Monday, February 29, 2016

Leap Day!

And February is going out like a lamb!

Today is a day that only comes around every four years: February 29th, or Leap Day. You know that we have Leap Day to sync up the number of days in a year, because the earth revolves around the sun every 365.25 days. We add an extra day every four years to make up that .25 of a day. The ancient Romans figured it out, and revamped the calendar a few times to get it right.

Originally August was only 30 days long, and this was a problem because Julius Caesar's month (July) was 31 days long. It wouldn't do for Augustus to have a shorter month than Caesar!

To make August as long as July they borrowed a day from February, reducing it from 30 days during a leap year to only 29, and 28 days the other years. This permanently left February as the odd, shortened month that it is. And it is just as well, I'd rather have more days for summer!

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Sunny Sunday

Ride Time! We haven't ridden since January 17, and that day it did snow a little bit. Today was spectacular. A true gift.

We parked at the railroad crossing in Marriottsville, and right on cue a train rolled by. It was the only train we saw or heard for the remainder of the day.

Our rig was the only vehicle parked in the lot, and through most of the outbound ride we were alone. We felt we had the park to ourselves! It was a lovely day and I wondered where everyone could be!
The rivers and creeks were high and running fast, still some lingering snowy and icy spots in the shade and ravines.

I wanted to stay on the sunny side and the high side, but we still had to cross the river three times before reaching our destination. On the way up Austin's trail KC ground my knee into a tree, a good-sized tree with well-defined bark. I thought my pants would be ripped, but later I could feel my skin, or what was left of it, sticking to my riding jeans.
That tree got me good!

We saw three other riders and a couple walkers on the entire ride to Woodstock. Along the way, crossing creeks and navigating around, it was obvious there had been no riders and few bicyclists out since the big storm. There was evidence that the ATVers had been out, and as recently as this morning. With the serious snow and storms we've had the rivers and creeks have changed: what was shallow is now deep, sand bars are gone, downed trees have floated away.

The Woodstock Inn was bumping, with motorcycles lined up on the road, the lot full, but no horses at the hitching posts.
While we were there three more riders came in, and service was slow. We had trouble getting a place to sit, and moved twice. Some came in and after a look around left because there would be a wait for a table.

On the way back we ran into more riders and hikers, families out. The park was getting lively, people in t-shirts and shorts! We stopped to chat to several groups, and others we passed up. We even were filmed crossing the river at the confluence, the water being a little high, but not so fast at that point.

We got back to the parking lot, which was full of cars. One car was parked right on our front bumper, but they were loading up their car and leaving.

We hadn't been in the truck five minutes and it started making a weird noise, and when the noise happened power was diminished. Couldn't go faster than 35 miles an hour. And it would occasionally 'roll coal' and I thought of the horses, getting fumed. The truck was running horribly on the way home, took an alternate route because we couldn't go faster than 30, and it was rolling coal lots of the way, but not the whole way home. This truck, 2004 Ford F-350 Turbo Diesel, has 52,000 miles on it. Barely broken in! All indications that it is a clogged exhaust filter, but not really sure. Hope so, that is a $6 repair.

And ran out of propane while cooking dinner; I use the grill frequently and last bought fuel in October, right before the camping trip we didn't go on.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Waning February

He decided to steam clean the carpets today. I've complained, chronically, that he doesn't wear his Muck Boots to the barn, instead he wears sneakers and tracks in everything (stone dust, hay, manure, horse piss, gravel, etc.) onto the carpeting under his desk and through the entire house. I also take my boots off at the door, using a washable rubber-backed bath mat to keep my boots on. I'll admit the kitchen doorway is filthy, but I sweep regularly and rinse the floor with vinegar frequently.

So he experienced a carpet machine failure. The machine was leaving more soap/water than it was extracting. We've had the machine 15 years, at least, and he searched online for a new machine with added features, prepaid at the local BigBlueBox. While we were out he decided we'd stop by his mom's and run her errands, then we ended up going for hike in the woods in his old neighborhood, seeing a 6-point buck and doe resting in the sunshine. The cabin in the woods has since been torn down, but the old shed is still there, with the wheel horse mower and mower attachment - a real time capsule from 40 years ago.

When we got back I cleaned the barn and dry paddock, moved laundry along and took Max for a walk.
Tomorrow is expected to be warmer, a better day to ride.

Friday, February 26, 2016

February's Last Friday

Last night, cold and seriously windy, I decided at the very last minute that I'd keep everyone in overnight. It was too windy, bringing the chill down past freezing and no where to get out of the wind and graze if left outside.

After grooming all the horses, instead of taking hay out, I put fresh shavings down, fresh water in the stalls and hay for everyone.

This morning, bright and sunny, still windy, blustery, and cold, I sent them out to their designated fields. The boys don't have their coats on and it is bone-chilling cold, but everyone is enjoying the sunshine, which is getting stronger every day. Only twenty-some days until Spring!

Thursday, February 25, 2016

HUGE Baby Steps!

Alli is developmentally a week or more behind Beau. After her ordeal of me getting her loaded into the trailer, she's been wary of me. I have not been able to touch her, for months. Don't blame her. Although I feed her and make sure she has hay and water and a dry, clean place to stay, she is always suspicious of me and gives me a wide berth.

Since November I've looked out for her, feeding her the best grain, decent hay, fresh water, clean shavings. She's done her best to stay away from me, always showing me her hind parts.

Last night I was able to actually brush Alli, but only on the right side, or at least by only standing on the right side. All legs, but have to stand at the right, combed out her tail, combed and trimmed her mane, while she lowered her head. Left side is a NO GO and we'll need the round pen to soften her.

I got lots of dried mud and bits of hay and debris off of her. When cleaned up it's obvious she is not really black, she's a very dark chocolate brown, maybe even a bay.

I think she's a girly-girl under all her fear and she'll love the attention and be 'pretty in pink' when I get her used to being touched, groomed and eventually bathed.

I had a dream I was riding her; it was a dream, not a nightmare. She's also very fast! She is eventually going to turn into a great, willing girl, a smooth ride and hopefully she'll enjoy the adventure with us. She needs to wrap her head around what's going on with her life.

We can work toward making her the very best girl she can be - for our purposes - she's four and this is a great time to bring her along.

We've been consistent with how we treat her. She's fed every day like clockwork. I think Skip has helped with bringing them into their entitlement status.

In November and December I was feeding them in fence feeders in field #1 and got them used to being fed. Baby steps. Alli didn't like 'Rounders', but now she does. Took some time, and a certain level of trust, but persuaded them into coming into the barn stalls to eat. Now they come in in an orderly fashion. Not so much running wild.

We don't have suitable tack for either of these horses - one size does not fit all - and she's young and will probably get a little bigger with age and muscle development. I would like to get a cute Aussie-style
saddle and pair that with a pink woolly saddle pad. I don't mind her dressing like that, she's very feminine-looking and could pull it off quite well.

I've never used a hackamore or bosal, but want to look into that alternative headstall choice.

She'll also need a visit from the dentist to make sure she's got good teeth, aligned in the proper way. Geldings/stallions can have a different tooth amount and pattern, but want to make sure her mouth is OK before moving forward.

She has a small case of rain rot, and getting her groomed, fed with quality grain, decent hay and getting her to worm herself, she's on the way to becoming healthy and fit.

Once we get the round pen set up with a load or two of sand inside, we'll begin her education in earnest. I know I'll lose weight; I did when I was bringing KC along - walking him all over the trails, getting him confident about trail hazards and visual stimuli. At the boarding barn the wretched women would ask me "when are you going to ride that horse?" At this point in time, I know I've put more miles on him than all of them combined - a daily hour in the ring does not compare to riding for hours over hill and dale, ravines, and crossing state lines.

She's agile and sure-footed, quick and pretty. Her potential is limitless and I am really looking forward to bringing her along her learning journey. Once I'm able to get a halter on her ...

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Stormy Night

W0W! What an afternoon! A line of storms roared through the area. It poured and the lightening was sustained, horizontal. On the way home I saw a frog hopping across the road!

He happened to be home, and for that I was truly thankful. He managed to get the horses into the barn, hayed and watered as the storm crashed in, only to get back to the house, which was taking on water in the basement. O boy.
This was a serious storm - fast moving and very destructive, knocking down trees, power poles and sparking isolated tornadoes with creeks running over their banks. The standing water was so deep on the Capital beltway, some lanes and exit ramps were closed.

I left them in, feeding them late, eventually letting them out to a beautiful full moon and starry skies, warm breeze coming through.

While we were out in the barn, grooming the horses, he left Beau's stall and immediately heard the sound of a low-flying helicopter. I assumed he had turned on the sound conditioning' CD, but it was a real helicopter, flying fast and low right over the barn! None of the horses even jiggled, but I did!

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Another Rainy Day

Another rainy day. Cooler than predicted and rain off and on through out the day. Going to continue raining overnight, too.

He continued with the sound conditioning and proclaims that Beau is done! Alli continues to wig out because that's what she wants to do.

Everyone is out for the night, but I left the boys in the dry paddock, which isn't very dry, but I don't want them even walking on the field. They have their blankets on, the Blacks are in field #1, which is completely trashed. At least it will be easier to spread orchard grass seed with the dirt already 'turned'.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Full Moon - George Washington's Birthday

This full moon is called a snow moon. We aren't getting any snow this time around, too warm. We are getting rain, and over the next three days the water totals will add up. We don't need any more rain or snow! We are a soft, soppy, sloppy mess as it is. Muddy hoofprints are making muddy ditches.

This is the first time in months that I was able to take Max on a walk around the perimeter, although we did come back in deepening twilight. There is still lingering snow in the ravine behind the house, muddy slick spots, and in the near-dark he thought he saw something and I was concerned he'd pull me off my feet.

The moon was coming up as we made our way around the front side and with the cloud cover it looked like a glowing sunset, but in the exact opposite direction. It was glorious, but with the coming weather system it will be the last we see of this moon phase.

He continued his sound conditioning with the Blacks and is able to groom Alli more than ever!

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Sunday - Rain Hit And A Miss

The day dawned mild and partly cloudy, by 10 a.m. it was raining. And the rain came intermittently through out the day.

We went to get more hay, and it rained pretty good on the way over. Slacked off to a slight drizzle while we were there, but he backed into the bank barn after moving one of the work trucks off of the ramp. We got about 40 bales of pretty good hay, which should last a fair amount of time, unless we get another foot of snow that stays on the ground for weeks.

We spent the evening in the barn with the horses. Before turning them out for the night, he played the new sound-conditioning CD and especially Alli was amped up. I believe he is playing the CD too loudly, but what do I know. After he turned off the CD she calmed down enough for him to brush her, mostly on her right side. Beau, on the other hand, loves to be groomed and I combed out and trimmed his beautiful tail. Earlier in the day he trimmed Beau's mane, evening it up and cutting off most of the red, dead ends.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Springtime in February

Unfortunately we didn't get a chance to ride. We had too many obligations, errands and chores to catch up, no ride time.

Some of these chores were done outside, which acted like a lovely, soft spring day. The sun was bright and the breeze was warm. Especially for February.
He replaced the old shower faucet in he LQ trailer with a new upgrade. The faucet failed during an extended power outage, cracked a plastic ring. Can't just get the plastic ring, have to install a whole new assembly.

With temps reaching 64, we did our errands with the car windows rolled down!

In between grocery stops, he worked with the Blacks, particularly Beau, who really seems to crave the attention. Alli is going to be a harder nut to crack. He's been calling her 'Nuttikins'.

Friday, February 19, 2016


Cold day, but the weekend?
I want it warm enough to get rid of this lingering snow cover. Too much to ask?

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Irene, The Barn Cats' Daughter

We are not cat people. I had a couple cats when in school, one being particularly awesome. We called him 'Killer' because he was a killer. He was more ferocious than any of our dogs. He once killed a turtle. We don't know how he did that, but he did. He taught me a couple valuable life lessons, too. He was stellar, and a tough act to follow.

He has never had a cat, ever. I haven't had a cat in decades. After Bug passed away, April was having issues adjusting to being an only dog. I didn't want a puppy or another dog. We were too busy and in the middle of planning our move to the farm. A puppy or young dog would not be an added feature to the mix.

We moved our horses from their long-time boarding facility to another that was literally right around the corner from our new place and half the price. That barn had barn cats. One of the tabby cats had four kittens. Two were orange tabby, which I do not like, at all. One of them was a tiger with a big orange spot on the head. I didn't like that, either. The last one was a tiger, my favorite flavor of kitty!
I don't know much about cats, he knows nothing. I said we were going to get that tiger kitten, and he was not happy about it. Every time we went to the barn to see our boys, I would go into the feed room, where the kittens were living in a big box, and pick up the tiger kitty. I held her upside down against my chest and cuddled her for a minute or two, then gently placed her back in the box. This went on for weeks, and when she was a little over six weeks old, we brought the kitten home naming her Irene.

We were living at our old house, but going to the new place nearly every single evening. We brought April and the kitten each time. She immediately was accustomed to getting in the cat carrier that our new neighbor had lent us. She loved the old house and the new house.

April fell in love right away. And Irene didn't know that she should be afraid of dogs, because she had a really good mother at the barn that did not let any dog scare her kittens. If Irene was sleeping, no one disturbed her. She also slept through the night.
Irene was great company for April while we worked during the day or on the fencing project at the farm.

Irene was a natural hunter. She is an inside cat, but we do have 'wildlife' in the house. She has killed a dozen or more Eastern Ring-Necked snakes over the past few years. And spiders. And crickets. She's bold. Not afraid of any visiting dogs. She weighs five pounds. Her mother and sister are regular-sized and Irene is tiny compared to the rest of her extended family.

She knows a couple tricks, too, like giving her paw when asked. She's really smart and I believe she thinks she's a dog with amazing super powers, like retractable claws.

Later I found out that her father was actually her brother from a previous litter. Our own 'Game of Thrones' lineage.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Ice Day

Last night the snow tapered off and it began sleeting or freezing rain. I had brought everyone in, all of them were wet and had icicles hanging from their heads, mane and anything else that was exposed. They all wanted in.

It later turned to rain, which immediately iced everything over. Including the grass. And the gravel. And froze the gate latch.

This morning it was so slick, I was tromping through the snow, breaking the hard ice shell. The 'bare' areas were super slippery. I slid into the shed door. My plan was to let them all stay in until it melted, predicted to be in the 50s today. I can feel little puffs of warmer air. But it is pouring, a regular drenching. I can hear our creek roaring.

The government was opening 3 hours late, and we decided to stay home. Later in the day, when it did really warm up to 45 and the sun came out, I put everyone out. He worked with the Blacks a little bit, too. It feels like spring and everything is a sopping, sloppy, mushy mess. The snow is rapidly melting and the creek is rising.

I brought them in to feed and brushed Beau, concentrating on his case of rain rot. It is getting better, but I am compelled to pick at the scabs. He applied the Gold Bond to his ears and his rump, both places continue to be infected with rain rot. Beau really does enjoy the attention, or maybe the grooming feels so good he just wants to stand there. I believe the combination of decent sweet feed, the wormer, hay and Gold Bond is making him healthier, from the inside out. Both of the Blacks have put on weight, too.

We are really burning through hay; hoping that this hay could last a while, with all the snow cover and nights spent inside, it is rapidly vanishing.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Presidents' Day - Snow Day (AGAIN)

This February is going down in (my) history as a very snowy month. Glad February is a short month. And it is snowing, again.

Last night I put the horses out after feeding. Alli did not want to leave her stall. She expected to stay in and have hay delivered. Eventually she walked out, but didn't go into field #1 right away. She had to first do a lap around the barn. Beau went out without further ado, at a canter.

Then I gave everyone hay outside, finished cleaning their stalls and filling water buckets. Later in the evening, before it was expected to start snowing, I brought them in for the night. They all filed in like soldiers. The Blacks want to be in, in the lap of luxury. I closed the Dutch doors and the barn aisle doors.

I got up this morning before the sun and it was actively snowing, everything was covered.
Predicted snow totals keep changing, but we are expected to have three to five inches of snow, topped off with a quarter of an inch of freezing rain. O boy! Been so cold that this snow is light and fluffy, but it will warm up to have freezing rain, so everything will have a crackly coating.

Sunday, February 14, 2016


The park that we frequently ride in has beavers. We've seen them in the past, swimming down the Patapsco River. We also see their 'work' and progress, and their mud slides into the river. They can really put a hurting on a tree. Sometimes girdling, sometimes taking it down outright. Their teeth-mark patterns look like ax work.

We have some trees in fields #1 and #2. A few years ago we cut down all the cherry trees in the pastures. Cherry trees are pretty in the spring, but the dying leaves are toxic, fatal, to horses if ingested. We had a weather event that knocked down some trees, too. We wanted to keep a few 'good' trees in those fields for shade. The grass benefits from shade, along with a nice place for the horses to hang out.

We've never had a problem with the horses gnawing on the trees. Until we got the Blacks, and not until very recently. Their field continues to be covered in snow, too. The trees are getting the exposed roots scraped and I don't want to lose any more trees in those fields.

We've thought a lot about how we are going to stop this behavior. We came up with the best or easiest solution: Snow Fencing
The formation of the 'little woods' makes it impractical to fence the whole area in - it would take yards and yards of fencing. Even wrapping the trees is difficult because the roots are above ground. If we don't do anything, the trees will not survive.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Cold (Seriously)

With the wind chill we are feeling single digits - the manure in the stalls is frozen, like rocks.
Truly, it is brutal out there! The wind is relentless, howling, and the snow squalls came and went. All day.

Cleaned stalls, prepped for the overnight stay, and went through a good amount of hay. Hay keeps them warm, not grain. And water. They need water. The electric buckets are a great invention. Along with the clothes washer machine, it is up there in the top 5 greatest inventions on the farm.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Something Lost

If we keep our pride
Though paradise is lost
We will pay the price
But we will not count the cost

Rush - Bravado - Neil Peart

On January 30 our farrier, Sara, came out to do the boys. I had work to do, so I had him keep her company out in the barn. She is a female, recently turned 30. She is uncomfortable coming out alone and dealing with our horses. She does come out on weekends, so it hasn't been a problem. She is an excellent farrier, and hot-shoes the boys. She is pricey.

A while ago she upped the price for shoeing because gasoline was expensive. Since then gas has plummeted, prices that I haven't seen in this country since the 1970s. Her price did not adjust downward. Recently she upped the price $20 more for each horse. She does the Littles, and charges the same price as a full-sized horse. She trims them every other visit.

She's a great farrier, helped get the boys over different issues they've had with their feet. It is a science, and not everyone can do it; it takes education and talent. Back in the day there were NO female farriers.

In the past I had farriers that would catch the boys in the field, shoe them, and put them back out. I would mail them a check. Never saw them, and I liked it that way. I didn't just have a stranger come out; I'd see how they treated the boys and know they could be trusted. I've had some out only one time. Several, actually.

Sara was mentored by a childhood friend and I put serious credence into that, too.

The farm here is covered, mostly, in snow. Everyone is sticking pretty close to the gate and barn. Not much tramping around the place. Over this past weekend, while checking KCs feet, I noticed that the nails in his front left shoe were all out, not missing, but looped over the shoe and holding the shoe on tight. It was like they hadn't been pounded in at all. I know this couldn't be the way that happened, because that's not how you nail a shoe on, but all three nails were out and looped over. The shoe was tight. I let her know Sunday night. I sent her a picture, too.
I don't know how this could happen. On the outside edge of his left hoof. It is a puzzlement.

She wanted to come out on Monday, but I was at work. I was home on Tuesday, because it snowed, but she didn't want to come out because it snowed. I met her Wednesday, finally, after 5:00 p.m. Without further ado she pounded the nails into the shoe and KC was right as rain. Then she asked me for $20. I said no, and if I gave her $20 it would be the last check I'd write her. Is there no guarantee on work done, when it was just done? She said it would have been free is I had been home on Monday. I gave her a hug and she quickly got out of my barn. I know that I upset her, and she left her nippers on the barn aisle floor.

I need a new farrier. One that shows up, treats my horses well, does the Littles but doesn't charge as if they are difficult or full-sized. Plus now we have the Blacks to do. If only we could get a halter on them....
And it's is going to extra-cold from now on until next week, so no riding. Brrrrr

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Snow (Repeat as Necessary)

Winter Storm Warning in effect from 10 PM Monday evening to 6 AM EST Wednesday.

The National Weather Service in Baltimore Md/washington has issued a Winter Storm Warning for snow, which is in effect from 10 PM Monday evening to 6 AM EST Wednesday. The Winter Storm Watch is no longer in effect.

Precipitation type: snow.
Accumulations: snow accumulation of 4 to 8 inches, with locally higher amounts possible.
Timing: precipitation will begin this evening initially as a rain and snow mix. The precipitation will transition to all snow by midnight and last through Tuesday night, with periods of heavy snow during this time.
Impacts: roads will become snow covered, resulting in hazardous travel conditions.
Winds: North 5 to 10 mph.
Temperatures: in the lower 30s.
To compound my long tale of woe, KC has a shoe that is compromised. On one side of his left shoe ALL the nails are not pounded in and looped over the shoe, holding the shoe tightly. I let Sara the Farrier know, but she won't come out unless I'm here and he's in, and neither of those was happening yesterday. Yesterday the nails did break and the shoe is slightly, barely loose.

He duct-taped the hoof, but this morning KC was wearing the tape like a bracelet. Now that it is actively snowing Sara the Farrier will not be out, although I'm home and KC is in his stall. Timing is everything, right?
It is pretty, but I'm really over this snow thing!

Monday, February 8, 2016

Sunday, February 7, 2016

This And That

I know it is SuperBowl Sunday. I don't actually care. We had a few things that needed doing this weekend, chores and errands. Some planned, others just happened. Like the upstairs toilet.

That toilet is 'new' having been bought when we first moved into this house. Nearly six years old. Yesterday the flush valve failed and the toilet was constantly running. Add that to the list of things to get at the BigOrangeBox store.

Friday night I discovered a mouse, huddled and dead, in an empty 5-gallon water bucket. I believe it is the same mouse that was living in the radio.

He cleaned out that cozy nest in the radio and installed the old speakers into the Blacks stalls, as we will begin broadcasting the 'Spookless' CD by Clinton Anderson. No affiliation, but I HIGHLY RECOMMEND this CD to desensitize horses. It honestly really, really works.
He also got speaker wire at the BigOrangeBox to install the speakers.

Saturday, February 6, 2016


No fooling around anymore with six bales here, eight bales there; we got forty-five bales yesterday in the horse trailer and into the barn! Yea! This will last until May (hope).

Thursday, February 4, 2016


Chasing daylight, as I frequently do, I went to Todd's for hay. Can't believe they ate it all since Saturday! But I managed to get eight bales in my car before the sun went down. There is no lighting in Todd's barn, and I can't pick decently in the dark.

I was greeted at the fence by four anxious, hungry horses! Managed to get one bale into the storage stall and fed everyone. Everyone was happy, busy. I pulled the rest of the hay bales into the barn while they were eating their dinner.

This is the first night since January 22 that they are spending outside. I don't think they are actually keen on it, but their stalls are a wreck and this is how it is going to be. There really isn't that much melting going on, either, and I was surprised at how little grass is showing through the snow.

For 'last call' I put the boys' coats on and gave everyone hay in their assigned areas, locked the Littles in the barn aisle and called it a night. Snow and a wintery-mix is slated for the morning. O boy!

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Rainy Day - Rain Rot

Rain Rot or Rain Scald is layman’s term for a common equine bacterial skin disease caused by Dermatophilus congolensis. It is characterized by the formation of crusty scabs, which peel off along with clumps of hair, leaving bare spots on the skin. As its name implies, rain rot appears on the parts of the body exposed to rain: the top of the head, neck and back. It rarely occurs on the legs or belly.

Left untreated, it may lead to secondary infections, such as Staphylococcal folliculitis. In very rare situations, it can progress to a point at which the bacterial population overwhelms the horse’s immune system. These extreme cases may exhibit fever, pain, loss of appetite and other signs of discomfort in addition to large areas of hair loss.

The vast majority of healthy horses heal spontaneously from rain rot without any treatment necessary, so long as the environmental factors are removed. If your horse is turned out frequently in rainy conditions, be sure he has access to shelter—a shed or lean-to. I have all these things, but if the boys or the Blacks don't want to avail themselves of the offerings, there is not much I can do about it.
Skip keeps his rain rot on the tops of his hocks and on his crop. I peel it away with one of the rubber noodle-y curry combs, debride the affected parts carefully, to remove any loose hair. Be extremely gentle, the area is very sore, can also bleed and horse will very quickly get fidgety. Next shampoo the area, use warm water and I like to use EzAll, a foaming horse cleaner, which can be left on if you can't rinse, but the boys like baths, so that is no problem for me. Remove as much water as possible and dry the horse off, let them stand in the sun until completely dry. It is important not to let the horse roll! The rain scald bacteria may be picked up from the soil. The EzAll will keep them clean, too, and not allow dirt to stick to their hair. I hand graze while they are drying off.

With the Blacks, and the winter weather, it is obviously impossible to treat their rain rot. Beau's condition is worse, and he now lets me comb him with the metal curry comb. His hair is coming off in clumps. He also has it on his ears. Ally is not as bad, but she could use a bath, too. Regular de-worming is good, too, as that helps control some skin ailments, like mange.

We've been using Gold Bond Medicated powder. It seems to give them some relief, although neither wants to have it put on them. It's one of those things that is contagious, and I don't want all my horses looking like their stuffing is knocked out.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Groundhog Day

No shadow: Pennsylvania groundhog 'predicts' early spring!
The handlers of Pennsylvania's most famous groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil, said the furry rodent failed to see his shadow at dawn Tuesday.

Monday, February 1, 2016

February Comes In Like A Lamb

I had put the horses in before I left to meet him downtown at Gallery Place Station - it was SOOOOO FOGGY - and drizzling - don't want KC standing out in the wet, soaking his feet - I have worked too long on getting his feet hard, don't need to marinate them in mud or snow! The temps were mild, in the 50s, but promised to get below freezing overnight.

They all were glad to get in, although it was 'early' and after the show we got home at 12:30A - gave them hay and water, took Max out, and went to bed.

In case you wanted to know, the concert was fabulous! - visually as well as musically, I would highly recommend seeing Muse (the band).

He bought these tickets when he was in the middle of the horrific office move and figured by February 1 he would be above water and need a break. This band has been around for about 20 years, and he would make fun of me for liking them, but then he discovered them and realized they are a three-piece band from England and he started watching the you-tube videos, and bought the tickets - which was early November - February seemed so far away then!