Hi, I'm Ev. I'm training to become a horsewoman. These are my adventures and misadventures. I'm green as hell, but so far, so good. I'm now learning from Bo (and sometimes his wife DeDe) at D&D Ranch in Pope Valley. I am extremely lucky to have this opportunity, I feel quite blessed, and I feel that they, and horses, have really turned my life around.
Solomon is my baby- a big old flea bitten grey Appendix gelding who is very kind and way too smart! I love him so very much. He is a rescue and was meant to be co-owned rehabbed, and maybe rehomed to a good home. He turned out to be over 25 years old with injuries that ultimately do not make him riding sound, so he is retired.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Ev and the magic bean- a horse owner's tale!

As the equine dentist cleaned up his tools, I casually reached over to remove some beans from Solomon Evsson. He was dropped, he was really sedated. He was still not in the mood, but I was like a ninja. A bean ninja. Oh god, what have I become...

The barn owner said "I'm still a newbie when it comes to horses! Do you think my horse needs to be checked for these "bean" things, too? Would you be willing to try that?"

The horse in question is Charlie Horse, a 14.1hh palomino pony of questionable ancestry and even more questionable temperament, on account of having been abandoned in a field for 5 years before the neighbor, who became a barn owner (well, pasture, as there is no barn) couldn't stand it any more and rescued him. He has about 8 molars, but he has all of his incisors, which he's perfectly happy to test the strength of on your flesh if you annoy him too much. He doesn't mind cocking a hoof, either.

"Er... that horse? I'd say have a vet sedate him really heavily, and have that vet do it. One you don't like very much."

"Oh, okay..." :(

"Well it might be fine. Some horses need it more than others. It's only really an emergency if he has trouble peeing or can't retract his penis, or it's really swollen or something."

"Oh really? Oh! Because he has been having a hard time peeing lately, I've noticed, he always tries so hard and not a lot comes out."

In the back of my head, I heard my Shihan's words, "you are responsible for your knowledge."

My knowledge told me that
a) this horse needed help, badly, and was drugged, so now was my best chance, and
b) with my horse experience and martial arts training, I was the best woman for the job at that time.

"Oh, yeah, okay, I'll... I'll give it a try. Let's see how he takes to it. Sometimes they like it, and that's creepy but okay, because if they don't like it, it's like they have a magical spool inside of their body that they can roll their penis up into, and then you have to go spelunking up to the elbow for horse penis. Nobody really wants to do that. Nobody you want to allow on the property, anyway. Sometimes it helps if you like, pet their thigh a bit. They... they relax I guess. Oh god. There's no dignified way to do this, for anyone. Okay, here goes."

I petted him a bit, and then reached over, wishing I had some gloves, briefly thinking about the urban horseperson legend that states that the smell NEVER WASHES OFF NOT EVER NOPE.

Okay, yep, chevon 9 locked, I have secured the horse penis. The nasty, crusty horse penis. This is not what I woke up this morning thinking I was going to do.

I had my leg pressed against his leg. I'd positioned myself next to the leg that was stretched back, so that I could jam up a kick as much as possible. I pressed my leg against it so I'd know the moment he moved it to try to kill me for molesting him after the dentist slipped him those drugs.

First thing I noticed? He seemed really swollen in the pouch area. They have this pouch, you see, at the head of the penis. Smegma and crud collects there, and over time, it forms something called a "bean." It's sort of a hellish stygian pearl- layers and layers of the nastiest stuff that collects from and around a horse penis. Over time, it gets bigger and bigger and bigger, and eventually it can block the opening of the urethra, making it difficult, even impossible for the horse to urinate.

This can lead to horrible things, even kidney failure if he gets blocked up or infected or something.

I tried to peel open the swollen pouch, and managed to break out something that felt kind of like crumbly gravel. A huge something. A lot of it. And there was a lot more.

At this point, Charlie Horse pulled himself out of his drug-filled haze enough to protest, as this had to be really uncomfortable, and started flinching and protesting. I backed off. He might be old and he might only have 8 teeth, but he is still much bigger than me, and probably faster, too.

"Well, that was horrible. And the rest of the news is, there's more. Way more. It HAS to come out. Today."

We moved him into his favorite place- the feeding pen. I repeated the process, twice more. I don't know where the...results of the first extraction went, but these two chunks are from the next two, which finally got all of it out. Not shown is the other side, which shows what the middle of it looked like- concentric rings of black, white, and yellow. Horrifying.

This is by far the biggest bean I've ever encountered. I had it in my hand and I showed it to the barn owner. "This is horse smegma, Holly. THIS IS HORSE SMEGMA AND IT IS SITTING IN MY HAND."

I scrubbed my hands and I scrubbed them and I scrubbed them, and I am putting some surgical gloves in my car as soon as I am done writing this so that this never need happen ever again.

Not long after the extraction was over, Charlie Horse peed, and peed, and peed. His lip hung low, his ears drooped, and I have never seen a horse look so RELIEVED before in my life.

As a show of gratitude, the barn owner sent me home with a huge sack of pears, apples, and squash gathered fresh from her property.

Parents, if you have a young girl or boy who will not stop pestering you for a pet pony, share this story with them so that they can understand the true magic and majesty that is horse ownership...

I'm going to go sit in the shower for 2 hours now while slowly rocking back and forth, back and forth...