Happy New Year! Not sure I’m talking to anyone here yet, but I’m committed to writing a blog a week with potentially useful information on things I know, love and enjoy the most: writing and horses. I’ve been writing and editing much longer than I’ve had horses, but as I step into my 10th year with equine friends, I’m here to say I’ve been through more than many people who have owned horses all their lives! The spooky, anxious, bolting horse; the beautiful buckskin who never overcame his fear of trailers over 2 1/2 years and 1,000 loading sessions; the failure-to-disclose-navicular-in-both-front-feet-purchase; the buddy sour QH who tore up the ground if I moved one horse out of sight for five minutes; the gorgeous but ringbone lame paint; and much more. Noble,[right photo] my cherished, soon-to-be 27-year-old Thoroughbred, has taught me how to ride (by trial and error and several bruised ribs being thrown off a 16h horse), load, groom, tack, treat and wrap a hoof, identify rainrot, Lyme disease, EPM, remove ticks, put on boots (we’ve been through many brands and styles to get this right), administer paste by mouth, measure for his winter jacket and much, much more. He is in excellent condition, blind on the right since age 5, and ready to trail ride any day any time. His daily mash includes:
- sweet feed
- senior feed
- continuous wormer
- Horseshoer’s Secret
- Cosamin ASU
Boaz [lower right photo] is 19, a former jumper/eventer whose heart was always on the trail, according to his owner. He moved here Sept. 11, 2016, and is in excellent health as well. Over winter we’re giving him Horseshoer’s Secret and 2x week Hoof Heal treatments so hopefully he won’t need shoes in the spring. His mash is just a couple cups of senior feed and the Horseshoer’s Secret. When Noble came to me 300 pounds underweight with busted hooves, he responded very, very well at the 6-month mark of Horseshoer’s Secret. We hope the same for Boaz, as he’s always been in front shoes except winter.
WRITING TIP: Its vs. it’s. Every time you see or use “it’s” you should be able to replace it with “it is” and get the same meaning, but I see apostrophes all over the place inappropriately. “We plan to go when it’s warm outside.” [We plan to go when it is warm outside.] By contrast ~ “I took down the saddle and it’s matching bridle for the ride.” [I took down the saddle and it is matching bridle for the ride.] Well, that second one obviously does not call for an apostrophe. Now that you are alert to its and it’s (it is), you’ll find it’s misused all the time. Except not by you!