Very sad day yesterday 3 crossed the rainbow bridge on our farm
Next to having my father die suddenly 7 1/2 years ago, yesterday had to be the hardest day I have had to endure. We euthanized 2 beloved horses and our very old dog.
Maddy was our 10 year old TB broodmare. She was a Seattle Slew granddaughter. We got her as a very scared, 6 year old (we were her 4th home at that point). Her knee on her front left had been broken as a yearling, and not properly cared for, and her "good" leg just finally was not going to hold up anymore from compensating. I knew last year when she gave us a wonderful filly that this would be her last baby and her last year. We had to sedate her right to the ground in order to trim her. Always a hard keeper, she also hid her foals inside of herself somewhere until the bitter end. Many times I questioned if she was in fact in foal. I am thankful for her two foals she gave us. One is a yearling the other a 3 year old.
We gave her this year just to "be" and she was in a pasture with two of our other mares with babies, so she "had" babies for one last summer. Her registered name was "Call me Happy" and yet she had the most mournful whinny I had ever heard on a horse. While her eyes were bright, there was always this undercurrent of sadness. When we first got her you could not pat her on the next b/c her eyes would nearly pop out of her head. She hid at the back of her stall, she would not take treats. She blossomed here but always remained a shy horse.
As I lead her out of the barn she let out one more mournful whinny and my mares answered. I nearly lost it. She was good up to the end. I had let her tail grow very long and we cut it to make a rememberance bracelet.
Next came our ancient dog. We don't know how old he was he was just ancient. He was given to us when he was 10-11. We had him 3+ years. He was a rescue who had spent most of his previous life chained out-chewing rocks to stave off boredom. he had free run of our farm. He was so afraid of t-storms we used to have to sedate him, thankfully he went deaf last year. He had terrible skin allergies, his hips started to go and he had some major mental health issues but he was a good old coot. Even the cats knew not to be afraid of him. Honestly he was the most clueless dog I have ever met-he would walk right under the horses as if they were not there. He will be missed.
The hardest to lose was my beloved Clydesdale, Doc. Doc was a heart horse to me. Imagine all 5'5" of me riding something larger than our truck. Before my shoulder got so shot, I used to be able to jump on him bareback from our two step mounting block. If that did not work, we just stood him next to the truck and mounted him from our tailgate. As brave as he was, his only "fault" which we teased him about, was the fact that he hated walking by standing corn when it russled in the wind. City boy! Despite his size he was kind and always knew, even when he went blind, to stay in his own space.
He came to us from the NYPD. He was 18.3 and truly the definition of gentle giant. He had developed cancer of the eyes. We removed his right eye last winter and the cancer in the left just exploded and invaded his bone before we could remove that eye.
Imagine a 2300 pound baby, that was Doc. Gentle to the end and he and I were so bonded. As I walked him up the driveway to his final resting place my younger stallion whinnied to him-he used to be in with Miracle and my other geldings. Doc, who very, very rarely whinnies (except at parades for some reason) let out this big whinny. I started to cry. We buried him on the other side of my older stallion's area and near his turnout buddies.
We are planting a mighty oak near his grave and two fruit bearing trees near Maddy and Cymba's grave(we buried them together). I know they are pain free now and having a great time. Never in my life did I think I would be putting down 3 animals in one day. But in hindsight it was the best way to do it. They will be so missed and never forgotten.