The Intersection of Work and Equine

Daily Tip: A reliable hay source is invaluable for a horse owner’s sanity and a horse’s digestive health. Read on to find out how thankful I am for mine!

I’m a last minute person. Always have been, probably always will be. The latest last minute effort was to acquire more hay. Think ahead so I can plan to make a hay run on the weekend? Nah…

So despite being tired, despite the rain, despite the fact that my husband couldn’t come help; despite being stuck at work almost an hour later than expected – I drove 45 minutes from work, over an hour from home, to load up a measly 42 bales of hay (less than my usual 50 because of the rain).

Given the inopportune drive I had to make, I had to plan at least a day ahead and I had to take the truck and trailer to work. I always wonder what people think when I drive a horse trailer into town and up the hill to where I work. My coworkers seem to get a chuckle out of it.

Despite a dreary day and my lack of interest in the task ahead, I did have a moment that made me remember why I was doing what I was doing and give me the motivation to jump in the truck and drive.

That moment was when I took my bag of dirty, muddy barn clothes to the bathroom to change before I left work. Normally I look like any other office worker when I’m at work. I don’t wear barn boots or come with stray horse hairs on my clothes…well, not many! As I stood in that bathroom and pulled on my sweatshirt, I inhaled the aroma that would wrinkle the noses of most in the building but was like heaven for my nose. You know what I mean – that smell of horse and dirt. I’ve actually missed it for the last couple of weeks because everything just reeks of mud. Now in this vinegar-scrubbed bathroom my nose transported me back to the barn and the reasons I drive over an hour to get my horses the best hay I can find.

Dressed to deal with hay, mud, and rain, I was ready to go load up with hay. As I drove down, hefted the bales into the trailer, and drove home through the rain, fog, and disappearing light of day, I was thankful for that hay. Finding a hay source when I took sole responsibility for such decisions was probably my biggest fear. Thanks to a recommendation, I have found a guy with great hay, a reasonable (and consistent) price, and a dependable supply. I am thankful I can trust my hay not to be moldy or dusty and that I don’t have to look around for a new supplier every time I run out of hay. Especially since I only get a small amount at a time, changing hay every time could put stress on my horses’ digestive systems that I’d rather they didn’t have. I’m also thankful that it’s someone elses responsibility if it rains, if the tractor breaks down, or if haying interferes with other plans. Given the option between a reliable hay source or maintaining the control over my own hay, I’ll take the outside source every time!

Moral of the story – we’re horse people, we love smelly sweatshirts, and we do what we have to, including forcing our horsey life on our non-horsey work life, all for the health and happiness of our horses!

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