A Good Last day

A last ride, a last time.

A last ride, a last time.

Decisions about life and death do not come easily.   My horse Kid turned 32 this year.  A lot about him is good.  He is sound. He eats well   But a lot is not.  His eyesight has failed to the point he has difficulty finding his way around.  A new pasture is an impossible voyage for him.  He has had some small strokes or neurological issues that cause him to constantly bob his head like one of those dolls that used to go on your dashboard of the car.  He is scared as the other horses pick on him and he cannot see them coming. I have owned this off-the-track Quarter horse for almost 12 wonderful years buying him from Sarah Petty when she retired him as a champion 1D barrel horse at age 20.  We had left our horses in Florida and he was our first Texas horse.  Sarah called him Texas Twister, an apt name for a barrel racing king. I credited Kid, and then Mickey (also from Sarah) with putting my little family of Ally, Lauren and I back on the track to life after a rough divorce and move from Florida.  Kid was Ally’s horse in the beginning.  She rode him well and often.  I went each day with her and Lauren to the barn where we were just had partial board to clean his stall, water and feed him.  We met new families.  We joined the world again and had a place to belong. Kid was the perfect quarter horse.  If you go to the AQHA site, their representation of a Quarter horse looks exactly like Kid.  His sorrel coat sang in the sun.  And as the versatile breed proclaims, there really wasn’t anything this horse couldn’t do. He blazed on the racetrack.  He went to National Team Penning finals, he could smoke a barrel pattern and when I asked him to be a jumper and an English horse he did that as well.

I had made the decision that it was time to let Kid go.  I especially did not want to try to move Kid to a new barn and pasture.  With his limited eyesight and all the pastures, it was not fair to him to move him from his home.

I tried to give him the best last day, full of treats, a good bath, extra Senior, and finally I saddled him up for one last ride.  He tacked up like a champ.  We simply walked around the arena and turned around a few barrels. I stopped him in the middle of the arena and gently said, “back”.  Immediately, with my hands quiet and still, Kid backed several steps.  What a guy!

This afternoon we took him to the vet. Of course, he loaded into the trailer without issue.

We got him settled in a stall.  I hugged and hugged him.  Lauren and I cried.  I hope he is now running in the green fields of heaven.  I will miss my beautiful boy so much.

Thank you for riding along and keep us in your prayers.

Mr. Kid 32 years young.

Mr. Kid 32 years young.

Marching On

Guess what this is?

Guess what this is?

It has been awhile since I wrote about all the goings on at the farm and in the family. We have had a frantic month of selling our farm while dealing with the sellers of our new place that have been less than benevolent in working with us.  From oil and gas leases from the past to multiple surveys to adequately depict the property, we have been flying around.  This has all been coupled with trying to pack everything we own, a busy work schedule, and problems with the animals.

At this point, today, we are scheduled to close on Six Meadow Farm tomorrow and our new place on Friday.  Then a new set of fun begins when we start the construction of the barn and fences.  Lauren has wished for her father numerous times, as she says, “he would make sure this place looked great”.  He was/is a great craftsman and she is right our barn would look infinitely better if he were the contractor.  But, alas, I don’t see him coming to town to take over the job.

The sand and gravel being set down for our new driveway.

The sand and gravel being set down for our new driveway.

It has been a rough and tumble month for the horses, dogs and cats.  Roland was here six weeks ago.  Bruno tore the shoe from his bad foot five weeks and six days ago.  He has gone all this time with no shoe on the foot that must be shod at all times.  The rain and wet conditions have made it difficult to get anyone out to help us.  Snowboy, in a classic Snowboy move, decided to load himself up the couple of steps to the tack room where the feed had been set out for all the horse’s dinner.  He ate at least 18 pounds of feed; high carb, high sugar feed.  Dr. Criner was appalled.  Is he alive?, she asked.  He should have colicked and died.  I don’t believe he even got a belly ache.  He was angrily asking where his dinner was when we did not feed him that night.  Now, his feet are looking horrible and I am hoping it is due to the horrible wet weather and not a result of his binge eating.

Speaking of dying, my brand new cat, the Burmese, that I had waited to get for so long, was attacked and killed by BrownDog.  Lauren ran out the front door to catch Muffy who had escaped the fence and BrownDog took that opportunity to storm the cat room and kill Hula.  I buried him in the back pasture and silently asked for forgiveness from his breeder that I did not protect him better.

If you go to the first, early blogs, you will see my description of BrownDog and that I trusted her the least of all the dogs.  She has become increasing aggressive.  She has attacked both the Corgi and Muffy, injuring them badly.  She has also snapped at my grandchildren.  I thought  about and tried out different alternatives but in the end, I stood with my beautiful BrownDog at the vet as I had her put to sleep.  I could not live with myself if she hurt a child.  She was the sweetest dog ever to Lauren and I.  It was a difficult decision.  But I am happy for my remaining dog family that they are not constantly scared.

So, a difficult time emotionally for us.  Lauren still has not been back in the saddle to jump, but physical therapy is going well and we hope to get her back to work this week.  The pain has diminished a lot for which I am grateful.

Jordyn was out this weekend.  She walked Snow around on his sore feet and then had a great time taking wildflowers to Bruno so he could eat them.  Bruno is so gentle and sweet to her.

Jordyn feeding Bruno wild flowers.

Jordyn feeding Bruno wild flowers.

My mom has had some health issues.  She is better now although her knees are bothering her again.  It might be time for Dr. Chau to inject them again.  It was like a miracle last time.  She has been happy and bright.  I think her memories diminish a little more each day. I am grateful to the staff and especially her sitter, Janet, who give her so much love.  She is safe and loved.  Not a bad place to be.

Thanks for riding along with all our adventures.  Hopefully, I will turning the lock on my home shortly.

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Top picture is my water trough which sits under the dusk to dawn light attracting a hoard of June bugs.  We moved the trough.  Yuck!

Top picture and this one are my water trough which sits under the dusk to dawn light attracting a hoard of June bugs. We moved the trough. Yuck!