In which the sun shines, and a big decision is made for Miss Fiddle

A variation on the standard "Ears at the Bottom" photo
Well, it's happened once again:  the weather has changed into the kind that makes me remember why I live in the Swamp.
Riding on Thursdays : one of the highlights of my week
The Usual Suspects have been a little thin-lipped lately in regards to the weather.  Our favorite swoon-worthy weather-guesser has been predicting doom, gloom, and regional misfortune for the last 8 months, and he's been close to the mark almost every time, especially when we combine Walter's forecasts with a standard Scotty Factor  to calculate the actual level of precipitation.  It's been a long winter.
"Look Ma!  No Gortex!"
And now (furiously knocking wood) it's Spring.  Springtime in the Swampland means continued rain (of course) but the rain is warmer, and is interspersed with "The Bluest Skies You've Ever Seen".
Parked outside our favorite lunch spot after riding.
Note that Dory's truck is pulling a "ghost trailer"!
Other things happen in Spring too:
This loose hair came from just her leg.  Her belly is even floofier!

I brush this horse every day in Spring, sometimes twice.
Hair waffles EVERYWHERE!
Duana and I took a lesson with Dory yesterday.  We've been continuing the work on collection and extension, and the horses are really getting the knack of it
Duana and Hana on the trail after our lesson

But Spring brings something else, in addition to blue skies and hair waffles:
The Dragon shows her stuff.  Photo by Lori Hudson.
Biggify the picture to really appreciate the fury of a hormonal mare.
Because Fee is on Regumate, she doesn't come into heat...but the extra light and all the other Springtime stuff makes her hormones get all funky, even with the meds.  

It's finally time to make this choice:  she's going to get spayed.  

The operation is not cheap (between $2000 and $3000 depending upon how she responds to things like the sedatives--if there are complications, the cost will be at the high end of the scale) but it's not going to get cheaper.  With the price of fuel rising steadily, it's a good time to stay home from a few rides and get this done.
This photo was taken last fall, when hormone levels were more level
Her surgery is scheduled for April 26th, and of course I'll be blogging about the whole process.

It's good, you know.  It's really quite good.


  1. Oh my, that is Fee ON regumate? I think you're on the right track with the spaying!

    She looks lovely in the lower photo though:)

    Keep us updated, we'll be sending out best healing thoughts your way on the 26th.

  2. I am so interested in following the spaying journey. It's pricey, but it seems like if it take the 'hormonal' factor out of things, it would be worth every penny and THEN some! It's unclear why more people don't spay horses that shouldn't be bred. My pony mare is one of those and if her attitude continues to be cranky, she may be following in Fiddle's footsteps. And I LOVE the the Dragon pic!!

  3. Hormonal mares can certainly be a problem. My last mare (I adored her and miss her terribly) was almost dangerous to ride in the early spring. And to make matters worse, she got worse as she got older (she died at 20). If this will make Fiddle a happier girl, the money spent will be well worth it. Keep us posted.


  4. Wow--Fee can be ornery. Great photo. You look like you're sitting her shenanigans really well. And I knew there was a reason I like geldings. But, of course, spaying Fee should produce the same result as gelding a stallion, right? Though I don't know. I've only owned a couple of mares in my life--and not for very long--though I've ridden many.

  5. Wow, that is quite an attitude. The spay will be an interesting story, it will be intriguing to see her attitude change.

    We have a very b*tchy mare at the barn, on regumate, spayed 2 years ago. It worked for awhile, but she started getting nasty again as is back on regumate. I think some if it is a bad horse/rider combo, I am not sure how the whole thing works out, but sending good thoughts to you and Fee for success!

  6. Goodness. Makes Rose's tantrums look minor! Very curious how the process goes so I'll be reading.

  7. I don't think I know anyone that has a spayed mare so I'll be following this with interest. Obviously you've put a lot of thought into this and the timing is never perfect --> so you pick the "best" time. :). She 'shore looks cranky!

  8. Had to scroll back through your older posts to find out about the spaying plans. I'm not able to biggefy your photos, but it's plain to see that Fiddle was not happy. at. all. Yowza!
    I have a friend who is a rancher that has his mares spayed, so he can still keep them as working horses on his ranch. He says it does make a huge difference when he rides mares and geldings together, so that the mares are better able to focus on work and not on their hormones and worrying about their personal space being invaded by the geldings or other mares.

    I sure hope it goes well for Fiddle and it improves her attitude, too.



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