Sunday, September 26, 2010

This is not my beautiful horse

Where did this contemplative, calm, confident horse come from? Every other time I've moved her (5 times) she's been insecure and hyper and very worried. She picks fights or at the least makes nasty faces at other horses, and she paces and worries and frets. But not this time!

M and I walked Dixie and Billy over this morning. I led Dixie around the whole pasture, pointing out stuff, then unclipped the lead and let her wander off. She got silly and cantered back to me once, but mainly she looked at things and walked around and thought about stuff. The north side horses came running up to their fence, then one of them ran away snorting, and she just stood and watched them. She had a couple of really good rolls, and she thinks dried out dead cheatgrass is delish, and she seemed to have a perfectly good normal day. Ate, walked, stood with her head in the shade. She touched the top hot wire with her nose, got tingled, and never tested the fence again AFAIK.

Billy the goat was totally stressed out. Walking him over was awful, and he stayed glued to Dixie for a good four hours, but I think he's settled in too. He had a tough time with the fence, too - he kept trying to chew on it or stick his head through it and getting ZAPPED. I saw him touch hot and ground and get fried no less than five times, and I'm sure he tried it a few more times. It's like it's a personal insult that such a wussy looking fence keeps biting him!

Cersei ran through the fence once and got lucky, then ran through it again and got ZAPPED - she squalled and ran away, and she hasn't tried the fence again. She goes through the gate with me now!

I have a 100 gallon tank for horse water, an 18 gallon bucket for goat water, and a little bucket for dog water. The chickens love the dog water, Dixie likes the 18 gallon container, and Billy prefers to giraffe his head into the 100 gallon. Oh well, at least everybody's drinking, right?

I spent two hours sitting out in the pasture with them, then did a pretty good job organizing my tack and cleaning up the horrible junk between the barage and the fence. I turned a minefield of boards and crap into one fairly neat (huge) pile against the barn wall, then raked up four trash bags of stuff from the ground - dead sage, shingles, bits of wood, coke cans, shredded plastic, etc.

My theory is that if Waste Management will take one wheelie bin plus seven extra bags, and I give them seven extra bags a week, I can get this place cleaned up some time in my lifetime. And it's much less daunting to shove a bag full of sagebrush every night than to try to fill up a truck and Go To the Dump. Ugh, going to the dump is overrated.

This might be the most beautiful thing I've ever seen :D


  1. Hey congrats on everything. I love having my horse at home.
    Yes, as long as they're drinkin' all is well....

  2. So glad she is so happy and relaxed - that means it feels like home.

  3. I'm so jealous that you can look out of a window in the morning and see her. Congrats on your hard work paying off, and your sane mare!!!!

  4. How wonderful to finally have her home. Sounds like she thinks it's home as well. :)

  5. i don't know what cheatgrass is.

    i'm encouraged that you keep a goat behind electric wire - can you please take a pic so i can see your fence configuration?

    i know what you mean about finally having your horse at home. it took us much longer.

    there is nothing better!


  6. Thanks, yall!

    Lytha, I took a couple pics of the fence tonight. There's 7 strands, which might be overkill - but there's no way my goat can get his head through two strands without touching both of them. That's the key - if he touches two he gets an enormous shock.

    Here's an annotated picture - tell me if you have questions!

    Cheatgrass is an invasive and highly flammable non-native grass. I'd never heard of it either til I came here!

  7. Yaay!!! Awesome to have her home and for that part to be done. Also. GOAT. Did i miss the part where you bought the goat? I'm a terrible blog-friend. :(

    I have a paranoia that if I put my horses out in a pasture like that they'd eat everything they weren't supposed to. lol

  8. Hey DiJ! I want to make it clear that Billy is not my goat. He is Dixie's pet goat. When I moved Dixie to M's place, Dixie adopted him (and he adopted her) and M, who has plenty of critters, said I had to take the goat.

    (cough) with that said I am going to get two Nigerian doelings later this week. (cough cough)

    But Billy is Dixie's goat!

  9. Hehe!! Goats are SO fun I promise. I've been meaning to stick up some fall pictures, since that's the only thing I'm capable of when working 14 hr days.

    Where are you getting the new ones? Any reason or just to populate your new farmette? :P I still want to steal your chickens, by the way. Mine are still retards and haven't realized we have goodies. haha

  10. From my co-worker (and new friend) - she breeds some high quality Nigis. Hoofin' it Ranch I was kinda thinking about picking up a second scrubby wether on Craigslist, to keep Billy company when I ride out on Dixie, but then K brought me some goat milk. And mentioned she has two more doelings to place. Aaaannnddd... I'm getting them!

  11. Wow! Looks great. (The annotated photo makes it look like Fort Knox!) Yes, cheat grass is a pain--literally:be sure to check Cercei's pads if you see any sign of limping--the cheat grass "burrs" have been known to work their way WAY under the skin and cause nasty infections. Also(not to be a party pooper, but...) is that all sage in Dixie's paddock? Laughing Orca Ranch had a nasty incident of toxicity which caused some weird and troublesome neurological signs in her sweet mare. You might want to read her saga and check your plants...
    But isn't it great to have them HOME!

  12. Oh, oh, oh!!!! Loved everything! They are all HOME!

    I'm soooooo very happy...and the fact they all mix it up with the watering containers....perfect.
    I move this weekend...and am nervous...I am told that they rotate horses. I kinda want to sit with my every diff field...but, won't be that weird in front of my new BO'S.
    I'm so envious of you...lovely having them at know everything!

    7 strands...7...good number!

  13. ah, but your rabbit brush is blooming - ours hasn't started yet!
    - The Equestrian Vagabond


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