This week we were able to sell three bucking horses that didn’t want to buck to some great people. I went through a lot of emotions when they headed for their new home. I have to admit that the bucking horses are not my passion they are my husbands. I prefer horse shows over rodeo. With that said I do love it in my own little way. I get to thank the bucking horses for introducing my husband to me and then making sure that our paths crossed again for good. We spend a lot of time taking care of the herd, planning which studs to bred to which mares and I enjoy watching the colts that we raise bucking and it’s pretty special to see them in the pasture everyday playing.
Before each foal even hits the ground we have big hopes for their future and imagine them as the next great bucking horse. We have already spent lots of time deliberating what will make the best cross between mares and stallions and we have waited the long time for them to arrive. Then, when they hit the ground it is so exciting because then the dreaming of their future is even more vivid because now we get to know them and their little personality, their markings and we get a real picture of what they will look like when they in the arena double footing each time. Our hearts break with them when it’s time to wean them and they call for their mothers, we spend the time worming and taking care of them and then it’s finally time to try them out! We buck them with a dummy first and although the dummy doesn’t always give you a true picture of what they will be like with a rider it gives us a pretty good idea of if they want to be a bucking horse or not.
As with any athlete not everyone is going to make it. Just because you are suppose to be something doesn’t mean that you are going to be that. We know that each year their will be a few that just don’t have what it takes. That can be pretty disappointing we had high hopes and they just didn’t want to. So while that dream ends we still care about them and it has been really exciting because we have started finding new homes for them as working horses. We have kept one name George and he is making a great hand as a ranch horse. We had another that went to California and is making a good Eventing prospect. And this week three left to start their career as ranch horses.
It was interesting though when they left the driveway I had alot of feelings. One feeling was sadness that they weren’t going to live up to the dream that I had for them as a great bucking horses but, with that came excitement because I know that they will be loved in their new home just as much if not more then what they were at our house and they have a chance to excel in a new line of work. I was a little anxious because I really hope that they are good citizens and live up to the great ranch horse I know they can be.
Lot’s of people believe that ranchers and livestock producers don’t care about their animals but they would be completely wrong. We spend so much time taking care of them, planning for them to be successful in their lives and then when that doesn’t work we find something else that they might succeed in. Now, yes I’m sure that some people really don’t care. It’s hard to believe because we are definitely not out here for the pay. I’m pretty sure we live below the poverty line. We aren’t here for the hours because we put in a lot more then what we would at a nine to five, I heard the other day a horse trainer saying. “I work 16hours a day to keep from working 8.” Which is a very accurate description! We do it because we love it. We love working with our animals everyday. We love planning and dreaming for them before they are even born.
So, although my dreams for these guys had to change I am so excited to see the great horses that they become. I don’t think that I could have asked for a better family to have given them a chance and I’m pretty sure/hopefully that I will get lots of updates! With the sale of them we are able to keep improving our program and let me tell you the future is not only bright for them it is also bright for their siblings and pasture mates that really did want to get it on with the dummy.
Sometimes the dream might look different then what you had envisioned in the first place but then when you look back it might have taken a little different path then what you had planned but the end goal is still the same. In the end we hope that every horse that we raise is able to reach it’s best potential and has a good life. I can’t imagine a better life for a horse then as a ranch horse with a family that has two little girls! The dream of raising great bucking horses is still alive when a majority of the horses make it and the handful of the ones that don’t are able to still go on and be loved horse as a riding horse I would say the dream is alive and thriving. Maybe the dream doesn’t change it’s just our vision of how we get there…