Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Pony Goodbyes

SO, a lot of changes happening. First, I have decided to sell my mare Luna. It was a heartbreaking decision and after many tears shed and many uncertainties and changes of heart, I am sticking to the decision.

I got Luna as a 2 year old, before I had a baby. My world is forever changed and trying to balance it all and put in the commitment to ride and work a green horse is not working. My Boy was getting seriously neglected (okay, not literally, but, he hadn't really been ridden much in the past few years) because any free time and funds I had went into Luna's training and riding. She was to be my future trail horse.

{This horse makes your heart go pitter patter!}

But I don't really need another trail horse. I have a great Appy under my nose, who at 21 years young still has many good years left if I can keep his arthritis in check. He's been there, done that. He is not bombproof and he is quirky, as most of you know from my blog. But I know him, I trust him, and there are still unknowns with putting miles on Luna, that I just can't take right now. Things change in our lives and I think being honest with ourselves when something isn't working out is the best for all involved. Yes, I could just feed her and let her sit for years until my children are grown. But is that fair to her? Not this horse. She craves people and attention and if I can find her a happy home, then my heart will be happy for her. Will I regret it? Maybe. But we can't live on "what ifs" and regrets. Things happen for a reason. Maybe she won't sell and she WILL end up with me.

I have only started "advertising" through word of mouth. I'm going to be selective with who I want her to go to. Someone with lots of confidence and experience working with green horses, and hopefully mustangs, but not necessarily so, as I think she'd make a great ambassador for the breed! She needs someone who will ride her often, all seasons, and sometimes just brush and love on her, because she loves that!

 In other news, Luna was out on trial with a family but she was too green for the intended rider, so she came back to an empty pasture because while she was gone, I moved My Boy to a local stable for a month so that I could use the indoor arena and give him a tune up (we've had a really, really wet winter and the arena is too slippery here.) I have enjoyed the time getting to know him again. He is such a good boy, but still a horse and does goofy things. I am using him to build my confidence again. I had some great trail rides on Luna last summer, she was really dong well, but still a bit jumpy at times- just needs more miles experience. But it did rattle my overall confidence a bit. I have some new ideas and thoughts about my riding with My Boy that I am excited to start with this spring. I feel like I, yes ME, am creating some of his "issues", and want to try to help him become a healthier, happier, sounder horse. Its going to take some teamwork. I will let you know how it goes!

The SD came to the barn with me one day and got to sit in an English saddle for the first time!

The SD watching a training session. She said that horse looked like one of the horses we saw in "Cavalia!" Good call, this big Percheron/QH mare does have that look!

 My Boy being a barn boy and wearing a blanket! Big change from his life of leisure!

{Photo taken the weekend before LB passed away. We got the horses out for the kids to groom and then we led them around bareback in halters. LB is the little black Mustang mare on the left. Heart of gold.}

In other, very very sad news, we actually said goodbye a great little mare a few weeks ago. A few years ago a local lady gave us a 24 year old Mustang mare that she raised from a foal. We gave LB to my 8 year old stepdaughter. She really was the kind of horse you could put anyone on! My SD rode her everywhere. Her only vice was that she put her head down to snag bites of grass on rides and was pretty relentless about it, ripping the reins right out of your hands if you didn't catch her in time. But if you could keep her from doing it (or late in summer when all the grass was good and dead!) she was awesome.

 Unfortunately, LB started to get lethargic and go off her feed a bit. Weeks later and several blood tests later (one of which showed she was anemic) we found her down in the pasture breathing heavy and sweating. We got her up and out of the pasture. A call to the vet revealed they had just gotten her latest blood work results from UC Davis. She was showing high pigeon fever. Probably an internal abscess. The vet came out and took her temp- 105. Her heart rate was the highest he'd seen in a horse. After he examined her she layed down next to him and her breathing became extremely labored. It was so, so hard, but there was nothing we could do to save her. She had many good years left in her, it kills me that something can come and take a horse like that. Apparently, it is fairly rare for pigeon fever to stay internal. We have no idea how sick she really was, by the time she started showing symptoms she was probably beyond saving. Even starting her on antibiotics was questionable, because they can interfere with the abscess working it's way out (there is a big technical term for that which I am forgetting right now.) The hardest part was for me to make the call to lady who gave her to us, who had grown up raising, training, riding, and showing this sweet mare.

So, it's been a crazy, tough, but also good, month.

In other news, I am occasionally substitute teaching and still looking for a part time job, which seems impossible in a small town!

I hope your new year's are off to a great start!

Ranch Girl


fernvalley01 said...

sad as it is it seems the right decision for you and Luna, and your beautiful boy deserves all the love and attention he gets! SO sorry about the little mare. Sad

50+ Horses said...

Good to hear from you and I commend you for your hard decision with Luna. Your decision to be selective about where she's placed gives her a leg up on positive future and your Boy is there for you. Sorry to hear about your Mare - seems the best ones leave us first...

Shirley said...

A couple of hard decisions there. Sorry to hear about the little black mare, she sounds like she was a real sweetheart.
I hope you find just the right home for Luna.