Happy Wednesday everyone!
Sunday evening was a bittersweet night. I received a call from my mom that a lady and her 15 year old girl had bought my 2 year old gelding named Rascal. I have been trying to sell him since last May so it was a bittersweet relief that he finally found a home, a good home at that My mom said they spent over 2 hours just playing around with him and working with him having a blast. The girl is looking for a project horse that she can train to become her High School Rodeo horse which Rascal would be a great prospect for. It will be a great home for him but I’m sad that I might not get to see him ever again. I am very thankful that I was able to spend quite a bit of time with him while I was home for Christmas.
Some background about Rascal….
For those of you who don’t know, Rascal was the first horse I have ever seen born live and raised. I bred my former show and speed event horse that carried me through competitions during my Junior High and High School years to a gorgeous Palomino Stallion who is a son of the great 8 million dollar reining sire Wimpys Little Step. I had planned on having the foal be my prospect for Reining and Working Cowhorse competitions, but my life changed directions.
In the summer of 2012, we attempted to breed Spree a few times but she never took before it was getting to late during the fall. Let’s just say it was the biggest disappointment during the ultrasound to find out that there was no baby to be found. We decided to breed her again the following spring in 2013 and she finally took.
11 months later, Rascal was born on May 8th of 2014. After checking on Spree avidly and waiting for the foal for a few weeks, I went out to feed Spree one evening and she had milk dripping from her teats, which is a sign of a horse going into labor soon. The mare was pacing around and was not at all interested in her food. We left her alone and checked on her once every hour. Finally around midnight we found her laying down going hard into labor. My dad and I tried comforting her as a pair of legs were starting to come out of her. We didn’t have to do much but we just kept a big eye on her and helped her push him out. After an hour or so to my slight disappointment, a plain sorrel colt came out of her. I was hoping for a loudly colored paint filly but Rascal soon melted my heart once we saw his face appear and peak out of the birth sack. He was a cute little guy with white markings only on his face. My mom, dad and I watched him try to stand up and he was moving around in no time testing out his new legs. In fact he was having so much fun moving his legs around he would not let me move him close to his mom so he could nurse. Spree was always known for her stubbornness and bad attitude and it seemed like her foal had received some of that strong will. So I came up with the name Rascal after I tried moving him closer to his mom and he refused to nurse! After watching him for a bit longer we decided to leave him and Spree alone and he eventually figured out how to nurse. I checked on him early that morning and he was nursing and happy as can be. We were really surprised with how well Spree took to mothering him since he was her first foal and she is not the nicest mare in the world.
I am very happy that I had the ability to raise a great horse that will bring a young girl joy, happiness, and hopefully lots of success.
Overall the birth was a bit nerve racking, but exciting at the same time. Luckily we did not have any complications so it went very smoothly. Having a foal is a very exciting experience and it is very rewarding to watch them grow. I learned a lot of patience in getting Rascal imprinted and used to being led and handled by humans. He is a smart little guy so he handled everything very well early on and was easy to work with. The one thing I loved about his mother was her passion for being trained and worked and she passed on to Rascal.
Even though I didn’t get to spend much time with Rascal this past year since I was living 8-12 hours away from home, it’s been fun to see him grow up into a handsome 2 year old gelding. I wish I could afford to continue training him and compete with him, but financially that is not possible at this time. I am very happy that I had the ability to raise a great horse that will bring a young girl joy, happiness, and hopefully lots of success. That is one of the best things about raising and selling horses. When I finally settle down with some horse property, I hope I will be able to raise more horses and produce champions for other equestrians. Producing a beautiful foal with lots of potential is a great experience and it is hard to explain how rewarding it really is. I can’t wait to hear about Rascal’s future and his accomplishments he will obtain! I hope he brings her tons of joy and success like his mother did to me. He will also educate her and improve her horsemanship.
Rascal will always have a special place in my heart, he is part of the family and is deeply loved!
Have you ever raised and sold a foal? How do you cope?