This weekend was an exciting and very busy weekend for us. We moved the first group of horses to the new farm. The Big Boys made the trip together on Saturday and they travelled in style on a big, shiny semi. We wanted them to have no period of separation at all to minimize stress and it seems to have worked. The day went better than I would have ever predicted.
Our shipper pulled up at 10am sharp, and by 11:20am the boys were grazing in their new pasture. It did not even take an hour and half to get all of the doors open, the ramp down on the trailer and the stalls configured to get ready to start loading horses, get everyone loaded, close all the doors on the trailer and put the ramp up, drive to the new farm, open all the doors up and get the ramp down to prepare to unload horses, and finally unload everyone off the trailer.
I was so proud of my boys yesterday. Every single one of them just walked right on the trailer without a moment of hesitation, backed into their stalls, and stood quietly while we continued loading horses. It has been a few years since a lot of them have been on a trailer for any reason, so we really had no idea what to expect from some of them.
Chance was the first horse on the trailer. I picked him because he is so quiet and always a gentleman and I knew he would get us started off on a good note. He did not let me down as he marched up the ramp and onto the trailer. All of the boys followed his lead.
Once everyone was loaded, the ramp was up and all of the doors were closed the boys hit the road. They had a short 30 minute ride to the new farm and they unloaded as quietly as they loaded. I thought I was going to have the opportunity to get some fabulous action shots and video as they ran around exploring their new digs. By the time everyone was unloaded and I turned my camera on they were grazing – and they never stopped grazing. I did not get one single action shot! Given that the Big Boys are so active anyway we were fully prepared for them to be a little worked up and crazy but I am certainly not unhappy that they acted like it was just another day and nothing was all that unusual.
We hung around for a few hours waiting for the big panic to come but it never happened. I left after about five hours and Jason stayed until almost 8pm. The boys had a couple of night checks by our help after Jason left and the only reports we received were that they were grazing quietly. Jason was at the farm bright and early this morning and reported that the boys were grazing happily when he drove up. They ate their breakfast and went back to grazing. When I spoke to Jason at noon today he said they were still just as calm and quiet as they could be.
Needless to say we are more than thrilled with the uneventful move!
Ivan walking quietly onto the trailer
Elfin was the last horse to load
Jeff, our shipper, sweeping off the ramp and preparing to close everything up on the trailer
Homer and Chance quietly hanging out; note Homer’s signature crossed legs in the back. I often see him do that when he is resting a leg.
Hemi and Chance