Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Winter is here, and the pasture is hellish
If you click on this image you can see both my little rascals wearing winter pasture finery: Montana in his burgundy lightweight blanket is off to the right and far away, Johnnie in the foreground is wearing his 'waterproof windproof breathable' sheet.
I'm always puzzled how any fabric can keep water and wind out, but let horse body heat and perspiration escape. However I won't have long to puzzle over this because John destroys horse-clothing as fast as he can. My personal best with him is 25 minutes for a fly-sheet.
Yes, at Time T I placed the $39.95 fly-sheet on his body, and walked away feeling proud of myself. I'm such a good horse owner! No flies on him, and no chemicals either! la la. At Time T+25 I drove down the road leaving the barn, only to spot John standing with rags, tatters, and straps hanging all about his head and neck, and when I unburied it, his face had a satisfied expression. Been there, shredded that.
So the clock is ticking on this windproof etc. but I had to do something because winter arrived with no advance warning. No gradual chilling of the nights, just two weeks of warm rain followed by 3 nights of a sudden hard freeze producing pastures that look like this:
The horses hate to walk on these frozen mud-lumps and little ice rinks, and so do I. When I took this picture:
John was just hanging at the fence trying to procrastinate on the ouchy walk to the haybale. So now we are all praying for snow, so much better for the horse feets to step upon than frozen mud! Tis the season.
And last night I spent a happy 15 minutes at the barn talking with other confuzzled horse owners about 'to blanket tonight or not to blanket???' It's not going to be windy, it is going to be cold, it's supposed to warm up to 40 tomorrow, but....and there's no right answer. Horse life = There Is No Right Answer!!