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Thursday, July 24, 2008

A shady business never yields a Sunny life

B. C. Forbes

Sunny is a pleasant old chap to have around. We learned a few more things about him, besides just being a retired Barrel Racer. He is half Quarter Horse and half Palomino. He is eager to please, and response to commands easily. But he has already began to back talk me. Oh, as if that should surprise you!

Last night I was out talking with my neighbors that train horses. They asked me to bring Sunny up to the fence, so they could get a better look at him. I told them what I know of Sunny, his age and retirement status is about all. And the last time he saw a farrier, or had his teeth dealt with.

They neighbors are very impressed with his demeanor and how well his legs are built. I was informed that he is about 100 lbs under weight, and with a little time and care, he will build back up and that sway in his back will not be so pronounced. I can get his hooves tended for $25 and his teeth done for another $25. I thought it would be more then that, so am relieved.

The neighbor showed me the only command I really need to know, her words. The emergency stop. Which Sunny responded to easily. Then they looked at his teeth, declaring that they weren't horrible and that he is no way he is 20 years old. But the vet who will be dealing with his teeth can tell me his real age.

Suddenly I was invited to a Weeny cleaning party by the neighbors wife. I must have dropped my jaw, because she was giggling up a storm. She informed me that she was serious, and that they do indeed have a weeny cleaning party. I told her that it was my son's horse so I guess he'll get to do that.

Now I am speechless. No one told me this! I have to clean his, um, sheath!?! What!?! So after we were done talking I ran into the house to inform my husband. I should know better to mention anything like this to a bunch of men. We had some buddies over and even if technically they are of a mature age, they still have the minds of 12 year old boys. They all wanted to be invited to this party, and asking how much it would cost. Blah blah blah. ~sigh~ boys. I ran straight to my homesteading books, none of which mention this particular type of party. So I looked online. Looks like it is a common practice, but not one that seems to be a necessity.

Luckily for me, many of my female readers have the minds of 12 year old boys, your writer here is one. So I will attend this party, take pictures, and make you all suffer through this with me. Oh, don't even gasp and tell me you are not in the least curious about this weeny party. I know better.

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

:D :D :D Welcome to the horse owner's world! I'm actually happy to hear that people informed you about this so fast. There are amazingly many people who are not aware of the fact that YES you DO have a responsibility to keep your horse clean ALL OVER! That includes the reproductive organs which actually, when you think of it, tend to get very sweaty if the horse runs a lot. And washing the gelding/stallion body parts is indeed a sport of its own. Good luck and have fun. And - be aware of the smell...! :D :D :D

Phelan said...

ah, thank you for the grand welcoming to horse ownership :D :D

I am one of those that didn't know this part of it. I have many male animals and they do not require this. Smell? Does this mean it won't be a squirting of saline like some of the websites claim? Wait, don't tell me, I'll have nightmares!

Briana said...

My college roommate is a large animal vet and I've gone on calls with her before. Including for this particular, ah, "treatment."

In that case, the horses had to be injected with some sort of relaxant, so that they would "let go" of the thing and it could be cleaned. And, yeah, it kind of smelled. (I didn't actually have to help, as my job was to keep track of all the horses done and injected, etc, for the paperwork.)

Oh, and *some* horses -- according to my Amy -- are comfortable just letting it all hang out on a regular basis and so don't really require this cleaning, because it gets some air and dries, etc.

-- Buffra

Briana said...

Oh! And that sounds really cheap for a good farrier, but I don't really know. I *do* know that they are hard to come by, so if you get a good one that does the job well, don't be surprised if he's also regularly late or kind of a jerk.

It's a highly skilled job, horribly back-breaking work, and they (at least from what I know of it via Aim) tend to KNOW that you can't just call someone else, so they aren't always best at the "customer service" aspects!

Funder said...

Yay for having a horse! Yep, sheath cleaning is one of the most... interesting parts of horse ownership.

I do want to point out that he's not half palomino. Palomino's a color registry - a palomino color can be one of many breeds of horses. He can be a palomino quarter horse, or a palomino walking horse, or a grade palomino.

Just think of it like he's blonde! You could be blonde and Irish, or blonde and Swedish, or blonde and Italian. He's palomino and a Quarter Horse. :)

(PS - it sounds like you got a wonderful first horse for your son. Congratulations!)

Mandie said...

A what party??? Tehehehe! I am sure curious to see pictures of this party. Have fun...

farm mom said...

Wow! I get that this may be part of basic horse care...but to make it into a party and invite the neighbors!! Wow! You have an interesting neighborhood don't you?! :) Thank god you were invited! Can you imagine hearing about it elsewhere and knowing you weren't invited?!?! The shame and curiousity would be killer! LOL! :) Cannot wait for that post, or the adolescent humor!

Phelan said...

Buffra, good to know. If this farrier doesn't work out, I have a card for another, and another neighbor uses a different one. I was expecting this job to cost considerablly more.

Funder, thank you for the info. I am still learning. To be honest horses were not on the top of my to-get-list. I am just repeating what I was told by the last owner. Good thing I didn't pay for him ;)

Mandie, I might just have to make this a pay to view site.

Farm mom, to clean ones own horses weeny in the privacy of ones own farm would be a little too kinky. This is something that should be shared with everyone. That way there isn't the talk of "psst, did you hear what Phelan does to her horse?" gasp!

oh, and I wanted to point out that "Weeny Cleaning Party" is the exact words used.

Cheap Like Me said...

OMG, that is a new one to me! I'm surprised my daughter hasn't told me about it ... she is a 7-year-old horse maniac who has been drawing anatomically correct animals of all breeds for a long time. Many times she has commented about viewing the whole horse-shebang hanging out to dry and how large it is. Guess I'll leave this little tidbit for her to discover on her own.

The smell? Oh my ....... This was one informative blog!

jules said...

Oh My! Count me in! Pictures please, this should be a riot!

Phelan said...

Cheap like me, I would not even know how to tell a daughter about this. Color me red. Yes, I would say we are getting a little too informative around here. But hey, this is what I learn, so ya'll will learn it to.

Jules, I knew it! It will have to be a pay-to-view post.

I wonder how my neighbor will feel about me taking pictures.

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to add that it's no wonder if people have not heard about this. It IS embarrassing and always raises a lot of questions. It's better to keep quiet. But really, it is and must be part of horse keeping, just think of the possibility that the horse gets an infection there... But it is nonetheless a bit of a taboo. You can actually test this very easily: just walk to any masculine, self-conscious male cowboy with spurred boots and a fancy hat and innocently (but loudly, if in public!) ask how often and by what method he cleans the sheath of his stallion. Have a camera ready for the reaction...;) Priceless.

Anita said...

Who does this for wild horses I wonder?

Phelan said...

Anita, I was just asking the same thing. Here is how I figure it, it's the prairie dogs. No, really, watch them. They aren't popping out of the holes looking for danger.

Country Girl said...

Phelan your a riot and I can't wait to see what this weenie party entails! ~Kim

Anonymous said...

Anita: it works the same way than most of other health treatments. Either the wild horses do not need them, because they never behave in a way that causes them to get sweaty in a similar way than a sport horse. Just check out any show jumping or dressage class, it is more than normal that just with 2-3 minutes of sport event the horse is foaming with sweat all over. This rarely happens in nature. Also, if wild horses get dirty enough to get infections, they just get sick and die. Also, if I'm not totally misled, this thing is more common with geldings which do not occur in nature. The stallions "use" their thing so often that it doesn't collect much dirt inside. Geldings don't remember their organs so things pile up... That's my explanation :D

Phelan said...

Thank you anonymous. I had asked this myself, and was told they die earlier.

lisa said...

Heh...this is why I always had mares! The first time I heard the blacksmith tell my friend she needed to "clean the beans from the gelding's sheath", I had absolutely no idea what he was talking about. When I found out...my pre-teen mind was never the same! ;-)

Anita said...

Learn something every day!

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