Barbaro update, and a challenge to those who say they love horses

14 11 2006

Barbaro’s cast has now been removed, and he is said to be making slow but substantial progress, say his vets.


Now, here’s where the “if you love horses” part comes in.

Barbaro has received a lot of attention in the months since the Preakness, and deservedly so; very few horses recover from that sort of injury. When I saw his jockey pull him up, and that dangling foot, my heart was in my mouth. I was somewhat relieved when they bundled him into the horse ambulance; at least he wasn’t going to be euthanized on the track, like Go For Wand was. He would not be added to the statistics for 2006, although the numbers for 2005 are horrendous enough (753 racehorses died as a result of track-related injuries that year).

If you are still moved by Barbaro, if you really love horses, don’t send him a card. Don’t make another video pastiche for YouTube. Do something for all the other horses who don’t have the world on their side.

Make a donation to the Barbaro Fund at the Penn School of Veterinary Medicine, buy a Barbaro wristband, the Breyer Barbaro, or the Barbaro print: all proceeds will benefit horse-related charities.

Volunteer at a local horse rescue, or send a donation of money, old tack and other usable goods. I’ll bet Canadian horse rescues would be happy to accept that Canadian Tire money you never get around to using.

Adopt a PMU foal, or sponsor a PMU mare.

Make your next eBay purchase from a charity or horse rescue which is trying to raise funds. MissionFish lists many of these; go to Search, then choose Environment and Protection of Animals under Nonprofit Type.

Volunteer at a local therapeutic riding centre and help someone else discover the joy that horses can bring to a person’s life.

Support Brigadier’s Law, which supports a proposal to amend the Criminal Code of Canada giving Police Service Animals the much needed protection they require, under the law. (Brigadier)

If you really love horses, and not just because it’s cool to be sentimental over Barbaro, do something meaningful for all the horses who serve us, and suffer in silence, yet still trust humans to do the right thing. They deserve it just as much as any Kentucky Derby winner.

Recall of contaminated horse feed

14 11 2006

Western Stockmen’s of Caldwell, Idaho, a business unit of J.R. Simplot Company, is recalling all Pride Mature Horse feed with the lot number 7701-050306. The lot might contain monensin sodium (Rumensin), a drug compound approved for use in some livestock species which can be fatal if fed to horses. Read more (link via HorsesRing).

Ghost horse in Dartmoor

14 11 2006

Img 426 Dartmoor Pony, originally uploaded by Bryan26.


Hallowe’en is over, I know; will you forgive me for posting another spooky tale? This one is from the Fortean Times site:

I live on the edge of Dartmoor, England which is range of moorland steeped in ancient history. Whilst being on the moor several strange things have happened to me. I’ve heard children laughing by a gate on a ruined farm and I’ve had had feelings of terrible evil in the area where many people have inexplicably driven off the road and been injured. The ghost here is known as the “hairy hands”.

However, this story is one about a horse. I kept my horses on a farm on Dartmoor because the riding is so good. One day we all went off to the horse market leaving one man behind to care for the other animals. Apparently, whilst we were gone he went out in the yard to feed the horses and saw a grey horse standing by the gate. At first he couldn’t think how he got in as the gate was padlocked. Then he thought perhaps we had bought him at the market and sent him back with a neighbour giving the neighbour a key and he had locked it again after him. Off he went to get another feed but when he got back the horse had gone. Very shocked he went into a neighbouring cottage and told the old man who lived there.

“What did the horse look like” asked the old man. Jerry described him. “Well years ago there was an old horse just as you descibed, who always stood at the gate on market days and when I came home from school, I’d give him my lunchtime apple.” We all pulled Jerry’s leg about knocking back the whisky whilst we were out but two weeks after this happened, the old man died and no-one ever saw the horse again.

Free streaming videos

14 11 2006

Over at Gold Buckle Network, you can watch streaming horse videos with a free membership. You can watch the Texas Thunder draft team (home of Goliath and Radar), Lippitt sport Morgans, Peruvian Pasos, Gypsy Vanners and lots more, along with historical and travel videos devoted to the Old West and even some old cowboy flicks.

Another helping of Butterscotch

14 11 2006

Was told about this video of Butterscotch, the Furreal Friends pony, at YouTube. It’s amazing (and to be honest, a wee bit freaky) how the toy responds to its environment. I still think I’d rather have the real thing, though. 😉 Many thanks to Steve for the link!

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