First of all, there is a crapton of media in this post. I probably could have broken it up into two, but… happy Monday.
Second of all, Sadie is still over a month away from having her Diarado foal and she already looks like she’s going to explode. Laken’s milk test says that she’s gonna have hers within the next couple days, so BABIES ARE COMING.
Third of all, I haven’t seen Presto since last September, and he’s definitely transitioned from foal to baby horse in that time. He is lanky and long and has way more leg than he knows what to do with at the moment. One of the first things I did was string test him, since he’s almost a year old now and those tests should start being pretty accurate. They were totally accurate with Sadie, anyway, far more so than the general “add two hands to yearling height” method. I never believed her string tests, but lo and behold if she didn’t grow to exactly the height they predicted. So I grabbed some twine and a tape measure and decided to just go ahead and use the two methods that had predicted Sadie’s height so accurately. First, the measurement from the coronary band up to the middle of the knee (idea being that however many inches this is, that’s their final height – so like 16.25″ would be 16.1h, 16.5″ would be 16.2h, 16.75″ would be 16.3h, etc)…
I checked that 3 times to make sure I was definitely going from the right place to the right place, and yeah… it’s definitely 17″.
Then I did the other method, taking his elbow to ergot measurement, doubling it, and adding four. That got us this:
Yep, 17 again. They both agree. I was kinda hoping for more like 16.2h, but I guess Sadie likes to throw her elephant height. I did stick him and he’s only 14.2h, so if you use the “add two hands to yearling height” method, then that’s 16.2h. Granted, Sadie herself was 14h at yearling height and ended up 17h by 6 years old. It seems to be a slow-growing family. I guess time will tell! Either way, he’s definitely on track for 16.2h to 17h.
I banged his little tail, which really was just taking about 1″ of gross yellow ends off to make it sorta even, and then chopped off his mane. Long mane on scrawny yearling neck just is not at all attractive, trust me.
He was also really really really incredibly hairy.
I’m not sure I’ve seen a coat like that outside of a shetland or mini. It was thick, it was plush, and it was long. He literally had dreadlocks behind his elbows. I couldn’t tell how much of him was hair. I was mostly thinking “Is his head really that blocky or is it hair? I don’t remember it looking like that???”. I really didn’t want to body clip him, but even after an hour of grooming not much hair had come off. And it was 85 degrees. He was hot underneath all that. So we dragged him into the barn and sheared him like a sheep.
This is now the second body clip this horse has gotten in his lifetime. Apparently I should just get used to clipping all the time, because between him and Henry I think it’s going to be constant. Presto didn’t really mind the clipping part at all, but every few minutes he’d start screaming for his friends (being inside the barn alone is terrifying, y’all) and swing himself around. He gave up for a while, and then by the time I was on his legs he started losing his patience a lot more, so he got to keep his little legwarmers from the knee/hock down and his face hair because I don’t need to die over this, thanks.
He was feeling pretty fancy on his way back out, though, and all the mares had to come running over to check out his hair cut. He was more than happy to show it off.
His little QH friend Murphy was pretty fascinated by how we transformed his yak friend into a sleek giraffe.
We left him alone for the afternoon (he was quite done with me by this point, poor kid) and then got him back out that evening to take some pictures.
He basically went straight to the fenceline to trot back and forth in front of everyone in the paddocks.
Then he realized there was a really fun water puddle and he proceeded to first leap over it a couple times…
And then splash and stomp his way through it.
Then he had to take a few (screaming) victory laps.
Then we stuck Murphy out with him so they could be idiots together.
The next morning, of course, a cold front blew through. What was only supposed to be mid to upper sixties turned into mid 50’s with a ridiculous wind, so I dug through the barn to find an old pony blanket. I tossed it on him, let him run a few angry laps of his paddock, and then adjusted everything.
He was not a fan. At all. I sat up on the fence to watch him for a while and he mostly just stood there and glared at me. Every few minutes he’d reach down and try to pull it off, then Murphy would come up and pull on a strap. That just made Presto stand there looking mad again. Henny’s mare glare ain’t got nothing on Presto’s. I have a feeling he’ll be looking at me like that a lot.
Luckily (I guess?) It’ll be back up in the mid-upper 80’s by Wednesday, so he only has to tolerate the blanket for a couple days.
The tentative plan is that he’ll get gelded this week, and then I’ll come pick him up on my way back from Texas Rose at the end of the month. It’s not really on the way at all, but it just adds like 4 hours of extra journey instead of a whole extra 10-hour round trip, and he’ll have Henry in the trailer for.. um… emotional support?
So really, as long as all goes according to plan, just a few more weeks and he’ll be home! Then I can start torturing him on a daily basis. Poor kid.