Category Archives: SKYDOG SANCTUARY

An UPDATE on GOLIATH AND RED LADY from Skydog.






I love the story of Goliath and Red Lady.  Today Skydog sent a very nice update and I wanted to make sure you saw this.  Lovely.

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FROM SKYDOG

ZZ is a zonkey – a cross between a donkey and a zebra

Good Morning and happy Saturday. Lots of people still asking about Goliath and Red Lady and one of the questions asked is whether they are on their own or can be with other herds. The answer to that is that they are currently enjoying their huge pastures and catching up and getting acclimatized here in a new land in a new state. Whenever we bring in new horses we keep them in a pasture for a month or two. That way they get used to us, the routine, regular food, new surroundings and then we determine when they can go out on the main body of the ranch and which horses would suit them best to be with. Luckily for us this used to be an elk farm and we have many 50 acre pens with high fencing that is incredibly safe and ideal for the wilder horses. At the moment they have the run of three pens and are busy exploring the whole landscape safely and quietly.

Red Lady is pregnant so we don’t want her having to get kicked by other mares as so often happens when horses first meet and argue over hierarchy. And in Goliath’s case – well he is enormous and studdy and we don’t want him having to tell all the other boys that he is the king now as somebody might lose that battle. So for now they are going to stay on over a hundred acres of joined up pens where they have a variety of terrains, woods, hills, pastures and new neighbors.

On one side of their pasture is Jagger’s herd who usually are out roaming on a thousand acres of beautiful high desert Oregon land and they don’t come this way other than to occasionally use the spring box near Goliath’s pasture. Well since the new additions they been hanging beside the North corner and spending a lot of the day talking over the fence as new neighbors do.

Goliath seems very interested in the mares (cheeky boy) and Red Lady actually seems just as interested in Jagger and Springsteen. It is really nice that they have company and companionship and don’t feel alone. Across the aisle they have the Kigers to watch and they can see the mare and foal pen too. Red Lady seems very happy to watch the babies play all day. I am sure she is aware she is going to have her own foal in a month or so and is keeping an eye on them as a babysitter from across the way.

The horses in Jagger’s herd are just gorgeous. We have the Sulphurs, Sage and Juniper, who are two mares we adopted from the BLM specifically to keep them together as they are incredibly bonded. They asked us to take them so they didn’t get adopted out separately and we have never regretted that decision when you see how close and dependent they are on each other. Apparently they had been adopted out once together but seized as the adopters didn’t take care of them and they had terrible rain rot and one was practically bald when she was returned. Then we have the Grullas, Lewis and Casey They were both rescued alone from different kill pens and are now very close and hard to tell apart sometimes except for Lewis’s white star.

The two funniest members of this herd are ZZ and Cassidy. ZZ is a zonkey who was rescued from being sent to a kill ranch in Texas where they shoot exotics. And Cassidy hopped on the truck out of a kill pen in Waco when we rescued Love. Jagger and Springsteen are the leaders of the herd and as with all the herds of wild horses it is invaluable to have a horse you can handle as the herd leader as you only need to halter one and the rest follow.

So now you have met Goliath and Red Lady’s nearest neighbors and they seem to be enjoying each other’s company in safety and peace. And that is truly all we want for these two, to let them settle in, get used to us and new horses and a different climate, hay and sounds and smells without any stress or anxiety. And so far so good they are making this home in record time……

This is Sage in the center with Jagger the fleabitten grey to one side and Springsteen a bay to the other

Sage is just the prettiest sweetest girl

Juniper Sage’s best friend and bonded buddy

Jagger with the very back of Goliath’s pasture behind him x

Sage, Juniper and Casey behind her

Jon giving ZZ and Cassidy a treat or two

ZZ and Cassidy are the very best of friends

Such a sweet herd for Goliath and Red Lady to get to know – who knows exactly what they make of ZZ and Cassidy but they are very interested and curious about them

Pretty Lewis taking in her new neighbors

Jagger saying hello

 


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ANOTHER AMAZING STORY OUT OF SKYDOG SANCTUARY – what a GREAT day for Goliath and Red Lady!






A few weeks ago, I wrote about Goliath, the 25 year-old wild mustang stallion who was recently captured (why?) and gelded…But luckily Skydog Sanctuary heard about this soon to be deemed unadaptable. older horse and found out his history from those who had followed his band for years… and Skydog rode in to the rescue!   You can read that story here.

Well, today, Goliath made it to his final home, Skydog Sanctuary – and met up with his mare.  Unbelievable!  From captured, gelded and unadaptable… to FREE again with his mate.  Miracles do happen.  Thank you, Skydog.  Thank you.

FROM SKYDOG:

We are working on get more video up and edited. Trouble was that where Goliath and Red Lady reunited ended up being completely as far away as they could be. And how can we blame them. Why on earth would they want to share that with a bunch of pesky people and long lenses. BUT I have some photographs of him running the length of five football fields to get to her. He galloped the whole way and didn’t stop until he reached her. And in these photographs you can see that she was just as happy when she spotted him for the first time too.

It was truly everything we hoped it would be and more. It was just further away. But this was all about them today. Them having that beautiful moment and locking eyes and running to each other. I will never forget it and neither will anyone here. It was so much the culmination of much hard work and worry and stresses and close calls and No’s turning to Yes’s. Most of all it was the determination of a group of horse loving souls who were determined to do right by these horses. And we did.

I don’t know why from the first time I ever set eyes on Goliath I knew this was important. I was determined from the beginning that his roundup and capture was not going to be the end of his story. That he and his family losing their freedom was going to count for something and hopefully bring change.

Change to a broken system of round ups and holding. Change to a policy of not re-releasing older stallions back into the wild when they should be. Change to stop gelding stallions over 20 due to the risks and trauma incurred. Change to a better sorting of what horses are left in the wild – Curly mustangs are rare and wonderful and the world needs more of them and their genetics matter when there are so few of them.

These are some of the issues we would like to raise awareness of over time, these and many others. Because change is overdue and long needed.

BUT today is not about that. Today truly is about two horses who care deeply about each other. Have had several foals together in the wild and will live to have another one together. That is important and meaningful and has to be worth something. Since we started Skydog it has been our dream and today it came true. Came true and beyond out wildest dreams is a reality today.

Thank you to Carla and Sean for getting our boy and girl here so well and carefully and with so much gentle handling and thought. To Elaine Nash, Ethan and Jon, Raven, George, Andrea, Maureen, Pat, and all the beautiful wonderful caring donors – the list goes on and on and you all know what a special place you have in my heart and how important you were in making this happen.

We did right by these horses. Hundreds and hundreds of people donated to be a part of this and are rejoicing in their happiness today. We did this you guys. You did this. And I love you for it xxx

Goliath came out of the trailer like he knew he was home x

Goliath came charging over the hill when he saw his girl

He has spotted her x

And Red Lady sees him coming

First moment as he approaches

 

Sweet kisses and sniffs – is it really you ?

By the way, I am having a baby xxx

Let’s get out of here xxx

Into the woods, they will never find us again x

Dreaming of her new life on a mountain top

And gazing into his future and it looks pretty bright x


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