Sunday, April 23, 2017

The Harmany Muzzle

"Sami" The Perfect Model"

" Does this make me look silly, are the guys going to make fun of me"

"Are you kidding me...what is this contraption anyway!"

We recently purchased the Harmany Muzzle to prevent Blue and Sami from ingesting too much grass while grazing.  They are the two horses here who need it most.  We attached them to their halters today to see how they would do with them and put them in the small grass paddock by the barn so we can keep an eye on them.  The one concern we had was that they wouldn’t fit into the automatic waterers but Blue tested his out first thing and it does fit in the bowl easily and doesn’t get caught on the bottom of the rim which sort of sticks out a little.
" We really need to talk about this"

I think we still have to make adjustments with the fit so it will be a learning curve.  The muzzles can be shaped by heating them with hot water.  We decided to try these particular muzzles because they seem more lightweight and more adjustable to give a more custom fit as needed.  Another plus is they can be cleaned at the end of the day by rinsing them off under water.  So we’ll see how it goes and I’ll let you know what we think of them after a few weeks.  I’m interested to see how they hold up.  Blue is notorious for trashing grazing muzzles.  I can only hope he’s met his match with this one.

Here is part of the ad for Harmany Muzzles:

"The Harmany Muzzle is designed to be open and airy, allowing better ventilation for the horse while still slowing his forage intake. Instead of nylon webbing which can absorb moisture and then mold or mildew, the Harmany muzzle is a medical-grade plastic containing kevlar fibers: the plastic will not splinter or snap to produce sharp edges (though horses can eventually chew through it like a conventional muzzle — Dr. Harman is looking into solutions for that problem.) At the end of the day, the entire muzzle can be hosed down or washed with soap and water and easily dried: no more worries about your horse breathing in mold!" 
If you want to check it out for yourself here’s the website:

Until next time

Quote for Today

Love means attention, which means looking after the things we love. We call this stable management.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Turkeys vs. Dogs


Our yearly Spring visit of turkeys has arrived.  Every year the turkeys seem to like to hang around the yard. In a few weeks we will see the hens come back with their chicks.  Right now the Tom is trying to impress the hens with his fantail display. 

" I'm displaying an impressive fantail here ladies...umm, any takers"
"Looks like he's at it again Gertrude. Just ignore him Bertha, he's got to get over himself"
The dogs are running from room to room barking their heads off at the turkeys.  When I let them out this morning they didn’t run after them at all but simply stopped and looked at them.  Once the dogs did decide to move,  the turkeys went on the other side of the flags that mark the underground dog fence.  The dogs won’t cross it or they know they will get zapped.  I actually think the turkeys are smart enough to know this as they stayed just outside the wire seemingly taunting the dogs.  When one flew away the both dogs ran to the front step.  They are both a couple of chickens.  Inside though, they are very tough.  I’m finding all this very amusing. 

" Mmmm, they look tasty"
" I think they're dissing me"
"What da ya think Ginger, should we keep barking? I think we're scaring the hell out of them...

Until next time

Sunday, April 9, 2017

And The Winner Is...

"Donnie & Blue"


"Yeah! I win!"

Donnie gets the prize today for being the dirtiest horse of the day.  Grady and Blue were respectively the runner - ups in the “ How Dirty Can You Get Contest” that was apparently running today in the herd.  I actually watched Donnie roll in the mud first thing this morning when he hit turnout.  I was hoping most of the mud would dry and fall off during the day.  As you can see it didn’t.  There’s a lot of grooming coming his way tomorrow morning.  I was just too tired tonight to take care of this.

 I’m happy to report that Sami is doing much better.  His swelling is down and he’s not lame anymore.  He enjoyed some time outside in a small grass paddock with a buddy and seems to be less stressed now that he was able to go out instead of being stuck in his stall all day.  Our horses really aren’t used to being in a stall.  They are basically out from morning until night every day.

Until next time

Quote for Today
  Grooming: the process by which the dirt on the horse is transferred to the groom.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

One Of Those Days

" Sami"

Did you ever have one of those days where everything went wrong.  Well, that was my day today.  First thing this morning I went out to feed and turnout.  Sami wasn’t putting any weight on his left hind and I couldn’t get him to move so I could see what might be wrong.  Okay, let’s start by cleaning out his feet.  Nothing there and he didn’t seem bothered by it at all.  So probably not an abscess.  He looked uncomfortable and definitely in pain.  I called the vet who came within the hour and diagnosed a swollen suspensory.  I’m treating it with Surpass twice a day and Bute once a day. Sami will be on stall rest until he feels better and can only go out when he's not lame anymore in the catch pen until the vet rechecks him in seven days. He’s not too happy about that but his window is open so he can see his pals.  There has been some vocalization when they move out of site but he’s dealing with it.

Next I had to change the huge water bottle on the dispenser because it was empty.  Well, as I pulled it off it cracked me squarely in the nose. Ouch! It still hurts but I’ll live.

The rest of the day was spent going out to the barn to check on Sami.  It has been raining buckets on and off all day with high winds and some thunderstorms with lightening thrown in for good measure.  So running between the raindrops and dodging lightening bolts was a fun part of the day.

Then tonight as I was bringing the horses in I was treated to another thunderstorm and we all got totally soaked.  After I put Surpass on Sami’s leg and fed I headed into the tack room for their nightly carrot treat.  That’s when I heard the digital fence box beeping and blinking red.  Swell, it wasn’t working again, which is not a good thing since I’m training Nikita to not leave the property with her collar on and the underground fence as her boundary.  It wasn’t working a week ago and I had the guy come out and fix it.  I just sent off the check for two hundred dollars today so they’ll be getting a call tomorrow.

In the meantime I have to walk the two dogs on leashes to do their business. Ginger is good she’s an absolute machine.  Nikita, not so much, it takes her a good ten minutes to find just that perfect spot.  Of course, they both had to go out after dinner and it was still pouring.  

I’m hoping that since things seem to come in threes that’s about it for the day today.  Then again there’s always tomorrow!

Until next time

Quote for Today
Sometimes you’re the statue a sometimes you’re the pigeon!

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Our New Girl

" Nikita "
Last Thursday we adopted a new addition into our family.  Meet Nikita, she’s a 14-month-old German Shepherd.  

 We got her from the Guide Dogs of America. Apparently, she didn’t meet their stringent requirements so we were able to adopt her.  Nikita was already named and since she’s been training under that name I really can’t change it even though I’m not crazy about it.  I’ve tried calling her Nikki but she didn’t respond to that name. So Nikita it is.  

Ginger & Nikita

Nikita is very well trained and listens to every command, better than Ginger by the way.  I’m hoping some of her good training will rub off on Ginger.  Most likely Ginger will corrupt her and I’ll have two dogs that won’t come when called. Both dogs are getting along well... most of the time.  There have been a few skirmishes over food, bones and toys but they’ve seemed to work it out.

It’s nice to see them playing and romping outside together.  Being a southern California girl Nikita had never seen snow.  She loves it and lies in the little patches we have left.  I think she is feeling good about her new home.  We love her already.

Quote for Today
“Dogs are our link to paradise. They don't know evil or jealousy or discontent. To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring--it was peace.” Milan Kundera

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Happy Birthday Mr. Blue

"Happy Birthday" to me...umm, where's the treats!

Today is Blue’s birthday. He is now twenty years old.  I don’t think there is much more I can say about Blue that I haven’t already said. Blue has a special place in my heart and always will. He is one of those extraordinary horses that will bring a smile to your heart when you are around him.  He has a personality that is so unique it would be an understatement to say he is quite a character.

Over the years there have been so many occasions where Blue has been an unending source of joy.  I won’t go into all of his antics but I can tell you they were quite different than anything I’ve seen from other horses over the years and always amusing. His trustworthiness with whoever is in the saddle is another of Blue’s many attributes.  When I had my knee replacement and hadn’t ridden in months I chose him for my first ride.  We only went for a short walk down the alleyway between the paddocks and the road.  No sooner had we entered the alleyway than we were greeted with about fifty or so very loud motorcycles cruising down the road right next to us.  True to form Blue never even looked at them where another horse may have given me a ride for my money that day.  He is a horse who knows who he is and is always there to greet you with a nudge and a nicker.

There are not enough good things to say about this wonderful guy.  Happy Birthday big guy and may you have many more healthy years ahead.

Here are some of my favorite pictures of Blue through the years:


Quote for Today
On the first day god created horses, and on the second day he painted the good ones.