Monday, October 19, 2009

This is racist?

Seriously? Okay, so what am I missing? If this is racist and has been pulled off the shelves, then I gotta wonder what else is considered racist. Maybe this...

to the Witch communty.

Or this...

to the ‘Hairy Guys and the Women Who Love Them’ group.

Or this...

Oops, now how did that pic get in here? *ahem* But while we’re on the subject, this goes out to all you Twilight fans: THIS is a vampire!

Monday, October 12, 2009

A little horse advice to a beginner

So I was browsing through Craigslist today and stumbled across the following post:

horse advice (south shore)
looking to get a horse, but dont know anything about caring for it, if you can give me some advice as in how big a stall has to be and how much it costs to upkeep a horse that will be great. thanks

Hey, at least this person asked first!

My advice? Don't get a horse unless you're first willing to take a ton of riding lessons with a qualified instructor and work at a reputable stable (gratis, if needs be) for at least a year.

Horses, even the free or cheap ones, are terribly expensive and are a huge commitment (mentally, physically, emotionally, and most certainly financially). They aren't something to be taken lightly nor started on a lark. Learn. Do your research. Ask questions. Find out about things like dental care (once a year at over one hundred per), farrier care (every six weeks at roughly $35 per trim... and that's for a regular barefoot trim—if you want shoes, they could run you a heck of a lot more), vaccinations (yearly for life—could run as high as $200 per year, depending), deworming costs (at least $20 every five weeks for life), boarding (as low as $125 per month to as high as several hundred per month, depending on the area, if the horse is to be inside or outside, and what the stable has to offer), specialized feed if necessary (boarding facilities only provide the basics, so there might be another hundred or more per month extra). And that's just the beginning! Add a minimum of $2,000 - $3,000 you'll need to set aside per year for misc. vet costs and the like (horses have accidents and they’re rarely cheap to fix!). Then there's the obvious, such as a helmet, saddle, bridle, saddle pad, brushes, hoof pick, blankets, fly spray, salt block, mineral block, buckets, halters (always have an extra one handy), lead ropes (again, extra), shipping boots, a trailer, riding lessons (yep, you'll still need that), possible training for your horse, a tack box... and the list goes on and on. Hey, horse owners don't call ourselves "horse poor" for nothing!

Oh, and if you're planning on keeping a horse at home, there's most of the above, plus straw (or shavings) and excellent quality hay (at the very least 250 bales of hay for one horse per year x whatever the price is where you live... here, it's gone up to around $8 to $10 plus, per bale) and a safe place to store it (away from where your horse is, as it could catch fire and kill the animal). And don't forget proper fencing (NOT BARBED WIRE or those damned T-posts!), a run-in shelter, a 12 x 12 box stall (which you'll have to clean out daily) which is made to specs and is safe and properly ventilated (or the horse could get the heaves, severely injured, or even killed), oats or specialized feed, a large water tub for outside (you'll have to clean that out every week as horses need access to clean fresh water no matter if they're inside and outside... unless they've just had a workout—then they need to be walked out and cooled down dry before being given water or they could founder), water buckets for inside the stall (also clean those out at least every week), a pitch fork, shovel, rake, broom, hoses, wheel barrow or muck bucket, safe stall mats (those can be really expensive!), a way to get rid of manure (to limit insects and disease, and because most counties have specific rules about that), rubber floor pans (to feed oats or special feed), water (of course), barn lights (of course), insurance, etc., etc. Not to mention the time involved in doing all of that plus grooming the horse from top to bottom every day, feeding at least twice a day, keeping all areas spotless, checking daily for anything sticking out (nails, etc., that could cut a horse), walking the entire pasture daily to check for gopher holes, loose boards, stray binder twine. And again, that list goes on and on.

Most people love horses. Most people want horses. No person should own horses unless they can afford them and know what they‘re doing. Why? Because too many good, sound horses end up at slaughterhouses, or worse—crippled, starved, ruined and in agony for life. Not to mention your own safety! If you're determined to get a horse, do the horse, and yourself, a favor and learn (through a ton of riding lessons with a qualified instructor and working at a reputable stable for at least a year) as much as you can first, first hand and not through some internet site or via some know-nothing idiot, so you'll know what you're getting into and so you can give a horse a good life.

Life, by the way, can be around thirty years or more.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

ALERT: Stolen Horse in Alberta, Canada

As some of you might know, I live in Alberta, Canada. So when I read a post today on Fugly horse of the day about a stolen horse in Alberta, I naturally had to jump on it to try to help spread the word. Please listen up.

If you are in Alberta, Canada please be on the look out for this stolen horse! This two year old filly disappeared from her pasture and we are VERY concerned that she may show up at an auction. If you see her at one or advertised for sale, please immediately call 780-722-4833. Thank you!

If you have seen this filly, do the right thing and call the number. Let's get her home!

Update: This filly is home safe. She was deliberately let out by Bad Neighbors, recognized and intercepted at the auction house, and brought home. Thank goodness!
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