What will $5 buy you today?

About eight months ago you couldn’t get a gallon of gas for five bucks in many parts of the country.  But the other night we got a deal.

When the aforementioned price of gas went up so did everything else dependent on gas – including the price of hay.  What the hay – you say?  Well this forced up the price of feeding a horse in an already struggling economy.  So what do you do when you can no longer feed Trigger…

I was sick that evening, but the truth be told I really didn’t want to go to the auction in Onadila.  That is, the horse auction.   My wife said she was only going to get some cheap tack.  Of course I knew the risks.  We had gone from no horses to five horses in as many months.  Still I really didn’t want to see this auction.  I’ve seen to many crimeless victims.

So I was just sitting around in my pjs drinking my last glass of Theraflu when I got the call.  I could hear her tears.  “It was awful.  They all went for cheap.  And so many good one went to the kill buyers.”

Unless you choose to put your head in the sand you are probably aware that most unwanted horse end up at auction and the most unwanted of them end up in the back of a truck to a Canadian slaughterhouse.  Now I’m not talking about mean ornery horses that attack people.  Just everyday old trail horses and pets that spent their better years riding people around but were now just to much to feed.

“So how many are we getting?” I asked knowingly.  “Just one.”  I’m guessing buy now you’ve already figured out how much that one cost.

He was a little colt.  Not trained.  Not gelded.  Frightened and alone, they thought he wasn’t even lead-able.  He was brought in the ring, un-haltered, next to last and was going to the kill buyer for $5 when Dawn stepped in.

“How are you getting him home?” Being it was already 10:00 PM and she was an hour away – with no trailer, I couldn’t even imagine.

But round midnight she pulled up followed by a trailer.

Did I mention we have no outdoor lights leading down to the pole barn – the only place we could keep the horse for now?

The older man who had trailered the horse for her swore up and down we couldn’t lead him.   But what choice did we have?   So we hooked up two leads to the little guy and lead him down a pitch black road by flashlight around the big yellow barn to the darkened pole barn at the bottom of the hill.  He was quite frightened but actually quite good.  We tied him to a post and gave him some hay and water.  He was ravenous.  He probably hadn’t eaten for several days.

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The next morning we headed down to the barn to see what we could do with him.  He learned very fast. He let us pet him and brush him and then take him for a walk in the field.  I think he’s going to be a very good horse.

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So you may not be able to get a good meal, see a movie or even get an imported beer in your local bar for five bucks today, but if you’re willing to take a chance you could still find some pretty good bargains out there – and maybe save a life in the process.

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