We’ve been hot and humid the last few days. All of our pastures have plentiful shade from both trees and shelters which is nice for the horses. They can graze in the shade around the wooded areas and stay cool. Of course some of them park themselves out in the sun and bake themselves which I don’t understand, but it seems to make them happy so we go with it. For those that have been here in person you understand when I say no horse has to be out in the hot sun unless they choose to be as our pastures are FULL of mature trees and wooded areas along with their shelters. That is why I am convinced that some of our residents truly like to bask out in the sun as they certainly have other options!
We’ve also had some unwelcome visitors in the barn in the last week. We’ve been wondering how it was possible for Cloudy and Olivia, our two barn cats, to be going through the enormous amounts of cat food. We were sure they were being assisted in the consumption of the food but we didn’t know what was helping them. On our nightly visit to tuck Mina and Jo, world’s cutest fainting goats, in their stall each night I spotted a possum trying to knock over the trash can where we keep the cat food. The can has one of those snap tight lids so it couldn’t get it open but no doubt it had already emptied out the food that was in the cat bowls.
I know many of you will disagree with this but the possum was quickly dispatched to a place where he/she can eat cat food for eternity and be happy. Trapping and relocating does no good as they just come back to the barn (we’ve tried this approach in the past). I have a live and let live philosophy when it comes to wildlife except when they decide they are comfortable entering the barn. Unfortunately nothing good ever comes from that and we end it quickly.
We thought we had the problem solved and then on another nightly visit to tuck in the fainting goats we heard Bear the schipperke causing a ruckus with something. Jason investigates behind the barn and Bear had caught and seriously injured another possum. We couldn’t let the possum lay there in agony and suffer until he passed on and Bear did not seem inclined to finish the job he had started. Yet again we had the unhappy job of dispatching this possum as well. It was the only humane thing to do in the situation.
We definitely thought we were finished with the cat food stealers at this point. Last night we were tucking the fainting goats in as usual and I hear one of the cats hissing and growling in my tack room (where the cat food bowls are kept). I investigate and Cloudy is extremely unhappy over the raccoon eating his food. Jason and I were very unhappy about this but had no choice about sending Ms. Coon on to greener pastures. To say that Jason and I were very glum and melancholy as we went to bed would be an understatement. We have NEVER had this type of problem with animals in the barn, this is usually more of an every other year it happens type of thing. Hopefully we’re done with dealing with barn visitors for at least a year or two.
Now that I’ve made us sound like terribly hard people to get along with I’ll post some pictures of the horses!
Bridget and Traveller grazing quietly (Lexi is behind Traveller)