I lost one of my most loved horses today.
At approximately 4:49pm, on November 25, 2010, I went to feed my horses and found Spice still standing on her feel, held up by a snow drift, dead.
It was seriously cold yesterday and last night and when I went to feed yesterday, I thought that I’d froze my face and ears after returning to the warmth of my pickup, but thankfully I didn’t. The South-West wind was blowing and the snow was wet, so anything even slightly warm (like warm flesh) instantly became dripping wet and at the same time, the cold froze the moisture wherever it was.
I can’t figure out how a healthy, three-year-old horse with long, thick, winter hair could die like that, but after talking to a friend, he said that maybe the severe wind and cold could have frosted her lungs, causing her death -- when I found Spice she was facing directly into the wind. I thought that maybe she’d frozen to death; I don’t know, but she’s gone and I’m going to miss her a lot.
Today, while throwing hay to them, I’d noticed that there were only four horses present and I couldn’t see Spice, who is always present at feeding time and never misses a bite, so I began to call her name and she didn’t show. The wind was still blowing and snow was still drifting as it had yesterday, so I couldn’t see too well without blinking, but after a few minutes of looking into the snow-filled wind, I spotted something dark, slightly- protruding from the top of a snow bank. It was the top of Spice’s head, her ears, her mane and the tip of her withers, just barely showing.
Cakes took a photo of me using her cell which I’m posting above, as I walked (too many snow drifts to drive) to feed and just previous to finding Spice dead. It will give you some sense of what it’s like here and possibly an idea of the danger that the wet snow drifting within the wind and the low temperatures create.
Today I actually had an iced-up face and ears again, because this time I was in the cold longer than yesterday, looking for Spice.
I’m also adding a photo of Spice from last year (10-09-09), at two-years-old, while I was breaking her to ride.
She was beautiful and one of the most intelligent animals that I’d ever had the pleasure to know and become close friends with.