Thursday, June 9, 2011

Stocking up on horse supplies

There’s a lot more “stuff” to get than I remembered.

About 6 months after I lost Cre I really didn’t think I’d be getting back into horses anytime soon.  Having a garage full of horse supplies was a constant reminder and wasn’t doing anyone any good.  I was reading the paper one day when I saw an article on the The Grace Foundation and learned about their activities rescuing horses.  I decided that donating my tack and blankets and other assorted horse supplies would be a great idea and one that would benefit so many more than if I’d just put it all on Craigslist. 

Little did I realize two years later I’d need to be purchasing a lot of it all over again.  Oops.

I try to do this all on a budget, and not just to keep Ken happy (though that is very important, of course)!  Every penny saved on supplies is a penny we can spend elsewhere (or gasp! - save).

So the fun of shopping began even before I brought Blu home and continues.  I’ve reacquainted myself with Christensens Saddlery in Loomis, Douglas Ranch Supply in Granite Bay and a few Internet stores like and Schneider Saddlery and a really nice one for custom sheets and blankets and such - Radon.  It still surprises me how many things a show horse “needs.”  Take blankets, for example.  I have gotten him a winter blanket that has a neck cover attached.  It isn’t exactly a subtle color pattern, but it’ll keep him warm.

At least he's toasty warm!  :-)

I really should have two heavy blankets so I can wash one while he’s wearing the second.  But that will have to wait.  The weather is taking forever to change so while I thought I needed to get him a lightweight blanket two months ago, turns out he still isn’t wearing it, so it could have waited.

But he has used his cooler.  It’s a blanket for use when he’s wet but the weather isn’t warm enough to let him “air-dry.”  A cooler is kind of like having a robe after you get out of the shower.  And he's briefly used his fly sheet.  It’s a very thin, mesh (like a screen) blanket that keeps the flies off when it’s really hot out and keeps his hair from getting sun bleached.  That’s just for starters. 

Since he’s a show horse I needed to get him a super lightweight sheet (a "Sleezy") for keeping him clean at shows.   

Here’s a picture of his show blanket from Radon in Equus Farm’s green and tan colors.

And I’ve gotten him a long fly mask so I can help keep the flies out of his eyes (Cre’s eyes got infected from flies years ago and the meds were messy ointments so I want to avoid that with Blu) and keep his nose from getting another sunburn.  I don’t know what a wild horse would do to keep from getting sunburned, other than to suffer with a peeling nose – but since Blu isn’t wild he doesn’t have to suffer.  That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!

Lets see, I’ve also gotten some Vetrolin medicated spray since all horses get cuts and scrapes and it’ll help him heal.  And a groom box with all the brushes, hoof picks, and such that I need for now.  And a groom bag for shows.  It’s got a shoulder strap that makes it easier to carry the show grooming supplies to the ring for last minute touch ups.

I bought the groom box and brushes before I’d even met Blu and I find it a funny coincidence that it’s all in BLUE.  Most of Blu's things are in blue if possible.  Though Equus Farm’s colors are green and beige and maroon, so some of his things (like his show blanket) are in those colors.

My last major purchase at this point is a show saddle.  (Though I never had one before, so getting one won’t be a replacement.)  For that purchase I’m trying HARD to buy used.  And for that I’m putting as many feelers out as I can in case anyone knows anyone with a western show saddle they need/want to sell.  If I can find a used one (wide or flex-tree, ¾ or 7/8 rigging, 16” seat, light oil) I’d love it.  If not, I’ll eventually have to shop for new.  I’ll need it by next spring at the latest.  I will make due with a borrowed saddle for the August show if I don’t have one by then.  And there’s always Cowboy Christmas in Vegas!

Re-supplying for horse ownership isn’t cheap.  I am happy I donated my things before, but really…ouch. 

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