03/15/2012

Europe is calling – Three at a Blow

We are not exaggerating, when we say that the new owners of the three travelers from Miller-Ranch are most anxious to see them. In only a few more days, Pawnee´s Missouri Belle, Samantha of Sonny L. and Commander-In-Chief M. will start their long trip to Europe.

On March 30 a KLM 747 will take-off from Houston, TX with all three aboard. Their first stop will be Amsterdam. From there Pawnee and Commander will travel to their new owners near Bad Nauheim and Samantha will travel to the Rhine near Koblenz.

The long journey for the three Foxtrotters will start on March 28; on that day they will leave the Miller-Ranch in Arizona for Houston Airport in Texas. After arriving in Houston, they are required to stay in USDA quarantine for 6 hours before they can board the plane in a container. Samantha is leaving her offspring, all fillies, at the Miller-Ranch, Arizona Outlaw´s Estrella M.R., a very pretty and special daughter, will close the gap, left by her mother in the line of broodmares at the Miller-Ranch; a pretty grey mare, “Velvet´s Pina Colada M.R”; and a beautiful yearling Velvet’s Rhythm & Blues M.R..

 Pawnee leaves a very nice stud colt “Velvet´s Pow Wow M.R.” at Miller-Ranch. All three Fox Trotters will have been in quarantine for four weeks at the Miller-Ranch before their journey. This has caused them no special stress, as they have all been together in their familiar surroundings.

 In the coming weeks, the gap caused by this departure of horses from Miller-Ranch will be filled with offspring. Eliminator´s Go Girl, known as “GeGee” by all at the Ranch, will have a foal sired by Arizona’s Outlaw M.R. within the next few days. This will be GeGee’s last foal. This top mare has generated a number of first class horses for Miller-Ranch.

 Her heritage to us has been eleven exceptional offspring. Her daughter, Velvet´s Lucia M.R. is located in Germany, as is Velvet´s Eliminator M.R.. Velvet´s Charisma M.R., one of the most beautiful mares there is, will replace her mother as a broodmare at Miller-Ranch. In the near future you will certainly see more of GeGee’s beautiful daughterLegend Outlaw´s Maxima M.R.

There are still six offspring from GeGee at Miller-Ranch. Out of the ten offspring she foaled until 2011, seven of them were mares. Everyone at the Ranch is looking forward to the arrival of her last foal with great anticipation.
When her last foal is weaned, GeGee will retire to Missouri. There at the Miller-Ranch in Nixa she has 100 acres of grassy meadow to enjoy with other retired Miller-Ranch horses such as Rocket, Zane, DeDee and Pretty Impressive.

She will enjoy her retirement peacefully with these horses, that she already knows from the Miller-Ranch in Scottsdale, Arizona. There is nothing new about the fact that it is a very long journey from a foal to a trained horse.
Along the way there are numerous expenses incurred. In Arizona the feeding cost has increased dramatically in the last year; currently it costs a minimum of $200 per month for each horse. Even with all the care we take in our breeding program and caring for our horses, some misfortunes cannot be avoided.
 It is especially tragic, to lose a good foal through an accident.
 In January we lost a good stud colt in a tragic accident. At Miller-Ranch, the young horses receive daily supplemental feeding from feeding stations that are built according to German standards so that each foal can eat without disturbance. As the picture shows, the yearling, “Tomahawk”, must have been trying to reach the feeder in the next box, and got wedged so badly, that he could not free himself and we could not free him either.

 During his struggle, he broke his front leg. Since the accident, we have made some expensive alterations to the feeding stations. Although the feeding stations did not create any problems in the past 5 years, it shows that even with considerable efforts to provide a safe environment, accidents happen.

With a finished trained horse from the Miller-Ranch, this accident most certainly would never have occurred. All horses, that have gone through the basic training at the Miller-Ranch and passed, remain calm when in a situation that they feel trapped.

The Tomahawk M.R. trapped himself, felt pressure and freaked out causing serious injury. This accident shows how important it is, to prepare the horses during training for such incidents.
 If you have seen the Miller-Ranch videos, especially the exercises with the tires on the trail course, you know that the horses, that have gone through this training will remain tranquil and relaxed and will not panic when a threatening situation occurs.
Many years ago, DeDee, the first Fox Trotter at the Miller-Ranch, spent more than 12 hours with her legs tangled in barbed wire. She waited patiently to be rescued. The barbed wire cut only the skin; no tendons or muscles were damaged. During that time, we boarded our horses at a guest ranch and unfortunately they only had barbed wire fences.
 This situation still exists today, because at many ranches there are still more cattle than horses. The “staking” training still used today, when necessary, at that time, saved DeDee’s life. Double D. Trouble (her registered name), was one of the best and most reliable trail horses at the Miller-Ranch with a very soft gait and a dream lope. Back then at the very beginning, during our daily trail rides, she helped us to understand and love this country and the Missouri Foxtrotter Breed. She is now 27 years old, is in the best of health and enjoys her life, grazing with her buddies at the Miller-Ranch in Nixa, Missouri. All the horses there were never urged or pushed for a blue ribbon or a garland. Their greatest accomplishments were doing what this breed is famous for; providing a comfortable ride and being the best and safest friend anyone can have while in the saddle – for this we say “Thank You”.

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