Our trip to Sugarcreek was a great success. As we hoped, we were able to aquire ten animals of varying ages, breeds, types, and temperaments- quite a well rounded herd, actually. You can see nine of these animals here. The tenth horse (not mentioned) is a story unto itself...
Three horses came into the auction ring. There was a chestnut Quarter type, a big bay draft, and a smaller family type horse. We were interested in the smaller bay. She was a horse that we had ridden and gone over before the sale began. We TRY to only bid on the horses that we have checked for age, breed/type, soundness, sight, (there are a whole lotta blind horses at the sale, many suffering from Leptospirosis, and of course- the blind appaloosas!), neurological problems, etc. In doing this we can be sure, within reason, that we are bidding responsibly with funds that are not easy to come by. Thank you to everybody that made this effort on possible.
Back to the "tale" of the tenth horse... we bid on what we thought was a nice family type horse only to find the gavel's slap awarded us the Double X draft horse for one hundred dollars!! Shock, dismay... whatever!!! He was now our horse. We immediately panicked over the fact that Mr Goliath would take three mid-sized horses' trailer slots- which would mean less horses could make the trip out of harm's way and into the arms of safety. As the gavel fell on the bay that we really wanted (and bought), we were approached by Kristina Kremer of Snowy River Animal Rescue. She was wondering if there was any way that we could POSSIBLY part with that big draft horse. He was part of a lifelong team that a friend of hers wanted to rescue and keep together! SURE, YOU BETCHA! What could be better? This horse and his partner were heading for greener pastures in Colorado! Holy cow- there really is a lid for every pot. That is a pretty nice chapter coming to a great end in the adventure called life.
As I mentioned earlier, we try to go over the horses to ensure a modicum of responsible bidding. This activity has a dual purpose. There are a few people at the sale looking for horses. They may not always know what they are looking at and are rightly leery of purchasing a horse that they know nothing about. Most shoppers lack either the skill, knowledge, or insanity to weed a particular horse out from the kill pen, throw a halter and a lead rope on it (some horse they just met), and jump on its back for a ride. Not so much with us. This is where the skills of Stacy and and Rachel (aka Stretch- she can practically hook her feet together under a smaller horse's belly!) come out to shine. A crowd watches intently and if WE write the hip number down, THEY write the hip number down. By trying loads of horses we give the animals some credibility to the potential buyers... and occasionally steer them away from that gorgeous paint that wants to kill you, your children, and your pets. I feel safe in saying that a good fifteen horses beyond that ones that we took found homes because of this effort. Heck, one man dragged us clear across the sale barn (a process of weaving between pens full of cranky horses) to look a horse over that he was interested in. We did, and we rode it. In doing so, we proved that that particular horse was there for a reason and was probably not the right horse for him. He did, however, leave that afternoon happily with another horse that we were able to recommend for him! This is just another great way that we can help the horses there.
We had high hopes of bringing home a couple of Thoroughbreds and started gathering tattoos... until we were "advised" that that activity was "illadvised". When it came to the bidding we couldn't get near them. For some reason they were bringing prices higher, MUCH HIGHER, than other similar, more useful horses. It was almost as if someone didn't want us to bring home an off-the-track Thoroughbred from the slaughter sale. I suppose that I have said enough on that subject. It's just a shame.
The sale house is NOT a Sunday walk in the park. There are politics and attitudes. There are sad, unfortunate, and even horrible sights. Let's face it- there are living creatures mixed with human greed and money. We don't need to describe or dwell in that arena. I rather put my energy into something postitive and constructive. Talk is cheap and actions speak a clearer and louder message. We do what we can... and we'll continue to do so.
All of these horses will be wormed and receive their vaccinations as well as having their feet trimmed (shod if necessary) on Monday. After that, we will post them online for adoption. A couple of them may even be of such quality as to raise funds for less fortunate horses. Last year we took one Sugarcreek horse and raised enough money to go back and save three others... so on and so forth. When all is said and done we will give you an account of the money raised, where it was spent, and if we broke even. Better yet, it is my hope that we have the funds left to go back and get some more out! Hope springs eternal. Thanks to all who are making this possible.
Note: LCC's computer is down, so anything you see on here until further notice is being done from my home computer. I am currently unable to post pictures on here or on the website, but AS SOON AS I CAN, I WILL POST THEM. I promise they will be posted the second it's possible. Sorry for the delay and thank you for your understanding. Pictures should be up soon, though, I promise!
Another Note: These horses will not be available for adoptionu ntil Monday, possibly Tuesday. DO NOT call asking about pricing info, because we cannot tell you yet. We need time to evaluate the horses and find out what they do (and don't) know, what their issues are, if any, and so on. Please don't rush us, we do the best we can, and we want to be thorough. Feel free to express interest or make an offer, but know that we cannot hold horses, and they cannot be adopted out without shots injected, feet done, and wormer consumed. Thanks for your understanding and neverending patience.
Here are the horses!!!
"Julia": (pictured above) She is a four year old Qtr/Welsh Pony mare. Raised and trained by the man who brought her to the sale. He was convinced that she would bring high dollar- and she really should have! She rides and drives, is 13.1hh, is sweet, sound, and easy on the eyes. She is a medium pony and has the look of a horse- not a pony. Heads up jumpers!
"Braut": Last year we picked up a round pony like him and called it Hot Dawg. Rachel went for Brautwurst for this 4 year old bay gelding. Amish broke to ride and drive! He is 12.3hh of rotund love!!
"Schotzi": (shot-zee) A 14 year old broke-to-death bay paint mare (minimal white) who was chubby and well groomed at the sale. She stands 14.1hh and has a very sweet eye. She only has 2 small spots on her neck that bear witness to her heritage. Her four white stockings pull together one heck of a cute large pony/small horse!
"Ford": 14hh, 4 year old Halflinger gelding- BUILT FORD TOUGH!! He had the nicest little old man (a human-man) standing with him at the sale. He said that the pony was quiet and willing but not broke. Soooo, Stacey jumped on him and off he went. He will be a snap to train... cute, quiet, willing- what a guy!!
"Raffles": A gray Welsh cross who was 'represented' as a gelding if you follow my drift. Come Monday, that will become an accurate representation. He will be an elegant hunter-type pony and should be around 14hh when full grown. He is two years old and cost us 20 bucks!
"Romance": This 20 something bay mare rides like a dream. She's a little thin, but that's easily remedied (teeth floating, anyone??). Don't you dare look down your nose at 'older' horses- they are often the very best! She is sound and sane and will babysit that child that needs a confidence builder. 14.1hh and trained for the ring but also loves the trail- what a gem! This darling mare will be heading to greener pastures with Leah, one of the LCC volunteers!
"Burke": This super fancy 2 year old Halflinger X Draft is 14.3hh presently and will probably grow at least another hand. He is quiet and is a total darling. He is green broke, and is ready for further educational opportunities. This guy has everything going for him. His demeanor is dignified, his attitude- nonchalant.
"Rolling Stone": Big black TB-type gelding with four white socks. He is 15.2hh but he comes across as bigger somehow. His head is... well, for lack of a better word... somewhat... COMMON, but he is an ace of a trail/family fun horse.
"Echo": 5 year old gray paint/qtr gelding. Flea bitten gray paint up front, dapple gray paint in back! He has the looks of a distingushed gentleman and the manners to match! He got pretty beat up at the sale but he's going to be alright... but those drafts can sure put the hurt on a smaller horse when they're packed like sardines in a kill pen! Rachel immediately fell in love with him, and will be taking him home as soon as he is 'good to go'!