Saturday, May 16, 2009

Big Poppa

Meg went with me to the ranch today to check mares. Yesterday I was sure my mare was getting close. Her bag had really filled up and she looked very uncomfortable. So I cancelled plans to spend Saturday night with Chris' mom and figured I would be spending tonight at the ranch, checking my mare.

Today, her bag seems to have shrunk back down a bit and she was back to hanging with the other girls...
Figures!
Cowgirl(the sorrel in the middle) is rapidly catching up to Chunk(the sorrel I am petting) in belly size, but she has not started filling in the bag yet. Honky Tonk(the red dun) isn't showing anything. I don't know if she is bred or not. I'm not crazy about the way she looks either. She is peaked through the hips and not in as good of shape as she usually is. She may have to go to mom's for some TLC. I told mom that if that was the case, I was going to haul her to the vet and have her preg tested, cause if she is open, I am going to ride her this year. She is a freaking awesome ride!

Yes, I'm standing like a dork, reaching 3 feet out there to give Chunk a little rub, cause Cowgirl has a tendency to pin her ears unexpectedly and if Chunk feels like she is cornered, she will flat run over a person to get away. I don't need run over and Chunk don't need to feel like she has to jerk around either. We must be very mindful of that precious cargo...that I wished she would pop out!:)

So with the mares all checked out, I cleaned some more on the barn and Megan gave the stud a good going over. He loves attention...
Now, before anyone freaks because I let my 15y/o daughter handle the stallion...we do have rules!

#1)First we observe. Ninety-nine percent of the time Pistol is as docile as a kitten. He loves people and begs for attention. But before we ever go strolling into his pen, we make sure he is NOT in stallion mode. It's not hard to tell the difference-head hanging over the fence begging for attention or head up and looking for other horses.

#2)The stud is always haltered while being handled. Any horse can move quickly, but a stallion can move twice as fast and even the gentlest stud has a tendency to kick out as they go by. Heard about more than one person who got kicked in the head(and died) from that happening when handling "gentle" stallions while they were loose.

We are very fortunate with this stallion, as he is exceedingly people oriented, grew up running with geldings and he has never been lippy or nippy. He was broke to ride by a guy in his 70's as a 2y/o and that guy said he was very athletic and cowy. However, the next people who owned him must have tried to "show the stud who was boss", cause he was one POed dude when he came to us. It took me a few months of handling him before that hard look went out of his eye, but once he realized that people were okay again, he has become a pocket pony. Since we have had him, we have not bothered to try to ride him, although I have saddled him several times. I may see what he remembers this next winter though. It's a shame to not at least keep him somewhat rideable.

He probably isn't everyone's cup of tea...
But if Shooter is any indication of what he produces, he'll work. His Oklahoma Star breeding should nick particularly well with the King/Sugar Bars mares we have. When I bred my Lady Bug's Moon/Leo mare(Chunk) to him, I was rather focused on the Lady Bug's Moon side of it, but since have found a very interesting article in regards to the good nick of Oklahoma Star and Leo. Would you all believe they were phenominal cutting horses in their day? Surprised me too! Not that I am particularly interested in raising cutting horses, but plenty of cow, coupled with plenty of speed is always a good thing. Another thing I hope Shooter is an indication of, is that this stud will impart a bit more length and smoothness to our somewhat blocky stock. I like stout, but some of what we have is...wow, a bit thicker than most people are looking for.

And finally, we went to the other pasture to see how my old mare is getting along...
Very well I think!
I struggled to keep weight on Woofer all winter. I knew she needed her teeth done, but couldn't seem to get the dentist to stop by the house. When he was out doing our other horses, I told him(again) that I had an old mare in dire need of a good workover, so out of the blue he stopped in one day and did her for me...and he leveled Moon up again too. She don't have much left for teeth, but he leveled her out and took a bunch off of her front teeth so she could grind again and she started gaining right away. Good enough! I think the old girl has a few more years left in her. I told her she better not getting to looking too good or I would breed her to the stud again this spring. She shook her head, kinked her tail and headed out. I guess that is a NO to any more babies! That's okay. She has given me all she ever needs to.



15 comments:

Andrea said...

I didn't think anything of it, your girl brushing a stud. She knows her stuff and she isn't in there being silly, she is doing what she went in there to do. And you have good rules. I think there are a lot of studs out there that are gentle. Our stud is all about business. And he can't ever be turned out with anyone. He will tare them up. We are going to geld him next year. If the mare we bred this year has a healthy foal.

And I love the way your girls look. Big nice hips, big shoulders, big bellies. You just have some really nice big horses. I love the width they all have. I can't wait to see those babies!! Exciting stuff. And my one mare did the funky big bag small bag thing too. Ugh.....I hope you don't have to wait too much longer.

cdncowgirl said...

It didn't even cross my mind to raise an objection to Megan handling the stud.
She has been raised around horses, and raised knowing what's what. She's proven she can be responsible and to use her brain around them.

City girl turned Country Girl said...

I too had no complaint about Megan in with your boy.. I guess there are some people that might freak, but as you have showed you have great rules for handling him!!! Doesn't that just tick you off when someone does something to a horse that was perfectly fine and gives them a human complex!!! OH it drives me crazy!!

The Momma's look great!!! Yes the bag thing was an issue here this year too...Interesting about Honky Tonk, she does have a bulge at the bottom of her belly but it could just be the angle of the picture.

Again I can't wait to see these babies!!! And I think your stud is gorgeous!! Love the bloodline!!

Mrs Mom said...

Dude- nice motor on the big boy there. Thanks for putting shots of him up- don't think we have ever seen him before! (And both Dear Husband and I LIKE!! ;) )

Old Momma there looks good too.

Hey- watch those mares. Seriously! I had a dream about you last night and mares foaling! ;) Something about a filly in there too....

BrownEyed Cowgirls said...

LOL-A person gets a little "punchy" when it comes to some things and you wonder...Do I post it or not? Back when I was reading, fugly posted a video of a girl riding a stallion for a sale video and people shredded it...because there was a kid riding a stallion. Never mind that they were a well turned out pair and the stallion was well trained and a perfect gentleman. All I saw in the video was a girl who rode well for her age and a nice looking horse. Others saw disaster in the making. I guess that sort of response sticks in a person's mind, even if you think those people are completely off base. I realize that people who read regularly would know that I don't throw my daughter into dangerous situations, but the passers-by? Who knows(shrug).

So anyway....

Country Girl-Yea, there is a little bulge there and a couple weeks ago, I noticed that certain flatness you can see in their flank right before they start getting a baby belly. Now, I'm not so sure. But we left the stud out longer than usual last summer, so she could have a July baby. Not ideal, but I'm really just hoping she settled. Last summer was her 3rd year with the stud. If she is not bred, we'll have to hand breed her next year. She was checked out by the vet last year and he said she felt fine inside. I've known mares who just wouldn't stand long enough for the stud to actually get them bred if they were loose, but settled immediately when hand-bred. She may be one of them.

Mrs Mom-Oh come on...I want a colt this year-LOL...which of course means I will probably end up with that filly you dreamed about. That's just my luck!
Pistol can absolutely fly! I've watched this horse lope along in the pasture and when he drops and pushes off with his hindend, he is like a rocket. I told mom, I wasn't sure if it would be thrilling or terrifying to ride a horse that can take off and run like that...but I sure hope his babies have the same ability.;)

Leah Fry said...

I think everybody looks pretty good. And thick horses can be really comfy rides.

City girl turned Country Girl said...

You know I have to chuckle about Mrs Mom's dream...Remember I wanted a filly and got a colt, so I told you that they will be mixed up LOL!!! I will do an update on the colt soon so you all can see his growth so far!! He is a feisty little stinker LOL!!!

Melanie said...

Well I for one cannot believe that you let Megan handle your stallion...lol and just kidding!!! :)
I used to work at a Paint horse ranch when I was 14-17, and I always handled their stallions. Except for one rather nasty one....

I cannot believe how much Shooter looks like his daddy! Handsome boys indeed. Of course it helps that your mares are gorgeous as well. Woofer is precious. How old is she?

jen098 said...

Well, I wrote a longer comment, but lost it in cyberspace. In a nutshell: I am getting sick of fugly horse...Any pic can be taken out of context. I have not posted a picture of me riding double with my three year old niece because I don't want it to end up there...even though she has a helmet on.

When I worked at the barn we all had a turn on the lesson horse, who was a stud. He was awesome and took care of everyone, even a 4 year old girl showed him. He also carried an old (late 60's early 70's) man on a hunting trip. This guy never rode, but that stud just took care of him.

I also rode an outside person's stud to keep him in shape. He was also a really good boy.

I also know a stallion who killed a handler, though no one was there and knows what happened. His new owner is a woman, who has not had a single problem with him, though she is well aware of this horses strength and power.

If your girl is a horsewoman, I have faith she can handle that horse. NO ONE can strong arm a horse, (well, you know what I mean). So it isn't about brute strength it is about awareness and experience. Your girl has that!

Pony Girl said...

I think your stud is a handsome guy! It's great that he is so well-mannered and you have great rules for handling him. Trust me, there are a lot of mares and geldings out there that could be more dangerous, LOL! ;)
I hope you have some babies soon. I never tired of seeing the babies on the blogs!

Danielle Michelle said...

I agree with all that's been said. Your stud looks great and screw anyone who has a problem with your daughter handling him. She's knows her stuff because you taught her right. There's nothing wrong with studs. The majority of the time it's the person handling them when something goes wrong.

Your gals look great!

White Horse Pilgrim said...

Back where I lived in Transylvania, half the teenagers had handled stallions as draught horses. Some of the neighbours drove pairs of stallions. They were nicely behaved animals in general, bred for temperament rather than flashy looks, and the people were used to working with horses. That seems much like your situation - you and your daughter know what you are doing, you apply common sense, and the stallion sounds well brought up.

I brought a stallion with me when I returned to England. He ran with geldings, he was well treated but no nonsense accepted, and now he lives quietly in a barn where there are mares too. The barn owner is happy. So are other people when they see how he behaves. The only problem that I have had lately with a stallion was when a mare jumped the fence to get in with him!

But of course other people see what you do, and what I do, and poke their noses in to disagree. I have my opinions on how to ride safely (which has a lot to do with personal competence and sensible, well trained horses) and these have just led to one blogger pompously attacking me. The whole fugly phenomenon is pathetic and frankly reminds me of the taliban - ignorant fundamentalists who think that they have a right to impose their views on the majority.

BrownEyed Cowgirls said...

White Horse Pilgrim...AMEN!!

C-ingspots said...

Stallions are horses too. Treat them with respect and common sense and you'll be allright. If you don't know what you're doing, any horse can, and probably will get your hurt. My mom always used to say that "opinions are like a**holes, everybody's got one". I still laugh because that's just so very true. Anyway, that Chunk mare is the one that I like so much. Not sure exactly why, she just hits a chord with me. And...I think the new stud is a beauty. Not overly muscled and a good athletic looking build. I like his looks. Is that who Chunk was bred to? If so, I'll bet the foal will have a great conformation. It would be even more awesome if baby were a true, bright bay. My favorite!! I miss not having babies to work with. That's what I love the most.

Stephanie said...

Hey - nice picture of the stud! I like him. Like any stud he'll have his strengths and weakness for his mares to complement.