Young Simon

February 26, 2021

This photo popped up on my Facebook memories this morning from 10 years ago. It was right after I got Simon

2/26/11

Compared to a few months ago

Summer 2020

Review: Century Hay Ring

February 16, 2021

Forever hay problems.

I have hay barrels hung in trees for my ponies to eat out of. This requires filling them everyday. Which sometimes is fine but other times it is not fine. Time and mud are my biggest adversaries when it comes to filling the barrels. Mud tends to be plentiful in the winter (and sometimes the mud freezes into a topographical map like structure that is hard to walk through) and time tends to be very short. Especially if you like daylight while you schlep through that mud.

I also like my ponies to have free choice hay in the winter, but not too free choice.

To sum it up I do not want to spend the time wheel barrowing out hay everyday in the dark, a lot of the time its too muddy to get the wheel barrow near the hay barrels, and while I want them to have a constant supply of hay, I want to slow their ability to eat it.

You see the problem here?

Solution #1, I bought a hay ring. I got the Century Livestock Feeder hay ring for $280 locally, already assembled. Tractor Supply does sell these, and ships them, but to get them shipped, even shipped to the store, you have to pay a substantial shipping charge on top of the $300 price tag. So I found one locally at our Farm Choice store, and it was even priced a bit cheaper.

Design – It is made out of a polyethylene piping. This makes it light weight, about 100lbs, which I can roll around and flip back and forth easily on my own. It is 8 foot in diameter so fits the round bales I get just fine. And it comes with a 7 year limited warranty.

They have three different styles. I wanted the taller style which runs a bit more expensive, but I could not find that one locally, and well, the one I got is more affordable and was ready to roll out in my field that day.

Ok, so now I have a way to have hay out 24/7 but the two pig-faced ponies I have can just stand there and suck hay down non stop like giant hairy vacuums.

Solution #2, I already had a giant round bale hay net I found online the previous winter for $50 on sale. Ridiculous right? It has to have issues right? Well sort of. It fits over a bale just fine. And I get some pretty substantial round bales. But the holes are tiny. Like really tiny. 1.5 X 1.5. The first time I attempted to use it the poor ponies thought they were being tortured with food RIGHT THERE that they couldn’t get out. I would not buy holes this small for a round bale again. It was just too hard for them to work the hay through the holes. Eventually they managed to get some nose sized holes busted into it which equalized the game. It slowed them down, but allowed them access. It also prevents them from throwing hay all over the place, stopping waste and mess.

I am pretty sure I got this net.

I decided to try this set up a few different ways and see how it went.

Trial 1: I rolled the round bale into the net, and then flipped the ring over it. It was easy and pretty clean. It took about two and a half weeks for the ponies to finish it off.

The bale and net in action as described in Trial 1.

Trial 2: I just flipped the ring over the bale, naked of the net. It took about 2 weeks for the ponies to finish it off. It actually lasted longer than I expected and the ring did keep the waste and mess down. I was pleasantly surprised.

Trial 3: I saw a funny photo floating around on the interwebs of a pony standing in this same hay ring, inside a net attached to the bottom of the ring. This made me think, why don’t I attach the net to the bottom of the ring. Then you just flip the ring over the bale and it puts the net in place for you. I am all about making life easier.

This photo was plucked from the interwebs with no idea where it originated. Whoever you are – thanks for the idea, and your pony is hilarious, so thanks for the laugh too.

Unfortunately my net would not open quite wide about yo attach it to the ring. Boo. I suppose I’ll just have to continue to manually put the net on the bale like some chump. – really it’s not that bad.

I’ve been feeding with this net and ring combo now for a few bales and I am pretty darn happy with the purchase. I give it two thumbs up. 👍 👍

Frolicking 2/5/21

February 15, 2021

I keep the ponies in the smaller wooded lot most of the time. Especially in the winter. It saves the field from being tromped around when the grass is dead and it’s also much harder to get hay and thawed water out to that field.

Ponies still need a good run in the sun though. So I put them out in the field for a bit.

A quick video of Simon getting his roll on.

Here is a video of them stretching their legs.

Red Horse Training Open House – Obstacles

February 12, 2021

Back on January 30, Jenny and I took our horses to Amanda Brunson’s – Red Horse Training – Open House at her new facility in Louisa, Virginia. Its a really nice facility with plenty of stalls, bathroom, office, lots of pasture, and a good sized covered arena. A covered arena in the summer is amazing. I mean, its amazing year round, but in the summer to keep that horrid wicked beating sun off of you, super sweet.

For the open house Amanda had set up all sorts of obstacles in he covered arena that everyone could go through at their own pace. There was even a lovely princess sheep in a tutu and crown. Jenny and I tacked up and headed in to play.

Simon was pretty light footed when we arrived and ready to roll. So we spent a few minutes walking around, and then dove into a few of the obstacles that I knew would not be a problem. We went through the curtains, then we back back into them, and then walked forward and then stood under them.

Simon used to not like the big balls, but over the summer we played with one at Amanda’s game nights and Simon changed his mind and now he likes pushing he ball around.

The remote control car was a really thrill for both Simon and King.

Simon has never been ok with dragging things, and this event was no exception. Jenny helped out and leading King, drug the tire around. We started with Simon following it, then walking next to it, then moving ahead and walking next to Jenny with it following him. Improvement, but additional sessions are necessary.

The one obstacle Simon was completely floored by, was the tiny bubble blowing machine. I think it was the sound and not the bubbles that was getting him. King walked past it nicely several times letting Simon follow him, but it still remained scary. I suppose a tiny bubble blowing machine is going to be a spring time purchase for me.

These giant skeleton horses were super cool. They whinnied, or as Jenny put it, it started as a whinny, but then sounded like they ate a wolf.

This event was a lot of fun. And it sounds like Amanda has a great plan for the new facility. If you are in the area she is worth checking out.

Photos by Chloe Franges

Snow Ponies 2021

February 10, 2021

Just a few obligatory ponies in the snow photos.

Neville’s feathers
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