I thought I would tell everyone a funny experience loading up 3 of our horses. A few years ago , My wife and I decided it was time to take our horses home to our place. I had just spent the summer being a trail guide on a ranch in Colorado. Wow what a place to ride, over 1500 hundred acres of riding in the Rocky Mountains. Talk about beautiful, just fantastic beauty at about 9400 ft high. Riding each day was a great experience! It is not everybody who is fortunate enough to be able to ride in such majestic beauty.
But winter is coming, not a lot of folks looking to take a trail ride as the early signs of winter are starting to happen. Colder frost like temperatures at night are telling one, the cold of winter is about to get serious.
Kori and I had 3 of our horses, my great buddy Scout, Kori’s horse Shizanee’ and our daughters horse Likan. Now you have probably already figured out these are not your normal names, at least not on 2 of them. Shizanee’ is Navaho for I am lucky! The other horse is named Likan for sweet girl. Let me explain these names, along with how we got them.
I spent a couple of years trying to help folks rehome their horses that they could no longer afford for lots of reason, the economy was rough, we had been in a drought causing hay prices to more than double. That caused some good people in bad situations to need to find new homes for their horses. That of course caused all types of problems with many people having zero idea of what to do. Unfortunately some people out of desperation gave their horses to someone who would take them, sometimes not making sure it was a better home.
Lots of folks were super critical of this, especiaaly since some just dropped them in someone’s pasture and then just took off leaving them. There were stories of it frequrently. Well a man called me to tell about this tall paint horse he had that needed a home. He said he would give her to me if I was interested, claiming her to be a great horse. How many times have I heard that. So Kori and I agreed to go look at them not sure at all about them. Well it turns out to be a boarding stable who has had this horse and another small mare for a long time. It seems as though the owner was having financial problems and had quit paying for their care. Now having to pay for their feed, hay, trimming of their feet is a considerable expense, especially if money is real tight.
So off Kori and I go to look at this horse. She was a fine looking horse with a name we hated and I quite honestly do not remenber it. But I do remember how skinny she was. This horse had received very little food for quite some time. She was a walking skeleton, you could see every bone in her body. The two horses were in too small of an area, filthy and dang near starved to death.
Her horsey friend was also not a very fat horse either. She just wasn’t as awful looking as the other horse. So we said we would take the one big one, and would return the next day with a horse trailer. I needed to work as I had rides scheduled for that day. So Kori asked a friend if she would help her pick up the new horse. So off they go happy as can be.
When they get there the stable owner asks her if she would like the other horse in the pen with her. Now you also should know that just that morning I told Kori , whatever you do only take the one horse. Well this is when I learned that you never send your wife to pick up one horse when she has a 3 horse trailer with her. The stable owner asks her if she would like both of the horses. If so for a fee she could have both. She promptly picks up her cell phone to explain how she will be calling animal control to turn him in for starving these 2 horses if he doesn’t sign the paper work to these horses. Well this type of publicity was not going to be a great thing so he agrees.
Kori and her friend load both horses really quickly. Kori goes in there with a halter, tells the horse, a tall 16 hands horse starving to death that if she gets into this trailer she will never go hungry again. The horse gets right on, sounds like a good plan to her. The other horse then gets on right away, no questions asked. Oh yeah did I mention there was hay in the trailer? Great plan.
So they drive up into the mountains bringing, not one but two horses. I wasn’t nuts about it but not much I could do about it now.
So we unload both horses with no trouble at all, then I have to head out with another ride. Well we get the horses renamed with someone riding them every day after a week or so. they are being fed constantly so they start gaining weight like crazy. Shizanee had horrible hoofs from neglect so we had to have a farrie out right away. I could not believe what her feet were like. There were breaks and cracks everywhere. to the point that he had to glue on her horseshoes. When I turned her out with her new shoes it was a sight hard to believe. She ran around like a new young colt, or like a little girl with new shoes. i had never seen anything like it before.
These 2 were ridden every day for the rest of the summer, they turned out to be fantastic horses, absolutely amazing.
Now here comes fall, it is time to take our horses home. All we had was a small 3 horse trailer to load them up with. Well the 2 no-longer starving horses loaded right up. They were not hungry anymore had no intentions to being hungry again. No way were they going to be seperated from us.
Okay, so now it is tme to load up my horse, Scout. Now Scout had a different view of this, she like me just fine but why would she want to leave this place. Surely I could be talked into not doing this by refusing to load. We tried everything, no way, she was not going anywhere! No way.
So finally, after much thought I gave up and told the owner of the ranch about the problems, it was getting dark, I was worn out with this so I would come get her in a day or so. No problem he says. So we get in the truck and now Scout is screaming at us, she does not like this at all. We felt bad but consoled ourselves this would only be a couple of days. Guess what? Life got into the way, then it snowed a lot until it was a month before we were able to get back.This was a very rough period of time. I knew she was being well fed and taken care of but I wanted her with me.
We finally get it together to go pick up my darling. Now this time everything is different, Scout runs right up the ramp, cannot wait to get into the trailer, goes in right away. In fact she will run over anyone getting in her way of getting in. To this day she demands to be the first horse loaded each and every time.
I a not sure what caused her change of mind but I can tell you she loads easier than any horse that we have. She will flat run over any horse trying to get in front of her.
It is a strange way to conquer a loading problem but 5 years later she still races into a trailer.