Friday, January 03, 2014

The Hose is in the Bathtub

The Cold Comes In

I did not take any pictures of the snow today. I was outside long enough without adding to my body chill.

We had somewhere between 8-10 inches, depending on where I measured it. It's hard to tell with the drifting, but on top of the garbage can shed it was about 9 inches deep.

When I went out last night near midnight, I shoveled my way to the barn and by 8 AM, the path was filled with another 4-5 inches of snow. But, the path was still visible, so the snow was not overwhelmingly heavy.

The Boys seemed to think standing outside in the storm was preferable to sheltering in the barn. They had several inches of snow on their blankets and heads when I went out for late feed. I can't quite figure out the rationale for staying outside in the miserable weather, but I guess they have some sort of horse logic at work. They were quite happy to come in for grain and hay, though. Tonight, I am going to soak their feed in warm water just to give them some extra fluids and warm tummies.

Which brings me to the hose. I have one of those coil hoses that I use when the regular hose to the water trough freezes. With below freezing temperatures all day and even colder temps at night, I really need it. Usually, I store it on the back porch where it's generally warm enough to keep the hose from freezing up. I drain it after use, but it's hard to get all the water out. Tonight, though, with REALLY cold weather, I decided to bring the hose into the house. Where better to keep it than in the bathtub? It fits nicely and adds a touch of colorful--green--decor to the room. As long as the frost free water spigot in the barn doesn't freeze up where it leaks a little, we'll be fine. I do have a hair dryer to use in case of spigot emergency, however.

Water, is, of course, super important to the horses this time of year. I have a water heater in the trough, so the Boys have de-iced water to drink. So far, they seem to be drinking a good amount during the day, so that's a big plus. My vet posted a note on Facebook today suggesting both a wet feed and the addition of some electrolytes. I think I have some in the barn, but if not, just the wet feed will do.

This winter's weather is certainly erratic, and it's a bit worrisome. Times like this I really appreciate having the horses in the backyard where I can monitor them and switch blankets/sheets as need be. It's supposed to be cold again tomorrow, then warm up for Sunday, stay that way for a few days and then hit us again with another cold spell around Wednesday.

Guess I'll be busy.


  1. I can't figure out how they think either. Last night Donnie,Dust and Mellon pushed through the gate and took off for a tour around the farm. They didn't want to come in even though all the horses in the barn were calling for them. They finally came in around seven. Tonight they all came in with no trouble and had a nice warm mash. They should have some sense it was going to snow and have freezing temps. We should have -11 tonight. Stay warm.

  2. What a benefit to have them in your backyard so you can feed just as you think it should be done and blanket them properly! If that spigot freezes maybe you could immerse it in very hot water from your kitchen.

    We are having a very pretty snow here today, though not nearly as much as you have had. This is a semi arid climate after all, despite the 1000 year flood in September.

    Now, as to the logic of staying outside in the snow. I went for a run this morning in 21 F (-6C) weather and I loved every minute of it! Because... I was properly dressed! Maybe the horses at some level appreciate the beauty of snow and clearly you have dressed them properly or they would stay inside.

  3. was thinking about you, having been looking at the BBC news about your weather. glad you're all ok. I like to feed sugarbeet (unmolassed, of course!) when it's like this, to keep the liquid up.. and i wrap water buckets in old rugs to stop them freezing in the stable! at least you don't have our chore of moving water in containers from home to yard, that is seriously hard work and so far (touching wood!) not been necessary this winter

  4. i meant to say, home to yard being 5 miles....