Saturday, July 19, 2014

Dogs vs Horses: The Great Debate

I have been having intense cravings for horse time.  I neurotically comb through the classified on the hunt for the "perfect" horse.  There is a breeder of paint horses about 3 hours from me.  I love their horses.  They have a born broke personality.  There is also a nice started cutting bred mare 45 minutes from me...  They are the SAME price.

I keep telling myself that now is not the time to buy a horse.

Do I have time?  Will I be able to ride consistently?  Honey tells me horses cost money...  I worry about doing justice to the dogs.  Can I do both?

I'm not going to lie.  I'm about 99% sure that I'm going horse shopping when I get back from my vacation...

Friday, July 18, 2014


You would think the fact that its summer and I'm not technically working that I'd have all kinds of time on my hands.  I've come to the conclusion that I'm a "fill the gap" person.  Empty road in front of me?  Fill the gap - find the nearest car.  No more grad school?  Fill the gap - create new projects to take your time.  

This summer started off with a bang.  I registered for unlimited Moksha classes.  I love this style of yoga.  After herniating a disc in my back last year and being banished from running (or anything fun it seems) I've begun the attempt to drop the 30lbs I gained and get my flexibility and fitness back.  While I have been discouraged from running, Moksha is a great whole body exercise that will help me regain my flexibility.  

I also registered both dogs in an agility class.  Ryder in the advanced.  Diva in the beginner.  Ryder is an agility fool and loves it.  Diva has good naturally trotted through the classes and happily done the exercises.  Because Ryder loves agility more than sheep and Diva loves sheep more than agility I've been trying to find balance.  I've been driving out to the farm -not nearly as much as I should- and working the dogs on sheep.  Ryder pretty much could enter a trial now.  Diva we are working on getting commands consistent.  Diva is gaining confidence on her drive and is progressing further away from me.  

I also had a bit of a break down regarding horses.  A very, very, very large part of me did not want to sell the baby.  Oh boy, was that hard!  I've been really twitchy and edgy.  Wanting to ride.  Wanting a horse to ride.  A major internal debate over time, horses and dogs has been waging war inside of me.  A compromise: I've registered for Jumping lessons at a local stable.  It was fun going out and getting my English gear again.  Nothing like breeches and big black boots to make a girl feel special.

But then I went to the doctor.  You know what they say about best laid plans??

In JUNE I had tweaked my ankle while out chasing down a child when on supervision.  I worked through JUNE on a grossly swollen ankle.  The swelling spilling over the edge of my runner.  After 3-4 weeks I went to the Medi-center.  The doctor ordered x-rays, but didn't look at my ankle!  The diagnosis - no break just a sprain.  I started wrapping my ankle.  I finished off work.  The second week of JULY my regular doctor returned from his annual charity doctor work overseas.  I went in.  I do not have a sprain!!  Nope, not me.  I have a broken ankle capsule.  It should have been CASTED. However, as at this point I've been walking on it for seven weeks, I was told no exercise, no walking, keep it wrapped and do not do anything to aggravate it.  Do you see how this may impact my plans??
For ten days I'm to baby my ankle.  I'm to do contrast baths.  I'm to sit on the couch with it elevated.

I'm not going to lie.  A major melt down was had.  My poor darling was baffled with my uncommon behaviour.  He kept rubbing my shoulders and asking me what was wrong as I freaked out.

I'm not going to lie.  I still am walking the dogs.  Not everyday and for shorter, but seriously?  How can I not?  I still went to my final agility class of the session.  I did cancel my riding lessons for the month of July.  I have stopped going to my beloved yoga.  I am trying not to pace inside of my house like a caged tiger.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

A Blogging She Shall Go

This lovely filly is still not named.  I sold her yesterday.  To a teenaged girl.  (I think teenage girls make the BEST horse owners.)  I have had so many thoughts and stories swirling around in my brain that I can't think straight.  Horse and dogs, dogs and horses.  Horses, dogs, men, children and time.  

I've decided that NOW is the perfect time to get back on the Blog trail.  

Saturday, May 10, 2014

A Surprise Ending

Whiskey provided a surprise ending last Sunday.  With virtually no signs other than being lightly bagged up, during a snow storm and cold temperatures, out in the field, she foaled.  It's a lovely and correct little filly.  Initially I had thought I'd want to keep this foal as a Whiskey replacement.  Guinness was a lovely baby.  He was quiet, gentle and by the one day mark I had mauled him and loved him all over.  This little baby... not so much.  She tucks her tail and prepares to buck when you try to touch her.  Whiskey is also much more nervous with this baby.  Less enthused with anyone attempting to touch her baby.  It's interesting to me how different things are.

Two Hours Old.

I haven't wrote much about Whiskey because I've been worrying about her.  You see, due to the neglect she experienced she was very lame on her front.  I've had reports that her feet were six inches too long.  This has caused some tendon/ligament damage.  I'm hopeful that with the baby weight now carrying itself around that she'll start to feel better.  She's getting regular trims and I also have a lady coming out to do some massage/muscular work with her.  I'll keep you posted once I hear what she thinks.  

Now I wait.  

I'm leaning towards selling the baby, I'm not in love with it's temperament and its a ghost of my mistake in letting these breeders have Whiskey.  Another negative is I wasn't in love with it's half sister (Roxy).  I may be best served in taking the time and money to fix Whiskey up, breed her next year (I'm thinking either a rebreed to Guinness' dad or to a Painted River Ranch stud.) and get my "riding" horse that way.  I'll wait out the summer and see if more time helps.  

More pictures to come...

Sunday, April 6, 2014


It appears my darling Whiskey may be a little further along than expected.   Dad called me to come look at her today.  You see, she is bagging up.   Her hind is looking "soft".  What this means is no June baby.  It is looking like an April or early May baby.  The baby watch is on.  I'll be burning up the miles to the farm.  While dad has calved countless calves, he has no experience with horses.  Giving him a crash course in what to watch for I reassured him that he would know when it was her time.  I gave him a heads up of when a vet would be needed.  In the meantime, I will drive.  And when she's "waxing" up I just may decide to stay there.  Fingers crossed for healthy baby delivered safely.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Summer of Dog

I have decided that this will be the summer of dog.  While the sale of the acreage has fluffed up my horse fund, I think I'm going to focus on one project at a time.  The dogs are creeping towards four years old!  And neither of them are finished stock dogs.  This was not the plan...  Life sure has a way of interfering with what you think you'll do.  My goals for the spring/summer seasons are as follows:

1) Continue to take Ryder to agility classes.  When he is ready step into competition.  I'm anticipating this won't be this summer.

2) Work both dogs regularly on sheep.  I think it's great exercise and great for their brains.  Work on finishing both dogs.  Ryder is scary close.  In fact, Ryder could easily enter an arena trial or run a novice field.  Diva is a little further back. 

3) Get Diva entered into a trial or two.  This is going to be her thing.

4) Take Diva to Gisela's classes.  I think it's good for her brain, even if it's not her thing.  It's the same reason Ryder will stay on sheep. 

5) There's a clinic in Saskatchewan that I have my eye on...

I'll slide out to Ken's to get my horsey fix when I need it.  No decisions of a horsey kind will be made until after Whiskey foals. 

Welcome to the summer of dog!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

A Little Love

Whiskey is looking pregnant these days.  I was out at the farm, in my town boots trying to convince her to come visit with me.  But alas, she decided she should remain on the straw pile rather than stomp through the mucky goodness that is an Alberta barnyard in the spring.  She is shedding copious amounts of hair.  It cracked me up how short she looks in this picture.  (She stands a comfortable 15.3 - 16 hh.)  I'll have to measure her properly one day. 
When I stand and watch, I wonder.  I wonder if it'll be a boy or a girl.  I wonder when she'll foal.  I wonder what color the baby will be.  I wonder if I'll fall in love and keep it.  Honey and I've talked about it.  Me keeping it.  If it's a filly, and I can find someone to play with it the next year or so, I'll keep it.  If it's a colt I'll work at finding him the perfect home. 
I'm impatient.  I want the baby, hooves on the ground. Now.