Calm, Forward, Straight

Calm, Forward, Straight

Saturday, January 14, 2012

At the Barn #53 - It ain't over 'til it's over...

Hallelujah - the hay strike has officially ended. I could not be more relieved.

The thought of moving one and a half tons of hay another time:

one to get here,
two to load into the old hay barn ( fell out of my trailer when the hay hook came loose),
three to put it onto a second set of palettes as the hurricane waters rose,
four to load into my truck heading to the farmette.
and five into the new hay barn (almost blew my knee out and got crushed by a bale),

was making me sick. Literally.

So was the thought of watching my horse get thin.
So was how the math of replacement hay would affect my budget.
So was figuring out where I would find any decent hay this time of year.
So was deciding out what to do with the offending not good enough hay -
(Please buy my extra hay even though my horse won't touch it - no really - I swear, it's great hay!)

Thank you Val for giving in before I had to.

This morning I rolled the manure cart with yesterday's discarded hay into Val's paddock. He dove in as I moseyed over to his stall to make my morning how much hay did he leave check. What? There's not even any manure in there for you to eat around, my beloved steed...

SO much tastier from the big bowl...

nom, nom, nom

Just can't get enough...

My friend likes it too!

and --------- yesssss! Bags were almost empty.

Nibblenet retired (temporarily)

Still, I wasn't 100% convinced. I cleaned the stall and mucked the paddock, wondering "but will he eat this morning's hay?" and "do I need to continue peppering with the tasty alfalfa meant for trailer rides?" As Val devoured his pellets I filled and hung the breakfast hay bag, unadulterated. For the first time in ages, he left his most favored bowl of crunchies and walked over to the hay bag... sniffed...

(Critical moment. For the last several weeks, he would sniff the bag - look at me - sniff again - push the bag with his nose - sigh disgustedly and walk away.)

... and yanked out a big mouthful. For this he got a kiss on his nose and my undying gratitude. Well, he had that anyway. :)

Hay - this is good!


  1. Given enough time I guess it looked more appetizing than usual. Maybe it was the presentation. Love the bowl o'hay! Go Val.

  2. Good boy, Val! That was a close one.

  3. Oh happy day!!! I only just understood Val's hay boycott when you commented on my blog. Before that when I read "hay boycott" on your blog and you asked readers what they do about it, I thought that the farmers in our country were going to have a hay boycott! I was starting to fret. I must be so messed up in the head from my pasture disaster (hey that rhymes!) that I couldn't process what you were saying.

    Anyway, I am so glad your adorable boy is back eating...nom, nom, cute with eyes closed!

  4. Thank you for the link to that wonderful post. I will really study it and the other post of Wiola's that Rockley Farm talks aobut. From my early views of her photos I am wishing my boys were at her place! Thank you again!

  5. Ok, after reading all this info I am wishing my boys were at Wiola's place AND Rockley Farm. Figures...both in the UK - my dream horse country. It rains buckets there though, but drainage and scenic pastures with hedgerows and stone walls and no bugs and...and, ok, just a dream. Stuck in Pennsylvania. Thank you again - many lessons to glean.

  6. Fuzzy face is eating...WHEW :) The most simple things bring the best enjoyment sometimes.

  7. Glad the hay strike is over! I was just reading some of your earlier posts and see that you are struggling with forward at times. You probably know this was an on-going theme for Rogo and I. Have you tried increasing his alfalfa intake for a consistent period of time, say a feed scoop soaked and fed twice a day? As far as blocking, I learned that I grip with my knees at trot, which REALLY blocks. You probably don't, but thought I'd mention it because it's easy to slip into without realizing it.

  8. Apparently you just needed to put the hay in the wheelbarrow, and that made it all better. ?!?!? Regardless, I'm so glad he decided to eat the good stuff! Whew!

  9. I always wonder why horses preferred hay from a manure bucket. I guess we'll have to be a horse to understand that. Lol.
    I'm glad that Val's eating.(:

  10. Carol-
    I have a couple of bales of alfalfa that are reserved for trailer rides, as sometimes Val would rather look than eat when we travel.

    There is no consistent source for alfalfa here, and it's super pricey, so I wasn't planning on feeding it regularly.

    I'm thinking saddle fit at the moment, and researching fitters and used saddles. There's a long story of my saddle which I will post about soon.

    As far as blocking - entirely likely. Thanks for the reminder. I will focus on my knees next ride for sure.

    Hope you and Rogo are well. :)


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