Friday, June 5, 2020

Harry Day 1

Harry is a bundle of cuts and scrapes. Thoroughbreds are notoriously thin-skinned. He has a cut on his knee, hip and back right leg. His face is swollen from the kick and he's SKINNY!! (They gave him cow hay!!)

First things first. A gentle grooming and mane trim. He does shine in the sunlight.
My mom said he looked sad.

His first time out in the Near pasture.
I wanted to know how he'd react to me. So I went out into the pasture and he trotted away. Boy! Does he have an amazing trot! Big! And floaty. 

I talked to him and didn't look at him and slowly work my way up to him and just sit next to him and scratched his shoulder then walked away. I doubt that's ever happened in his life before. 

I did that three times and the last time as I stood scratching his shoulder he let out a big sigh and his head dropped. It's a good sign. 
And when I walked away he followed me.

Harry Canary OTTB

All my life I have loved horses but they were something I had to love from afar. My next door neighbor had a subscription to Thoroughbred Racing Magazine and for a couple of years I got the old copies, looked at the pictures and cut them out to hang up in my room.

I think this was the beginning of my love of Thoroughbreds. 

What's difficult about the multi-million dollar industry is what do you do with these highly breed animals once they're done racing? 

(This is not a debate on racing... Just an explanation.)

When we bought our first horse on a tiny budget, and being in Utah, we basically had two choices. Quarterhorse and an Offtrack Thoroughbred (OTTB).

Some time I'll tell you about Eiger. But he gave us experience with OTTBs and when he left, my heart hurt.

Don't get me wrong. I adore my Canadian Warmblood/Thoroughbred Cross. She's my future. My funny girl. And my partner.

But I couldn't help looking for another horse.

Enter--Harry Canary. 13 yr. old, 15.2 hh, gelding. A red head. (Never really liked Chestnuts btw.) OTTB who raced for 4 years. The last two he never won, placed or showed. 
 After racing, he was in Montana. But sure how long. Not sure what he did.... worked? Pleasure ride? English? Western?

Six months ago, he was moved to Nebraska. There the family "couldn't keep weight on him."It was a constant battle with Eiger, but like I said, I've learned few things.)

Circumstances put all their horses for sale.  Word came to me. The price was right. I knew I've have time this summer for a project. We've had some luck taken struggling horses, getting them healthy and teaching them about kindness and love.  So Harry came to us after a long hot trailer ride.
He was kicked in the face the day before he was to come--a vet said he'd be okay.
Evidently, they had to pull him into the trailer.

So will begin a hopefully happy transformation as we introduce Harry to the world of dressage, jumping and spoiling.