Monday, December 13, 2010

Colder Than . . .

Yesterday was one of those days when the temperatures fell from the upper 20sF into the upper teens by the end of the day.  That wasn't so bad, except that the wind was steadily blowing at 25-30 mph with gusts to 45mph.  That made things pretty nippy.  Dawn, despite her very heavy turnout blanket with the insulated neck (only the best for the "fragile flower", as we sometimes call her) was ready to give up and come in by 8:30 a.m. after being out for about 2 hours.  Pie and the others stayed out until about 11 a.m. We've had much colder weather than this, often for a week or more at a time, and this cold snap is supposed to be easing up by tomorrow afternoon, so I'm grateful for that.

This morning things were a bit better than expected - the temperatures was about 5F with a wind chill of about -10 - they had expected -20.  At those temperatures, Dawn wouldn't have been comfortable even for a short time, so I gave her a 10-minute hand walk in the aisle of the barn.  She didn't seem too upset about not going out - I always let her stick her head out the barn door so she can see for herself what things are like. One of the downsides with our facility is that when the horses are in the barn due to the weather - our dry lots and pastures have no shelter and they're very exposed to the wind - or ice, there's no indoor to turn them out in, so hand-walking's your only option.  Pie was able to go out for a few minutes and probably would have stayed out a bit longer but I wanted to head home after cleaning my stalls.  I'll turn him out at noon for a bit if things warm up.  Depending on how things are, Dawn might go out for a minute then or else get another hand walk.

(I added to the overview post on equine digestion (see sidebar) a link to this article, which has beautiful illustrations of the equine digestive system and how the various organs are placed relative to one another.)


  1. So much for getting a breather after the last brutal winter. At least these cold periods aren't hanging around for days and days on end.

    I hope you guys warm up soon, and not only because what you've got is headed straight my way.

  2. Temps are dropping here agian to! its supposed to snow by the end of the week, and drop to around -18deg C.

    So we`ll see.

  3. OK temps here--for now, but it's supposed to drop to the 20's tomorrow. Guess I need to get the outdoor things done today if I can.

    Trouble it, after the heavy rains, we are mudded in again. Times like this an indoor facility would be awfully nice...but that still wouldn't help with the yard work!

    Hope the cold doesn't last long. It sounds pretty intimidating.

  4. Brrrrr - when that wind blows, it's bitter! Luckily, we have a nice warm spell and sun. Maybe that'll come your way!

    Thanks for all of the great 'educational' posts. I learn so much from you. I truly appreciate the time you take to share your expertise and research.

  5. Brrrr. I'm like Dreaming, I hate to tell you but it will be 62 degrees today in Corrales, NM where we live.

    Hang in there.


  6. I think just like with people, some horses have a higher tolerance for the cold than others. My gray mare and her brother are always wanting their blankets on and to stay inside, but my white colt absolutely will not keep his blanket on and he'll stand out in the cold wind forever, just having a blast. I'm sure Dawn really appreciates having you listen to her about not wanting to be out too long in this weather! :)

  7. Yes, we are having the same weather..I seem to get what you get a day later. Brrrr!
    Laz chose to stay outside (when he has access to shelter/stall) in the wet snow and the BO said he was shivering by the time she MADE him go in his stall. So odd...
    Today, they got winter coats and are running around playing in snow.
    Poor Dawn, I relate to her :)

  8. I find it annoying to deal with this rain and gusty winds we've been having. I think I'd rather have snow instead of this mud.

    Our herd insisted on going out yesterday in the rain, so their waaterproof blankets went on and out they went. It doesn't seem to bother them. We have 3 run in shelters but do you think they would use them, even with the hay inside. Nope. Stayed out in the rain like a bunch of turkeys getting soaked. I'll never figure them out!

  9. I have the same problems here, and I am quite cautious about letting them out in bad conditions since we lost a horse to a shoulder fracture when he slipped on ice that was hidden under snow. An indoor arena is very, very nice to have in winter--but I don't have close enough access to one either.

  10. Kate, sorry that you are getting some terribly cold weather (like other commenters, I think it is coming our way to the east coast also)- but you do find some great ways to do interesting things with Pie and Dawn despite the conditions. Hope the bitter cold doesn't last too long!


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