Sunday, January 23, 2011

Dinner on January 23rd, 2011

January 22nd and 23rd, 2011

A beautiful Saturday at the barn!

Jim moved hay around, and fed the horses in the big field (see the video on the next post!). Everyone seems to be much happier in the sunshine (although the fields are still damp and muddy...perhaps the sunbreaks will give them a chance to dry somewhat).

Kim and her two daughters were out and groomed Mary and Sue. Both now look beautiful!

Sam and Katie were here, and Katie rode in her lesson. Sam worked with Lilly in the arena, too.

Gail Keller and her son came out, too. Gail recently lost her older horse, and it was evident she missed her horse quite dearly. She donated a great feeder that Jim put into Katie Mae, our spokes-Percheron's paddock.

It will definitely keep all her hay from getting ground into mud!

Sasha was here, too, and worked with Vanilla Bean.

 Vanilla bean was another feedlot rescue, and most likely came from the reservation near Yakima. She is one unique little horse, and has a particularly interesting brand:

Vanilla Bean was originally adopted from the feedlot into a terrible, terribly abusive home. It was lucky that Jim and Sherry were able to rescue her from extreme neglect and complete disregard. Vanilla Bean was also pregnant when she arrived, even though she wasn't more than a couple years old herself. She delivered a very cute, healthy filly who was adopted to a good home.

Baby Bean
Sasha worked with Vanilla Bean and took her out of the field. Vanilla Bean is looking for her special person and home, too! She hasn't really had a particular volunteer work with her in some time. She's a totally adorable pony sized appaloosa type, and would make an excellent trail horse.

More to come next time!

January 13th, 2011

Apologies for the delay in blog posts! Things have been busy out in Eagle Creek. Jim is also the treasurer for another organization, so he spent the last few days balancing out the checkbook, which was no fun for him. Luckily, someone else will be taking over that job in the future!

As far as our horses, everyone is doing just fine. Dallas has lost a little weight, so she has been moved indoors for more attention and special feedings. She's walking just fine, so we are happy to see her improvement!

Juliet and Tempest are a special pair of horses at Hytyme. Both were rescued from the Yakima feedlot. If Hytyme didn't intervene, these sweet girls would have shipped to slaughter in Canada. This week, they somehow managed to break through their electric tape and wandered into Lilly's paddock. Everyone was returned safely, and Lilly didn't seem to mind her neighbors coming over for a visit.

Juliet is a chestnut Quarter Horse, and although she is probably in her twenties, it's obvious that she was once a perfectly well-trained horse in her prime. She has a bad hip and sometimes walks with a limp. Perhaps she got into an accident and had a bad fall, so that's why her owners got rid of her.

Tempest is a white Appaloosa, and she is blind. While she may be able to see some shadows, she certainly does not see much, and relies on Juliet as her seeing-eye-horse. The two are rarely far apart (although sometimes Juliet likes a bit of a break and "hides" from Tempest. Usually they will find each other soon after!). Juliet used to wear a bell, so when she moved, Tempest would be able to find her in the pasture. However, since both horses are in the main barn, residing in a big stall and paddock, they are able to stay close.

Tempest (in the flymask) and Juliet (wearing her bell), Summer, 2008
 Katie and Sam were out this week. Sam hurt her back, but was back out mucking stalls within a few days. She sure is tough, and an excellent friend to have around the barn. She loves her horse very much! Becca and her mother were out at the barn on Monday to see Buddy and Hope. Hope did really well--and she is looking great this winter. Her new blanket makes a difference in how she is faring in the cold, wet weather. Buddy has a good trick he can do--he can smile on command. Although it's not the most flattering shot, here is Buddy doing his favorite trick:

Smile, Buddy!

Kassi was out this weekend. She is quite dedicated--driving all the way up from Corvallis. She worked with the horses very early in the morning and gave lessons. We also have some new volunteers! Sasha and Dani were out this weekend as well. Sasha has been out to the barn to help three times already in her 1975 Ford pickup truck she rebuilt herself!

Michelle, everyone's favorite Carrot Lady was here as well, doing what she loves to do: delivering snacks to our rescued horses. Thanks so much Michelle, for bringing all those delicious carrots as well as six bags of much-needed Strategy! Alisha, another new volunteer was out to clean stalls. She's been coming after school. Kim, her daughters, and husband Andy were also out to do some mucking. We sure do appreciate all the help! Without the volunteers, life would be much harder. So, thank you, Hytyme volunteers! We couldn't do it without you.

More soon!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

January 8th-11th, 2011

It's been cold and beautiful at the rescue for the past few days--but soon the weather will change for the wetter. Hope and Cameo are now back in the proper side of the pasture, although it took a good hour for Joey and Becca to convince Cameo to walk through the deep mud separating the two pastures. Now that the horses are all on one side of the fence, the grass will have a chance to grow for the spring (and the mud will have a chance to dry, too!). Kassi was out and rode Lyric, and Katie, although she was feeling sick, made it out to see her horses.

Our number of equine charges is steadily declining this winter. Since waiving the adoption fees on our horses to approved homes, we've been able to find new adopters. Each adopter is screened--we look at their property, and check their references. We do not adopt horses to boarding stables. . This bodes well for our winter hay supply. However, Jim has been battling the legal system for the last few months. This week brought more papers from the attourney that will stretch Jim and Sherry financially for some time. But, life goes on, and we'll continue doing what we do. For instance, even though it's the middle of January, the daffodils are starting to come up out of the ground. Spring will be here before we know it.

Spring is coming!

In some happy-but-also-sad news, Peanut Butter Boy and Maverick were both adopted. Congratulations to their new owners! Peanut Butter Boy had been at the rescue for a few years. He was surrendered by his owner when he was under a year old. He's had a few wonderful years at Hytyme to grow up. He'll probably still get bigger. Peanut Butter Boy is an appaloosa and Tennessee Walker cross. Volunteers knew him as the horse with the saddest tail and endearing personality. Volunteers have often joked about getting Peanut Butter Boy a tail replacement.

Peanut Butter Boy is a horse that we'll dearly miss at the rescue. He'd always been one of the first horses to greet people in the fields (but then you couldn't get him to leave you alone!). We're all very proud of him and know he'll be an excellent horse for his new owner. It's sad to see any of our horses leave, especially one as funny and charasmatic as Peanut Butter Boy, but we also know that each horse deserves their own, special person, and a life outside of their time at Hytyme. As our mission states, we seek to rescue, rehabilitate, and rehome our horses. With each horse that we're able to place, we complete our cycle, as well as leave space for other needy horses.

Maverick was also adopted this week. Maverick's new owner is the girlfriend of Peanut Butter Boy's new owner. We're so happy that these two horses will be living together in Brush Prairie.

Maverick's new owner originally came to the rescue to meet Cash, but instead she met Maverick. She was familiar with Maverick's show career in driving and showmanship. Maverick is a 2006 Morgan gelding. He came to Hytyme in May of last year. A quick Google search of Maverick's registered name, Gambit Moon Shadow, shows that he won the colts under 2-years-old in-hand classes at the Pacific Northwest Morgan Classic show in May, 2008. He also won second place as a show champion stallion that day, and pleasure driving for 2-year-olds.

Volunteers know Maverick as another horse that's the first to greet people in his pasture. Becca and Joey have been working with him, and he loves to come inside for training. He seems to really enjoy doing work and learning new things. We know he'll be successful in his new life, but we'll all miss him very much. He's a very special, magical horse as well.

Maverick's new owner plans on showing him in driving and confirmation, and their first show will be in March at the Mount Hood Equestrian Center.

Good Luck to Maverick and Erica!

Peanut Butter Boy and Maverick get ready to go to Brush Prairie

Peanut Butter Boy in his fancy new halter gets ready to go home!

Both horses loaded up fine and are off to start new lives and new careers! Like all our adopted horses, we want to hear what former Hytyme residents are up to. Keeping track of our horses' new lives is really rewarding. It takes all sorts of special people to help our horses recover from past neglect and abuse.

Friday, January 7, 2011

January 7th, 2011

Today was moving day for the horses in the big pasture. To let the grass start to grow in the main acreage, Jim moved the horses into the smaller pasture close to the barn. It seems that Hope and Cameo were being troublesome (by the way, Hope is feeling better and is back at home with her herd) and wouldn't leave the field. Even when Jim tempted them in with grain, they were still reluctant to walk through the muddy passage between the two pastures.

Jim placed the hay on the side of the fence he wanted the horses to be on, and it took a few minutes for the horses to figure out what was happening. But Buddy understood. Buddy, as usual, was the first horse to eat. He got to the hay at least five minutes before the other horses did. Hope and Cameo are still on the wrong side of the fence, and will be until tomorrow. They'll be just fine overnight--and tomorrow they'll be moved back in with the other horses.

Hope and Cameo like to stay together. Both are a bit older, and a bit crankier than most of the horses in the pasture. They keep to themselves, and keep away from people and other horses, for the most part.

Cameo is a bay Arabian mare. In her pre-Hytyme life, she was a broodmare. As a result, she hasn't had much human socialization. Hope, too, was probably a broodmare. It's terrible to think about all the broodmares who are dumped on feedlots or taken to auction when their breeding careers have ended. Since they are used for breeding purposes, most aren't trained at all. Training a horse can ensure their safety as they get older
and change careers and owners.

Brittany was out to work with Ada today. Ada had some rainrot, so Brittany and Katie doctored her skin. Unfortunately, rainrot is a common problem during the wet Northwest winters. Horses with heavy coats that get damp are more susceptible.

Today while Jim was feeding, he had a little help from Portia. Using her nose, Portia helped Jim unroll a giant round bale of hay, which weighs about 700 pounds. Jim asked her to keep helping, but Portia stopped. Maybe this is something to train her to do?

January 6th, 2011

Today was a relatively easy day at the horse rescue (despite the $204 to put a new tire on the tractor and a a large letter from Jim's attourney...). The weather was nice and dry, probably in the 40's. That's a much better temperature than the previous cold and wet and snowy weeks. In the warmer weather, Jim can feed less hay--although it's going to be tough making the current hay last until April.

While the horses in the big field ate their dinner, Jim found an unusual rock. It looks like it could possibly be handmade. Jim's found arrowheads before, but this object is a bit different.

An interesting find, for sure! The valley that Hytyme is located in was once home to a Northern Oregon Native American tribe, which was wiped out by measles in the early 1900's. Although this historical reference is tragic, it makes sense that various groups would want to live in the area. The land is quite gorgeous. Jim sent the pictures to Jodene, our webmaster and owner of one of the fillies, Abby. Jodene is an archaeologist, so it will be interesting to see what she has to say about this found object!

In some fun news, here are some pictures of our spokes-Percheron, Katie Mae, in the 2009 Estacada Fourth of July parade. Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

January 3rd and 4th

It's still cold in Eagle Creek! Temperatures are supposed to warm up a bit and get back to the 40's with rain. During this cold spell, it's been difficult to water the horses. But, nothing too eventful has happened in the past few days, so all is well for now.

The horses are looking really good for this time of year. In fact, they might actually be gaining weight this winter, which is a relief compared to other years when winter meant horses dropping weight too quickly. Perhaps this is because of the reduced numbers in the big pasture (since many horses have gone to new homes in the past month! Hooray!). Either way, this winter has been relatively easy on our horses so far. Let's hope that continues into the rest of the new year!

There are a number of fun things in the works at Hytyme when spring arrives. There's been talk of hosting a fundraiser with raffle items and training demonstrations. More info on that event will be forthcoming! For now, we're just happy that our equine residents are healthy and that so many long-term residents have found their way to loving owners.

Some of the drafts were out again today, and it seems that Snickers may be the escape artist in charge. Now the gates are all securely fastened, and everything is put away in the barns. Coal is doing well with Rosa as his companion. Coal lost his best friend Masquerade almost a year ago. After months of greiving, he's found a new best friend in Rosa, our donkey. They make quite a pair! They live in the pasture closest to Jim and Sherry's house, but Rosa's braying can be heard all over the property.

Dakota, a dark bay quarter horse and thoroughbred cross, was adopted last week. While we don't have any pictures of her with her new owners, we do have some older photos of Dakota as well as her filly, Delilah.
Several volunteers worked with Dakota over the years, and she was always easy to take out of the pasture and work with. She's a very nice horse and has needed her own special person for quite some time now.
Delilah is just turning three years old this year and is also ready for a new home. Delilah is one of the most sweet and friendly horses at the rescue. She's a beautiful color--in the winter, she's white. In the summer, she's a light golden cream. She'll make a wonderful riding partner for someone! She's excellent with her feet and leading. She's also started her groundwork and has worn a saddle so far.
Stay warm!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

January 1st

It's been awfully cold in Eagle Creek! Temperatures have been down to about 20 degrees at night. The senior horses are all blanketed, as are horses with thin coats (many of the Thoroughbreds have a hard time keeping warm during the winter), and some of the boarded horses. When it's this cold, watering all the horses can be very difficult. All the hoses are frozen, save for one that's drained and moved from faucet to faucet or trough to trough.

Hope could go back out in the field, but Jim is going to wait for this cold spell to pass before letting her out. She seems to be doing much better--and is happy in her stylish and warm blanket. Hope hasn't ever been an indoor horse--one look around the main barn, and you can see some of her handiwork. There are several hoof-sized holes in the stall walls. Those are from Hope. When she first arrived at Hytyme, she was dangerously thin.

 Hope's story involves two seperate cases of starvation. She was dumped at the feedlot with the four fillies (featured in an earlier post) in terrible condition. The feedlot owner fattened her up so she could get a higher price at the slaughterhouse. Then, someone in Washington adopted Hope off the feedlot to spare her that final trip to the slaughterhouse, but didn't know how to feed a horse in such precarious condition. Hope was starved again. When Jim and Sherry intervened, Hope was close to death. Luckily, at Hytyme, Hope was able to fill out and become healthy again.

Hope in 2007, 2nd starvation

Hope in 2009
 Also, welcome to more new volunteers, Dave and Leslie! They mucked stalls recently, which is a tremendous help. Our other new volunteer, Michelle, was here as well with more carrots and six bags of grain!

This morning, Jim noticed some draft horses grazing around the dog pens. It turns out they had let themselves out in the middle of the night--a fun New Year's surprise. Luckily, they were very easy-going and it wasn't difficult to get them back to their pasture. Everyone is back inside, even though the barns are a mess. Thanks to Katie for helping clean up after them!

Speaking of draft horses and  Katies, we'd like to introduce Katie Mae, the rescue horse that started it all. In 1999, Jim and Sherry rescued Katie Mae, who, at the time, was a very underweight Percheron mare.
 In just about two months, Katie Mae went from this underweight 1100 pounds to over 2,000 pounds, which is a proper weight for a horse of her size.
Katie Mae has done it all around here. She's given rides to all the kids, gone on trail rides, and was even dressed up for the Estacada Fourth of July parade in 2009. She's a very special horse, and is basically the Hytyme spokeshorse. We'll feature more pictures of Katie Mae and her life on later blogs.

Otherwise, that's it for now! Expect more tomorrow. And go Ducks!