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darlin

Spirea




She’s two and a half now. We bought her grandma as a weanling at the first miniature horse sale and show we ever attended, and saw her grandpa go through for way more than we could ever afford. Her mom was born after what was by our reckoning a 16 month pregnancy, and a remembered “oops, I did have him in the same area that one time”  about the time we finally had a filly on the ground.


2004 – We bought Mandy back for the second time after her latest owner had passed away. She was thin, but with a belly as big as a house. She had been bred to an appaloosa stallion who pushed the 38” mark. I’d always loved his color, and his background breeding as a grandson of both Chianti and Paul Bunyan. This gave me a chance on another cross with our foundation stallion on those lines.

In late March, we had four mares in the foaling pen by the house. On Wednesday night, we had a little buckskin maiden mare who was obviously thinking about delivering, but she didn’t seem to know what to do. She’d lie down, roll, get up, bite at her flanks, paw a little, and wander off. We had just about given up on watching her from the bedroom window when Mandy, then a ten-year old with 4 babies behind her, walked loosely up to the younger mare, touched noses, and I swear snorted “watch, this is how it’s done.”
She stepped into the foaling shed, and with a grunt, threw herself on the straw. One push with stiffened back legs, and her water broke. DH and I took off at a run through the bedroom to the back room, grabbed the foaling kit, ran out the back door and across the back yard to the gate. In that space of time, she had about half the job done. A few more pushes, and this girl with the long long legs was ready to meet the world. Momma took time to rest, and let us up clean her baby up, and the first meal was delivered quickly. We usually milk a little off mom to check that everything is working, and feed that to the baby, so that our babies are as fully imprinted on us as we can get them. Many pictures of the process are available at http://wynnsfollymini.myhosting.net/albums/Foals2004/Index1.htm
followed by pictures from the other foalings of the year. It is rather obvious that Spirea was baby #1 of that year. When things go well, we also have more leisure time to take those wet baby pictures.
The other things about appaloosa colors is that they often develop their color over time, and Spirea is certainly doing so. As you can see, her small baby-sized blanket is growing out spots all over. She is a lovely girl, but a little more spirited than the average mini, causing us to wonder about her daddy’s breeding. The farm where he was bred had a slight reputation for having some hackneys in the back pasture, and she sure moves like a high-stepping hackney, doesn’t like to stand still, and does not understand the concept of backing up. Its forward or else with her.  This picture was taken at a fun show down at the nearest riding club arena. We haven't done that much with her, and had maybe taken her off the farm once before. This was the first trip in the new trailer, including finding out that the brakes were working a little too good.  When she got tired of standing tied by herself a the trailer, she discovered that she could fling herself on the ground to get attention.

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