"Warm Horse Fur" took on a new meaning this afternoon. (Quote from SueK)
I've been buying big square bales from Jim ..., and when he went to deliver the one to Debut and No, he didn't put it in the pen, but right outside the door (Too wide for the opening). Then we opened the gate and hooked the long blue gate to the other end, forming a triangle around the bale that put it INSIDE a fenced area, but also gave the mares access to one side of it over another blue gate, which is NOT thick enough or high enough to be a stud pen gate...
So, sometime this afternoon, the next two bales were delivered, and I looked out to see DEBUT running around with the mares.
My feet were swollen and I had to rip off my socks to get my feet into shoes, then went outside. By then, OMyNo had also joined in the fun, and the mares were racing madly back and forth, driven by Debut, who was trying to keep them all away from NO. Ah, spring! Ah, hormones! Debut, recovering from EMP, quickly got out of breath and lathered (50+ degree weather, and wind, but absolutely delightful outside.) I caught him, took him into the closest gate (Raven's pen in the corner) and he promptly pulled the lead rope out of my hand (Highly unusual behavior for him). He and dad tangled, with Raven going down under him, nd he nearly falling on top of him (Good fighter he's not). I got him caught again and into the barn, then had to dash back up the hill to secure the gate, which was only leaning where it belonged.
I hooked a big new purple nylon halter around the post and gate, tying the lower hinge with the lead rope on a bowline. The top metaL hinge was ripped in two for a good 2" of its 2" 1/2" length, so no repair will work.
OMyNo would not let me quite get close enough to halter him. I ended up holding the gate open for him, praying Raven would not come OUT, and that Alegria, the only mare with any marks on her, did not beat him in. This time when I called him, he'd had enough and came. He squealed up with Raven, kicked at him, but they didn't fight, so I left them together instead of putting him back in with Debut, who was still plenty irritated with the youngster.
I called Larry to see if he'd replace the hinge for me some time in the next few days. (Hopefully before the next hay delivery is necessary, as the lead rope/halter hold the gate upright, but don't allow it to swing.)
Everyone was wet and sweaty, rolling and rubbing that old long hair on fence posts and dirt. What a grubby bunch! I was really glad the water was not readily available in bulk. It takes quite a while to water everyone at the gravity flow fountain, but that also keeps too hot horses from over drinking and maybe foundering themselves.
Pandemonium is alive and well in southern Iowa this lovely leap year day.