Yep – it has been a while. Like months. I have emerged from the horrific winter that has just recently loosened its grip on everyone and everything. It’s hard to believe that a few short weeks ago snowflakes taunted our winter-tortured souls while today it is almost 90 degrees. Overnight it’s gone from winter to summer and the ugly gray mounds of melting snow piles have been replaced by robust bursts of blossoms and blooms! Then there is the grass: rich, juicy and sweet-smelling – a feast for horses who have also suffered through the long winter.
I have a horse who shivered in the winter cold despite his toasty stall and plentiful grain. Buzzy is my 23 year old rescued Standardbred, a former harness racehorse who did quite well during his racing career. I’ve had him since he was 8 and right off the track. Over the years we have myriad trials, tribulations and adventures, but those are for another chapter.
Actually, the story for today is rather simple. My boy is relegated to a paddock where he has great friends, but little grass. He is, however, constantly munching on some of the finest hay in these parts. Yesterday I drove out to the barn and decided to hand walk my buddy out to a gorgeously lush field that was oozing with grassy nutrients – nature’s gift after a difficult winter.
Buzzy could barely contain himself and when we got there he promptly buried his nose in what would later become the prized first cutting of hay of the season. Horses’ bellies are delicate mechanisms so I was wary of his munch time, but erred on the side of more time rather than less. When he brought his nose up without me pulling, I knew he was full, for the time being anyway.
We ambled on back to barn – a nice, lazy stroll – when suddenly – out came the loudest belch I have ever heard! The thing is – horses don’t burp! Most horses, that is. I’ve heard Buzzy burp once before, and it was after a similar round of spring grass.
So with his eyes glassy and his belly full, back home we went. No doubt the burp was his way of heralding in a much needed and deserved spring!