Friday, January 28, 2011

New Date and New Info

The travel date is changing, unfortunately. Nothing bad happened- just people's normal work schedules getting in the way of horsey fun!

New hauling date of Wednesday, February 2.

This is very interesting- earlier this week I spoke to the Sumas office and was confirmed that they would be in the office. When probed for information, all the agent said was to bring the completed paperwork.

Today, the agent, who actually sounded very much like the same guy, also confirmed the date and time as acceptable, but ALSO told me that there was an additional fee of $43. Not a big deal, but it would've been nice to know.

I am hoping there are no other hidden surprises when it comes to the border crossing, and I hope it is as easy as everyone says it is.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

New Stuff!

Someone's new sheet arrived today :)

And his temporary new halter is hanging outside his stall door- he'll get a Tekna halter once I know what size he runs!

He also has his very own bucket-o-brushes waiting in the tackroom, and about 6 new sheets and coolers, a grain bucket, polo wraps, and a bunch of other goodies all given to him by a  dear good friend who lost her precious Paint gelding to EPM a few weeks ago. These are mostly all show stuff- either that Hank won or used to win :)  He was a great guy, and I feel like by letting Dansey wear his stuff, Hank will be imparting some wisdom on the youngin'. Dansey, in turn, will have rather grand shoes to fill!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Doing Better

We're doing much better!

The vet comes back out today to complete the ppw for his travel. Should be ready to go for Jan 31!

Sunday, January 23, 2011


He's ok- but we had a bit of a scare late Friday night.

He got the full treatment, and seems to be recovered.

Send good thoughts to our boy! Though colic is not funny, I did joke with J and say maybe this is his way of saying how he feels about becoming an American in the near future.


So, Amy, the J & M coordinator/volunteer extraordinaire for J & M was able to read Dansey's freeze brand, and subsequently, find out who he really is. (eternally thankful! YOU ROCK!)

Here is her post:

Our boy is Conceptionbydesign- the son of a $1.7M winner, Grinfromeartoear. In general, he's got an awesome pedigree with lots of $ winners (daddy), harness racing horse of the year (grand-daddy), Hall of Famer's (grand-dad on Mom's side).

His full pedigree is here:

Our boy is also quite young- not even 3 yet. His birthday is April 14th, 2008. I'm glad to know this as I can tailor his training and development to that of a young 3 year old.

It always amazes me how horses like him fall through the cracks and end up at auction.

I'm also wondering if a name change is in order. His name at J & M is "Dansey", which I like, but I can see people making fun of him, which is why I changed it to Danney. However, now I know his registered name. I'm contemplating "Desi" too. I guess I'm going to wait until I meet him and see his personality. Maybe it'll be none of these and something else.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Monday Jan 31?

I'm as giddy as a school girl. We're looking at Monday, Jan 31, to be the day Danney comes home.

I'm going to call the US border people tomorrow to make sure the vet will be at the Sumas crossing in the morning.

Just for fun, I added a count down clock to the blog. -->


Thursday, January 20, 2011

Good News!

Just got word that Danney's traveling papers will be ready on Tuesday. Now we just have to work out a hauling date for both parties.


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Post Office = Evil

Well, I've run into my first snag. Its not even a big snag, just an annoying one.

It is: the United States Postal Service.

Maybe I'm just oblivious because I hardly use the post office- but they absolutely SHOCKED me yesterday.

I went in with the full intention of mailing the checks for Danney's adoption and vet work in some expidited fashion. Little did I know that First Class mail would cost a whopping $0.75 and get there between 5-10 business days,  and then the next available service, I believe it was some sort of tracking and there in 3 business days was $35.00 !!! Oh yes and I could get it there in one business day complete with tracking for $40.

I stood there- completely overwhelmed, hardly able to comprehend what I had just heard. Then I got angry. So I posted the 1 small envelope at the $0.75 rate and called it good. This may delay actually getting Danney- but I couldn't bear to give the postal service that kind of money. Heck, I'd rather have paid PayPal fees and gotten the $ instantly to the Rescue.

Lesson Learned.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Truth About Buying a Horse from Canada

I was going to add this to my "mis-perceptions" thread- but since this isn't strictly about Standardbreds, I figured I'd give it its own space. I will likely cover this topic over multiple posts as uncover the complexity, or lackthereof, bringing a horse in from Canada.

When I first saw Danney's face on the J & M website, I thought "cute horse, love Standies, but how will I ever get him home?" I thought that while the adoption fee was quite reasonable, that the expenses and procedure would be off-putting to everyone involved.  Not to worry- a little investigation proved that my concerns could be laid to rest.

So far, the process has been no more expensive nor any more stressful than purchasing an out-of-state (or heck, even an "over the pass in Eastern WA") beast. 

The adoption fee was $500, which quite frankly is $250- $500 cheaper than either of the local rescue adoption fees.

The health certificate and Coggins are expected to run at $150 or less.If you were purchasing an out of state horse- you would need at least the Coggins.

The hauling fee is going to to be the same as any other 4 hour round trip expense would- which is going to be cheaper than my adventures in bringing horses back from a certain Yakima feedlot.

In terms of the process- animals must pass through the Sumas border crossing. The paperwork is presented and they need to meet and be inspected by the state veterinarian.

Right now, for personal passport reasons, it looks like we will be meeting J from J &M Acres Rescue right over the border. From there, its a 2 hour drive back home.

So- pretty simple stuff here, and not cost prohibitive at all.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Mis-Perceptions on Standardbreds

One of my goals in doing this project is to show people how great Standardbreds are. I fully intend on disproving these myths in subsequent posts, while working with Danney.

Here they are:
  • Standardbreds are only pacers
  • Standardbred pacers never trot
  • Standardbreds can not canter or lope.
  • You can't ride a Standardbred
  • If you ride a Standardbred, all it will do is pace at 40 mph.
  • Standardbreds are ugly.
  • Standardbreds are "cheap" horses.
  • All Standardbreds coming off the track will have bad legs.
  • Standardbreds are "hot" 
I'm going to add my own as acquired by lurking message boards and reading what people say about this breed. For every one person who says the Standardbred is a calm, docile, people friendly breed, there are seemingly a litany of folks who want to point out that:
  • Standardbreds are crazy
  • Standardbreds cannot bend
  • Standardbreds won't give to the bit
  • Standardbreds make bad dressage horses
Hmm, well, it looks like I have my work cut out for me!

Danney's Introduction

Danney, formerly Dansey, is a 3 yr old Canadian Standardbred purchased ffrom an auction yard by J & M Acres Horse Rescue in British Columbia, Canada. He is broke to cart and has had a couple rides under saddle. He's a pacer (as opposed to trotter). Much about Danney can be read on the J & M page as well as the Mare Diaries blog.


Once you begin reading this, you will likely be scratching your heads wondering what I've gotten myself into and proably the bigger question...WHY. Here is my attempt at answering these questions!

1. Supporting local rescues doing a FANTASTIC job. Even though they are in Canada, they are still under a 3 hour drive.  Even though they are not an "official" rescue, they still right a fantastic tight ship- taking in only the number they can reasonably work with. They also train and market their horses openly and honestly. These things are very important!

2. Promoting the breed. Standardbreds are not very well known out here in Washington. And overall, there are many myths about them that I'd love to dispell. When I was younger, I rode a bunch of re-trained Standardbreds. They were all hunter jumpers. Where I come from, there are a lot of Standardbreds being raised- Goshen, New York is a hot spot as well as the Meadowlands in New Jersey. I remember the breed being a laid back, willing sort- and I'd love to be part of introducing OTSB's into Washington, as they don't seem to be well known here, though they are just over the Canadian border.

3. Talent pipeline. My goal with my 2 mares was to have them both going on similar tracks. With Piper being older (12) and Tally young, (8), the plan was to compete- always having 2 to choose from. Anyone who competes knows that a simple injury or illness can ruin a season, so having bench strength is always important if you can. As it turns out, Tally isn't well suited for competition, and doesn't appear to WANT the job. So Danney is going to be developed slowly into that position. I figure by the time he's well schooled, Piper's days in the spotlight will be winding down- so it is perfect.

4. The individual: something about Danney struck me as special- and my feelings were confirmed by those currently closest to him. He has the friendly, willing nature I am looking for, and the desire to work with people. I think we'll develop a special bond and have wonderful adventures together!

5. As for the "what have you gotten yourself into?" question...Yes, I've done this before. Yes, the last time I did this I was a young sprite almost 2 decades ago. But I remember it being awesome! Yes, I know it is going to be a new challenge- but a fun one!

Danney should be coming home to Washington in a couple of weeks time. Once we know when he can be hauled home, we'll order his Coggins and Health Cert- essentially his border crossing papers. My plan is to chronicle each of these adventures. So, stay tuned...the adventures with an OTSB are about to begin!