It’s been a strange summer for me. My typical life in the summer months looks something like this …
- I graze. I graze some more. And when I’m finished with that, I eat some grass.
- I hang out with my best buddy, Nevada, and the two of us boss the mares around.
- T saddles me up two or three times a week and we have a workout in the outdoor arena.
- Once a month or so, Rosa and I hop in the trailer and the humans haul us to the mountains for a trail ride.
This summer is just weird. And not in a good way.
- I try to graze, but the area Rosa and I have access to has almost no grass, and hasn’t for most of this dry summer. Food-wise, things are more like winter … hay in slow feeder nets.
- I hang out with my best buddy, Nevada … across a fence. And I have only one mare to boss around.
- T saddled me up last Tuesday, but before that, well, I’m not sure when we last had an arena workout.
- And as for the mountain riding, it hasn’t happened at all. That other trailer has left the yard on multiple occasions, but the horse trailer stays parked.
Now, I’m a pretty easygoing guy, but I miss hanging in the shelter with Nevada, I miss having two horses below me in the pecking order as opposed to one, I miss my time with T even if it means I have to work, and most of all, above all else, I MISS GRASS!
As you know if you’ve read my posts before, Rosa has metabolic issues which make her prone to inflammation in her feet when she eats green grass. But why do I have to miss out? Why do I have to be her dry-food companion? I know, I know. It’s because I’m what horse people refer to as an “easy keeper”. In other words, every blade of grass goes right to my girth line.
I admit I was a little pleased on Tuesday when T had to adjust my saddle fittings down a size rather than up. And after our ride, she turned me out in a grassy paddock for an hour so I could get my fill of the green stuff. I’ll work every day if it means an hour or two of grazing! I hope she’s reading this.
My understanding was that we’d all be together again for the winter, once the grass was gone. But now there’s a haystack in our shelter, along with five of the barrel slow feeders. I have a feeling this two herds of two horses might be permanent. As much as I miss my longtime buddy, I know he needs extra feed to get him through the winter and it’s difficult for him to get enough without Rosa and I getting too much. Gidget is somewhere in the middle with her need for feed so she’s a better pasture mate for Nevada than I am, as much as I hate to admit it.
On the plus side—and I do try to keep a sunny outlook—our paddocks are right next to each other so we can visit over the fence. And our track area runs right alongside Nevada and Gidget’s pasture. So, other than shelter time, it’s almost like we’re in the same space.
And, you know, if I think about it, in my herd of two, I’m now the alpha horse instead of second-in-command to Nevada. I’ve been promoted!