27 degrees and very breezy (15mph winds. Yep, that's "breezy" in North Dakota) was the forecast when I headed to the barn. 30% chance of snow today and snow all day tomorrow, but it hadn't started yet. I decided to brave the breeze, and try and get Rigsby one last basket of fresh, semi-green grass for the season.
Thank you Steve Jobs, for the speak to text technology on my iPhone. Without it I could not be bringing this report to you all today. I was kicked in my right forearm by a horse today, it is now rendered almost completely useless. It wasn't Rigsby, it was a new horse that they had just put in the paddock. He was scared, the other horses were driving him around, I was trying to work a knot out of Rigsbys' mane. As I came around Rigsby, the other horses drove this new horse into the corner. I must have made him feel trapped. He turned his butt toward me, I dove out of the way, but he still tagged me on the arm.
The x-rays in the ER showed it was not broken, just a bruised bone and severe tissue trauma. They wrapped it up, gave me a sling and a prescription for Vicodin and said I should be fine in 2 to 3 weeks.
After the rain 2 days ago, I knew the fields would be soft. Perfect footing for a jog through the fields. It went far better than I expected. Rigsby was forward and not too tense. He had some great moments of lip licking and relaxation. He stumbled and slid in the mud a few times, like an awkward teenager does, but it helped keep his attention on his feet. We saw the neighbor mares across the field, and Rigsby took the opportunity to arch his neck and show off for the ladies. What a ham. As we both grow stronger, our jogs will become longer. The low, gradual hills will help him build a fantastic topline and confidence in his footing. He should be quite a horse, come Spring.
Due to incremant weather (aka: pouring rain, 46 degrees and 50mph wind gusts), my BO thought it best to keep the indoor/turnout ponies, indoor today. She's one smart cookie.
Besides the morning turnout time they spent roaming about the indoor arena while she was cleaning stalls, I went in the early afternoon to make sure Rigsby had some additional excercise. It was a very successful endevor.
We worked on-line for about 1/2 hour, going over poles at a walk and trot, making turns around barrels and working on bending exercises. He was respectful of my space, forward and a very willing learner. There was tons of lip licking from him, and lots of terrible singing from me. He rewarded me at the end of our lesson by going for a grand roll, and I rewarded him for a job well done with a big basket of fresh picked grass, a 20 minute session with the curry comb and some deep leg massages.
This is where a perfectionist, control freak horse owner pretty much has a panic attack.
Rigsbys feed program is pretty meticulous. What if they don't add the aloe vera juice? What if they don't mix it properly and he separates his supplement from his feed into an expensive little pile? What if, what if, what if?
What if I take a deep breath, a chill pill; and calm the fuck down?
The Ultimate Chill Pill
The benefits of this soooooo outweigh my paranoid thoughts.
Imagine my horse fed, and given ample time to digest his food by the time I arrive at the barn? This means we can go directly into training/playing! Why the hell didn't I think of this before? Oh yeah. Because I'm a perfectionist, control freak.
Is this enlightenment/extra training time worth $100 more a month?
Today I finally threw in the towel on keeping Rigsby on 24/7 turnout. The wind in North Dakota is just too much for him. Even with his blanket, if he was exposed to the wind he kept a slight hum of a shiver going. I know he was in no danger to the cold, but he's burning up all the hard fought calories I've put in him. After a few random late night visits, I noticed that he spends most of his nights in the lean-to, out of the wind and away from the hay. Well, if he's doing to sit in the shed all night, he might as well be in a warm comfortable stall where he can be nekkid, within sight of two of his other herdmates; with hay in front of him at all times. Sounds like a game plan to me!
Winter Feed Program: He's now getting a chunk of alfalfa, and I'm replacing his 1/2 lb Equine Jr ration, with Senior feed, for the extra calories.
I arrived at the barn today, with a plan to bring Rigsby out in the open fields and play. Considering that the last 24 hours consisted of constant rain, leaving the chance of some pretty muddy going, I was sure to dress for the occasion. I wasn't too worried about my green plaid pajama pants tucked into my before mentioned muck boots, or even my drastically different colored flannel hooded jacket, after all; it was 1:30 in the afternoon on a weekday. I'd have the barn to myself.
This was not the case.
I opened the barn door and was greeted by the husband barn owner, and three strange men, including one who was going at some horses face with a power tool, resulting in white smoke everywhere.
Oh goodie. The dentist is here.
I was thrilled, and a bit embarrassed, all at the same time. Thrilled because my horses face while eating lately, looked like this...
And embarrassed because instead of looking like this...
I looked more like this...
But such is Life...
There were about 7 or 8 men and women standing behind the stall the dentist was working in, with their well groomed horses. Yes, when coming from off-site, people groom their horses like it's a show, or something. 7 or 8 is nothing. Last month there were probably 25 strange horses milling around the property.
The dentist visits my boarding facility once a month, with his sidekick The Chiropractor; so once a month our barn is filled/packed with people/horses that have come from as far as 100 miles away to have their horses worked on. This tells me they are very good at what they do. It also tells me that my boarding stable is the place to be in this area. But I already knew that. I told Dr. Dentist MD that I'd wished I'd known he was coming, because my horse was showing signs of needing his teeth done. DDMD cheerfully mentioned that he'd just had a cancellation, and he could fit my boy in next.
An hour later...
Two baby teeth and the wolf teeth. No filing down for this cat. We ain't fuckin around round here.
I love that picture. Where was I again? Oh yeah....
Eventless, in Minot, ND
I moved here last Spring, from "Occupied" Area IV.
It isn't the end of the world (but it's right on the edge), because Rigsby is only 2. Knowing I'd be stuck in cow country for a minute (or 1,296,000 minutes), I bought a baby to play with. What I didn't anticipate, was the lack of riding instruction that would be available; so sadly, I wear these...