Thought I would change things up a bit with this “play of the week.” So, I’d like to introduce the last member of our family “Gus”.
He’s 20 years old this year; a thoroughbred with a ton of personality. He was born in the States and has the registered name of “Known Tender.”
But, Gus is a much better name. Fits his personality to a “tee.” He’ll follow you around like a dog, except he weighs a thousand pounds and produces 40 pounds of manure per day. Imagine having to clean up that after the snow melts!
Our daughter in the background mostly re-trained him in show jumping and 3-day eventing.
We’ve owned him for quite a while now, I’m thinking it must be half his life now. Prior to coming to us, he spent a journeyman’s life on the racetrack in Ontario. He raced out of the gate with 45 starts; was in “the money” 21 times – including 10 wins; with lifetime earnings of just over $430,000.
He’s mostly retired now; basically a really funny living and breathing lawn ornament. He spends his day eating and lounging around at a stable not to far from us. My daughter part-leases him out to a young girl who takes basic riding lessons on him. He has a bad knee, so his jumping days and eventing days are behind him.
So, if you ever meet him and show up with peppermint candy or horse treats, you’ll make a buddy for life. Bulk Barn no-name peppermints are fine. He’s not too fussy that way!
Since writing this way back in March of 2017, our daughter has finished college and moved to Halifax to work for at least a year. Since being in school for three years and moving half-way across the country, I think she has only ridden Gus a couple of times over that period.
So…………..today(Friday, December 8), Gus is moving on to a new home outside of Rockwood, ON. Barb his new owner is retired having been a farmer next to Lynn’s aunt and uncle near Holstein, ON. She sold her farm and lives currently with her son and family on a 5 acre former horse farm. Barb had horses all of her life and just recently had to put down her 35-year-old horse.
Barb was looking for a new friend to pamper and Gus seems to fit the bill.
Although he will be missed, this is the best solution for Gus. He has a bad knee and arthritis and really needs to move around a bit and be ridden. Unfortunately, where he has been for the past number of years were he has had the best of care, he hasn’t had the opportunity for Sara to get out to the stable to be ridden all that much.
So, life moves on.
Lynn and I have visited his new home and it looks great. Barb is very excited to get him and only yesterday she called to finalize his travel details and to say her grandchildren are all excited and giddy about him showing up and asking, “when will he be here and can we ride him.”
So, in the next few hours Lynn and I will head back out to the stable one more time to get him ready for the trailer trip and follow them down to his new home to ensure he gets settled in okay.
He will have two new paddock mates…….donkeys; two or three pet rabbits to look at and a lovely new stall in a super barn.
We’re sure he’s going to be pampered and spoiled rotten……….just as he deserves.
He will be most missed by our daughter Sara……he was her best friend through late elementary and all of high school until she went away to college. They competed in numerous horse shows; 3-day eventing competitions and many hours of trail rides and general just hanging out.
If Sara wasn’t at home, you knew she’d be at the stable.
But, in life sometimes you have to give up want you love most……………if really love them.
This is the best result for Gus……..but it doesn’t make the sadness of him leaving any easier.
But, Barb says we’re all welcome to come visit at anytime……….so…..I think we’ll head down to see him in late January or early February just to hang out; eat treats and reminisce about old times.
Still, doesn’t take the sadness away.
Gosh…..going to miss that old guy………….Gus
A further update….
Lynn and I went down yesterday(March 8) to see Gus in his new home after almost 3 months down there. He’s settled in well. Apparently, everyone in the family and those who come and visit spoil him rotten. He fell in “love” with the donkey in the stall beside him, and the two are now inseparable.
We’re thrilled beyond belief that Gus has a new home and people who love him. They’re in the process as soon as the frost leaves the ground to till up and smooth the outdoor arena to get ready to ride him.
It was tough leaving, thinking it may be the last time seeing him. But, one never knows we may head down later in the year. He was such a huge part of our life, but he has a new and wonderful life with Barb.
We’re thankful for that!