Long time no write, not by choice. But I wanted to just give a quick update on the CatDogHorse crew.
Malcolm is still doing great. His motor never stops running and those feet of his never stop kneading. Such a lovebug!
Inara just celebrated her 11th birthday yesterday! 11! How does that even happen? She did spend part of her celebration time at the vet getting a bump checked out, but fortunately it was just a lipoma so nothing to worry about. She’s healthy as a horse!
Renata is doing amazingly well. We are working on getting her to wear a saddle and bridle while lunging. She is sassy sometimes (which is just fine!), but she’s learning to settle in and go pretty quietly and respond to voice cues. She and I are learning together, and it’s wonderful!
I managed to get my hand badly broken (and a hoofprint on my stomach!) when Renata playfully kicked out about 6 weeks ago. She broke the 5th metacarpal so badly that I had to go to three surgeons to find one who could fix it. I now have 2 pins, a plate, and screws. Recovery is very slow going and it’s still painful and has VERY limited mobility. Very frustrating. But I’m doing what I can. So that’s why there haven’t been updates for 6 weeks! I promise to try to do better!
Renata’s story is a long one, and just beginning. I’ll speak of her training progress in the blog from time to time, but she has a compelling story that deserves to be told. So let’s start at the beginning, shall we?
February 19, 2016: My friend, K, went to the local meat-buyer’s auction down in Amish Country. You can find some good horses there, and she was not intending to pick up a “project.” However, fate laughs at us sometimes, doesn’t it?
K posted this picture on her Facebook page:
I saw it and my heart broke. Without really thinking, I posted, “I’m halfway tempted to tell you to pull her.” K quickly texted me and said she’d be going up for bid soon, was I serious about pulling her?
Oh man. I couldn’t afford a horse. Heck, I’d just started riding again recently after nearly two decades away from it. What the heck did I know about owning a horse? Especially a horse as beat up as this one was?
But we quickly texted back and forth figuring out the logistics, and then decided to pull her, fix her up, and sell her. I told K what I could afford to buy her for, and then held my breath.
We got her. Holy crap, I was kind of a horse owner. A dream come true, for sure, but this horse wasn’t ever what I’d pictured.
K estimated her to be around 7-8 years old. We needed a name. A strong name. I let my fingers do the walking via Google and suggested a few names, one of them being Renata. Renata meant reborn. It was perfect. So this beat up mare got her fateful name and a new lease on life.
K got her home and I got my first full body shot of our project. She was stunning. Beat up and underweight, but gorgeous. And BIG.
Rennie with K
Rennie with K
I met Rennie for the first time a few days after she arrived at K’s house. I was expecting I would weep when I met her, because I thought I’d be meeting a victim. A horse that had given up. A horse that had been abused and thrown away like garbage.
I could not have been more wrong. Despite Ren’s terrible physical condition, she was ALIVE. Her eyes didn’t ask for pity. They didn’t ask for tears. They were strong. She was not a victim. She was a survivor. She had fresh open wounds, scabs, scars, knobby knees, and was filthy. She had to have been hurting. But you didn’t see that. You saw a horse that wanted a second chance. You saw a horse ready to be reborn. To be continued…
Renata has a GoFundMe page for those interested in donating to her ongoing medical care:
Went out of state for a week and obviously had to leave the CatDogHorse crew behind. Needless to say, there was a joyful reunion when I got home! I got home in the middle of the night, and we had a lovely snuggly sleep, and in the morning, the world was right again:
I made it out to the barn later that day and had some excellent “welcome home” snuggles from Renata. I think she had a growth spurt while I was gone. Can’t wait to measure her! Our baby girl is growing!
The introductory post on a new blog is always so stressful! Fortunately, since this blog is about the furballs, the stress level isn’t too bad. I can talk about them all day. So let’s get started, shall we?
Cat – Malcolm
Malcolm is a handsome young man, probably 5-6 years old. I adopted him almost three years ago. I was looking for a large male cat that would enjoy having a canine buddy. Mal was part of a hoarding case. He was living with 51 other cats in a small apartment. Unfortunately, the vast majority of his housemates were killed by a local “humane” society as they were deemed feral. Mal was one of the lucky 12 saved by the rescue. And they were SO not feral. Mal settled in to the household pretty easily and adores his big sister, Inara the pit bull. I had trouble finding a picture of just him because he is always curled up with her!
Dog – Inara
Inara is a nearly 11 year old pit bull, though when I tell people she’s 11, they say, “months?” Her energy has not waned in her more mature age, for which I’m grateful. I got her as an 8 week old puppy from a “rescue” (in quotes because she was later arrested for hoarding/neglect). Her mom had been confiscated from a fight ring when she was pregnant with Inara, and Inara was born at the rescue. I hadn’t wanted a puppy, but aren’t we all suckers for wiggly puppies? She is my first dog, and she has been a learning experience! She is the absolute light of my life and has been with me through so much.
Horse – Renata
Rennie is the newest addition. She joined us unexpectedly back in February of this year when her other mom/co-owner went to a meat-buyer’s auction down in Amish country. Her story is a novel unto itself and she’ll get her own blog post to update her history, but suffice to say she has come quite a long way. She is a 3-4 year old mare, probably mostly Standardbred with perhaps some Saddlebred mixed in (she’s a flashy mover!). She’s my first horse and again, quite the learning experience!