A Note about Sugarbush Draft Horses

I see it over and over again, and no matter how many times it's said, it's still wrong. "Sugarbush Drafts are just an Appaloosa Draft Cross". Uh.... no. The Sugarbush Draft Horse was a breed created many years ago in Ohio. While the initial cross was made using Percherons to Appaloosas, in the many generations following, the breed has been solidified into a consistent type. Saying these horses are "just" a draft cross makes as much sense as saying that AQHA horses are "just" a Thoroughbred cross, American Cream Drafts are "just" a dilute Belgian, or that Morgans are "just" a grade.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

It's Official... sort of

Straight from the source: It looks like Daltrey has a new home!

Daltrey is a lovely Stonewall Sport Horse colt, soon to be gelding.  He's by Sugarbush Harley's Classic O (SDHR) out of Quagga's Ardent Sun (ApHC).  Ah, the memories.......

Arden managed to sneak his birth past us, but just barely.  Because she was bred to a large stallion, I was paranoid about leaving her unattended.  Ok, I'm always paranoid about leaving my mares unattended during foaling, but I was MORE paranoid this time.  The Problem was, it was March of 2010, and the foal's "due date" was July 2009.  Arden was bred to O in 2008, confirmed in foal by ultra sound, and rechecked in foal by ultra sound around 90 days.  In June of 2009, she appeared to be open, so I had the vet confirm that she had lost the foal.  He said "Yep, she's bred".  Uh oh!

Because Arden is a rather submissive horse, I had chosen to pasture her with the stallion, O, over the winter.  It was logistically easier on me, because they could share a round bale.  With one horse, the round bales often go bad before a single horse can finish them.  At this same time, we learned that we had a parasite problem.  Not just ANY parasite problem, but it appeared that we had an ivermectin resistance.  My horses were packing away the groceries, getting dewormed, and slowly losing weight.

Leah discovered this because her pansy boy began to show weird colic type symptoms.  A specialist diagnosed him, he was treated, and both Leah and I changed our deworming regimens.  Suddenly my horses began packing on the pounds!  I assumed that the parasite problem caused Arden to abort, and at some point in there she rebred.  I wasn't watching, because she had been confirmed bred.

So there I was, a bright March morning (before dawn) about to pass out.  My father was working early, so I asked him to check Arden every 2 hours.  If she was not eating, pacing, biting at her sides, sweating, or ANYthing, he was to wake me immediately.  At 11am he checked on her, tossed her some hay which she began scarfing down, and came back in.  At 1pm, Jae and I headed to the barn to refill water, and check on her again.  Arden was in the last stall on the left.  I saw her standing quietly, and thought to myself "wow, she's changed her shape, she has to go any time now" while I filled the first horse's water.

Then above the stall wall a pair of white tipped ears appeared.  I literally laughed out loud, and called to Jae.  The silly mare had foaled on her own despite my best attempts, and never showed a sign of discomfort!  At 4am her milk had been yellow and mostly clear!  (For those who don't know, it gets cloudy and white before they foal).

Arden was a perfect mother, and the baby was born mellow.  Nothing bothered him.  Because of his splash white markings I was convinced he was deaf - he was that calm.  It took 2 weeks before he proved to me that he really could hear.

Leah met the little guy within his first week of life.  One look at those baby blue eyes and every one fell in love with him.  And his personality!  Oh... he's a saint of a foal.  He never fussed, he only barely fought his training (the day we pulled him up to wean, he pulled back against being lead away from his dam).  He learned to bathe in 15 seconds... literally!  He learned to wear a halter in the time it took me to put it on him.  He loved any attention he could get.

When Leah mentioned that she was interested in him, I thought it couldn't be a better match.  This is the perfect "first baby" for any horse person.  For Leah, and her pony keeping situation he's tailor made.  He's sensible, he's goofy, and he's attractive!  Oh... and he's O's son.  Leah has a crush on O.

For months she's been mentioning that she'd like to have him, but had refused to commit.  I of course pointed out every good point of having a third horse... while reminding her that she was free to enjoy all of my horses with no commitments.  Leah's family around here; she's "Aunty Leah".  It's true, I'm an enabler.

This weekend, she finally admitted that she's a lost cause.  Of course, like all of my horses, I offer a trial, to make sure that the new family fits and works well.  So, there's still the chance she can change her mind.  The goal is to make the best match possible for people, horses, and the baby.  But I'm pretty sure that this little guy has found his forever home.

Now... we'll get to hear stories of Leah training her new baby!  She only thought she was done with the pony drama!

HA!

6 comments:

  1. Lucky Leah!! He's adorable and his temperament sounds excellent.

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  2. Yeah to Leah !!!! He is a gorgeous colt (so to be gelding) and she's going to have a blast with him !

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  3. Congrats to you both! What a sweet colt and how nice that you will still be able to watch him grow

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  4. Congrats on another great match!!

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  5. I tried to resist. Heather's right, though: only time will tell. But, it's looking good so far.

    The chance to own not only O's son, but a horse from Sig's bloodlines — OH YEAH. I'm more impressed with him every day. I have never seen him act even slightly fearful. That's a good trail horse waiting to happen.

    My "daylight" pony :-) Hmm, I think I feel a post coming on...

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  6. I tried to resist. Heather's right, though: only time will tell. But, it's looking good so far.

    The chance to own not only O's son, but a horse from Sig's bloodlines — OH YEAH. I'm more impressed with him every day. I have never seen him act even slightly fearful. That's a good trail horse waiting to happen.

    My "daylight" pony :-) Hmm, I think I feel a post coming on...

    ReplyDelete