I have decided to sign up for no less than three X Wing tournaments over the next four weeks, two of them in Germany. Yeah, bet you didn’t see that coming… I am not sure, I did. I never do stuff like that, for one simple reason. Who is going to take care of my horses if I am gone all day? Or all weekend?

But now, I decided, that I do know some cool people and that it should be possible to have the horses looked after without incident. When I have a horse like Marble, and to some extent, Ablaze, who can be rather in-your-face, I am very careful about who I let onto my pasture. I never want to come home and find that they may have hurt someone, or that they have been hurt by someone.

I know, Marble can be downright dangerous, but I don’t want anyone shouting at her, or hitting her or in anyway, responding to her behaviour, unless it is absolutely necessary. I don’t want the situation and her temper to escalate. Finding someone to look after your horses, who won’t shout at her, or hit her, is actually very hard. Horse people tend to hit first and ask later, and think that the horse had it coming, for threatening them.

Still, like I said, I do have some awesome people in my life, and I actually trust that they can handle feeding my horses for me, without starting a fight with Marble, or Ablaze. So, I took a chance and signed up for changing my life, and finally letting go a little of those horses who has been running my life since 1994 when I got my first horse.

And then my vet called me this morning, with the results of our parasite tests. All things considered, the results were exactly as I had thought they would be, right down to Ablaze, having his belly full of sand. I am not surprised. He has had a period over the last few months, where he has been drinking from mud puddles, rather than the water barrels, driving me insane, trying to figure out why… Luckily he has stopped doing that by now, and is back to drinking clean water, but that doesn’t change the fact that he has been eating a lot of dirt, and that dirt in the digestive system is fatal to horses, so I set in with psyllium and here is my next problem.

Whereas my horses are usually fed once a day, (vitamins, minerals and protein,) and drowned in hay so they have something to eat at all hours of the day and night, Ablaze now has to be fed twice a day for the next month, and add to that, he doesn’t like psyllium much.

So, my evil plans for having my friends look after the horses, kind of derailed there, because I can’t ask anyone to feed them twice a day, especially not when only Ablaze has to be fed the one time. The others are fat, there is no way I am feeding them twice a day for the next month…

I don’t have a stall, individual feeding is not that easy in a herd and no matter how well behaved my horses are, and how much I can easily swing it when it comes to feeding the foal and not the others, I don’t dare ask that of anyone.

I know, it’s a day, maybe two, out of a month, where he won’t get that psyllium. It won’t kill him. In fact, I doubt it will make a difference at all. Still… What kind of a lousy horse owner am I, if I chose to go to Germany, to play X Wing, rather than stay at home and feed my baby myself?

I am really not looking for a way out here, I want to go, but Ablaze is my responsibility.

Sometimes I wish I could be like most horse owners I know. Able to just leave things like this, up to others, and count on the horse not dying if something does wrong.

Thing is though, I knew a two year old once, who died from having eaten ten kg sand… He went through surgery and died on the table, the vets shovelling sand from his intestines. Scary stories like those ones, makes you kind of freak out when your vet calls and says that yes, you were right in testing him, he has been eating sand…

So here I am, wishing I could be different, and wondering how I am going to swing this. Alternatively, I get up at 2 am and feed that horse, before I go to the tournaments, and I go back out there and feed him when we come home by midnight… Or, maybe I try and trust others, for a change?

Or, I cancel. Stay home and do what I have been doing for 21 years. Live up to my responsibility and take care of my horses.


About Starstone

-Owned by horses. Writer, Photographer, Director, Musician.
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