So the news that I wanted to tell you about…
After searching for 8 months, I believe I’ve found a farm that will work well as a retirement home for Big Guy. Pony will continue her retirement at FR. When Z returns from training (projected June 1) she will stay at FR as I have access to an arena and trails, in order to continue her education.
In BG’s new situation, he is now pastured on 9 acres with two other horses (which comes to 1 horse per 3 acres which is accurate for the horse to support himself in the growing season on grass). The important thing I’ve learned with BG this past year is that he simply will not eat hay with the same gusto as he does grass. He is not that keen on round bale hay at all, eating even less of that. All of which caused weight loss.
During our visit to the new place, the grass had already greened out and was plentiful even though we are technically recovering from drought. Now that we’ve been hit with a week of rain (and floods!) that grass is really popping.
His permnament pasture mate is navicular so that gives him a horse friend that is not rambunctious. The third pasture mate is also a gelding and comes and goes, depending on if he is needed at another location for riding lessons.
The farm has very safe fencing reinforced with electric. It does use t-posts (which are uncapped) but BG is well aware of this type of fencing and electric. With the pasture being so large, I don’t see him challenging it even in play.
The shelter is a loafing shed big enough for 3-4, with an attached tack room; the feed room is their garage. Though there is no arena or roundpen, this is not needed with BG. The owner lives on the property and will be feeding twice a day, and haying during the winter (board goes up slightly during that time).
The location is about 20 miles, one way, from home though as officially “retired” I will be coming out only to check on him, do hooves, and maybe occasionally ride him in the pasture.
Pricewise it is the same that I am paying at FR, except with a pasture that will support him, which will decrease my feed bill. Also, the loafing shed is poop-scooped by the owner, so I won’t have to pay for anyone to do this (which I have in the past at FR). Because of the pasture, I won’t have to buy him summer hay, and winter hay is bought the owner with an increase of $25 a month to my bill.
Overall, this makes it more cost-effective, but more then that, less hassle which I really need in my turbulent personal life right now.