It’s a heat wave! We’ve had temperatures back to above zero and I am happy. It’s pretty sad when you think 18 is warm. Last weekend we had a high of -14 with wind chill making it -25, so you can see why I am happy to have it up to 18. I often giggle when I see people complain that its 32 degrees and they think it’s cold. When it hits 32 here you see people wearing shorts…no joke!
First is the paddock with my monster. He’s the boss, and he loves me so he gives me no problems. Then is a horse I like to call Moose…because he looks like a moose and acts like a moose. He is then followed by the only ‘western’ horse in our barn.
After that I go to the bad boys paddock and bring them in. They are horses that don’t seem to know how to behave with any other horses other than themselves. Then it’s off to the barn owners geldings. They are easy to bring in in the winter, but they usually bring me to tears at least once in the summer. I leave the girls till last, because I don’t like mares. And they are witchy. And they can be mean and pushy, and evil. In the winter it’s not so bad but again in the summer...ugh.
Once they are all in I start filling buckets since the hose is finally thawed. And as I’m doing that I check to see if everyone has all their blanket straps in place and adjust as needed. When all the buckets are filled, and the disgusting poop/hay/yuck filled buckets have been scrubbed and filled and I’ve succesffully dumped at least one poop/hay/yuck filled bucket down my leg, I head off to the tack/feed room to start mixing grain.
I’m amazed that I’ve memorized each horses feed schedule. I can’t even remember what I learned in college but I can tell you everything that every horse I’ve ever met has eaten for supper. So I line up the buckets and start filling grain. Some of the “special needs” horses don’t get grain so I give them their “special needs” feeds. Then it’s on to the smartpaks…Love em!! Then add the other supplements that are in big tubs. Then load them up into my grain cart and away I go. When I get to the barn it’s like a zoo. Every horse is making some sort of noise. I dig out their feed pan that they’ve buried under their hay. When I’m done giving the monkeys their food I check their water one more time and top off any that need it.
When that is all done I rake the aisle and sweep the mat by the cross ties. And by then I’m pooped. Keep in mind this is done in sometimes -40 degree weather. Can you see why I’m in no mood to ride?
Our arena is heated, but only to about 42 degrees, any warmer and the horses could get sick, or something along those lines. I just get so exhausted in the winter that I don’t want to add the extra effort of going to the tack room and dragging out all of my tack. I would just hop on bareback but I have trouble getting up there all by myself.
I am not a very good horse mom…especially since 17 horses aren't really that many to take care of. There are plenty of barns with way more horses! I just don't like riding in the winter...