Monday, March 29, 2010

Military Family need home for horse NOW!

Taylor came to GentledMustangs several years ago and was adopted by a military family that has loved and taken great care of her. Now they need to rehome her ASAP as their circumstances have change and they are not longer able to afford the board. This has been a VERY difficult decision and this horse is worth much more than they are asking.

Taylor is a 7 yr old, IBHA registered Quarter Cross - Approved Home - $1500

Great on train, some western pleasure, English and started in jumping - she shows alot of potential. Extremely willing and loves a job. She is an awesome horses but needs someone who can ride/work her consistently or property to run on versus being boarded in a stall because she is very high energy (GREAT barrles prospect). Not recommended for children or beginner riders.

Healthy, up to date on vaccines and de-worming. Has mild fly allergies and needs a fly mask in the summer. Good around dobs and getting pretty relaxed around other horses - was previously pastured with other horses with no problems.

Taylor has had thousands of dollars and many hours of traing by myself and on-site trainers.

We are selling her because I don't have enough time for her now and the cost of boarding. She has been in our family for a couple years and is being ridden/worked at least 5 days a week.

$1500 FIRM for horse, tack and any supplies in my tack room. May consider selling tack separate.

Contact Sarah at 760-547-3406 or

Friday, March 26, 2010

Still Needing to Be A Baby!

For those of you who have read about Prince William, you know that he was cruelly weaned from his mother when the owners sold her when he was only one month old. One month - I can't imagine. Left to fend for himself with other horses then stuck on a trailer and shipped from Missouri to California at just a few months old, then tossed out with other horses to once again fend for himself.

Not only was this bad for his health because he lacked his mothers milk and wasn't old enough to fight for his food with tossed in with other horses, but he never got the nurturing that a mom gives their babies and a baby he was at just one month. That is why what I saw today was as shocking as it was touching.

We recently brought Bella back from training with Dee Howe and learned that she has disabilities that will make it hard for her to carry a rider. Dee and her husband just fell in love with Bella while she was there because she has such a gentle nature. Dee said if she was bred she would probably throw a foal as honest and sweet as her. Well we aren't in the breeding business so as much as I have always wanted to breed Bella, we never have. She was a broodmare before she was rescued by us. That is why what I saw today was as shocking as it was touching.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Trying Weekend - But it's over!

This has been both a long week and a long weekend. A side of the normal daily living routine, we had so many additional things that brought challenges and some stress that really did reminded us "that which doesn't kill you makes you stronger". So let's recap the week.

On Thursday morning we took Chance over to Dr. Matt to have her hernia repair surgery. It took most of the day, but it went well and she went through the surgery without and problems and her recovery to date has been very good - along with her mood.

Thursday night the top/bottom of the hot water heater blew, spewing water throughout much of the first floor of the house and damaging sheetrock, carpet, padding and making an overall mess. The fans have been blowing the carpet dry along with the sheetrock and cabinetry while the dehumidifer has been sucking the moist air out of the totally closed up hot. It has been hot, noisy, smelly, did I mention hot, and a damned mess. But the fans are quiet tonight, we can open the windows and let fresh air in and hopefully in the next day or two they will come clean everything up. But the peace and quiet for right now is joyous!

Saturday we woke to Prince Wm having a swollen left hind fetlock and feared he had broken it or one of his pasterns and prayed we didn't have to put him down. Our prayers were answered when Dr. Corine Selders of Ceder Creek Equine here in Ramona, came out and gave him a thorough exam and full set of x-rays and didn't find any fractures. Dr. Dawn Fletcher of Medicine Hat Animal Chiropractic came out today and looked at him and is relieved there is no fracture and says pulled ligament or tendon (as did Dr. Selders) and it will just take him a while to heal up. The cold water baths and anti-inflammatories have been working because the swelling has gone down a little bit and he is not as sensative to the touch today.

Because the house was hot and noisy this afternoon we were forced outside. We pulled our lawnchairs into the front yard and I grabbed P Wm on a lead line and we put Chance on a lead line and let them both eat the wonderful grass in the front yard while we watched the sun starting to set and enjoying a nice cool drink. Peace and quiet, our horses recovering and content at our sides. The dogs laying around and loving the fact they get to be out in front of the house which is a rare occurance.

Did I mention the wonderful time I had brushing out both Chance and Dr. Bill and giving them each some special love and attention. They both looked so clean and relaxed and you would never know that they each had pain earlier this week and are both recovering from something that required a vet visit.

Life is good! And the house is quiet..... good night and God bless!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Prince William has an Emergency Vet Visit today!

We woke up this morning to the hum and buzz of all the fans blowing the moisture out of the carpet and the humongous dehumidifier that is pulling the moisture out of the air. All this because the water heater blew late Thursday night so our house is in temporary shambles. They replaced the hot water heater and this morning - no hot water.

Anyone who has gone through this or any other large water damage issue knows just how bad it smells. All the more reason to head right out to the horses. First one to check on is Chance, who had her hernia surgery on Thursday and is stalled with Prince William so she doesn't go stir crazy thinking she has been left by herself while the rest of the horses are enjoying the pasture.

Chance is doing well. Her incision site is a little swollen, but that is to be expected. There is no drainage and she seems to be in good spirits. P Wms spirits are good too because he loves being with his big sister - she shares her feed with him :) . But he is limping - not good!

Doesn't take but a glance to see what's wrong. His left hind fetlock is swollen twice it's size and his hoof looks unusually pigeon toed. He is putting weight on it but not much and only on the outer toe area. As a gaited Paso Fino his legs have a little turn in his walk, much like a TWH, so his gait is the same, he's just carrying his foot wrong.

His temp, pulse and respiration are normal and he's eating which are all good signs. The fetlock is not hot or mushy, but to us something is twisted badly or perhaps even fractured. No visable signs of injury, no cuts, scratches, blood - nothing. Two weeks ago we had to call the vet out for Jet on a Sunday morning, now here we are again calling her on the weekend. At least it's Saturday so she won't miss going to church with her girls again for us.

After a thorough exam and series of radiographs we find out that there are no apparent fractures which gives us a chance to take a deep breath and thank the Lord that he doesn't need to be hospitalized. He will definitely needs time to heal without putting a lot of pressure or extreme movement of the area.

We set up a smaller pipe corral for him sharing a panel with Chance so they continue their companionship and sharing their food. Hosing it twice a day with cold water for 15 minutes and then putting a good wrap on it to help give support to the area. Top it off with some anti-inflammatory medicine and a little pain relieve - but not too much because we don't want him thinking his ankle area is fine and putting stress on it - and some supplements to give his body a little boost with healing.

We will take a few more radiographs after the swelling goes down, probably on Monday. So in the meantime he and Chance will be getting a lot of TLC - everyone's prayers will help too.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

I Swear She's a Tom-Boy

This girl has had a so many ups-n-downs in her not quite yet two years of life. Today we were finally able to have her umbilical hernia repair for the 3rd time and hopefully third times a charm.

Chance was born from a feed-lot rescued mare named Sugar who was brought to us by Audrey at SHI , in the spring 0f 2008. Her first hernia repair was done with bands and should have taken care of the situation no problem. But not with this rough and tumble little filly. She figured out a way to get out of her stall and in the process pulled the bands off the first night.

We decided to waited until she was a little older and then had stitches put in hoping it would close from the inside without have to open her up with surgery. This was going great until one evening when she met Griffin the sheep and decided to run, kicking up her heals and as she turned, she turned right into the fence and got herself lodged halfway across it. Of course like any other horse she didn't stop and by the time she did, not only had the stitches been pulled out, but now she needed stitches on her chest from the fence injury.

Now we had to wait until those injuries healed to tackle the hernia issue again. After all of this, she was not a happy camper when it came to me handling her injuries because she just plain hurt all over - scratches from front to back... The cuts and scrapes have all healed and you would never know it ever happened except for a little attitude she has - or could that just be because she is a coming two year old???

In December, Facebook sent me a note asking if I wanted to raise funds for a cause in lieu of birthday presents and the only thing I was concerned with at the time was this filly's surgery. Through SHI's Facebook page and mine, we raised $200 to help pay for her surgery.

Now that the weather has finally settled down and I don't have to worry about cold, wet, muck and that stuff, I decided it was time. Today we drove her to Valley Center were Dr. Matt (from "The Soul of a Horse-Life's lessons from the Herd", book by Joe Camp) and a fellow equine dentist, Michael Grigsby, CEqDT, were working (the ranch that housed the last Pete Ramey workshop which I attended) and Dr. Matt had time in his schedule to take care of her hernia.

What a beautiful day it is too. The sun is out, nice mild breeze, temps in the 70's - it really doesn't get much better than this when you are a horse care practitioner. The first picture is Chance getting prepped. Dr. Matt is covering her feet and Micheal is clipping the surgical site, my move is watching and I am taking the pics. Chance went to sleep like an angel.

He had to make an incision and then stitch three layers from the inside out and the stitches will disolve over the next several weeks. She will have to stay in a stall and not do a bunch of running around while everything heals up.

The surgery didn't take long and she started coming out of the drugs just as Dr. Matt was fininshing with her. It looks good and prayers and fingers crossed she won't injure herself again and do something to disrupt the repair this time.

We stayed and the facility and let her walk off some of the drugs before loading her in the trailer. She is such a good girl that she walked right in the trailer no fuss, no muss. Dr. Matt said she was a very good patient and was going to grow up to be a nice horse. We think so.

Thanks go to everyone who made a donation in lieu of a birthday present for me - and really this was a GREAT present; to Audrey at Saving Horses Inc., Dr. Matt and Michael for their great teamwork during the surgery, my mom for donating the remainder of the funds for her surgery and to all of you who will be saying prayers for this sweet filly.

Stay tuned for updates. :)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Sugar (rescued mare) gets her dental done!

Now that Bella has come home, Dee Howe has taken Sugar as her next student. Sugar was rescued from a feedlot in Dec. of 2007 and foaled in June of 2008. She has gotten 30 days of training and has since had several trips out on trail and in preperation for her adoption, I wanted Dee to work with her to see where her strong areas are.

Immediately she noticed some mild pain causing Sugar to be off on her hind end. She is tucking her hind end in to far, not standing sqare and having a little difficulty carrying weight and some pain on her whithers.

Dee suspects that giving birth has gotten her hind end out of adjustment and then she thinks perhaps the person riding her was using an ill fitting saddle causing the pain in her whithers. After adjustments to aleviate those, she is still a little off in her back end. Her feet have been trimmed well (barefoot), so the next piece of the puzzle is her dentistry.

Her first and last dentistry was done in August of 2008 and she should have been re-done in August of 2009, but being our busiest dentistry month of the year, I didn't get to our own horses... Kind of like the mechanics own cars...

The picture below shows what her molars looked like after all of these months. They really are quite good and just need a few minor adjustment, the sharp enamel points reduced and the front of her number 6 molars slightly rounded (or what some call a bit-seat). This took only about 15 minutes.

Her incisors are another story. All of her permanent teeth are finally in, but they have erupted unevenly and she has what's called a diagonal - you can see the teeth on the bottom right side stick up further than the other lower teeth. This diagonal causes her mouth to open too soon when her teeth move laterally (right to left) while chewing or will cause her teeth to be off center (look at the teeth in the middle) causing her issues when she is being asked to tuck her head and get collected while riding or working - this could also cause her to be slightly off balance under saddle. Additionally her lower teeth are protruding further than her uppers creating an under-bite that can also restrict her movement.

In the picture below you will see the incisors after I have made the needed corrections. Those corrections included: reducing the teeth that were too high - correcting the diagonal, correcting the table angle (chewing surface) of the teeth since the lower teeth had a rim on the edge causing a slight under-bite or the lower teeth sticking out slightly further than the uppers, the minor chipping was removed and you can see that the teeth are now center properly. These correction took about 10 minutes and she was done.

Now that the diagonal and other mal-occlusions of her incisors and molar arcades have been corrected this will take any pressure caused by the teeth being unbalanced off the TMJ area and that should be reflected through her spine and carried right down to her feet. Dee should see a difference in how she carries herself under bit immediately and she may even see some slight changes that may need to be made in her hoof trim now that her mouth is in balance.
This is what I refer to as dentistry for balance body movement. A float will just take the sharp points of the edges of the molars - that is why it is inexpensive. But you can tell from looking this horse in the mouth that without having her incisors corrected, the imbalance would just get worse over time, cause more pressure on one TMJ than the other and she will continue to carry her body off balance to compensate for the pain her out of balance teeth were causing.
If you have any questions about dentistry for balance body movement you can email me at and I will be glad to answer any questions.
One final note - other then working on their own personal horses (such as Sugar) equine dental technician's (non-veterinary equine dentists) need to be supervised by a veterinarian on-site during the dentistry in the state of California. If you have a tech do the dentistry without a vet on-site and something happens, there is no insurance that covers your horse for any mishaps because that person - even if they are an RVT - is practicing illegally in California. It is simply not worth the risk.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Our Freedoms Being Taken Once Again!

I spent an extended weekend in Las Vegas at the conference of the International Association of Equine Dentistry and many times the subject of the teeth of the wild horses was used in comparison to the problems in domestic horses that require annual, sometimes semi-annual, dental correction and maintenance.

During one of the lunches I was seated at a table with two gentlemen from Nevada in the Reno area. The discussion went from the dentition of the wild horses versus domestic horses to the gathering of the wild horses by the BLM. One of the gentlemen blamed the current issues of both the wild horses and the unwanted horses on the closing of the slaughter plants and wholeheartedly stood behind the efforts to build new or reopen the plants. He just doesn't see the wild horse the same as those of us trying to preserve their rights to roam on the lands they are on.

I know there are areas where the food and water are very limited, I know that there are times when the wild horses roam into residential areas looking for both, I know there are people who set out food and water for them and I know there are some that detest the horses being there even though they were on that land before the developers moved in and took it away from them.

There are some that used to joke and say it was nice of the American Indian to take care of our land for us till we got here, which really isn't much of a joke, but it makes me wonder if the government did it to the American Indian by putting them on reservations, the Japanese by putting them in camps, the Mustang by putting them in holding facilities, who or what is next.

These are our freedoms being taken away as well as that of the wild horse. History shows us that the government doesn't make a distinction between human or animal when they get in the way of what the government wants to do and usually at the financial benefits of a few.

This is not just about the wild horse - it is about the government taking rights away for the profits of a few once again.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Bella's final training day with Dee Howe

Dee Howe has been working with our rescued Mustang Bella to prep her for adoption. Bella has been being "just a horse" in the pasture the last year and we wanted to hone up on her previous training. Bella returned from the now infamous 3 Strikes Ranch in Nebraska and didn't want to be caught and also pulled her head away if you got near it on the left side.

One of the first things Dee noticed was scar tissue on Bella's left eye. I never noticed it because she has multi-colored eyes. Realizing this explained why she was so difficult to catch and was very nervous about having the left side of her face touched - she couldn't see what was happening. In the very beginning of the video you will notice a translucent blue area on the bottom of her eye - that scarring blocks any vision in that area.

There were other issues that Dee also noticed. Bella had tight and swollen muscles in her neck and when you touched her whithers her shoulder muscles would twitch. Once we got her settled and were able to take a really close look at her, we saw two areas on her neck where it was clear that at some time she had been roped - severely and twice. She has some nerve damage in her neck because of this.

First thing we did was her teeth to be sure the pressure and chewing surface of all of her teeth were balanced so there was no undue pressure on her TMJ. Dee also worked on body issues related to her neck, back, ribs and feet. These adjustments gave her much relief of pain she was felling that was extremely difficult to notice while she was just be a horse out in the pasture.

Dee spent a lot of time working with Bella's blind side wanting to teach her to allow someone to approach and touch her halter - not grab her halter - but lightly touch it so she has no pain. You will see in video that Dee addresses that fact that Bella appears to have had her halter yanked on at some point.

I have a much better understanding of Bella now. In the past, once we had her on a lead line she would do what ever was asked of her. I just couldn' t figure out why she was being so difficult to catch after she returned from 3 Strikes Ranch. Now we know that she was injured, in pain and afraid. Having relieved the pain that we could and working with her to over come her fear on her blind side, we hope that Bella will settle back in to enjoying life as a horse - without the pain.

I am so thankful for the knowledge that Dee has in working with horses and her calm and patient manner that gives horses the time to work through issues without feeling stress and pressured. Check out her site and call her if you have a horse that you have concerns about.