Chilly Pepper Miracle - Mustang is sending out a big THANK YOU to LOWE'S, in Redding, CA. Once again, they have demonstrated their love and support for their community. As most of you know, not only do we specialize in the critical foals, but we are also involved with the local schools and are truly a "community rescue". It is not "our rescue", it is YOUR RESCUE, and Lowes stepped up AGAIN to do everything they could to help all of us make this a safe place for the animals at the rescue. We are blessed to belong to such a supportive and compassionate community and that is what saves these critters and lets so many children (and adults) come visit and enjoy them.
We are finding out that living so close to Mt. Lassen puts you in a whole different world weather wise. Looking out the window, the sky is a brilliant blue, and the trees are magnificent against the pristine, blue backdrop. The ice and snow are sparkling like tiny diamonds in the sunshine. It is absolutely beautiful. It is about 20 degrees and we are living in solid ice. The ice has been here since before Christmas, and although it is much better for their feet than the mud ,it is quite treacherous. In the areas where the horses spend the most time, they are walking on about a foot of packed ice.
Wow, I just glanced out the window in time to see Honey Bandit "sitting" on the ice. His back feet slipped out and he went down. However, the good news is that he got right back up and although favoring his back leg slightly, appears to be fine. Man, that is so very scary. It makes you panic until you know they are okay. We of course will watch him like a hawk, but he is walking around and eating just fine. There is always that little part of you that wants to stuff them in a stall and "protect them", but that is not natural for them. If we look at the mustangs in the wild, they travel in all kinds of weather, in all kinds of terrain. The horses have shelter, but make it very clear they would rather be out in the fresh air.
However, due to the severity of the weather we have been having, and the cold and unrelenting temperatures we have been experiencing at night, that little part of me that is so protective, is making sure that their shelters are much warmer than before. Matt and I decided that we would make the shelters warmer by adding more walls and wind breaks. The other morning it was said to be about 3 degrees with the wind chill. It's funny though, because it may warm up to mid 40's during the day and then it feels like spring. If you look out, you will see the critters scattered all over, soaking up whatever bits of sunlight come through.
So Matt and I headed down to Lowe's to get some wood for the shelters. Upon arrival, we saw a stack of culled lumber. We spoke with the manager and he gave us an additional (rather large) discount on the stack. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!! So yesterday Matt and I used our "new wood" and added a couple of much needed walls. We still have lots more to do, but this will make a huge difference in the wind chill. The stalls already stayed dry and free of snow, but this will be much nicer for the horses. As we get the funds, we will be adding additional walls to all the shelters. It is kind of interesting looking, as it is made up of mismatched pieces, but the horses don't care and we may not be fancy, but we will eventually be warm.
Honey Bandit is now hanging out with Chilly Pepper and Dakota, as he was getting quite pushy with the little ones. He actually "rolled" Romeo the other day. He ran right into him and knocked him down. Romeo is fine, but it is time for Honey Bandit to remember a few more of his manners. All are well and enjoying the bright and beautiful days.
I did have a recent phone call which was kind of upsetting. Basically the message was that I should not be trying to find a forever home for one of the horses up for adoption. Unfortunately, we are not a sanctuary. We have limited space and extremely limited funds. We are a "rehab and then re-home". We have to keep adopting out the babies or we won't have room for the criticals. Unfortunately this person did not offer to "sponsor" the horse, and just expected us to feed and pay for it the rest of it's life, and as much as I would love to, we simply cannot afford to do so. It also seems like people are forgetting we are in "crisis" as a horse loving nation. There were over 100 (not exact on the numbers) of wild mustangs rescued at the last second from being sent to slaughter in Nevada, just in the last couple of months. The Nevada Dept. of Ag has been continuing to round up the wild mustangs. People have stepped up to "save them from slaughter", but many do not realize that is just the first step. Most of these horses are still in temporary homes, and will need to be supported and fed and cared for the rest of their lives. Yet through all this, there are still sanctuaries out there breeding more unwanted babies. It is hard not to want to "save them all", but it isn't possible the way things are. It is heartbreaking on one hand when we find a home for these babies. After spending 24/7 and then pulling them back to life, it is extremely hard to let them go. But we simply cannot be available for those emergencies if we don't do what needs to be done, and that is find loving, safe, forever homes for these babies. This is what they deserve. So please, when you are passing judgement on the folks who "rescue and re-home", remember that a little piece of their heart leaves with every critter they save and move on, whether it is horses, cats, puppies or whatever. It is hard. If you are really concerned about a specific animal, there is always the possibility that you could sponsor that one, and help to save it even if you can't care for it yourself.
Take care and remember - LOWES is the answer to all your hardware needs. Tell 'em Honey Bandit sent you!
The photo with HB and the feeder is taken on about 1 foot of ice. Very deceptive as it seems like you are on solid ground until you fall through on those warm sunny afternoons. :) The horses don't seem to but we sure do. Guess God made them better at this outside winter stuff than we are.
Honey Bandit and the babies took the screens off the kitchen windows, so now they can "visit".
The pix of the car shows how much snow is really still out there. Love it when it's white. .
Bear (black rescued doberman) is starting to spend more time "hanging out" closer to Soldier. They still have some issues of "who owns mommy", so we are working with that slowly. The girls spend lots of time playing with him in the pen.
Just thought y'all might like to see what you have accomplished. We sure appreciate it! and so do the critters!!