Friday, April 30, 2010

P.S.A. for our friends at Saddlebred Rescue

Saddlebred Rescue is very motivated to move some horses. Each week they are having to turn away more horses who are being shipped to slaughter because they are out of room. They have pledges to help with adoption fees and from what I understand, no reasonable offer will be refused.

Here is their page of available rescues: Available Everything from show ring candidates, to proven lesson horses to personal trail horses... Each horse has been evaluated and is receiving training by SBR's resident trainer.

In addition Hogan the horse with the huge heart is available as a pasture ornament for a $0 fee. The Amish called and wanted him to be picked up by SBR because they did not want him to go to slaughter. He was pulling a buggy 60 miles a day. Hogan's wind is broken, and he is not a very enjoyable ride (he's very game, and I guess he would have to be to go 60 miles a day). He needs to be a lawn mower. If a home cannot be found, he will be humanely destroyed in two weeks. This fella deserves a good retirement home. He has done his best and paid his dues.
Please spread the word. If anyone is interested in adopting and lightening their load so they will have room to help new horses in need, please call Pat Johnson at 908-304-3560

Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Blustery Day

Spring has been winding on with beautiful sunny days, and quite a bit of breeziness. Today was blustery, and I was feeling very fresh, so to avoid getting me all sweaty and deal with the grooming issues, we opted for a quick jaunt around the fields (short version) and we took the camera along so you could see what we see. Ready?

This is my first view south across the valley towards Pennsylvania (furthest set of hills). We are on the border between Mom's cornfield (to the left) and the family farm hay fields (to the right). Up ahead is the cow pasture.

And I think I see my cows. They hang out here in the corner where there is about 20 feet of old fencing between the cowlane gate and the corner. I think they are scoping it out and deciding whether or not to make a break for it.

Hello Cows. (this is as close as I like to get just in case they do make a break for it. I don't want to be involved.)

To the right (and west) is the family farm. That where we see all the Amish. They have been working on the barns for more than a year now. The barns belong to Mom, and Uncle Dad. That's where we keep all the extra horse hay, and where I am told, the cow operation will be located when it gets bigger. Just beyond the barns (look just to the right of them through the trees) is my field where I like to gallop. That field belongs to Brita.

And so do these trees and the pasture beyond. You can see the road. It divides the family hay fields from Brita's land. That road is nice to trot up and down because it is fairly flat and doesn't have too much traffic. Brita makes me work on that road. But sometimes I get to gallop there.

So we've gone down by the barns, trotted along that road, rounded the corner of the fields to the right and are headed back to the top of the hill where we began. We like to make a big loop of these hay fields. On blustery days when you can't hear traffic coming, they are the safest place to be. We are lucky to have plenty of wide open spaces so we can see traffic coming a long ways away, and if some scary farm machinery or something heads in our direction, we can get off the road into the field. Traffic doesn't bother me much, but when goes past at 45 miles per hour only a few feet away, I get a bit anxious. If there is so little as a ditch and some field between the speeding car and my precious cargo, I ignore it completely. At this house, there are lots of sites to see. The lady who lives there is usually working outside, and I like to stop and watch her. Today she was planting something in her vegetable garden. Hi Lady.

And then we finish up with a stroll through the woods across the road. This is a good spot for cooling off. In the summer it is cool and shady. Right now the leaves are just starting to open.

Well, it was nice having you come with us. See you soon.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Making Waffles

I've been cooking this month ~ and waffles are on the menu. Hair Waffles. I've been so warm in my winter coat. Finally it's coming off in big chunks. We left a trail in the yard of hair waffles when I went out to pick grass. The birds were happy, and started carrying some off.

But wouldn't you know it, some of the nights are still cold. The Doctor came on Friday to get some horse juice, and he also gave me a poke in the neck. It made me feel lousy. I was stiff and sore and grumpy. Mom got out my winter blanket and tucked me in for the cold nights. That made me feel better. But now my blanket is a mess. This is what it looked like even after a good brushing. So Mom is off to the laundromat.

There has been some progress on my pasture. The farmer came back with a different piece of equipment, squeezed through my gate, and fluffed my dirt. I've been very sad that I can't go to the pasture to play. Mom let me out there at first, but I ate great big wads of dirt. It was so easy. I guess she was afraid I would get filled up on wiggly earth worms. But when the Doctor came he took away some poop, and he looked for worms. He said he couldn't find any, earth worms or other kinds either. So I don't have to eat any nasty paste this spring. I think it is much wiser to spend money on poop tests instead of icky paste.

So the back pasture looks like a farm. The farmer guy has been very busy around here, kicking up dust in all the fields. And there were lots of rocks out there in those fields, some nearly as big as my head. A big herd of Mexeecans swarmed through and picked all the rocks. I wonder if they store them in the barn? Rocks don't seem like a very good crop. Even I wouldn't eat a rock.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

But Buttercups are Pretty!

Last year my little pasture was full of beautiful yellow buttercups.

No one has really used this pasture in the summertime for a few years, and the buttercups took over. Mom and Brita have been talking about what to do about this, since I have been trying to eat every little bit of green I can find. They said that buttercups will make me sick. and the more I eat, the sicker I'll get. So, today Mom was standing above my pasture with the crossthestreet neighbor talking about tilling them under. All of a sudden, on the horizon, Mom spotted the downtheroad neighbor with a tractor and plows, and he was headed past our little farm. I don't know what it is about a man on a tractor that gets these gals all excited, but add an implement and they just go wild. Next thing I knew, that big tractor was in my pasture just ruining the grass. And apparently, he will be back next week with more implements. I sure hope he plans to put things back the way it was.

So anyway, we went for a nice little ride. But while we were out, the winds changed, and the temperature dropped 20 degrees. I'm not kidding. It was like opening the refrigerator door. The wind was so high that we couldn't hear important stuff like traffic coming, so we'd gone for a little mosey around the fields, visited the tame red cows, had a nice little canter, and were headed up the woods trail when that blast of cold air hit us. We turned and hightailed it back to the barn before we got caught in the rain. Brita said when she got to the barn today it was 72 degrees and when she left, it was 50 degrees. Now it's pouring rain out, everyone is inside and we're munching our hay. April showers bring May flowers... but they won't bring buttercups.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Like a Heat Wave

OK, it's not LIKE a heat wave. It actually IS a heat wave. All weekend we had temperatures in the eighties. Which is about 20 degrees warmer than it should be. Way to warm to be running around in your winter coat, but I did anyway. We had a good gallop around the cornfield. It was firm and dry and made really good "clop" noises. Then we took a stroll in the woods. All this activity got me really sweaty. Brita washed my tail and waited for me to dry off so she could scratch my itches, but it didn't really happen. Not to worry, I have a solution to wet itchy coats.

For our purposes today, we will need to find some dry dirt. Wet dirt is good for lots of things, but not for drying sweat.

Then you get yourself situated directly over the deepest dusty spot.

Drop down and get right in it.

Make sure you get your wet neck deep deep into it and scratch back and forth.

Then "Alley-ooop" and get your props back under you.

See? All nice and dry.