Dreams of Nash

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Last night in that half awake half asleep state I thought of Nash. He was walking beside me breathing on my hand.  This was the way we always walked.  I had my right hand on his lead and his nose was up against my hand.  I could feel his warm breath.  I have  had a few horses through out my life but I never felt as connected to one as much has Nash.  Maybe it was because I truly rescued him and he came from an abusive past that he felt safe at GSF and knew he was home.  The grieving process is interesting, I have had a blessed life with out a lot of the loss of those closest to me, but I can honestly say I am still grieving the loss of my Nash.

This past Saturday after we finished working on the new fence my friend’s and BF surprised me with a beautiful collage of my favorite pictures of Nash.  I feel truly grateful to have such awesome pictures of him taken by Judy and given to the farm as a donation to his hernia fund.  (Here is the original plog post about it.)  The pictures captured his heart and I will treasure them forever.

We were all coming up from the back field.  Bringing the ATVs and Tractors back up to the barn.  They were all acting a little suspicious as the BF was trying to intentionally slow me up and not rush through the barn.  He had me “help” put the tractor away (he didn’t need any help). I heard him check with my friends that they would meet us on the other side of the barn.  As I walked in I noticed all of them gathered at the far end of the barn.  I knew something was up, but for the life of me couldn’t figure out what.  Then they presented me with this:WP_20141020_16_08_03_Pro__highres

I could not believe they had all done this for me.  So quickly after his passing and it even included his name plate from his stall door.  I was so blown away that tears started streaming down my eyes.   They all came in for a group hug and I noticed a glimmer of tears in some of their eyes too.  Thank you all for this beautiful gift!  I will treasure it forever.  I look at it every day as it hangs on the wall beside the front door in the great room.

Good Bye, My Sweet Boy: Nash


It is with a heavy heart I write this post.  Nash’s condition did not improve over night. Despite all of our efforts last night which included a broad spectrum of Antibiotics, Anti-inflammatories, and fluids through the nasogastric tube I found him in worse condition this morning.  The neurological condition/disease/infection that he had was starting to effect his muscular function.  He was using all his might to stay up right all night.  By this morning, we confirmed his bowels had completely shut down and there was nothing else we could do.

I took the morning off to be with him for the last hour before the vet came. I found him this time laying down and struggling unsuccessfully to get up.  I sat with him, talked to him and cried. It was a peaceful time in his stall.  Thankfully Rachael came over to support me through this process and say her goodbyes.  We were with him through the passing and it was the best way for a loved horse to go;  I held his head the petted him and was there for him the whole time.

These are the last pictures I have of him from the past 2 days.

These some of my favorite pictures of him. The professional photographs are the work of Judy Reinford.

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Thought for Today

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Nash quote

How Horses Help Humans

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I started reading this article in the Huffington post online had had to share.

8 Reasons You Should Learn To Love These Under-Appreciated Animals

There are some great quotes in it:

  • “As a sophisticated herd animal, horses immediately begin building relationships with people as members of their herd.” ~Dede Beasley, M.Ed., LPC, an equine therapist
  • “One of the many psychological benefits of spending time with horses is the tranquil nature they encourage within us.”
  • “A pioneering 2013 study from the University of Kentucky discovered that spending time with horses can help people develop a sense of empathy as well as enhance their social and leadership skills.”
  • “A study commissioned by the British Horse Society in 2011 confirmed that regular horse riding and horse riding-related activities like mucking out stalls counts as moderately intense exercise and can help keep a person healthy. Additional research associates equine therapy with lower blood pressure and heart rate, reduced stress, and fewer symptoms of anxiety and depression.”
  • “The horse is the perfect mirror, they are very emotional beings; we’re only starting to realise how intelligent they are,” Gabrielle Gardner, a therapy counselor of Shine For Life,

And they call it puppy love

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Meet Lacie and Harley.

These precious little golden pups are Chex and Warlock’s new sisters.  No I didn’t get 2 new dogs GSF’s boarder/neighbor did.  Good luck! Let me know when they are done potty training THEN I am up for puppy sitting.

Today’s Facebook Thankful post

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Today's Facebook Thankful post

I am Thankful I have my horse Nash in my farm life. He is the equine example of unconditional love and trust. I quickly realized he was abused before I rescued him. It took him a while to understand that we were not the same people as in his past. Since he was reminded daily of how much we love and respect our horses he learned to love and trust again. Thank you all how convinced me to fund raise for him and thank you to all who donated to the surgery that he is having today.

Day 1 Nash arrives at New Bolton Center

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Pre-Surgical work up day

I got to the barn early and fed him his two cups of grain. He was such a good boy this morning. I told him the plan and about going in the trailer. He followed me right in to the trailer. He was definitely nervous and shaking a little, but is so trusting. When we got on the road the anxiety started and my stomach was in knots.


It took us about 2 hours to get to the hospital.  20131118_101304Look at that face, he was so upset and confused.  Poor guy.

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After going to admissions someone meet us at the trailer and escorted Nash to his stall.  He we so good; but very nervous and looking around, taking it all in  and trying to figure it out.    I led him into the stall that was filled with straw bedding.  I guess he has not seen that before as he wasn’t sure about walking into it.

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Then they put a muzzle on him due to this dietary restrictions (only a little bit of grain).  He didn’t like that at all.  And thought is was very unfair that there was hay in the hay rack and straw on the ground.

20131118_103624 20131118_103627 2013-11-18_10-29-36_885 2013-11-18_10-37-06_25 It was time to go and leave him there.  I left feeling so bad for him, but knowing it is for the best and the surgery will give him a long life with no worries of the hernia getting bigger.

Dr Parente called me this afternoon.  He had a look at him and said we are all set for surgery tomorrow.  The hernia is of a good size and shape for the operation.  He is going to have the ultrasound done to have a look at the margins and determine the procedure for anchoring the mesh.  The surgery will be done tomorrow afternoon and he will call me after.  So now we wait.

Thank you to all the Facebook friends who have already sent us positive thoughts, prayers and wished Nash good luck.

Scheduled Nash’s Surgery Date

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Tuesday, November 19th


Heart Felt Appreciation

I can’t believe it is really happening!  The generosity of friends and animals lovers is beyond words!  We have raised enough money to pay for the surgery!  Thank you to all of Nash’s benefactors:

  • my lesson students who
    • choose to ask for donations for Nash instead of birthday presents,
    • raised funds through their schools – Nickles for Nash
    • put out Nash Cans at local businesses.
  • the friends of Nash & GSF who give of their own money
  • friend who organized a raffle for tickets to a football in Nebraska
  • friend and amazing photographer Judy Reinford who donated a photo shoot & images for the fundraising flyers and postings and had a client out for a photo shoot who donated to the campaign.
  • Fretz Western Wear for agreeing to have a Nash Can on their counter and their customers for donating.

I have not yet closed the fundraising due to the cost of aftercare and in case of  any post surgery complications.  If  there is any money left after he is healed and recovered I will donate it to a worthy horse rescue group.

Dust Storm

Now for the Details

I spoke to Dr Eric Parente on Wednesday.    He is the a professor of surgery at the New Bolton Center for large animals.   He explained that we will have to minimize Nash’s feeding schedule for 2 days prior to the surgery.  The goal is to decrease bulk in his colon so that there is less pressure on the surgical site.  So this means no hay starting Sunday, November 17th and he can only have 1 -2 cups of grain every 4 – 6 hours.  He is going to be so mad at me!

Nash will be admitted to the hospital for 4 – 5 days. I can bring him in either Sunday night or Monday before noon.  On the first day Dr Eric will ultrasound the hernia to find the margins and how close it is to the last rib.  He will use the ultrasound to figure out what to anchor the surgical mesh to.  If it is close enough he might even use the rib for anchoring.

The surgery would consist of general anesthesia and the insertion of the mesh.  After the surgery he would have a belly bandage for support.  They would use IV antibiotics followed by oral antibiotics.

He should be able to come home  on Saturday.  I scheduled his release during the week of Thanksgiving when I am off from work and my parents are up visiting.  That way I can be there for him and spend time with him during his early recovery. Once Nash is home he would have to be in the stall for 2 -3  weeks with only limited hand walking.  This will allow time for the important scar tissue to form.

The end result is that the mesh would provide support from it getting bigger.  The results would not be flat against the stomach because it will have a round shape as the scar tissue fills in.



Who awakened your soul?

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Who awakened your soul?

Never give up….

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