Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Fun in the Snow!

Keeping the horses fed and making sure they have unfrozen water is sure challenging this time of year.

What goes in, must come out!

My horses tend not to drink as much water when I use those heaters that go inside the 100 gallon Rubbermaid tanks, so I use these heated water buckets. Which mean lots of refilling during the day. Sometimes I dump the warm water from the bucket into the bigger tank and refill the bucket for them. I can better track how much water they're drinking with the smaller buckets also. Keeping them hydrated is as critical in these cold temps as when it's hot out.

Missy, my wonderful quarter horse mare whose been with me the longest is 20 now and has a 5 month old at her side, so she has shelter when she needs it and plenty to eat.
This is Missy's first born, Danny, on the opposite end of their loafing shed. They are in a separate area from Spencer and his buddies. (Neenah, missy's filly, and Jake a 3 year old Quarab rescue, are in with Danny and Missy.)
Just trying to keep everyone fed and as comfortable as possible. I don't blanket my horses unless I see one of them shivering. Keeping hay in front of them usually keeps the shivers at bay.
Corner feeders are in both sides of their shed. I've noticed that horses don't like their butts towards the opening of a shed, facing in, when they are eating, but these guys have learned to accept it.

Jake and Neenah use these fence feed buckets for now. These buckets are a bit frustrating for Jake, because it's not easy for him to get a good mouthful. But that's okay. Plus I think it's up too high for him here, so I started setting them on a lower fence rail. That seems better.

The Parelli Playfield in winter. The pond is frozen and I walked out on it yesterday. Kind of scary, but the ice didn't crack! I told Rich about my excursion out onto the frozen pond and his response was, "The ice must be really thick, huh." He cracks himself up sometimes. I've just learned to roll with it.
Update: It has been snowing all day. It's gotten fairly deep!:0)


Rachel said...

I am totally in that "keep everything from freezing" routine now... and it's TIRING!

The girls get beet pulp mash twice a day and yesterday it was a solid block... UGH! So they got really warm beet pulp after that! :)

Didn't know they had smaller heated buckets, we'll have to get some!

lytha said...

hey, quit showing off your super cool two-wheeled one-handed wheelbarrows. agh, i have looked everywhere in germany and cannot find these. *whimper*


firecoach said...

You have 2 of those wheelbarrows! I have one, which I used to clean, then I have to wash it out to soak hay in. I told my husband I wanted another one but he said that was not a high priority. Imagine that! I have hydrants at each stall so I do not have to deal with frozen hoses.
I have been giving my guys warm soaked hay cubes. They really look forward to that for breakfast and dinner. They then get hay to munch on during the day. I am looking at different slow feeder to slow down my Hoover Vacuum cleaner Morgan.
I cannot imagine not have the heated bucket. I worry about them having enought water.
My IR mini seems to be getting a little sore, but I think it is due to lack of exercise.
My husband made paths in the pasture for the horses to run in, but I have only let them out once because when I feed breakfast it is dark and dinner it is dark. I am finding that they are getting very packed snow in their hooves. I had to soak them in hot water to loosen it up to clean them out.
We are supposed to get 8 more inches of snow tonight.

Rising Rainbow said...

You're right about how hard it is to do proper horsekeeping in this kind of weather. We don't normally have such long spells of freezing temps here. This year we are getting a real work out.

Hope you have a Happy New Year!

ps, I dream of 40 acres someday too!

Rachel said...

Hey you - guess what??? Someone posted on the FUGLY Horse of the Day website and recommended YOU as a good natural hoofcare farrier for a recent rescue that the website owner coordinated!

I think they already have a farrier, but I was tickled pink to see your name up there. I know someone famous! :)

Can't wait to meet next weekend!!

Rachel said...

Sorry to keep posting on this, but was hoping to point you over to FUGLY again and see a comment that was left here:

Here's what it said - much like what you noticed before! See the last part of it!

Hidalgo said...
I have seen several barns where they tie their horses up after riding so they won't drink or eat and colic. That has got to be the biggest barn myth ever!!! Makes me want to scream! Being an endurance rider, it makes me shudder to see a horse tied up and deprived of food and water after exercise. Guess what, if your horse has regular access to water, it won't drink down the whole tank. It may drink a little more than usual if you've worked it hard in the arena for an hour, but it won't drink down the tank.
The more you deprive the horse of water, the more it is likely to overdrink, even after it is cooled down, and that's not any better, hot horse or not. . We endurance riders let them eat and drink throughout a whole ride, even on training rides...oh my god! Shocking! I do some training work in the arena and have never deprived my horse of water. So ridiculous. But maybe those horses in draw reins with their heads down to their knees at 3, have much more problems and *are* more likely to colic in the first place.

To each his own on whether to shoe or not, but after seeing Parelli's horses with really high heels, long toes, chipped feet and egg bar shoes all around, not much surprises me about these "gurus".

January 8, 2009 10:54 AM

Pat said...

Hi Rachel, I need to update this blog with a new post. I have a good news post to put up about a founder rehab, rehomed and happy! It's coming soon.

Thanks for sending that comment. I'm not the only one who sees the problems with the Parelli horses I guess. Someone else sent me a bunch of pictures that were taken of their horses and it was very sad.

But about the tying a horse's head up for hours...I just saw that at a barn I was at not long ago, and I thought, what the heck. Every stall had a tie mounted on the wall and one horse was standing there tied short. Hmmm, I thought horses needed to get their heads down occasionally, not just for comfort, but in order to keep from choking or if they have sinus issues.

I think they do it to teach them patience, but anytime I see a horse tied up to a wall, post or has it's head tied around to it's saddle, I call that absentee training and if you're paying someone to do that to your horse and leave, they aren't worth your training dollar. Life can be such a bummer for horses. It hurts me to think about it.

Rachel said...

Know what's funny? I had just gotten finished reading the most recent comment on that post on FUGLY and then went to check my email and found that your comment sure sounded alike. It WAS you! :)

I totally agree - that is absentee training.

Some of the things they do to the "competitive" horses really sadden me. I'd take my girl with her sweet spirit and easy handling anyday over a money earner with a broken spirit.