Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Pasture Board - for a horses health?

Oberon will be pasture boarded with a nice shed available to get out of wind and bad weather.  I like the fact that each pasture "suite" is partitioned in order to provide the utmost pasture rotation.  I am extremely lucky to have such a nice facility five minutes from my house.

In the afternoon, there is shade available in the grass pasture as well.  I have done a bit of research and I really don't understand why some people keep horses in their stalls for extended periods of time.  From what I have read, horses are animals meant to survive the elements of nature and I don't understand when I hear "it is too hot" for horses to be outside.  A shade tree works.  I guess some people are worried about their horses coat fading, but isn't health far more important?

Many horses end up weaving, cribbing and head bobbing and just plain become stressed out.  Isn't stress one of the leading causes of colic?    (I am truly asking this question, not being a smarty pants.)  Standing in a stall is terrible for a horses circulatory system as the body receives insufficient blood flow and the heart becomes stressed.  Horses are meant to move their feet.

I understand putting a horse in a stall overnight for "protection" depending upon where one lives, but I still think for most horses, pasture boarding (with a shed) is better for their health.  Is it true that horses in  captivity live shorter lives than horses in the wild?   I also read that a fluffy coat in the winter is much healthier than a blanketed horse - that we are actually harming their immune system.

What are your thoughts?  

Monday, August 29, 2011

Welcome Home, Oberon!

Eleven hours in a trailer and he unloaded and was as calm as could be.

Oberon surveying his new kingdom...  (he is king of the fairies after all in Shakespeare's "Midsummer Night's Dream".

Oberon was hungry after that long ride.  

Doesn't he have a sweet face?

"Lean on Me"

"Better than a boyfriend" she says.  Dad agrees.

Welcome Home, Oberon!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Palomino Quarter Horse For Sale

Molly is seven years old and available for adoption through Red Dog Farm.  She is a rescue horse, but not due to any fault of her own.  Her owners came to a tragic end and she was left homeless.  I am sponsoring her training with James Cooler of Cooler Horsemanship, a natural horsemanship program based on the ANTRUM Method.

Molly is a horse that is very sweet and loves human companionship.  She is green and coming along quite nicely.  It has been fascinating watching James ground work her and recently he got in the saddle and walked and trotted her.  I watched a session where he was working with her backing up while mounted... she made great progress.  It is my understanding that Mary of The Galloping Mind will soon be doing a post on Molly and her training.  Click on that blog periodically (or follow it!) if you are interested in reading more about this fine mare.

Molly is a delicately framed Quarter Horse, very lady like I would say.  James is obviously a bit big for her and is riding her in a big roping saddle.  Two photos down from here, you can see her with two young girls.  I believe Molly is about 14.1 hands.

Her disposition is one to want to please her humans and I would say she is really quite smart as she seems to be learning quickly.

We often go out and brush her in the field and when we leave, she follows us to the gate.

She is currently being pasture boarded with two other mares sharing her paddocks and shed and they get along really well.

She is listed through Red Dog Farm for an adoption fee of $1,500.  That really is a steal and also consider who is training her.  Click on his website and you will be amazed at what a talented man James Cooler is with horses.  If you are interested in Molly, feel free to ask me any questions here on my blog and I will also encourage you to call Red Dog Farm directly and ask for Garland.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Oberon... arriving SOMETIME this weekend!

Arriving about the same time as Hurricane Irene hits the NC coast, Oberon should be arriving in our part of NC.  Far enough away from any damaging storm, but appreciative of any rain it might bring.  And it is about time Oberon arrives, as the rest of my photos are not the greatest.   I just love the photo above as it shows you how sweet Oberon is... my daughter's feet were flopping and dangling along with the stirrups and he is mostly leg driven.  He was really trying to listen to directions - you can tell by his ears.

The one below makes me laugh.  Poor Oberon, waiting patiently for me to get the background set in my viewfinder and my daughter to smile prettily... and we just about took his eye out with the halter.  Oh well, we will make it up to him.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

AMAZING Friesian video - trained by Paul Dufresne

I absolutely LOVE the Friesian horse.  I have been drawing the Friesian horse for a while now and searching on the internet for a Friesian cross and considering to purchase one for myself someday.  I came along this video and am now following the You Tube site "TraningforCourage".  I THINK Mackenzie Meadows is the training center this trainer either owns, manages or works from.  Click HERE for a tour.  The trainer (owner?) of the horse below is Paul Dufresne and I think the farm is in BC (British Columbia?)  Now, I could have all of this wrong, but I am trying to understand the site.

The following video is almost 15 minutes long, but do yourself a favor and find the time to watch it.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.   (Gotta love his dog, too)

Here is another 15 minute video of him riding an Andalusian at the National Andalusian Horse Show in Chilliwack BC July 23rd, 2011:

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A Handsome Gelding

I took this photo of this handsome gelding last year after it had rained.  Wish I had the opportunity to photograph some horses after a rain now.  It has been so dry this summer.  

Friday, August 19, 2011

Getting Antsy

This is Oberon and we are still waiting for him to be transported to NC.  He is trailering with pregnant mares going to Texas and they decided to wait and hope the heat recedes.  They didn't want to put the mares in any danger of miscarrying.  So, it looks like the plan is next Friday, the 26th.  However, I looked at the forecast and the only difference I see is HOT and thunderstorms...

I could kick myself for not taking more photos of Oberon.  The bottom one looks a little funny as he was taking a step towards me.

I think I have a used saddle already lined up to purchase.  It is a Natural Performer with horn Parelli saddle and comes with a breast color.  I am planning on purchasing their Theraflex pads.  Anyone out there have this saddle? If so, do you love it?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Wordless Wednesday #6

Yes, it is Thursday.  But it is 12:12 am and for me it is still Wednesday :)

Monday, August 15, 2011

Simply Handsome

This is either Moonshine - an elderly gelding, or Indigo...  He is owned by James Cooler of Cooler Horsemanship.  

Friday, August 12, 2011

Still Waiting for Oberon

We are IMPATIENTLY awaiting our Oberon.   He is to arrive sometime early next week, we hope.  He is the Quarter Horse we purchased in Michigan while on vacation.  I was seriously considering purchasing another horse, but at this time have decided one horse will work quite well as my girls are beginner riders and will soon be back in school.  Next year, when they are competing for more riding time and better riders, I will plan to continue my search for another horse.  I will say, however, that Apelles and Riggens (in the post below), and Molly (aka Titania) are all very sweet... and still for sale.   If you are interested in any one of them, drop me a comment and I will put you in contact with more information.

The following was copied from Oklahoma State University's Animal Science Website.  Click HERE to read about numerous horse breeds from A-Z.

The Buckskin is thought to of originated from the Spanish Sorraia.  

No-the Buckskin horse is not a mere "color." Buckskins, Grulla and Duns are noted for many qualities that are not characteristic of other types of horses. Their color is an indication of the superior genetic heritage they possess. Buckskins have been long noted for their superior qualities and strength. They have more stamina, more determination, harder feet, better bone, and are generally hardier than other horses. A Buckskin with weak or spavined legs is a rarity. "Tough as wet leather" is a good description of the true Buckskin.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

A Friesian/Fell Mare

Click HERE as I think it is Apelles as a baby.  I am trying to contact the owner of the stud to find out.  If so, she is not a Fell mix but a Welsh Cob/Haflinger mixed with Friesian.  (her ad says she is Freisan/Fell)

HERE is a photo of her daddy.

So, this is my third horse in a list of three I have narrowed it down to purchasing.  She is being offered at a new reduced price and is now within my price range.  Each have their pros/cons.  If only I could buy them all - the Palomino QH mare, the Paint gelding or this Friesian cross mare.  My mind is churning...

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Riggens - A Paint Gelding

This is a sweet boy we are considering purchasing.  It looks like it will be a choice between the rescue mare and Riggens.  He is a 9 year old Paint gelding and has more "Whoa than Go" as they say.  In defense of Riggens, it was hovering around 100 degrees in Charleston, SC.  He has a personality very much like my 1/2 QH/Arab gelding I had when I was young.  My girls each rode him and he has a very slow (wonderful!) ultra-comfy jog and will stretch out for a nice trot - handy on those hill topping fox hunt rides I hope to do this fall.  I feel very confident that he has the experience and demeanor to take care of my girls as they are beginners and get me back into the saddle.

The owner has given me a week or so to decide on Riggens.  I am watching another horse Molly (aka Titania) and observing her training (I posted about her below).  She is a Palomino QH, green and sweet - a rescue mare I am donating my money to receive professional training from "Cooler Horsemanship".  I don't believe she has been ridden for at least a year or so and is 6 or 7 years old.  Her owners had an unfortunate ending (A murder and suicide) and she was left without a home.  Red Dog Farms rescued her.  She is sweet and very smart and very willing to please.  She loves people.  She is about 14.3.

We are awaiting the arrival of our Oberon, the gelding QH buckskin I highlighted a few posts back.

Searching for a horse is much tougher than I thought.  I have adored many, but am trying to keep a level head and think what is the best fit for all of us - I could handle a bit more of a "go" horse, I think, but my girls are far too new at horses and I do consider myself a cautious rider - not one to take on too much of a "go" horse.

The ONE thing Riggnes did that was kind of odd was when we first approached him in the stall he laid his ears all the way back.  The owner told me he would do this, that he was all "talk".  Riggens is "low-man-on-the-totem-pole" in a barn of 5 or so bigger or older geldings.  She said he just likes to play tough and seems to be saying that "this is MY space - I'm in charge".   As soon as we touched his neck his demeanor changed to ears forward and sweet  (never nipped or looked like he would bite). We got in his stall, brushed him and pushed him around, cleaned his feet, rode him, gave him a soapy, sudsy bath and touched his ears, under his belly...  He never did anything to make us afraid.  We spent about four hours with him.

If you have any words of advice or comments, I do appreciate them.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Titania to our Oberon?

Oberon is our horse now (see below) - I sent the wire transfer and he should arrive within two weeks.   We have renamed him and since we are a theatre family, we thought names from Shakespeare were appropriate:  Oberon & Titania are the King and Queen of the fairies in "Midsummer Night's Dream".

Murphy & Molly are their old names.  Molly is a rescue horse and I am paying for her training this month with James Cooler of Cooler Horsemanship.  I am also looking at a paint gelding that I had my eye on a couple of weeks ago and my girls and I are driving down to Charleston SC to ride him and see what we think.

Oberon is six years old and is a reining/cutting horse.  He is very responsive and sensitive to the rider.  Both of my girls rode in a too big saddle and their legs were flopping a bit.  Since he is pretty much a leg responsive horse, my daughter below (we won't comment on her posture :) ... cued him to canter by accident.  Oberon slowed down to a walk immediately when she signaled, but the look on her face was priceless!  "What was THAT?!" she had said.  LOL

Monday, August 1, 2011

Is HE our boy?

We found this sweetheart in Michigan.  He is a six year old gelding and very gentle.  He is trained as a reigning/cutting horse and is wonderful to ride.  He is leg responsive, rides with a loose rein and loves trail riding.  Waiting on the vet check today...

I am sponsoring a QH rescue mare's training this month and we will consider purchasing her at the end of the month.  I also am off to Charleston at the end of this week to take a look at a nine year old Paint gelding that caught my eye.  I will share photos of both horses here in a few days.