked their patient data base for a quarter horse named Moose. They found one who was nine years old and was listed with a 23 years old mare. Bingo. Someone named her Autumn. Welcome Autumn. I will be her caretaker until she is healed and we can find the right home for her.
Moose has been Autumn's leader and protector for the 10 months I have known them. He is very devoted to her and is troubled that she has been taken from his side to eat and heal. A very solid boy, he appears wormy but has not suffered the weight loss of his sweetie. My friend will be his caretaker. Moose, who I am calling Mosely, waited by the gate for hours and hours, calling to Autumn. What will happen to their relationship?
Tomorrow I will trim his hoofs. They have some nasty forward flares that look very uncomfortable. I worked on Autumn's front hoofs today. Cary (with Mosley in pictures) is going to help me tomorrow, so I should be able to get all their hoofs trimmed in much more comfy.
Friday, January 15, 2010
Tonight we have a good ending to a not-so-nice story. Tonight Bay Mare got to come in to eat, be groomed, and evaluated for immediate needs. She walked through the dark, left the pasture where she has lived for months, and stepped with complete calmness and trust into the warmth of the Redwood Barn. Diving into a pile of grass hay, she sighed and literally melted into our touch. This is a sweet, sweet mare. Here is the rest of the story.
On Wednesday our barn manager left me a message to call him. I did not get the message until Thursday night and Friday was so crazed that it was evening before we talked. Meanwhile I had been feeding Bay Mare in the pasture after everyone was gone. When the b. manager and I talked he said he had already sold the 2 horses - to my friend Jennifer who is in Prineville, Oregon going to saddle making school!!!! Jennifer did not even know that Bay Mare was starving - she just knew that their owner was in arrears and that the b. manager was going to take the two horses "over the hill" to auction which these days doesn't offer much hope for a horse. She bought them for the price of horse meat. We talked tonight and I have her complete agreement to start the rehab process. This is turning into a community project.
Tomorrow I will take in a fecal sample and schedule a vet appointment. I am so relieved. This is the first time all week I will go to sleep without worry. All of your comments and encouragement meant so much to me when I felt I was in a nasty double bind needing to stay in a positive relationship with the barn manager while not taking any visible action to help horses I didn't have "official" access to. Thus the "midnight" feed runs. From the late night feedings, she already seems to have more energy.
Bay Mare trusted me and my friend Sherri without hesitation tonight. I could rage for a considerable amount of time about the people who did this. Instead, I will marvel at horses' capacity and willingness to trust after they have been grievously neglected.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Bay Mare and I have become friends. Efforts are being made. I will update when I can.
THANK YOU for your incredible support following my last post.
It becomes so hard to understand how people can let this happen, yet it does. Thousands of horses in our country are in dire straights. For heart lifting inspiration, visit Thoroughbred Friends and meet Joe Shelton, a man who finds hope in the face of despairing circumstances. Please visit today and read about Party, then go hug your sweet horses.
Sunday, January 10, 2010
Tonight I'm thinking of the many wonderful people I've met over the last few years who open their hearts to horses. Many of you have been involved intensely with rescue work and have courageously found answers that saved horses who would have been lost without your aid. My "saving" energy has gone into my sweet grannie horse Lyra. She just had her teeth done and I learned that her age is more "around" 25 than 20. I would save more, if I could. Right in the very place I find such joy, the general pasture at Freshwater, are two who need someone to help. Quickly, I suspect.
He is a big boned, nine year old, quarter type gelding. A blood bay. I just found out his name is Moose. His mare is a petite 23 year old thoroughbred who was sleek and lovely when she entered the GP months ago. Moose is fiercely protective of her, runs off any horse that looks at his girl. Even Red. No one has come to care for Moose and his sweetie through the long cold months. They have dropped their weight. The mare is in trouble. I wrote about her earlier in the week.
Tonight Bay Mare kept laying down. She had a hard time getting up. Moose stayed close by. Loyalty - horses have it in their bones. I came close to Bay Mare and she nickered to me. Soft, scared eyes. She knows. I had written my barn manager a note about her eariler in the week. Tonight I called him. He called their owner and then told me that he or she is coming to check on them tomorrow, but they are in arrears and probably won't want the horses. Not want their horses? What kind of people take such vivid personalities with such clear and shining spirits and leave them to fend for themselves for MONTHS and then decide they don't want them? Not want Moose and his bay mare? If the owners of Moose and Bay Mare don't pay their bill, then they will get sold or taken over the mountains to auction. These days only the meat folk buy horses like this at auctions.
I want to save Moose and Bay Mare. I told my barn manager to tell me before anyone started talking about hauling horses to auction. I have a two horse herd. That is what I can do well. And I cannot let Moose and Bay Mare fall by the way side. I've walked beside them in the herd for months. Don't know what the answer will be. Tonight they will be in my prayers.
Yesterday there was an earthquake. It was 6.5, yet felt more intense.
It could have been much worse. I am fine and my house is not damaged.
I've spent the day cleaning up things shaken off the shelves. I was taking a nap when it started. Great metaphor. As I grabbed my jeans I kept thinking - dang, why didn't I finish that earthquake kit? What did I grab besides my pants? A knife, flashlight, and a leash for the dogs.
Was I frightened? Heck yes. But my greatest fear came from not knowing if this was the "big one" that visits the Humboldt Coast every few hundred years. I've been in several earthquakes and this felt the most intense, though it was not the biggest on the Richter scale.
In less than an hour I was walking the fence line of the general pasture, wanting to be sure it was intact. Grateful. Shaken. Comforted by the calm of the horses and the beauty of the sunset. Thinking what I need to do to prepare.
PS Sheeesh, only on Facebook! There is a "I survived the Eureka 2010 Earthquake" Group. Of course I joined. There are lots of pictures that show the outcome - not tragic fortunately, but definitely sobering.
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
Sunday, January 3, 2010
. . . I know I'm pretty darn lucky working in schools and getting to live by a school schedule. So winter break is coming to an end, tomorrow back to work. I like knowing that regardless of how busy or intense my job might be, I have a herd of friends who move through their day within a pattern that resonates with ancient rhythms. And no matter where I am a part of my heart, touched by these horses, moves with them through the sun, shadow, and connection of their
Whenever Red sees me, his head pops up and he makes a bee line for me. He is so cute! I just love this horse.
Fino and Sooten are two old freinds. Sooten is crippled from long ago intentional injuries from a malicious person. He moves around the pasture taking tiny steps. Fino keeps him company and stands by him when the other horses become too rough.
I've never seen anyone come to visit Steamer. He is slowly (months) developing a relationship with me. Here he is letting me know that Lena is a bit too close in his personal space.
Red loves it when I enter his world. He hangs with me, sometimes not letting the other horses near. Here he is standing with his head next to Lyra's flank, he waited like this while I talked to her and hugged her. He might not have been too happy about it, but he didn't budge to interfere. I believe that he realizes that she is part of our little herd of two. My sweeties, Red and Lyra.
But he did not hesitate to let Rickie know he was TIRED of having all the other horses wanting to be with me.
Bay mare is not doing too well. She is a TB who is younger than Lyra, but no one ever comes to care for her. One reason I like to walk in the general pasture is I get to see how all the horses are doing. Sometimes I worry that no one else does. Her condition has really deteriorated over the last few weeks. Yesterday I talked with a couple of other boarders about her. We will be talking with the manager. We intend to see that she gets some help.
Rickie is one of the sweetest horses in the GP herd. Another wonderful boy who never gets a visit from his human. He has "pocket pony" written all over him.
And it takes very little to make him smile.
The day was one of those rare winter days with incredibly clear, warm sunlight. Many horses got cozy and took long winter sunbaths.