I have temporarily crawled out of the dark abyss I currently call "my life" to do a blog post. I started this blog with the intent of using it solely as a tracker for my own personal growth with my horses, but lately there has been very little worth writing home about.
My roller coaster of a life has ebbed and flowed like most in the past few months. I have experienced hardship, incredible amounts of stress, and everything that goes along with it... Though, through the darkness there has been little glimmers of light that encourage me to keep pushing onward.
Firstly, after jumping through what felt like an endless line of hoops, my husband and I take possession of our new farm on July 31st. This entire ordeal has been a large contributing factor to my recent stress (and of course that lead to, weight gain - fack!), but it seems as though we are scratching the surface of a beautiful, exciting development in our lives. I don't think we will be bringing Kidd and Kai home right away, but I hope to have them there by the end of August... more on that in a few weeks!
At the end of June, I tossed my hands in the air in disbelief and frustration, and chose to bring Nikki home. I invested over $2,200 to have her bred, and she wasn't covered once by the stallion. Her last veterinary visit was on June 9th, and the Vet felt she had all the signs of being in heat and instructed the Stallion Owners to attempt to breed her, despite her showing no interest in the stallion. Not to my surprise, Nikki booted the ba-jesus out of the Stallion, and they put an end to it as it was too risky. I understand their point, and they did all that they could given the circumstances so I am left with a lighter wallet and a feeling of utter defeat in my heart. I have continued to tease her daily, or every other day, since arriving back home as I estimated her to be cycling again anywhere from June 30 - July 10th or so, given that I have no idea when she actually ovulated and was just basing it off the Vet thinking she should be showing some signs on June 9th.
Last night as I stood talking to my friend/student/loyal supporter/resident bitchy friend/everything I noted she seemed a little more heat-like and decided to catch her and take her to the retired stallion to tease again. He enjoys flirting with the ladies, but doesn't get overly carried away like our new young-gun does so it's safer and easier for everyone to use him for teasing purposes. For the first time since she arrived home, she was content to stand with him and sniff noses while in previous days her hind feet were flying with fury before we even reached him. She first attempted to threaten to walk past him and throw in a walk-by-kicking for show but a quick correction on the halter had her content to just chill; unlike her every other time since arriving home.. SO, I'm crossing my fingers, toes, eyes, legs and arms that she's coming into heat and I will just take the risk on having a late foal.
For the sake of clarification, even though I am involved in the racing industry, we do not breed for January/February foals, and rarely even March or early April. Interestingly enough, my inlaws have found it made very little difference when they actually got to the track, and it's far more work for everyone. On the contrary, breeding too late (which I will be doing if Nikki continues to cooperate) is a concern due to our long winters. We have had Winter arrive as early as late September, which can be really tough on a foal who's only 3-4 months old.. Plus, weaning in the winter sucks, but at this point it's a risk I am willing to take to avoid her going 'open' for another year.
Going back to the irk of financial distress, I feel as though if I can still get Nikki in foal this year, that $2,200 investment isn't lost - even if $1000 of it was an unnecessary stud fee as she will not be bred to him; I am still willing to accept it if I get a happy, healthy foal out of this otherwise sh!tty situation.
As if that wasn't enough, Kai has now been lame, to some degree or another, for over 6 weeks. What started as a 3.5 week long foot sensitivity due to her over-sensitive feet and a recent trim job, turned into a whopping 2 days of soundness. Unfortunately, Day 2 came to a screeching halt after about 20 minutes on the lunge line when she strained her Right Front leg in less than ideal footing, despite being 'fine' through it the day before and the 20 minutes prior. Nevertheless, she sustained a minor injury to one branch of her Suspensory.
I know the typical protocol would be Stall Rest, Cold Hosing and Wrapping, but I chose to skip the Stall Rest and move her into a small paddock instead. I felt as though being in a barn 23.5/7 by herself wouldn't do her any good and would likely wind up being detrimental to her.
I have recently resulted to making her stand with her leg in a bucket, because the cold hosing is getting old, and it makes my life easier and still gave us something 'new' to face in the boringness of it all.
She has some days where she is better than others, and I am considering putting a lunge line across her paddock that will make her area even smaller (if she will respect it) to limit her movement a little more but in the mean time I continue to doctor my 'lovely', 'fantastic', 'joyous' horse.. But hey, on the plus side I switched her to Buckeye Grow N' Win and I am pretty happy with the results. Besides getting her sound again, her next order of expense is getting her teeth done.. Horses are fun, right?
Finally, Racing on our local track starts this weekend and I am so excited! We are busy haying and soon will be busy moving, but I still try to get out at least once each weekend to watch the races when I can. My In Laws will have 1 horse running this weekend, and there is another particular mare I am keeping my eye on... cause I need more horses, right?!