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In Loving Memory...
~ Gogo Fatale ~

6/2/01 - 10/11/11
~ Forever the Marest of Them All ~

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Sunday Success Stories

(Sunday Success Stories are a new series here at Eventing-A-Gogo. Each week, we feature a reader's own personal journey through overcoming difficulty and adversity, sometimes against all odds, and pulling through no matter what. These stories are about those who never gave up, and who made a difference in the life of an animal who just needed a little love and care in order to turn around and really bloom again. Send your success stories, past or present, to!)

This week's Sunday Success Story comes from Jen, who blogs over at Slidin' N' Jumping. Dollar (Cee Kay Sash) is an older QH whose story with Jen began in 1994. The two of them grew up together and shared their many ups and downs, including a big tendon injury, a new home, and finding his way back to Jen in the end.

Slidin' N' Jumping - Dollar's Story

My love with horses started when I was 7 and attended Bible Camp for a week. I fell in love with riding and kept on asking my Dad if I could have a horse. My Dad, not being able to say no to me, got me my first horse for Christmas of 1994. This was my introduction to my first horse and best friend Cee Kay Sash. Or as my Dad named him, Dollar (after John Wayne's horse. Lol.). We instantly bonded and made quite the riding pair. Although there was one thing that I was not counting on with him: that he would be a racer and a run-away. Although needless to say he didn't terrify me one bit. I knew that if anything happened to me during our ride, he would stop right aways and come back to me to see if I was alright.

I dealt with a lot of self-confidence and self-esteem issues during my school years and he was the horse that I could run to after school bawling my eyes out because of all the bullying that was happening and I knew that once I was in the saddle, I felt as if I had all the confidence in the world.

We soon entered into 4-H where we learnt how to be a team even more and winning quite the amount of ribbons on the way. We had learnt how to pull off the perfect trail pattern, do a quick run in barrel racing and then go back into the pen for Western Pleasure. He was definitely my all around horse.

And then the accident happened when he was 5 years old, on his birthday in 1997. We went to the Blumenort Fair that's not far from where we live and we were doing pretty good that day. My Dad was taking him in Barrel Racing and took him for a warm-up, just working on the bending for the turns. Dad was working this at a slow lope on the grass and Dollar tripped and came up dead lame. He got Dollar over to the trailer as fast as Dollar would move but the damage had already been done. We were lucky at this point that there was a vet trailered right next to us and she told us the devastating news: Dollar had pulled a bowed tendon in his front left leg and probably wouldn't show for the next year or so. I was in tears and devastated that my best friend was hurt and I didn't know what to do. We got him home as gently as possible and called our vet over. He confirmed what the other vet had said and gave us 2 options: we could either put him out to pasture for a year and let the leg heal, or we could put him down and save him from all the suffering. I broke down completely when I heard this news, but my Dad was smart and said that we would keep him out in pasture and see how he does.

So for the next year, I spent every day cold hosing and tubbing his leg twice a day to help with the swelling and then down to once a day when winter hit. He seemed pretty content, but I could tell the look of jealously when I was riding another horse and he was standing in pasture glaring at me.

When we were finally able to do work on him, his attitude had changed. He was no longer the run-away, but he was extremely stubborn and would only basically work for me. Sometimes someone else if he was feeling willing. My sister took him to 4-H Provincials in 2001 and I took him there in 2002.

In early 2002, I really wanted to do Reining big time, but because Dollar was reaching the age of 10 and because of his leg, he wasn't able to take me there. So I had to make the decision to sell him (which didn't help being forced by my Dad to do better and not caring that I was letting go of my best friend). The 2002 4-H Provincials was the last time that I rode him, as he was being delivered to his new home the day after competitions had completed. So needless to say, I was an emotional disaster, but we still walked away with 2nd in Reining.

The day I sold him was the worst day of my life. I stayed in the trailer with him while we delivered him to his new home. I bawled my eyes out and I handed his lead rope over to his new owner. I was assured that he had a forever home and that if any opportunity came up, I would be the first one to get him back.

Since that fateful day, he was sold to a riding student that fell in love with him and did a little bit of showing with him. But she brought him to a barn when he was 14 and got Heaves. He was then sold back to the person that I sold him to.

I kept on enquiring about getting Dollar back and saw him again in the fall of 2009. And he recognized me immediately. I asked what was being done with him and that's when I was notified about his Heaves condition and that nobody was really riding him at all. I told them that when they make up their mind about what to do with him, to give me a call.

In February of 2010, I got a call from his owner. She told me that they were going to sell him and that I had first dibs. They were asking $500 for him but at this time, I had no job and no extra money to buy him. I had asked my Mom if she would be interested, but after dragging me along for about a week, she said no. So I had to call back the owner and let them know that I would not be able to take him, very much to my regret.

March 11, 2010 came around and I got another call regarding Dollar. The owner said that if I wanted to, Dollar was free for me. She said that they had people looking at him, but they weren't the right people and they needed to find a home for him. So I called up my Dad and asked if I could leave Dollar at their place and explained the situation. He said yes! Then I had to pass it by my husband and he as well said yes!! So I called the owner back and told her that I would pick up Dollar on Saturday.

And what a joyful day that was. And I think he knew that he was coming home for the last time. When I unloaded him from the trailer he was 18 going on 2. He wouldn't stop jogging circles around me as we were walking down the driveway and was just a happy camper all around. And so was I. After searching and pleading for almost 8 years, I got my best friend back.

Since then, we have found relief for his Heaves (steroids are a wonderful drug), have competed in several shows and winning some ribbons and just enjoying our time together. I'm hoping to do some entry-level eventing or dressage with him next year as he is still my all-around horse (although I know he prefers doing Trail Class. It's much easier on the old man.)

And I made a promise to him that I will keep: that he stays with me until his dying day.

(Send your submissions and stories to! This series is new and can't get underway without YOU! Gogo wants you to!)

1 comment:

Jen said...

Thanks for posting this Andrea!!