Friday, August 31, 2012
I was loaded up and out the driveway at 6:00 a.m. to meet a couple friends to ride @ 9:00 a.m. We were all excited because it would have been their two mustangs first long trail ride away from home, and it would be at a place I had never been to. Problemo? Yep! It was pouring down rain the direction we were supposed to ride, and the trails are dirt so when it rains, no riding on them. I made it almost half way there and got a call letting me know the trails were closed....so I headed to Rudolf Bennit Wildlife area close to our house. We had a light rain shower and the trails are usually good, plus I was already loaded up, so why not?
Tripp is saddled up and ready to go! Woo hoo!!!
The plan was to take the route around the shooting range, then take the other big trail around the lake. Great plans sometimes have a speed bump attached to them. We started out okay but then I noticed Tripp was trying to stay on the wet leaves. After his last ouchy episode I have been watching his trims closely. It was not as bad as last time but I could tell he was still ouchy. I tried to get past the rougher spot, then decided to turn around and head back. I was frustrated because all looked good when we left the parking lot.
Some of you know we have had issues with Tripp stopping to eat on the trail. It is beyond being a small problem. When I was riding him back we stayed on the edge of the trail that had grass. Sure enough...he dove in to the grass! So I did the "Let's work your buttsky off" routine. Part of the ground was uneven and I knew that we just might practice our 'tumbling' in addition to working that buttsky off.
As we were walking along he dove in and I started to work him in circles and serpentines. He tripped in a small ditch but I was prepared for it. He went down to his knees, which we have done before, and instead of fighting to get back to his feet like he normally does, HE STAYS ON HIS KNEES AND PROCEEDS TO EAT LIKE HE HAD JUST WON FREE TICKETS TO THE BUFFET! No joke! So I did something I have never done before (especially since I have been working with my scaredy cat issues)....I popped him on the butt with the end of the mecate rein. Yee Haw! He jumped up in the air (I had already prepared for this too...but still didn't like it one bit! ACK!) and I spun him around. He tried a couple of more times and when he did not listen to me, I popped him again. After that he was so jumpy and it just was not pleasant to be on him. I was so glad we were almost to the parking lot.
We were on the last bit of the trail before the parking lot, and by now he has realized that the girl on his back is not the same girl who is usually on his back! WHO IS SHE AND WHAT HAS SHE DONE WITH MY GIRL???? We stood next to some plants so I could get pictures of the water drops on the leaves...and he didn't even look at the branches! Whew! He was getting it. I know I have to keep working on this and being more assertive for this to get better. I am also trying to find out what will make our rides that include lots of grass more pleasant for both of us. The trail ride I took a couple weeks after this one worked out well...I got to the parking lot early so took him for a walk, we did some ground work and he did NOT get to eat. Then we walked back to the parking lot and when he relaxed, I took him to a spot and let him eat. Everyone else showed up and we prepared for our ride and headed out. It was a very pleasant ride! Yay!
After getting pictures of the water drops we headed towards the parking lot, and here come two big gaited horses heads a bobbin' along! The older guy in the lead was not very friendly but the gal with him was. Just wanted to share a smile and good morning...nothing more. :-)
Then we got to the parking lot and we had company! These two rigs were together and I had to laugh when the lady who owned a couple of the horses told another gal who had not ridden in a while "You forgot your helmet. You better not fall off!" She was also about 5 ft tall on a very tall horse! I smiled to myself...we didn't chat but I enjoyed watching them get ready to go and wished I was headed back out.
About that time a couple of other riders came from the same direction I was, and they continued on the trail towards the lake. They were both full of smiles and enjoying their time with their horses.
Tripp is so awesome when he sees other horses. Every once in a while he will give a whinny to someone, but not very often. Usually he answers then he is done.
Now, to the feet! What I found was a bunch of sharp little rocks in the crevice of his frogs on the front hooves. No wonder he was not comfortable! I have not had problems like that before, and just didn't think about it. I figured since the trails were wet the footing would be good for him. Lesson learned! I also need to treat him for thrush. Dang, that is nasty stuff! Doesn't matter if it is a little or a lot - it is icky and makes for unhappy hooves.
I will say it was not one of the most pleasant rides I have had with Tripp, but like the sign says "A bad day riding is better than a good day at work!" :-)
Until later....Karen and Tripp who still believes his 'girl' is an imposter.
Hmmm, where has the summer gone? It has been a dry, hot, long one, that is for sure! But we have survived like everyone else...just a little more sweaty than normal. It doesn't matter how hot it gets, life on the farm still goes on.
We picked a day to trim hooves on donks. We did not use the power grinder on the donks...I just knew it would not be a good situation, and it was too darn hot to talk them into it.
JESTER: Noooooooo....I don't want to be first!
JESTER: I think I will just rest my hoof on the railing for the girl. I will let her think it is her idea.
Batman is 3 yrs old now and still a ham. He wants to see what Brian is doing. Nothing like checking e-mail in the barn lot. (Not me....my barn lot time is not techy time!)
The boys will play! When we put out new round bales we open the gate to the storage area. They like to run in and run out...I think they feel like they are getting away with something. :-)
Batman looking all cute!
Brian is picking up sticker branches and he has an audience. Wow, from this angle Red (aka Romeo) looks like a prego mare! Ha ha! He is an easy keeper and has not been working...so he is like me. A bit soft and out of shape. :-)
When Brian goes to a new area to pick up sticker branches, they follow him to make sure he is doing it right.
Frog in the garden...
We were very worried about the bees this summer because everything is dieing off. We did not know if they would find food or not. The dark spot on the front of the one hive is a bunch of bees hanging out. When it gets hot, they will cluster at the front. The other two hives didn't get this bad.
This little purple gem is Chicory. It is normally a 'weed' that we mow down in the yard, but the bees love it, so we have a weed yard.
Here is the short version of what Chicory is: The chicory plant is Cichorium intybus, is a hardy perennial with purplish-blue flowers that open and close at the exact same time each day.
And they do too! They open in the morning and are closed by late morning. Isn't that cool? To read more about Chicory go to this site: http://coffeetea.about.com/od/typesoftea/a/Chicory.htm.
There are a lot of other sites out there too that tell about the herbal qualities. Interesting stuff! It is amazing what resources we have all around us but don't have any idea.
Here are a few Chicory plants around the hives in the morning. The purple is so brilliant when the sun rises and hits them just right.
Chicory plants around the young tree that is almost dead due to the drought. But the Chicory has survived! :-)
It has been so dry and doesn't take much to get a dust bath going. The heat also doesn't stop the group from finding play time! We should be more like them. :-)
Red looking all cute! For the longest time I just didn't bond with him...and I tried. It was not that I didn't like him, it was just that he didn't have much of a personality so I was not drawn to him. He was just there. After hanging out with the horses, burros, mini's and a llama, he is showing more personality and I actually enjoy going out to see him now. He also greets me with a deep nicker every morning and evening. :-) I am a sucker for a good nicker! Hee hee!
Wyoming loving his scrach time.
Wyoming the handsome dude. His mane had started to grow out nicely this Spring, then he started scratching with someone and it is back to being short and fuzzy again. :-)
Okay, this sign comes with a story. I came home early thinking that I had the house to myself. I get undressed, head to the laundry room to find a t-shirt (which was not there!), then was going to head back to the bedroom to throw my jeans on. I was home - I am free as a bird! :-) Well.....guess who pulls up? Brian and his kids! THEY WERE NOT SUPPOSED TO BE THERE! I ended up getting trapped in the laundry room with no pants....so I sat in the laundry basket nekid and they had no idea I was there. Brian headed to the barn thinking that is where I was and the kids stayed in the house...and I stayed sitting in the laundry basket! Brian found me later. (I laugh about it now...) I was not a happy camper so just didn't say anything...I knew whatever I said would not come out nice.
So, the next time he was to show up with his kids, I put a note in the laundry basket telling him I was at the barn. He got a kick out of it and took a picture.
I let the water tank overflow because the turkeys were panting so hard. They loved the runoff!
Until later...Karen and Tripp who is tired of sweating for no reason.
Where has the time gone? Hershey and Tripplette have lived here for a month and so far so good. One of the first things Madison and I did was give them a bath. Hershey enjoyed it much more than Tripplette did. Tripplette said she was not scared, it was just not something she felt was necessary. Mustangs don't get baths from the two legged people in the wild! (I think she is taking this mustang thing to heart!)
Dogs don't seem to bother either one of them.
Madison has enjoyed messing with the mini's. She has groomed them and taken them for walks. I got to thinking we should take them to the wildlife area and walk the trails. We both need the exercise and the mini's would love it! OH! Brian needs to go to so Batman can tag along.
Grandma Tandee thinks it is okay they are living here. She knows that sometimes we all need a helping hoof to get ourselves back on track. :-)
I'm not looking!!!!
Now I'm looking!!!
We kept Hershey and Tripplette in a smaller penned off area for the first few days so they can eat in peace, and so I knew they were safe from the others. Nobody is mean, but you never know how the dynamics are going to be when you have someone that is weaker in the bunch.
Hershey had a few burrs in her mane and bangs...
Madison and Hershey...
Madison and Tripplette...
One day I came home from work and headed out to the barn lot to check on everyone. Here is Hershey standing by the remains of the round bale...
...and here is Tripplette at the bottom of the hill trying to find stray peaces of green stuff! ACK! We have escapees!
It appears I forgot to latch the panel, so both girls were out, and Wyoming and Batman were in their pen. I walked out and Wyoming and Batman had ears up and watched me come to them...just like they were smiling! And to be honest, they probably were! The pen we set up is where Wy and Batman hang out to visit with the outside group - and we turned their lives upside down when we took that way. Oh the horror..... (yes, there was sarcasm there...ha ha!)
For the most part the girls got along with the group. The donks don't bother them at all, they are not afraid of the llama and give him a few kicks if he gets too close, and they know to get away from the bigs when they get the 'look'. The only thing I worried about was Wyoming. He is normally a lover and not a fighter, but there was something about them he just didn't like. He even body slammed Hershey one day and sent her rolling. I was shocked beyond belief! Thankfully Hershey got up and hobbled away (this was before she started walking better), but still, I did not expect it. It got MUCH better in a short period of time...whew! I would stay out there and just watch, and when I saw the look in Wy's eyes and his posture, I would say his name low and slow. He is smart and he knew...it was like "OOPS! Got caught by Mom!" :-) Now he gives them the look if they get close to his treat feed, but other than that, no worries.
Wyoming says "I don't know what you are talking about. That is my story and I am sticking to it!"
Then it was time for the vet....I only got a couple of pictures here because I was helping hold them up after her night night medicine. Their stock isn't made for mini's so we had to get creative. I love my vet! Dr. Cliff Miller from Green Hills Vet Clinic in Moberly, MO. In fact, all their vets are great, but Dr. Cliff was who we started with so he is my favorite.
He is getting Hershey ready to get her teeth checked. She is the weakest one but also the one who showed the most displeasure about being violated this way. :-)
I forgot my camera so had to use the phone for a picture of the inside of her mouth. See that big yellow looking tooth on the right side of the picture? It was very long while the others were short, so she could not get the chewing action she needed. The bottom jaw had a gap where that long tooth cradled in, so it did have a place to fit so she could close her mouth, but like I said, no chewing action to speak of. She also has a weird underbite and the way the molar sits affects that too. Dr. Cliff took down as much molar as he could for the first time and got the rest all smoothed off. We go back in December for another go at that tooth. Tripplette just had a few hooks but nothing dramatic like this.
The coggins papers for them say they are both 4 yrs old. I knew Tripplette was close and knew that Hershey was not close. The vet is guessing Tripplette at 5 and Hershey as a teenager. They are guessing her to be 12 - 15 yrs old. Her teeth are a bit weird so he and another vet got the book out and were looking at the whole picture. She guessed the same thing Dr. Cliff did...so we just say Hershey is a teenager. He had us power pack both of them and we just feed them separately and some stuff with a bit higher fat in it.
Thomas the cat used to be an indoor cat and now he is mostly outdoor. He will come indoors to nap or eat then he is ready to go back out. He has lost 3 lbs since his vet check last year! That is a lot for a cat! He was a 20 pounder last year and this year he is a 17 pounder! Yay! That is what staying away from the 24/7 food source along with being outside exercising will do for ya! :-)
Thomas is being stalked by a guinea...
I tried to get some updated pictures of the girls to show you all how their ribby gaps are filling in. This shows it pretty good. Tripplette is still very narrow and Hershey still needs some mass along her back and butt, but all in all they are doing well. The other day was the first day I could really notice a difference. Hershey still walks weird and Tripplettes hind end needs to strengthen up. We will get that checked out when they are in better shape in December.
Hershey says to have a wonderful day and see ya next time!
Until later....Karen and Tripp who is pretty impressed he has a mini of himself! He didn't know there could be two of him with equal cuteness! ;-)