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!

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