Friday, December 25, 2009

Happy Holidays and some Happy Holiday stories (and one sad one to remind us of why love is so important)

First of all, Happy whichever holiday you are celebrating or will be celebrating.  Having friends and neighbours who are, among other things, Ukranian, Ba'hai, Jewish and Buddhist (just to name a few), we would like to pass on the hope that everyone is in for a happy, fulfilling year, with lots of successes and contentment.

And, now, a little picture from Santa Chance and Mrs. (Penny) Claus:

He was such a good boy about this, although it was pretty obvious while we were putting it on him that he was totally embarrassed at being forced to wear the hat.  Well, Chance, you should see what we do to the kids in our family!

So, I've promised some Happy Holiday stories, as well.  First of all, the happiest story we have, is a continuation of the story of Andy, the young gelding with the shivers.  The last we had heard, he was headed for the vet college, in theory to be used for research. His owner could no longer afford to keep him and was hoping to find a place in PEI to take him because of the cost of the ferry crossing.

In actual fact, unbeknownst to us, he was slated for euthanasia in late July.  Luckily, someone (and I'm sorry, I don't know who it was) contacted EarthArc (click on their name to go to the site).  Earth Arc is a retirement home for large animals in Nova Scotia.  Early in December, they contacted Sadie's Place to let us know that Andy was now with them.  We were terribly excited to hear that! Earth Arc housed him temporarily at Handiber Hills and found someone coming over for Old Home Week to transport him across and he's been living there ever since. Here is a picture I pulled from their website--they were going to send more, but they had a batch of miserable weather and got tied up in looking after their animals.

They have him on the same high fat, high antioxidant diet that we recommended when we were looking for fosters for him.  Doesn`t he look happy?  We are so glad he was able to find someone to take care of him. They tell me that on the new diet he is doing well and his symptoms have diminished somewhat. He is still not rideable, but is now able again to trot, jog and run in the field.  Thank you Earth Arc!

While I don't have any pictures (yet!), I can tell you that Devil is very happy in his new home.  He has a lovely barn, lots of good food and a lovely mare to keep company, which is just what would make any man happy.  What else would he need?

Mr. B, or Duncan, as we have gotten into the habit of calling him, has arrived at Sadie's Place.

And, boy, is he excited!  He's the funniest thing on 4 legs.  After years of a stall at the racetrack, he's got an outside run, with free access to the barn.  His roomate is Bandit and the two couldn't be more different.  While Duncan is instantly curious about ANYTHING going on in the yard, Bandit rolls his eyes (figuratively speaking!) and, from the  greater wisdom of his 3 extra years of life, seems to say, "What are you going on about now?  Don't you know there's food over here waiting to be eaten?"  Duncan is perpetually amused and amazed by everything.  He is like a cross between that one person in the neighbourhood who sees everything that goes on and a 5 year old just before Christmas.

He's a mid-sized horse, with a lovely mane and tail and that beautiful dishy face.  On his assessment visit, he walked out, lifted feet and was just very happy to do whatever we wished.

Look at that lovely mane!  We think that, once the initial excitement of the new digs is over, he will settle down into a lovely little riding horse.  He has a very nice trot and seems very smart, for someone who wants to take the time with him.  At only 9 years young, he's still in good shape and has lots of years left in him. 

But he's still hilarious when he follows you along the fence line, doing the horsey equivalent of, "Whatcha doin'?  Can I come too?  Can I see?   Where ya going'? Can I help? Watcha got there?"

Ok, now for our sad story and how a sad story can still become a happy one.  Dottie, another adoptee, was recently euthanized.  She had developed an infection and accompanying lesions in her spine and, despite aggressive treatment (including the AVC), it was determined that her condition was not going to improve and the decision was made.  However, in the midst of their grief, her adopters were still able to open their hearts to this little fellow:

Now dubbed 'Wyatt', this is a weanling standardbred colt, who was shipped with a livestock dealer.  He was born with a crooked leg and was obviously not going to have a race career, so was not registered (although we are trying to track down his breeding, just because it's always fun to know where your horse comes from). 

Dottie's adopters took him in to foster.  Doesn't she look like a good mom?  He is going to be so well looked after!  Wyatt needs some time to grow and for us to see if his crooked leg will interfere with his ability to be a pleasure horse.  Right now, it certainly isn't slowing him down, as he trots and gallops all around the pasture and tries to drive his extrememely patient roomate around the bend.

Yes, you're right, that is Yankee!  And is he ever a fantastic babysitter!  Like all young kids, he can be a bit hyper and pesty, but Yankee handles it all like a pro.

Except at supper, when he reminds the young fella that his is older and therefore more important :P . (Sounds like many of the conversations I have had with my little brother. It worked about as well with him too.)

Yep, mom saves the day.  Story of our lives, isn't it, ladies?

Wyatt is not currently available for adoption, although if someone wants to sponsor him, I'm sure he would be grateful.  At some point, we are going to have to do some x-rays and other procedures, to see what is going on in that leg--just the thought of it makes me say Ouch!  But, Yankee is still available for adoption, and definitely has the makings of a very good saddle horse--he did very well during his training and really enjoys working under saddle.  Someone really needs to take him home and polish him up for the show season.

Well, just want to wish every one, again, Happy Holidays, and hope you come back in the new year rested and rejuvenated.  We'll be blogging Chance's 2 month anniversary in a few days.  We have the pictures, but this entry was getting too long!  Keep checking back and, while you're waiting, don't forget to hug your horses!

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