Thursday, March 7, 2013

The Hardest Thing

The hardest thing to do is to let someone you love go.

I haven't had to deal with that a whole lot in my life, so having to put down a horse is just so devastating.

Grady has always been my best friend, the best horse a little girl could ask for and my first love.

This morning I got a text from my dad while I was in class saying there was an emergency and I needed to call him. Knowing my dad, it's really important if he calls it an emergency. I stepped out of class to talk to him and as soon as he spoke I knew something was wrong. Grady wasn't doing well and they had the vet out. My heart just broke right then. I gathered up my things from class and left, already crying (poor teacher, he looked kind of speechless when I told him I had to go).

It was the longest hour of my life trying to get home as quickly as possible. I was so worried that they'd put him down without me being there. That's something I've always worried about, especially when I'm traveling. When I got there the vet had sedated him - given him a ton of morphine and banamine. He colicked this morning and twisted his gut badly. He ended up getting his back feet stuck in the fencing when he rolled too close.

I'm so lucky to have such an amazing community. The neighbors called my parents when they saw him rolling then three other neighbors stopped to get him out of the fence. One person pulled the fence post out of the ground, another cut the wire away while my neighbor LC sent my brother to the barn to get a halter and calmed Grady. I'm so glad they all stopped to help.

The vet said there pretty much wasn't anything he could do. He had tubed Grady a couple hours before but there pretty much were no gut sounds still. He palpated him rectally but could hardly get his hand up very far because of the twist. Grady was feeling a little better when I got there from the morphine, he nickered and nuzzled my face when I got there. But he had a hard time standing, his muscles were shaking and he was obviously still uncomfortable.

Hardest decision of my life. I spent over an hour with him, just petting him and loving on him. It was a beautiful day out today, not a bad day to die I guess, all things considered. The vet finally came back an hour and a half later and I decided it was time to put him down. The longer I waited the harder it would get and I didn't want him to hurt any more.

He would have been 27 this year. I always thought he would live until he was 30 years old. It was something my trainer who helped me buy and retrain him always said: that he's the kind of horse that I'll be riding until he was 30. I had so many things I was looking forward to with him. He was just starting to shed out and I always get excited when that happens - he goes from fuzzy teddy bear to sleek stallion. I was going to have a professional photographer come take some pictures of us together this summer since I don't have too many of me and him together. My parents were planning on turning the old vineyard area into his new pasture and had just planted some orchardgrass. I always thought he'd be around when I finally got around to breeding Jetta, that he'd be the foal's buddy when it was time for weaning, that he'd help me start my next project horse this summer, he was always the best horse to use for ponying.

I'm just going to miss him so much. Even just today, walking down to the barn to get a saddle I expected to see him pop his head over the fence. He was my baby, my handsome old man.















My favorite pair of ears






Last time I saw him and he was so spunky!


20 comments:

  1. I am so so sorry for your loss. :(

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  2. Ia m so very sorry for your loss. He sure was handsome, and obviously adored you. You can see it in the photos.

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  3. I am so, so sorry. Thinking of you.

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  4. Sad day! I'm so sorry for your loss. Today was old geldings 21st birthday and I'm hoping he makes it to 30. Like you, I have all sorts of retirment "duties" that I would love for him to be around for. Thinking of you at this time.

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  5. I'm so very sorry for your loss. He's a very handsome boy and it's clear he will be missed. My thoughts are with you, your family, and all those who loved Grady.

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  6. Very saddened to read about your loss... Grady was certainly loved immensely... I am sure he is greatly missed.

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  7. I am so sorry for you loss. There's nothing anyone can say to ease your pain but know that we are all good shoulders to cry on.

    Hugs to you.

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  8. What a handsome dude. RIP Grady.

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  9. I am so sorry. That is a phone call I dread. Your neighbours sound incredible.

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  10. So sorry for your loss. Those kind are the hardest to lose.

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  11. So sorry to hear about your boy. He reminds me of Toy Town with all those little white spots.

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  12. I am so sorry for your lose. It never gets easier. *Big Hugs*

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  13. I'm a long time lurker but I wanted to come out of my shell for a moment to say how very sorry I am for your loss. From reading your blog it sounds like Grady was a super horse.

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  14. So sorry for your loss. Looks like you guys shared a lot of awesome time together though! I know it's not easy but think about that :) hell be with you forever in your heart.

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  15. So sorry to hear about Grady. You did what was best for him and he didn't suffer. It's never easy when you lose a loved one, I know he will be missed.

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  16. Thanks everyone for the comments

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  17. I am so incredibly sorry to read this. It must have been such a hard thing for you to do.

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  18. I'm so very sorry that you had to say goodbye. It's never easy, no matter how prepared you are or how much it's the right choice for them.

    Many hugs to you. Be gentle with yourself and give yourself plenty of time to remember him and grieve. I know he'll hold a place in your heart forever.

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  19. I am so sorry for your loss :(

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  20. I just saw this post so I'm sorry for bringing up sad thoughts again, but I really wanted to say that I'm so sorry for your loss.

    It's obvious that Grady was really special and that you two had the bond that many people only can dream about.

    Hugs.

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