Sunday, January 31, 2010

Horse plans that fall apart

Three years ago, when I still had plans of dabbling in horse breeding, showing and selling, as I had been for years, I purchased 2 young colts. The one on the right, Cap, was to be gelded and become my riding show horse. He was from a friend's farm in Iowa. The one on the left, Moon, was to be my stud, he is related to Cap somewhat, and he came from KS. Cap was the sweetest and prettiest moving colt, but when I pulled him off the trailer I noticed his front ankle was enlarged. Hoping that it was just from standing so long on the trailer, I doctored it and let him rest for 2 luck. so in comes the vet with the bad news...basically in English it's juvenile arthritis. Well I discuss it with my friend in Iowa, we don't want him to have to make the trip back, she will only run him thru a sale so I set out to find him a home at a very reduced price. Good news is... the man down the road falls in love with him, buys him, breeds him to his gaited mares, he doesn't care about registration papers, and I can drive by there today and Cap is fat and happy. And the man says he has never sold a horse off his property yet. He trail rides and uses the offspring for his outfit. So, one good out come....then there's Moon....the love of my life...enter BAD BOY!!! Now mind you I have been training and breeding my own horses and have helped out at other farms handling stallions. Can't say I can handle all studs but I am fairly good at it. But I am now up in age with arthritis in my hands, Moon has learned how to flip the lead rope over the crest of his neck and spin away from me, even with a lip chain. So after trying for a few months of working with him in a pen..and he's fine...and walking in the open and losing him, I decide it's time to geld him. Well, he's a big stout boy, and one side will not stop bleeding, my vet comes 3 times, and finally has to do surgery on one of the leaders to stop the bleeding. One month later, darn if Moon didn't run thru, very honestly the one section of barbed wire we had not replaced on the entire farm! it was a 20 ft section in the woods, $10,000 worth of fencing on our property we had installed and he finds this one piece deep in the woods! He cuts the inside of his hind thigh. When I find him he is bleeding so profusely I assume it is an artery and I am going to lose him, that was the vet's initial assessment also. But by the headlights to her truck in 15 degree weather she finds a sliced vein and proceeds to suture it. Amazingly he lives. ( I had the best vet in the world...I hated moving!) So when he heals it's time to get him broke because by now he's 3. I send him off, good trainer, wrong match. As the guy said, well if you can ride the buck out he goes on and rides....My comment was...that was 19 bucks...I told you think "grandma!" do I look like I can ride out 19 bucks....if I could he wouldn't be at a trainer. so I bring him home ride him once and turn him out. ( my confidence was already shattered when I (my fault) got thrown by one of my other horses 1 year prior) Eventually, I just give him to a friend, well my friend gets divorced, only rode him once, can't afford him, turns him out, I go and take him back and he is scalded with the worse case of rain rot I have ever had to care bad the I actually caught the fungus myself ( verified by my Dr.) and he was very underweight. So I promised Moon he would never leave what do I do...I move and have to send him off to be boarded. Well this time I picked a very reputable AQHA trainer, that I have watched train 3 times, and shown 4 times, It's costing me an arm and a leg, but my hopes are that once we move and get settled in, I will finally have my dream horse, and Moon will have forgiven all the plans that fell apart, there's not a mean bone in his body, he's just a spooky horse without a lot of trust, and I don't blame him. I just miss him terribly and want him home....gosh I sound like a teenage girl....when it comes to horses...I still am!!!!


  1. I am empathizing .. we need to leave our cat Rosie at the clinic for treatment for a whole week .. I am hoping she knows we are not abandoning her ...

    Great post!

  2. I know all too well. Our dogs do not like us much when we have to leave them for more than a day. And the takes her weeks to get over it!

  3. I'm so glad other people have tempermental pets! I wish my new home wasn't so far from Mathews, or I'd say put me on the tour so you could meet all my creatures...of course NNG you're welcome anytime, neighbor as it BHE! and CBW if we can get her up this way!

  4. I have to come up there just to see my Tonic.

    This Moon sounds like a handful. But after all these trials and tribulations maybe he can find peace at the new homestead.

    BTW - that lip chain - is that what I call a twitch? It twists their lip up so they can't focus on what it is you're trying to get them to do that they don't want to to?

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  6. No, a lip chain is running the chain part of a lead shank under their upper lip and hooking it to the other side of the halter. A very harsh control method if not used correctly but is a very common control method used on Stallions that are shown at halter, when you have a number of these aggressive youngsters all standing in a row.
    A twitch does nothing for Moon, he laughs at them!!!
    I had an old roping horse from OK that if you put a twitch on him he was paralyized could do anything you wanted... and otherwise he was a beast!