Friday, May 22, 2009

There are two wild horses in my wild horse pens!

Well, they are here! And I took a lot of photos...too many to load into blogger. So I'm giving a link to the facebook album where I also have comments attached to the photos telling the story of our day.

The basic arrangement is the adoption pens, then I show photos and talk about the mare, then photos and talking about the stud (to-be-gelding).

It looks like they must have trimmed up their feet before the adoption - I conclude this only because they are not overgrown and they've been in a holding facility since November.

Also, I'm trying to come up with names for them...I like to go with something that is unique or descriptive for the horse, or is a name that heralds from their stomping grounds (for example, Catlow's name is from the Catlow Mountains and Valley in the South Steens HMA area). These guys come from the Needle Range in western Utah. I won't tell the names that have been popping into my head because they are corny and I don't like them. I'd love to hear suggestions! Naming is hard because names are so important!


nikki said...

Your new horses are beautiful! I bet the little mare just seems small because she's so thin. Once she puts some weight on she's really going to fill out and seem bigger(the stud too I'm sure). I love the highlights in their manes too, and zebra strips, and dorsel stripe! I can't wait to see their different personalities come thru. I'll try to think up some names and pass 'em on your way if I come up with some.

I bet the mare will be a mother hen and quieter (I love the pics with her and your dogs) and the colt is going to be more in your face, no non-sense and investigative(in a good way).

Do you know how many other mustangs at the adoption were adopted? Or is the adoption going on all weekend?

Kara said...

Hi Nikki,

It's still going on. An announcement in the paper said that they were going to have 60 horses, but it didn't seem like that many were there. I'd say at most 40, but I was distracted so my thoughts about how many there were might be off. It's a first come first serve adoption, not competitive bid. So they started today at 1pm and then another round tomorrow at 1pm. We left before any of the adoption started.

Interestingly, there were a couple Amish men there looking at horses and filling out applications. I wonder what kind of life an Amish mustang will have. At least they are adapted to the long distances that Amish horses pull buggies.

Pony Girl said...

Wow, what a day! The Facebook album was a great idea. They are both pretty horses, I especially like the mares's face and blaze. She looks sweet and curious and I agree, she'll be easy to work with. I hope she grows for you and she certainly will fill out.
The colt looks feisty, but like you said, it's probably fear. He was just moved from his comfort zone and thrown into a new one, he's on alert. But I'd be super careful. I'm excited to watch the progress of you and your dad working with them.
I'm glad your dog didn't get kicked, that would have been awful. We don't let the dogs go into the horse's pastures, my sister's puppy run under the fence once at feeding time (before she knew better) and my horse stomped on her. She's lucky she had only minor injuries! They do run along and bark at the fence which can agitate the horses, too!

Kara said...

Chico will half heartedly try to stomp a dog too, so my dogs are pretty smart about it. When a horse moves quick or in their direction, they get out of the way. And they know how to behave around them. The only bad thing is that they really like to try to "help" me if I have to get after a horse for being pushy while we are in the pasture, but if I yell quick they'll back off. They are great help for herding though...eventhough I never really worked with them for that, they do a pretty good job of fanning out to make me larger as I herd the horses...I just have to keep reminding them no to get ahead of me. And they also will stay out of the pens if I tell them, so, now no dogs allowed in either mustang pen just to be safe.

arlene said...

Wildairo charged me several times when we first got him. He'd strike out intending to get me try to bite as well. I was protected by the gate.

When your new horse is hungry offer him some long stemmed fresh grass through the fence so he can get to know you. I had Wildairo in a small pen at first and when he tried to attack me through the gate I fought back with my crutches and my fists yelling NO at the same time. He learned quickly what NO meant because after awhile soon as he went into attack mode I'd yell NO and he'd call off his attack. Once he knew I was his boss we were fine. The trouble is I'm the only one he respects.

Don't go in there with him till he respects you more. If he's anything like Wildairo, he may try to fight first and ask questions later. He thinks he's defending himself.

By the way later Wildairo had to bite (not nibble, but bite hard) everything I put near him like brushes and the towel that I put on his back. He had to teach objects he was the boss I guess, lol.

Kara said...

Arlene, I don't think that this guy is as confident as Wildairo...think of this guy as being extremely fearful (like Echo), but standing up for himself because he thinks he's all alone in this big world and he's the only one who is going to stand up for himself. He hasn't come at me or shown aggression, but he's show extreme extreme panic and fear. So I think that if he was cornered or if I was in his pen for too long, he might resort to showing aggression if he can't handle it. So far he's too scared for me to be in the pen with him. And if I'm outside the pen leaning on the panels, he's on the far side or in the barn...either hiding from me or peaking at me. I dont' know if he'll get comfortable enough to actually charge me at the fence later...but he might. I think I need to spend a bunch of time outside his pen. Either that, or he needs a larger area to work him in...his 24'X24' pen is too claustrophobic for him if I'm in there. So much for the bamboo pole method. I think if I tried to touch him with a pole, he WOULD go through the fence or charge me.

arlene said...

OK I understand. What has helped me with Echo is just taking it very slow and winning his trust. He was so terrified of people it was sad. I remember when I tried to touch him with a bamboo pole the first time!!! I've had to try a different approach. lol. I bring him lots of freshly picked grasses and he loves it. I mix it up by making him do some 'rounding penning' in our square pen. I can get him to do some really nice trotting circles around me and direction changes. We stop often for grass breaks and it has just occurred to him that I'm not chasing him when he doing his circles. He used to run around in a blind panic, now he even tries to slow down to a walk because he knows he's not being chased. When he does have a moment of panic I make him do circles as punishment. We're coming to the point where I might try the touching issue again but in the bigger pen.

I'm only just starting to do things to startle him on purpose. He's handling it like a good boy. At one time my hair blowing in the breeze would sent him off the deep end. I found getting through to him when he was that terrified was impossible. I believe the pace we have gone has built up better trust for both of us. I hope so anyway.

I'd bring him snacks and also sit outside the pen next to where he eats. I have discovered that the way to a mustangs heart is through his belly, lol.

Kara said...

Arlene, how big is your square pen that Echo is in? Did you keep him in a smaller pen or a larger pen than what we have (24x24ft). I wonder if we might need to revise his pen if he can't handle being that claustophobic.