I didn't do a post last week because I was camping up on Flathead Lake all week (wonderful!) and I got back this week to find six new arrivals at the barn! You can check out all the pictures on the home page. I will be getting more info on their backgrounds soon. Two Quarterhorses, Hoback and Scooter, came in, as well as four donkeys. Three of the donkeys are related and were owner-relinquished. All four donkeys are overweight due to being overgrazed on rich pasture. This picture of Brighty illustrates what happens - oversized belly and fat flaps.
I didn't realize before coming to Wings the problems that happen when a horse eats too much grass. I vaguely knew that it might cause them to founder but I didn't realize it could also cause insulin resistance due to the high sugar content of the rich grass. All the new arrivals are in dry lots while their health and needs are being evaluated.
This week I was busy getting pictures of all the newbies and getting them up on the site, then doing the usual mucking, watering plants and moving hoses, a little grooming, and just generally enjoying being near the horses. Today I helped out with the mucking in all the outdoor pens as most of the crew were at the fairgrounds staffing an information booth at the non-profit fair. Angelica and I spent about an hour and a half driving around to all the pens, although she had started before me, so she probably spent more like two hours. It's definitely a workout, and we were in the hot sun, but I really enjoyed visiting with the horses in the pens and getting to say hi. There's just something about horses that is simply wonderful!
Now that it's finally warmed up, the flowers are blooming, so I'm enjoying these gorgeous iris while they last! This is why I love to garden.
Laura Weise is a Wings volunteer who lives in Stevensville and will be bringing you stories of life at the barn.