Yesterday, we said goodbye to a dear member of our family. One who was loved by our children and grandchildren and was a fixture on our place for many years.
Watson, AKA, Co-stars BB Good, was thirty years-old… a handsome Palomino gelding who stole our hearts from the very first. He once belonged to Tom Watson, the golfer, as a show horse. We got Watson when his show days were behind him.
We loved the fact that he was gentle even though he stood 15 hands… that’s a horse’s measurement in height.
Over the years, he toted our family around, grownups, kids, babies, and guests—and anyone who wanted a safe, comfortable ride.
He was a calm and steady horse that made you feel at ease, high in the saddle. You can feel when a mount has an even, smooth gate, and he had it!
Watson’s devoted stable mate, Rhubarb/Ruby, a pretty sorrel filly, was very upset yesterday. She’s paced all afternoon, sensing something wasn’t right with her buddy. We don’t give animals enough credit when it comes to their emotional senses. They feel change, and loss. And, that was very evident yesterday.
As you probably guessed, we had to let our beloved Watson go yesterday, with the help of our local Veterinarian. As Ruby paced around the corral, whinnying for her friend, Dr. T knew just what to do. He went to her, put a halter on her, and let her say goodbye. A few sniffs and nudges later, she was much more content.
We’ve lived here, on our Ranchette, for many years. Pets have come and gone. We’ve buried three horses now, several dogs, and numerous cats.
When I was a kid, on our farm in Iowa, there was no ceremony or care to bury our animals. Large animals, like cows, sheep, and pigs were hauled off by the rendering works–huge trucks that were all too familiar in the farming community. You could actually smell them before you saw them. The sight of a cow or horse being pulled by a log chain into the back of those vehicles was sickening for me, but a way of life on the farm. That’s why we decided that we would never do that, so we have all our dear-departed animal family members buried where they lived most of their lives.
I imagine it won’t be too long before we start looking for another horse to fill the void left by our dear Watson. I know Ruby needs someone to keep her company. He or she will have to be ready to take on grandchildren and anyone else lookin’ for a sweet ride!