Saturday, June 4, 2011

Drift and Fritz Make a Deal

Before Drift came, Fritz was the alpha of the gelding herd, and he likes mares too, although not to quite the same degree as Drift.  The moment Drift arrived, Fritz was immediately displaced as the alpha, and has been mostly spending his time with Fred.  Drift usually hangs out in his pasture near the mares in their pasture, and pretty much ignores the other geldings, except that he runs them off if they come between him and the mares.  He's happy out in the pasture by himself, so long as the mares are out in their pasture.

This morning I heard a number of squeal/bellows from the gelding pasture and went to look.  I found Drift in the "mare corner" - it's the corner of the geldings' pasture that is closest to the mares when they come up to their front pasture - but there was Fritz, too.  Drift and Fritz were standing very close together - mere inches apart, nose to tail, and clearly benefitting from mutual tail swishing to clear off the flies.  It seems that Fritz came up and proposed an accommodation, and Drift agreed.  It got very hot today, with a heat index well above 90F, so I brought my three in to put them in their stalls under the fans, hosing them off with cold water first and using a sweat scraper to remove excess water.  Dawn's used to this and appreciated the rinse off.  Drift is gradually getting used to the spraying, but is still a bit unsure about it.  Pie - it was his first time to be sprayed - was alarmed at first but quickly figured out that it didn't feel too bad.  Poor guy - he really seems to suffer in the heat (he's getting electrolytes daily now) and was sweated up and breathing hard, and I had to remove a green-headed fly that he couldn't reach from his sheath.

My saddle was reflocked on schedule - I picked it up this afternoon - it looks and feels great and tomorrow we'll see how it sits on the three horses - it's supposed to be cooler tomorrow and it should be a good day to ride.

7 comments:

  1. Well it's nice to see that Drift and Fritz came to an accord out there. (this time anyway) Ugh, a green headed fly? Ick! Sounds mean.

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  2. Glad to know the Boys have found a way to get along. Maybe Drift will be happier and more settled with a buddy.

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  3. Herd dynamics are always fascinating. Good to hear that Drift is willing to compromise his independence even if the main reason is for mutual fly and heat protection.

    ~Lisa

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  4. it is lovely to see your horses in all their beautiful summer coats. They look great

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  5. Glad Drift is learning to work with his herd mates!

    Your weather sounds similar to ours - the horses seem to have a hard time adjusting to the sudden 90F days - and rightly so!

    Hope your saddle fits well after being reflocked!

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  6. Good to hear they seem to have worked it out. Hope the saddle works out for all three and the weather cooperates for a few rides. It's too hot too early for this, the horses need time to get used to it like we do.

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  7. I find that it often takes 3 to 6 months before some horses truly find their place within the group. Maybe if Drift gets more integrated with the boys he'll lose some of his interest in the mares. We've had more than one gelding spend the first few months hanging out along the fence near the mares and without fail so far every single one of them has always moved on eventually. Some of them took awhile to move on from mare watching though.

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