Saturday, March 5, 2011

Happy Horses

Rogo gave me a scare tonight. I went to put them in, after being out all day. I put Rogo in first, closed the door to the inside of the barn and walked across his stall to the outside door to hook it closed (their stalls have two doors - a door in from the inside of the barn and a door to turn out so they can go in and out at will). He used his nose while I was across the stall to open the inside door. If he got into the barn he could get outside - I hadn't closed the barn door that we use - so outside he went. Yikes! He was loose! He never tries to escape or open doors, so I hadn't thought anything about him opening his inside door. I went quietly out with his halter thinking I could just walk up to him, put it on, and lead him back in. He ALWAYS wants to be with me and has never been any problem to catch. Not tonight. He didn't actually run from me, but he moved away and didn't want me to hold him or put his halter on either. I finally got it on him, but then the horse that will follow me all the time didn't want to be lead in. It took some 'bullying' and very strong firmness to convince him he should go back in the barn. I was so scared! What if he took off and got on the road? I don't even want to think about it.
Doug pointed out that he's been standing in a stall with little to no turn out for most of the winter - why would he want to be locked in? Oh. Now I get it. Poor baby. Doesn't excuse the bad manners though. We have ground work to do. Coincidentally a friend just offered to show me some of her ground work techniques, so we'll be getting to work on it.
It was so fun watching the horses today. It was like it finally sunk in that they were home and weren't going back to where they were. They literally played - running, chasing, leaping, squealing - all afternoon. I've never seen them play for so long a time. I tried to bring Savanah in to brush her (she is shedding so much that when she lays down to roll and gets up and shakes I can see the cloud of hair from in the house). Normally she loves being brushed, but all she wanted to do is get back outside. When I feed them their hay they drag it outside, so I feed it outside now. It's like they've been depressed and are coming back to life. Their energy level is going up, up, up with each passing hour. 
I watched a show on TV tonight about animal hoarding and I'll just say I think we've witnessed a border line case recently. Things have been turning over in my head...
Doug and I talked more about the horse business tonight. It's just about the most fun undertaking of my life. I hope it comes together.


12 comments:

Karen said...

My boy spent all summer living the life of the stall horse who only had a few hours of turnout a day. While he was still a good boy all summer, when I moved him back to 24/7 turnout in the fall there was a light that came back to his eyes. So nice to see them happy!

Calm, Forward, Straight said...

Rogo was liking the taste of freedom ;)

I wonder if being restricted at the other barn is connected with his lack of forwardness you were experiencing for a while?

So happy for you that you have them home :) Keep us posed on your horse business ideas!

Carol said...

I just wish they'd had a few hours turn out a day. Some days they got none. Other days, maybe half an hour. And Doug worked hours on the fences to try to encourage turn out.
I think the lack of forwardness is probably linked to the lack of turn out. I noticed when he first got there he was so energetic if he was coming in from turn out, but then turn out became less and less, and energy went down and down :(

Carol said...

Just another note - we'd leave them out all night but the snow is so deep that we're afraid they might try to walk over the fence. As the weather warms up they'll be out 24/7.

Dom said...

Glad he didn't get far!

Annette said...

Don't you just love happy horses!!

Lori Skoog said...

Carol,
I just caught up. Wish I could have tasted your Pad Thai dinner! And I love mangos. Glad you were able to catch your horse and all is well. They have to be so excited to have turnout. I have a lot to say about building an indoor, boarding etc. We built ours in 1992. Is there a way to email you?

TBDancer said...

Carol--just put it down to "spring is in the air." My horse has turnout regularly (and he has a lovely large paddock with a view of everything going on around him, so it's not like he's stallbound) but there are times when he sneaks through that "little window of opportunity" (and the open gate ;o) and runs like the demented around the acre. My home is fenced and the gates are NEVER left open, but I'm always afraid Mr. Demented is going to fall or otherwise hurt himself, so I don't enjoy the chase as much as he does. It is scary, and yes, groundwork is in order here, too. ;o) Glad Rogo was just "slightly rude" instead of WAY rude--like "out the gate and buh-bye" rude.

Jan said...

Carol, I'm so glad you were able to catch him quickly after he got out! It is so scary when a horse is loose and many dangers immediately go through your mind. Glad they are all back home now and you can look after them. What special horses!

Amy said...

How scary. I am soooo glad he came in safe. I am so sorry about the turn out situation. There have been a couple weeks over the winter that the weather would not allow turn out and my horses are different animals being locked inside all day.

Hurricanes12 said...

awww, it's definitely up there with the scariest things ever having your horse loose in an unconfined space!

i had to scroll back to read about your business ideas, i've missed a lot!
it sounds so exciting, i hope you decide on a venture and it's very successful. maybe you could venture further into other businesses within the same business if it's successful, if you get that?

personally i prefer the breeding side, though i could never do this as i'd become way to attached to something i'd bred and seen take it's first breath in the world!

achieve1dream said...

I'm glad you caught Rogo and nothing bad happened. I also don't want to think about that. I'm glad your horses are happy being at home. I bet you're thrilled too. :)