Sunday, November 24, 2013


I've been missing my horses.  I've spent the last week at home, but I'm gone all day on my latest externship and I leave early and don't get back until after dark.  So it's been over a week since I've seen my horses in the daylight.  Without a barn with lights, it makes it hard to really check on them...but they are all there and upright for every feeding.

And this weekend marks the last cram session for an exam that I hope I'll ever have to do.  I take my national board exam tomorrow.  Wish me luck!

And I'm going to post the transition collages I made for Chico and Catlow that show their progression since I adopted them as yearlings until now.  Can you believe they are 9 years old already!?

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Together at last (2)!

Cody trots to catch up with Catlow, who moved down the valley to graze.

After separating Stormy out, Chico hurries to catch up with Cody and Catlow.

Stormy makes it back down to the others after I shoo her away, and Chico right away sets in to chase her.  She's not to happy about it...with a swish of her tail.

All the activity gets Catlow riled up too, so she launches into a gallop!  If Catlow is going to run, the whole herd will run!  I love the power in Catlow's launch!

They are all feeling a little sassy!  Well, Catlow and Cody are...I think Stormy is just trying to stay out of Chico's way!

 Catlow is really digging in!


My dogs think they should chase the horses as the horses run past and my poor cruciate ligament tear/repair dog, Jasper, trips himself up in the grass and goes head over heals!

Don't worry, Jasper is okay.  It just hurts to see him so debilitated.  I'm pretty sure catching Lyme disease set off his cranial cruciate ligament tears.

The horses get separated.  Stormy ran into the lower pasture and whinnies pitifully to her separated friends.

So they all head down to be together.

Once together, they are still riled up!  I love the tails in the air!

 Then they settle down, with Chico and Cody standing side by side, like they used to.  Stormy looks on like she'd really like to be next to her Cody.

I do think that Cody missed Chico.  She touches him affectionately here.

Stormy decides she's had enough of them for awhile and trots up to visit me again.  Sure, maybe she thinks I'll feed her, but she really does seem to be bonding to me!  Every time I come outside, she looks up and stares at me with this penetrating look.  None of my other horses do that!  Griffin used to always notice me and acknowledge me too.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Together at last!

This will be a two parter, just because I have lots of photos to share.

And because I know that it is probably hard to tell all my dark horses apart , especially since they all get darker when their winter coats come in, I'll describe them all quick before we get into it.  Catlow is the easy one...she is the sorrel with the big blaze face.  Then Stormy is the only other horse with any white - she is dark brown (seal brown) with a small crescent on her forehead, a snip, and a white right rear pastern.  Stormy has the darkest coat color and true black mane and tail.  Cody is very similar in color to Stormy except she is more of a smokey color (due to the cream gene on seal brown) and her mane and tail are very dark chocolate.  She is also bigger than Stormy and has no white.  And Chico is the simple bay with no white.  He is actually a little bit of a sooty bay, but compared to the others, he is quite light.

Chico's wound is really healing nicely.  It's hardly even thickened around the fetlock anymore.  It has a nice scab over the ever-shrinking granulation tissue.  I'm so pleased at the stage it's at.

So I decided to turn the horses back out together.  It's easier to manage them when they are together.  As it was, the two out in the big pasture weren't getting any mineral because the mineral feeder is in the barn.
I knew there would be drama, and of course there was, but not nearly as much as there was the first time I turned Chico out with them all.  That time he was also full of energy from being cooped up in the barn.  This time it was much less excitement, but still a lot to see in the herd interactions.
Stormy has this disgusting habit of peeing at horses when she is kicking at them.  I thinks it's a bit of submission thing, but she also tends to show extremely strong heats, especially to horses she hasn't been with.
Here she is kicking at Chico and peeing at him at the same time, as he threatens to kick her.
Chico tries to go down and chase after Stormy, again, but Cody (dark chocolate colored horse) steps in front of him and cuts him off, threatening to kick him.  Remember, Chico and Cody are usually best buds.
I love Cody's face in this and Chico's reaction.  She is clearly telling him to back off. 
And he does.  Cody is the boss mare afterall.  He behaves himself for a few minutes, following Cody apologetically.  This picture is good for showing the colors of the "dark" horses.  Stormy is furthest in the background here, then Cody (you can really see her smokiness), then Chico last.
But that doesn't last long.  He's back to chasing Stormy again.
He tries to keep her on the outside of his herd, while Cody looks on with a watchful eye.  Catlow couldn't care less what was happening.  She was just happy to be out in the big pasture grazing (she was the one in with Chico in the little pasture).
Chico succeeds in isolating Stormy and she looks at me hoping I might save her.
Chico takes off at a strong trot to catch up with Cody and Catlow.  You can see his leg really doesn't hinder him much at all!  I'm so excited that I might actually have my riding gelding back when he's all healed up from this.  I don't think this ruined him!
 He's catching air here.  Someone said that he probably is okay because mustangs are tougher than other horses.  I sort of had to giggle at that because really, Chico was just one lucky horse.  Lucky that he happened to miss all those important tendons, joints, and everything else down there!  And I like to think he had good care.  Without all the bandaging, he certainly wouldn't have had this good of a cosmetic effect, and it may have scarred bad enough to hinder motion in his fetlock.

After Chico isolated Stormy, she came right over to hang out with me.  She just stood next to me and walked beside me in the pasture as though I was leading her.  I finally shoo'd her away telling her to go interact with the others, and as she left, she stopped and looked back at me with this expression "Do I really have to?"
I'm really becoming quite attached to the newest member of my herd.