ND mule auction takes in $21,000 for investigation
•MANDAN, N.D. — Officials in North Dakota’s Morton County say they made $21,000 from selling mules that were seized in a North Dakota animal abuse case. The county sold 22 mules in an auction at Triple H Miniature Horse Rescue near Mandan. Morton County Sheriff Dave Shipman says the proceeds will go toward costs of the investigation and rescue. Officials in Morton and Burleigh counties seized more than 150 horses and mules from properties belonging to William Kiefer in January after finding 96 dead animals on property northwest of New Salem and three more dead on pasture east of Bismarck. Kiefer has been charged with several counts of animal mistreatment in both counties. He pleaded not guilty March 5 to five misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty in Morton County and has not entered pleas for similar charges in Burleigh County. He faces up to five years in prison if convicted on the Morton County charges. He is scheduled to make his first appearance in both counties on March 20.
Kentucky Mule Drink Recipe
1 1/2 ounces bourbon whiskey such as Jim Beam or Maker’s Mark
1/2 ounce fresh lime juice
4 ounces cold ginger beer
Fill a glass with ice. Add bourbon and lime juice; top with ginger beer. Garnish with lime. What a kicker!
Makes 1 drink
"Never send a man to do a horse's job."
"Housework can't kill you, but why take a chance?" Phylis Diller
FROM THE MAIL BAG:
I have a 3 year old mule that I have raised from one of my mares. I am used to training horses and he is my first mule. My first question is that he has a bit of an attitude. He can sometimes get in my " space" and can be a bit obnoxious ( ear pinning, grouchy look) when
he is approached to be petted. This happens only while he is standing at the gate that I go through to feed everyone.
Cindy's reply: A mule or horse getting into your space is recognized as spoiled behavior simply because you have allowed your young mule to crowd you. Allowing your mule to come closer than arm's length is considered to be crowding into your space. In the herd, the
herd boss corrects obnoxious behavior by stretching their neck out first, pinning the ears back, showing teeth as to say "GET BACK!" If needed, the herd boss will send out the offender by chasing it away. I am not saying that you cannot bond or connect with your mule, but you do need to have this respect and boundary issue worked out. I believe mule's are more personable than horses are. They have a code to live by and you better know it. So you determine when you want your mule to be close to you - as in your space. There will be times when you should not let your mule into your space so that is why you want to train your mule to respect boundaries. Your mule's behavior at the feeding gate is common when animal's anticipate being fed. I would work with your mule on a lead line or lead rope
and a crop. I would do this excercise a few times before applying the technique at the feeding gate. Simply place your hands on his side and ask him to move over. Move him to the right, switch sides and move him to the left. Take the end of your lead rope and touch his hindquarters with it, so that he moves his hindquarters away from you. Repeat this on both sides. If your mule is not responding - you can use your crop to convince
him he must move away from you when asked. Ask him to back up, go forward and whoa. Do not allow him to rub on you or come into your space, because you are establishing control and leadership. You can be pals later - work has to come first. Now that your mule is responding to moving away (yielding) from you, backing up, moving forward, whoa when asked - you can apply this strategy inside the feeding gate. Take your crop with you and encourage your mule to stay back. Tell him to back away just as you had previously worked
on. If he needs a swat on the side to move him back - then do it. Do not tolerate any kicking behavior what so ever. I have seen this behavior in horses and mules that have been hand fed and it is very ugly. So, if you are hand feeding your mule, this would be a good time to stop until you establish boundaries.
Another caution about animals greeting you at the gate: mules and horses are jealous creatures and since there is a hiarchy, the low guy in the pecking order is at risk for getting hurt as well as the handler. It is not fun to have a horse kick out or run into your mule while you are in the line of fire. The mule will run over you or do what ever it takes to protect himself - and getting run over or dragged is not a good situation. Be on your
guard and clear the gate area first.
GET YOUR COPY NOW- ANSWERS TO YOUR MULE QUESTIONS BY CINDY K. ROBERTS
Cindy, Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions. The thoughts and experience with which you address our concerns are greatly appreciated.
When I pushed her yes I did have spurs on and I do believe she did tighten her ribcage. She does that when I’m putting the saddle on her and a blanket over her to keep her warm. I don’t believe I’m too big for her as I am 200 lbs and she is a rather big mule, 15 hands. I believe the saddle fits her as well. As of her breeding we were told that she is part Appaloosa and she shows just a little bit of that color. She is not too thin in the chest maybe a little over average and she has good strong legs. So I don’t know what other breeding she would have besides the Appaloosa. Of course than there is the Jack burro as the sire.
Yes, we do want your book and the bridle. If the bridle will help me get back on her I would have use of it as I am hesitant even now of doing that.
We have six dogs and my wife did say at the beginning that she would be somewhat like working with a dog.
Thank you again; with regards; Mr. Tom.
FIRST TIME LOADING
I loaded my mule in the trailer for the first time and it didn’t work according to “plan.” She
didn’t want to have anything to do with that trailer so I put some grain on the floor. She
would eat as far as she could without having to take a step. I never knew a mule could
stretch their neck that far, but she did. I finally put a butt rope on her and after she reared
up a time or two, she leaped in. She didn’t want to go back in the trailer after the ride
either. I don’t want her to get hurt in this process. Once she was in the trailer, she fretted
and pawed. I hate to see her upset. She is three and is a sweetheart. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. By the way, your web site is sensational! I could be stuck on it for days (on my work computer) but my boss would not appreciate that so I can only peak at it around lunch time. Thanks Debbie
A simple trailer introduction would be to back your trailer to the paddock, leave the door open and feed your mule in it every day for a few days. This makes the trailer a part of your feeding routine and your mule won’t mind getting in and out. If this is not an option, work with loading her and unloading her on a routine basis. By that I mean take your time, allow her to look around, sniff the floor and encourage her to come forward—when the time is right. Reward and praise her should she make an effort. It may be one leg up and then she may back out. That is OK. When she proceeds to back out, go with her, don’t tug or
pull on the rope. Circle her, walk her up, back, and when the timing is right, proceed to the trailer again. If you lose the forward motion, back her up and work her in small circles to the
right and left. Sometimes this will work because the mule decides that standing in a trailer requires less effort than to do ground work. Just remember, this technique does not work on all mules. Most mules that are new at loading will get in willingly after they have checked out the trailer and you took the time to work with them without putting on pressure.
Having a pasture mate in the trailer helps too. You didn’t mention what type or kind
of trailer you had. Mules and horses load better in trailers that have wide entrances to them. Make sure your trailer is wide and tall enough for the comfort of your animal. Cramming a large animal in a small trailer will sour them for sure. Also place floor mats in the trailer with shavings. This will help keep your mule from slipping and it will make her more comfortable.
Sometimes you will have to load an animal and you don’t have time for a trailer introduction. I like to keep a 20 foot long cotton rope with a stainless steel snap on one end. Tie off one
end to a tie ring inside the box of your trailer and snap the other end on to the mule’s properly fitted strong halter. That way the mule cannot get away while he is “thinking” about this trailer business. Once the mule figures out there is no escape to the right or left and backing up is not an option, he will eventually jump into the trailer. Never whip your
mule into the trailer. This has a negative effect on the mule and makes matters worse.
If you have a problem loader, in the near future work with this animal. It may take twenty minutes or so, but the results will be positive. Simply load and unload your mule a few times. Each time your mule gets in the trailer, reward with praise and cookies. Next, back him out slowly. Repeat several times and you will have a mule that is agreeable to loading and unloading.
Make sure you feed and water your animals on the longer trips. Transporting stock
is stressful. If you take the necessary precautions before leaving the barn then that lessens your chance of problems while on the road.
Note: Keep up with a maintenance schedule for your truck and trailer. Inspect your
trailer floor for possible needed repair, check your tires and have your wheel bearings packed once a year. Before leaving, check the tire pressure and test your brakes on your vehicle and your trailer. Keep a mileage log in your truck and rotate your truck and trailer tires when needed. Caution: Never overload your truck or trailer. Hauling livestock in an overloaded trailer is an accident waiting to happen. Keep your trailer level. A trailer traveling with too much weight on the rear axles will eventually cause problems. Too much weight on the tongue will be problematic too. Use a truck or vehicle that was made to haul a trailer of your size. Overloading your vehicle is not safe for you or your animals. Please be safe and enjoy your ride. ~Cindy K. Roberts
WINTER FEEDING FOR YOUR MULES
Water is just as important during the winter months as during the summer. Colic rates go up during the colder months, as water consumption goes down in the wintertime! Check those water buckets every morning, and if you haven’t already, a tank heater is a great invention. Mules cannot eat enough snow to meet their water requirements, so you must make sure to
provide plenty of water.
Provide a mineral salt block to help you mule keep a mineral balance.
Pay attention to the weather situation. Horses and mules can tolerate very cold weather, as long as it is dry. As soon as they get wet however from a snow or ice storm, their nice thick winter coats lose their insulation factor and the mule will be challenged to maintain their body temperature. In very cold weather, mules do require extra calories to maintain their body
condition, so pay particular attention to body condition during cold snaps. If you are concerned about providing extra warmth through feed, give your mules more hay. The old wives’ tale about feeding corn for extra warmth is just that, a wives’ tale. The process of digestion for corn (in the fore gut) is very quick, and provides very little warmth. Hay requires a much slower process of digestion, and by the nature of the digestion (by microbes in the hind gut) it gives off more internal heat that the mule can make use of.
Finally, make sure not to confuse a hay belly with being fat. Fat is laid down primarily over the top line of a mule – a cresty neck, the withers, a crease along the spine, and around the tail head – these are what the entire body condition scoring system is based on. A large hay belly is a result most often of sagging muscles on both the topline and under the belly – not
so much from eating hay all day, but from the standing around all day while eating the hay.
ESTATE PLANNING FOR YOUR MULE - Since mules are a part of the family and develop a bond with their owners, it is advisable to have an estate plan filed. Mules experience sadness, depression and anxiety when separated from their owner granted they had a routine and a strong bond with them.
Are Your Pets – horses, cats or dogs included in your estate plan? If you have horses, cats, dogs or other pets with long life spans, it might be time to include those pets in your estate planning. Pets in estate plans are often thought of as an estate planning activity of the rich and famous, but many Americans now purchase pet health insurance, pet vacations, pet day care and many other luxuries for their beloved animals.
So, it’s only rational to make provisions for your pets in the event of your death. Estate planning for pets can range from the very simple to the very complex and from very inexpensive to more costly arrangements.
From simple to more complicated here are a few points to consider:
1) The Informal Memo Option -At the very least, consider putting together a memorandum to your executor and/or family members suggesting the disposition of your pets. In this case, where no financial provision is being made for the pets and their care, it is often advisable to discuss the plans with the friends or relatives involved to ensure that they will, in fact, take on the responsibility. In any case, a memorandum that sets out instructions is still always a good idea. What something more complicated but more certain?
2) The Outright Gift Option – Consider a bequest to heirs or others who agree to care for one or more pets. Remember, selection of such care takers is important where there is a flat and outright bequest sine there is no way of knowing how long the responsibility will last. For that reason, and given the high cost of equestrian care, many horse and other pet owners
prefer a gift to a trust where the trustee can ensure that care givers get what they need to Providence continuing care at the right level anticipated by your trust and in your memorandum of instructions.
3) The Trust Option – First, be aware that not all states permit a trust for pets and animals. Pennsylvania and thirty one other states have, however, adopted such a law. Next, review the issues such as: identifying your pets (the ASPCA site even suggests DNA identification), identifying a caretaker and trustee. A memorandum to the trustee and care takers with specifics about your pets needs, and your desires for care can be vital. Finally, determine how much will be needed and who gets the balance at the death of your pet or pets.
Howdy from Missouri,
A spooked turkey can run 20 m.p.h?
Deer, codfish and boiled pumpkin were served at the first Thanksgiving dinner?
The original thanksgiving lasted 3 days? Remember, this was before antacids were made!
Pondering thought...If Wyle E. Coyote had enough money to buy all that ACME stuff, why didn't he just buy dinner?
The kind of woman I will be When I am old.An old Mulewoman.
I have a 3 year old mule that I have raised from one of my mares. I am used to training horses and he is my first mule. My first question is that he has a bit of an attitude. He can sometimes get in my " space" and can be a bit obnoxious ( ear pinning, grouchy look) when he is approached to be petted. This happens only while he is standing at the gate that I go through to feed everyone.
Cindy's reply:A mule or horse getting into your space is recognized as spoiled behavior simply because you have allowed your young mule to crowd you. Allowing your mule to come closer than arm's length is considered to be crowding into your space. In the herd, the herd boss corrects obnoxious behavior by stretching their neck out first, pinning the ears back, showing teeth as to say "GET BACK!" If needed, the herd boss will send out the offender by chasing it away. I am not saying that you cannot bond or connect with your mule, but you do need to have this respect and boundary issue worked out. I believe mule's are more personable than horses are. They have a code to live by and you better know it. So you determine when you want your mule to be close to you - as in your space. There will be times when you should not let your mule into your space so that is why you want to train your mule to respect boundaries.
Your mule's behavior at the feeding gate is common when animal's anticipate being fed. I would work with your mule on a lead line or lead rope and a crop. I would do this exercise a few times before applying the technique at the feeding gate. Simply place your hands on his side and ask him to move over. Move him to the right, switch sides and move him to the left. Take the end of your lead rope and touch his hindquarters with it, so that he moves his hindquarters away from you. Repeat this on both sides. If your mule is not responding - you can use your crop to convince him he must move away from you when asked.
Ask him to back up, go forward and whoa. Do not allow him to rub on you or come into your space, because you are establishing control and leadership. You can be pals later - work has to come first.
Now that your mule is responding to moving away (yielding) from you, backing up, moving forward, whoa when asked - you can apply this strategy inside the feeding gate. Take your crop with you and encourage your mule to stay back. Tell him to back away just as you had previously worked on. If he needs a swat on the side to move him back - then do it. Do not tolerate any kicking behavior what so ever. I have seen this behavior in horses and mules that have been hand fed and it is very ugly. So, if you are hand feeding your mule, this would be a good time to stop until you establish boundaries.
Another caution about animals greeting you at the gate: mules and horses are jealous creatures and since there is a hiarchy, the low guy in the pecking order is at risk for getting hurt as well as the handler. It is not fun to have a horse kick out or run into your mule while you are in the line of fire. The mule will run over you or do what ever it takes to protect himself - and getting run over or dragged is not a good situation. Be on your guard and clear the gate area first.
Dear Ms. Fershtman:
I am about to take my mule colt to a trainer that came well-recommended. What if my colt hurts the trainer? Should I be worried about being sued? - A.L. (Indiana)
Answer: Horse and mule trainers, it might seem, should expect the risk of being thrown or injured by the mules they train. Over the years, however, injured trainers have filed lawsuits against those who hired them and others. And sometimes the trainers win.
Cases Involving Equine Activity Liability Laws
As of March 2009, 46 states have passed some form of equine activity liability law. As I have written in the past, all of the laws differ, but many of them share common characteristics. Most of these laws state that an equine professional, equine activity sponsor or “another person” should not be held liable if someone is injured as a result of an “inherent risk of equine activity.” The laws typically include exceptions that could allow certain kinds of lawsuits to proceed.
Both before and after the passage of these laws, some professional horse trainers have filed lawsuits after being injured on the job. A brief discussion of the cases follows.
In one case, a horse trainer sued the horse’s owner after being kicked while preparing a horse for a show. The case was dismissed based on Georgia’s Equine Activity.
Liability Act. On appeal, the Georgia Court of Appeals agreed and found that the law protected the owner from suit because the trainer qualified as a “participant in an equine activity” to whom the law applied.
In a case from Louisiana, an exercise rider at a race track was injured and sued. The Court likewise held that the case should be dismissed based on Louisiana’s Equine Activity Liability Act.
The Trainer Wins
A case from Massachusetts involved a horse trainer who took a test ride to evaluate a horse for potential purchase, but the horse threw him, causing injuries. Throughout the case, a dispute existed as to whether the horse’s owners warned the trainer that the horse was temperamental and disliked being ridden in a certain direction. The trainer did not necessarily win the case outright, but because of the discrepancy in the facts, the court ruled that a jury needed to decide whether the horse owners satisfied a requirement in the Massachusetts Equine Activity Liability Act to “make reasonable and prudent efforts” to determine the trainer’s ability to safely ride the horse.
Cases Involving No Equine Activity Liability Law
New York’s highest court affirmed dismissal of a lawsuit filed by the famous jockey, Ron Turcotte (who was best known for riding “Secretariat” to his U.S. triple crown victory). During a race at Belmont Park, Mr. Turcotte fell and was rendered a paraplegic. He sued several people, including a jockey who allegedly caused the accident and the owner of the horse that the jockey rode. In dismissing the case, the court stated in part that “professional sporting contests ... by their nature involve an elevated degree of danger. If a participant makes an informed estimate of the risks involved in the activity and willingly undertakes them, then there can be no liability if he is injured as a result of those risks.”
In a case from Indiana years ago, a trainer worked a horse on a longe line when the horse allegedly attacked and injured the trainer. The trainer sued the horse’s owner.
However, the court dismissed the case based on the principle that the trainer had “assumed the risk” of being injured.
In a New York case, an experienced horse trainer volunteered to help another trainer load a colt into a trailer but was injured when the horse kicked her. She sued the horse farm claiming that it was negligent for, among other things, failing to warn her of the colt’s dangerous propensities and for improperly administering a tranquilizer to the horse before the incident. Ruling that the case should be permitted to proceed to trial, the court noted that the trainer did not “assume the risk” of being kicked under the circumstances.
In a case from Minnesota, a professional horseshoer was kicked while trimming a horse. His lawsuit claimed that the owner knew, but never warned, that the horse was a “kicker.” The court held that the horseshoer deserved her day in court so that a jury could decide if the owner, by not warning of the horse’s history, created an unusually hazardous situation that put the horseshoer in danger.
As these cases show, trainers are more likely to succeed if they can prove that the owner or stable knew that the horse at issue had an unusually dangerous tendencies but failed to warn them. Trainers are more likely to lose if the risk at issue was an “inherent risk” or an “assumed risk.”
This article does not constitute legal advice. When questions arise based on specific situations, direct them to a knowledgeable attorney.
About the Author: Julie Fershtman, a lawyer for nearly 23 years, is one of the nation’s most experienced Equine Law practitioners. She has achieved numerous courtroom victories, has drafted hundreds of contracts, and is a Fellow of the American College of Equine Attorneys. She has spoken on Equine Law at conventions and conferences in 26 states. For more information, visit www.equinelaw.net and www.equinelaw.info.
Julie F ershtman’s books, MORE Equine Law & Horse Sense and Equine Law & Horse Sense, can help people avoid disputes. The books are easy to read and are required reading at several equine studies programs. Order both for $42.90, first-class shipping included. For more information, or to order, contact:
Horses & The Law Publishing at 866-5-EQUINE. Or, send check or money order to Horses & The Law Publishing, P.O. Box 250696, Franklin, MI 48025-0696.
The cowboy was trying to buy a health insurance policy. The insurance agent was going down the list of standard questions.
"Ever have an accident?"
"Nope, nary a one."
"None? You've never had any accidents."
"Nope. Ain't never had one. Never."
"Well, you said on this form you were bit by a snake once. Wouldn't you consider that an accident?"
"Heck, no. That dang varmint bit me on purpose."
"My dear, I don't care what they do, so long as they don't do it in the streets and frighten the horses."
~ Mrs. Patrick Campbell
Thanks for putting up with me & best mule wishes,
~Cindy K. Roberts
October is National Fire Prevention Month. Change your smoke alarm batteries – carbon monoxide alarm batteries and CHECK YOUR BARN! Inefficient or faulty wiring can cause a fire. Fire tips: Clean those cobwebs out and do not let empty feed sacks pile up. Do not store paint or flammables in your barn or hay shed. Last but not least, do not let your mules play with matches.
Happy Birthday to country recording artists Alan Jackson & Jeannie C. Riley and the Queen of The Cowgirls – Dale Evans.
October 26, is National Mule Day!
Celebrate with your mule and buy him a sarsaparilla! Read the mule facts.
To appreciate the mule's mind and athletic ability, take time out to learn about his parents, and you will find that you still don't know all there is to know about the mule. A friend recently confessed that she did not become a better parent until she bought her first mule. She said she learned everything about her kids by getting to know her mule. Pretty clever.
I have a strong desire to understand the mule and his point of view...I respect his independence. I believe they are complex creatures that are often times misunderstood. Remember to look into their heart and then proceed to move forward with this though: Mules are individuals. It is vital to understand their distinctive personalities. Designing an effective and humane training program for your mule will help you to develop a partner for life.
MULE TRAINERS send your bio and summary of your training philosophy to be listed on the Mule Trainers page on WWW.EVERYCOWGIRLSDREAM.COM Click here to view the page FIND A MULE TRAINER.
MULE TRAINERS send your bio and summary of your training philosophy to be listed on the Mule Trainers page on WWW.EVERYCOWGIRLSDREAM.COM Click here to view the page FIND A MULE TRAINER.
Farmer John was injured when a truck hit his pick-up, and he filed a lawsuit against the driver who hit him. When the case went to trial, the truck driver's big city lawyer questioned farmer John."After the accident, did you not say to the sheriff's deputy, 'I'm fine'?" asked the lawyer. Farmer John answered, "Well I'll tell you what happened. I had just loaded my favorite mule Bessieinto the...."
"I did not ask you about your mule," the lawyer interrupted, "I asked you about your statement to the sheriff's deputy. Did you not say, at the scene of the accident, 'I'm fine'?" Farmer John answered, "Like I was saying, I loaded Bessie into the trailer, and I hitched it to my pick-up truck...."
The lawyer angrily turned to the judge. "Your honor, I am trying to establish the fact that, at the scene of the accident, this man told the sheriff's deputy on the scene that he was just fine. Now, many months after the accident, he is trying to sue my client. If his case is not a fraud, he should be able to answer my question with a simple 'yes' or 'no.' Please tell him to simply answer the question."
The judge, somewhat curious about the mule, responded, "Let's hear what he has to say. If he doesn't get around to answering your question, we'll deal with it after we find out about Bessie."
Farmer John thanked the Judge and proceeded, "Well as I was saying, Bessie was in my trailer and was driving her down the highway when this huge truck ran the stop sign and smacked my truck. My pick-up went into the ditch, and the trailer tipped over. I could hear Bessie moaning and groaning, and I knew that she was in a bad way, but I was hurtin' real bad and I couldn't even move. Then, the deputy came, and he could hear Bessie, so he went over to her. He looked at her for a moment, then he took out his gun and he shot her right between the eyes. Then the deputy came across the road with his gun in his hand, looked at me and said how are you?"
Race mules were staying in a stable. One of them starts to boast about his track record. "In the last 15 races, I've won 8 of them!" Another mule breaks in, "Well in the last 27 races, I've won 19!!"
"Oh that's good, but in the last 36 races, I've won 28!", says another, flicking his tail. At this point, they notice that a greyhound dog has been sitting there listening. "I don't mean to boast," says the greyhound, "but in my last 90 races, I've won 88 of them!"
The mules are clearly amazed. "Wow!" says one, after a hushed silence. "A talking dog."
MULE FOR SALE: contact Rose Miller email@example.com about this mule!
Gaited 15 2 h black 11 year old mule for sale. Mr.
Magic is his name. He came from AK where he was ridden a lot. NO BAD HABITS, is good for everything...vet, shots, farrier, etc. he is personable.
Contact Rose Miller - mule is located in Arizona.
Has your relationship with your mule gone sour? As the song plays, "Nothing as cold as ashes after the fire is gone..." Does this describe your mule's attitude toward you? To improve your relationship with your mule and strengthen the bond, here are some tips that will help you to understand your mule:
Mules are thought provoking creatures. That means they are as clever and witty as compared to children. Like children, mules will think of ways to GET OUT of the lesson/task at hand. Like children of all ages, they are easily bored;they are smart and do not wish to be bored by stupid humans. If I had a mule's brain, I certainly would see the world in a different perspective!
The best approach that I can do while training my mules is to play mind games with them. Interacting with your mule inside a round pen or corral is an excellent place to start. Crossword puzzles are not needed, but we will start with a colorful ball. Mildly kick the ball around in the pen to create an interaction with your mule. Do not spook your mule, you simply want to kick the ball around as though you are "inviting" the neighbor kid to come out and play with you. Your mule should show interest. Your mule may be apprehensive at first, but will come around to accepting the ball moving around inside the pen. The goal is to encourage the mule to play with the ball and push it around. If your mule is not interested in the ball, then bring out another item from your giant mule toy chest and begin with it. Squeaky toys are good play toys to use.
As you can see in the above pic, this mule is very startled about this new object that makes noise.
This particular mule was nervous and lacked confidence, she had no trust in her handler.
Whether you want to boost your mule's confidence or develop a stronger bond with your mule, you can work on these issues and more by using the exercises in the book,
Confidence Training for The Western Saddle Mule by Cindy K Roberts. To get more info click here - you will be glad you did!
I will leave you with this thought provoking quote:
"My dear, I don't care what they do, so long as they don't do it in the streets and frighten the horses." ~ Mrs. Patrick Campbell
Thanks for putting up with me.
~Cindy K Roberts
Howdy from Missouri! As you already know, it is horsefly season! And there is no limit, that's right, there is no limit for the kill. So, swat away to your heart's content. So, far I am up to 15 kills. I like to cheat and use hairspray first on the nasty offenders, to slow them down... however, my mule got rather sticky so I had to give that one up.
August 25 is Kiss-And-Make-Up Day,you know what that means? Kiss and make up with your mule. That's right. After scolding your mule for an infraction, (hint: never over punish -- always match the punishment with the crime) you still need to give him a scratch or a pat a minute later to let him know that things are OK between the two of you. It just makes good sense. Mules that have reassurance, encouragement and reward coming from his owner have a stronger bond with their riding partner.
ANYONE WHO SUFFERS FROM PAIN—STIFFNESS IN JOINTS, OR IF YOU ARE JUST CRANKY IN GENERAL, CHECK THIS OUT: Everyone deserves to have their funny bone tickled!
Keith Woolery was charged with public intoxication and assault and battery with a deadly weapon on a police officer.
Woolery oftentimes depends on his mules and a covered wagon to get around.
“I don’t usually have problems out of them. It’s just when they get spooked they do get sideways a little bit,” said Woolery.
Saturday night police arrested Woolery after they say he ran from them in the wagon and rammed a patrol car. Investigators say Woolery smelled like alcohol when they stopped him.
“They did not find any open containers in my vehicle, nothing. We’d had some beers on the way from Heavener, but as far as being public intox, no,” said Woolery.
According to a police report, Woolery allegedly rammed the police car three times with this covered wagon.
But Woolery told said his mules got spooked.
“They shouldn’t have parked that close and they shouldn’t have been trying to ram a mules head on with another car with lights and sirens going,” said Woolery.
Investigators claim Woolery refused to get out of the wagon. Police say the suspect made the mules go faster. Woolery replied, “No, I was trying to stop the mules.”
According to a police report, an officer tasered Woolery to get him in handcuffs.
Woolery says he has brakes on the covered wagon.
“We can half way break it, but we can’t just shut everything down,” said Woolery. “If we do they start skidding the tires. It don’t do no good. They just keep going. The harder it is for them to pull the more they pull.”
Police say the suspect was not charged with driving while intoxicated because he was not driving a motorized vehicle. NEED HAY?
MISSOURI MULE EARS (COOKIES)
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. shortening
1/2 tbsp. vinegar
1 1/2 tsp. soda, mixed in vinegar
1/2 c. Kahlua Liquor
NEED HAY?http://www.hayexchange.com/ The Internet Hay Exchange is a free hay listing and hay locator web site. Publishing over 10000 hay for sale listings annually.
This is my mother. Recently she decided to take up mule riding for the first time in her life. My mom has never ridden a horse ever, except once for 30 seconds for a photo op. Now she thinks she knows everything - so my sister and I decided she can start breaking out the mule colts next week. My sister, Round Up Wendy and I tried to explain trail etiquette to her, but she got rather snippy with us, so we decided to let mom do what ever she wants when trail riding with us. Besides, she is riding our best mule. Today is her birthday - Happy Birthday Mother, you are one in a million!
MULE TRAILER LOADING TIP:
A simple trailer introduction would be to back your trailer to the paddock, leave the door open
and feed your mule in it every day for a few days. This makes the trailer a part of your
feeding routine and your mule won’t mind getting in and out.
your mule to come forward—when the time is right. Reward and praise your mule should he/she make an effort. It may be one leg up and then your mule may back out. That is ok. When your mule proceeds to back out, go with your mule, don’t tug or pull on the rope. Circle her, walk her up, back, and when the timing is right, proceed to the trailer again. If you lose the forward motion, back her up and work her in small circles to the right and left.
Sometimes this will work because the mule decides that standing in a trailer requires less effort than to do ground work. However, it may aggravate him too. You will have to decide which approach is suitable for your mule. Having a pasture mate loaded in the trailer helps too.
Use a lubricant on the hinges so the doors operate efficiently. A creaky door will make a young or inexperienced mule nervous. Lighter color trailers are better too. Visually you want your mule to see that everything looks good and there are no suspicious elements that could harm him/her. So a white or light color trailer box looks more inviting and less conspicuous to
your mule. Lighter color trailers are cooler for your animals in the summer too.
Check for animal droppings from critters that may have inhabited the trailer. The scent of wild animals in the trailer will keep a mule or horse from loading easily, especially if it is
a raccoon. If the trailer doesn’t smell like horses, mules or cattle then that is a big red flag to your mule.
Check for busy wasp nests in the corners and ceiling of your trailer before you load up. A stinging insect with wings will certainly annoy and fret any animal. So deal with potential problems before you head down the road.
Sometimes you will have to load an animal and you don’t have time for a trailer introduction. I like to keep a 20 foot long cotton rope with a stainless steel snap on one end. Tie off one end to a tie ring inside the box of your trailer and snap the other end on to the mule’s
properly fitted-strong halter. That way the mule cannot get away while he is “thinking” about this trailer business. Once the mule figures out there is no escape to the right or left and backing up is not an option, he will eventually jump into the trailer. Never whip your mule into the trailer. This has more of a negative effect and makes matters worse. If you have a problem loader, in the near future work with this animal. It may take twenty minutes or so, but the results are positive. Simply load and unload your mule a few times. Each time your
mule gets in the trailer, reward with praise and cookies. Next, back him out slowly. Repeat several times and you will have a mule that is agreeable to loading and unloading.
The first time your mule willingly loads into the trailer, let him stand there a couple of minutes before you take off. Give him a couple of minutes to settle in to his new surroundings.
Make sure you feed and water your animals on the longer trips. Transporting stock is stressful. If you take the necessary precautions before leaving the barn then that
lessens your chance of problems while on the road.
Note: Keep up with a maintenance schedule for your truck and trailer. Inspect your trailer floor for possible needed repair, check your tires and have your wheel bearings packed once a year. Before leaving, check the tire pressure and test your brakes on your vehicle and your
trailer. Keep a mileage log in your truck and rotate your truck and trailer tires when needed.
FYI: September 6, 1873- Hays City, Kansas- David Roberts (no relation) shoots and kills Peter Welsh and George Summer in front of Cy Goddard's saloon.
I will leave you with this thought. The Presidential election is around the corner. I found a candidate that is smarter than everyone on Capitol Hill.
"I never shot nobody I didn't have to." John Wayne
Live a good, honorable life. Then when you get older and think back, you'll enjoy it a second time.
A lightning bolt generates temperatures five times hotter than those found at the sun's surface! Lightning strikes about 6,000 times per minute on this planet!
There are more plastic flamingos in the U.S, than real ones
MULE NEWS FROM RICHMOND:
Only scattered details survive to tell us about Major Robert Williams, a Confederate Civil War veteran who returned to Ray County to build a prosperous life as a farmer, railroad man and mine owner.
SURVIVAL INFO: HOW TO SURVIVE A POISONOUS SNAKE ATTACK ON THE TRAIL
Obviously, if you are bitten by a snake, you should seek medical attention immediately. The following should be referenced only if you cannot get yourself or the victim to medical clinic.
First of all, you should know that deaths from snakebites are rare...more than 50% of snakebite victims will have little or no poisoning and only about 25% of the victims suffer from serious systemic poisoning. Also, regardless of the animal, a bite wound can become infected from the bacteria in the animal's mouth. This local infection is responsible for a large part of the residual damage that results. It is important to know that the victim's state of mind plays a large part in their recovery. An excited or hysterical person will have increased circulatory activity, causing their body to absorb the toxins faster than normal. Always try to keep snakebite victims as calm as possible.
Before you begin to treat a snakebite, you need to determine whether or not the snake was poisonous. If you were not able to visually identify the snake, you can tell by the bite if the snake was poisonous. The following signs/symptoms can help determine if the snake was
• Fang punctures at the site of the snakebite. One or two punctures (and sometimes three or
four) usually indicates a poisonous snake, especially if the other symptoms below are
• Pain at the site of the bite.
• Swelling at the site of the bite within a few minutes or within 2 hours.
• Paralysis, weakness, twitching, and numbness. These are signs of neurotoxic venoms, and
usually appear 1.5 to 2 hours after a person is bitten.
If you are bitten by a poisonous snake, follow these "Do's and Don'ts":
Lie down with head slightly lower than the rest of the
Do not move around. Doing so makes blood circulate faster thereby speeding up the spread of the venom. If making an incision, cut no deeper than the two layers of skin. Do not make any deep cuts at the bite site. Cutting will open capillaries, which creates a direct route into the blood stream for venom and infection.
Remove toxin as soon as possible by using a mechanical suction device or by squeezing. Do not use your mouth to suck out venom. The vessels under your tongue will absorb toxins almost immediately and carry them to the heart. Clean the site of the bite and hands extremely well. Do not use ice on a bite. If the bite is on an extremity, snuggly wrap the extremity halfway above the bite site, using material at least 2 inches wide. Do not put your hands on your face as venom may be on them.
Remove watches, rings, bracelets, and any other restricting items. Do not use a tourniquet.
Drink small amounts of fluid, preferably water. Do not drink alcoholic fluids.
Use aspirin or Tylenol for pain Do not use morphine or morphine derivatives.
(From Confidence Training For The Western Saddle Mule by Cindy K. Roberts)
The mule is a thinking machine. He thinks while he is on his feet, he thinks in his sleep and yes, he dreams. The mule gives much thought about how to do something and how not to do something, whichever is to his advantage. He is not interested in leaving his pasture pals to perform boring schooling or work. He doesn’t care to leave his comfortable surroundings for any menial task or activity. The mule is curious about his surroundings and anything new. He doesn’t like repetition and while learning something new, the mule has the capability getting it right the first time around. The trouble with this is few handlers and trainers are able to “perfect” the task at hand the first time around while working with a mule and more often will push for that perfect ride or perfect result. The mule would like to think that it is his idea. Since it is the mule’s idea, then that in effect, means the task has his stamp of approval on it. It’s a done deal, he likes it, move ahead with it. Remember to convey each lesson or task to him as though it were his idea. That means it has to be intriguing enough to keeping his interest and that is part of the deal, right? Everything has to be fun. No unpleasant classroom atmosphere, please.
While training your mule, set him up to succeed during each lesson. To do this, you will teach the simplest exercise first. It would make sense to teach whoa from the walk first, then the trot, and so on. Praise will immediately follow and your mule will be pleased with himself. I call this creating “attaboys.”
Teach more than one exercise at a time in order to hold the mule’s interest. It would be very boring to the mule if you were to teach just one exercise. It would also be intense for the mule. This is because you, the trainer, would be striving for perfection before moving on. Therefore, teach several exercises that can be learned at the same time. For example, teaching the mule to back through poles as well as learning serpentines, bending exercises (circling), working through cones as well as tires will keep the mule's mind fresh and willing. Be sure that your exercises are at the same level of schooling to avoid confusing your mule. You wouldn't teach geometry before addition, right? Strive for perfection (without drilling your mule) before developing speed during any exercise. Teach each exercise at a slow speed. Only ask for more speed as the mule perfects the exercise. Sometimes it is better to work the same exercise three times or less, then practice it again the next day. Give the mule adequate time to think about the exercise.
Be clear and concise in your training. Your cues must be repeated in the exact same
manner each time it is used. Inexperienced trainers have to think about how to apply a
training method. Later, it will become more natural and less thought is required. At
first, your cues may be more pronounced and as training progresses, your cues should
be more slight and subtle. This is where you will be asking for your mule to be
attentive to you and only you. You will have developed a relationship with your mule
and you will click. For this to develop, there cannot be any mistakes in your training or
confusion will be a result. This alone will cause your mule to develop a disinterest.
Cues must be closely related in time to the expected response. Remember, timing is so important when training the mule. The stimulus and the response must occur together or WITHIN A SECOND OR TWO, or the connection between the two is not made. The mule's brain does not have the capacity for a delayed response. If he did, he would be running for office.
When giving a cue, ask for immediate response.
Warm up the mule physically and mentally before starting a training session. There are a number of physiological changes in the mule's body when transcending from resting to working. A chemical change occurs which is why it is important to warm up your mule before any serious exertion. Professional athletes know this. It is best to repeat an exercise that the mule already knows, being careful at the same time not to sour him as well. After a few minutes of warming up, you can proceed to a new exercis e or work on perfect io n of an e xercis e. (Read the rest of the chapter in Confidence Training For The Western Saddle Mule by Cindy K. Roberts) Get the book! www.everycowgirlsdream.com/confidencetraining.html
style="font-family: Verdana; text-align: left; margin: 0in 0in 0pt; ">
Warning! Under Missouri law, an equine professional is not liable for an injury to or the death of a participant in equine activities resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities pursuant to the Revised Statutes of Missouri. Your participation in training your own mule or horse by following the advice given in this column and throughout Every Cowgirl's Dream web site is a risk that may result in permanent disability and even death to you and/or your animal. Advice in this column is given through 20 plus years of professional and private mule training experience. The unique personality of your animal and the individual reader's skill level will vary greatly. This column is not a substitute for a qualified mule trainer in your area. Always utilize a professional and knowledgeable trainer to assist you. The author asks each reader to evaluate his or her skill level, athletic ability and mule sense prior to attempting any training technique. (My husband, Perry Mason insists that I use this warning label.)
A mule walks up to the bar and orders a drink from the bartender. The bartender sets the drink in front of him and tells the mule, "it's o.k. buddy, you can talk to me. Why the long face?"
Hope to see you in Shelbyville Tennessee! I will enjoy watching the mule show and visiting with old friends.
"I won't be wronged, I won't be insulted, and I won't be laid a hand on. I don't do these things to other people and I expect the same from them."~ John Wayne
REPORTED FROM L.A. TIMES: National Park Service mules, horses die from lack of water.
Seven mules and two horses owned by Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks that were left without water because of a faulty supply system have died, park officials said Friday.
The animals were among 17 pack mules and stock horses owned by the National Park Service that had been kept at a 300-acre fenced winter pasture in the Pixley National Wildlife Refuge, about 45 miles north of Bakersfield in the San Joaquin Valley.
According to park spokeswoman Dana M. Dierkes, the animals died of kidney failure after a water supply system apparently failed. Two other animals, a horse and a mule, have been under the care of a veterinarian and six others appeared to be fine, she said. The animals were discovered Monday.
“This is a tragic loss for us. These animals were part of our team and a vital part of park operations,” Supt. Karen Taylor-Goodrich said in a statement. “We are heartbroken about what happened and will be investigating this incident thoroughly.”
What to do after a mule wreck or mishap.
AFTER THE DUST SETTLES, WHAT NEXT?
Check your mule for any discomfort from ill fitting tack or a poorly fitted saddle.
Calculate the weight of the rider, plus the saddle/load and make sure it is not over 25% of the mule's body weight for the saddle mule.
Always do a pre-flight check before mounting into the saddle. Ask your mule to bend laterally right and left (from the ground) while standing at your mule's shoulder, picking up one rein and gently pulling to the side. The slightest "give" from your mule, give an immediate release of the rein.
Allow your mule to relax before you mount/leg over into the saddle. Make sure your mule is quiet and receptive before mounting and taking off.
If you think your mule needs a "sacking out" to get over the heebie geebies, then take the time to do it. Introduce your mule to new things in the round pen or corral gradually. Use a long stick with a plastic bag tied to the end and move it in different directions while trying to get closer to your mule. Do not force him with any sacking out situation. Work slowly around him and approach closer when he starts to get desensitized or bored with the object. Usually a "refresher" in sacking out will help to connect with the thinking side of your mule's brain - which should put him into the right frame of mind for his next riding routine.
Ride your mule in the round pen first to give him some "atta boys" before you procceed outside the round pen. Ride him over poles to keep him thinking and give him praise for being good. Keep your rides short if you are riding alone. Ride with a skilled rider or two on your longer rides to help build the confidence in your mule. If your mule starts to build up pressure and does not respond to lateral bending, step down and walk him in small circles, restore calm before getting back on. Do your pre-flight check, before mounting. I didn't graduate in 90 days or 6 months and neither should your mule. Keep your powder dry and your mule happy.
Useful Tips Before You Step Up Into The Saddle:
Be aware if your mule is nervous while you are tacking him up. You may want to work him in the roundpen or corral first.
If it is a windy day, it is normal for your mule to over-react. He is picking up different animal smells from every directiont he wind blows. Most mules do not like coyotes or the odor of raccoons, groundhogs etc. This would be a reason for your mule to be nervous. Remember that wild animals marking their territory would make your mule to react and be sensitive to this.
Your mule can show signs of agitation or anxiety just from eating a weed that didn't agree with him. Some weeds are toxic to horses and mules. Look over your corral or pasture and look for toxic weeds that are in your area.
Make sure your mule has fresh water. Check your ponds/creeks for possible dumping of chemicals or toxic waste. A dead carcass upstream can be a problem.
If you grain your mule, check for mold or rodent droppings, urine - keep your grain in proper storage containers to avoid contamination.
Check your mule's eyesight. Aged mules or mules that have had an eye injury are capable of losing their eyesight and this is scary to a mule.Look for bites or marks that would indicate that your mule has been "bullied" in the corral or pasture. This can shake up a mule. Horses can be very nasty and aggressive towards mules.
Have your john mules (geldings) sheath cleaned. Having a build up of smegma can block the urinary track and decrease the flow of urine. This can make a mule experience discomfort - so have your mule checked.
Mules can develop a skeletal imbalance from a fall, performance at work or at a show and from rolling on an object in the pasture or corral. They can dislocate a vertebrae just like you and I do. Your vet can easily x-ray an area to determine if the issue is skeletal related. Equine chiropractors can do wonders for a mule that is in pain.
SADDLE MULES FOR SALE
5 YEAR OLD BLACK HORSE MULE - TWH MULE - TRAIL RIDING MULE
PAINT MULE FOR SALE - TRAIL RIDING MULE
Send your mule sale ads to:
Mule Show Plans For St. Louis Area:
I have been meeting with different trainers in the area about the possibility of constructing an annual mule show in the St. Louis beginning in 2013. I would like your ideas on what you would prefer in a mule show. It would be a 2 or 3 day event, but I need to hear from you! I need to know what you like and what you don't like. What classes do you want to see on the schedule? What do you want in paybacks? What can be improved for mule shows? Do you want entertainment...as in half time? Send your ideas to the above email. Thanks for your input.
Keep your powder dry~
Cindy K. Roberts
April 2012 copyright
IN THE NEWS:
THREE MEN ARRESTED FOR CATTLE RUSTLING IN A HONDA CIVIC
(CBS/AP) CARLSBAD, N.M.
Three men and a baby cow. That's what authorities in southeast New Mexico say they found in a Honda Civic on Friday, which led them to arrest the men for cattle rustling. The calf - 220 lbs. - was riding in the backseat.
The Carlsbad Current Argus reports the trio was jailed at the Luna County Detention Center on charges of suspicion of larceny of livestock, conspiracy, lack of a bill of sale and exporting livestock.
The county sheriff's office says a deputy pulled over the car and saw the calf sharing the backseat with one of the alleged thieves.
EARNING YOUR MULE'S TRUST by Cindy K. Roberts
Being connected with your mule or horse requires knowledge and skill. The knowledge that you know what level of schooling your mule is at and how much confidence he has gained from positive schooling.
Your skill level requires that you are able to introduce new items/tasks that your mule is ready to endure/master. Example: a good tool to use for schooling is a tarp. In a paddock or roundpen -- simply place the tarp flat on the ground. Your mule should be haltered with a long leadline attached. Place grain or your mule's favorite treat around the edge of the tarp. Ask your mule to walk up to the tarp. If he gets as close as 20 feet and stops, fine. Let him look. The more confident your animal is, the closer he will approach the tarp on his own. Pet him on the neck and reassure him. Ask him to move in closer, let him stop, investigate, reassure. In a few minutes time, your mule will get close enough to nibble on the grain/treats.
Next - place grain/treats in the middle of the tarp and ask your mule to walk toward the center. Reward him with praise that he did excellent! This exercise typically takes 20 minutes and you know the payoff? This groundwork exercise will come in handy when you ask your young mule to cross a ditch or creek. It is a confidence booster for your young mule.
When things go wrong -- then your mule will lose confidence and will lack in trusting you. That is why you should never ask your mule to do something that is lacking in solid schooling. Basic and solid schooling will prepare your mule to readily accept new tasks on the trail. I used to get bored with doing groundwork with mules. Then, I discovered what an easy way to build confidence and earn the mule's trust! (Plus you get all the credit - in the mule's eyes.)
You can do new things with your young mule on the trail and I encourage that -- just take the time to get the task done. Forcing your will on a young/inexperienced mule will not get the job done. It may take 10-20minutes to get the job done along the trail -- but taking the time to doing it right will be a big payoff. To learn more about building your mule's confidence - Confidence Training for The Western Saddle Mule by Cindy K. Roberts.
Easy Fly Spray: You can mix seven parts water with one part citronella as a fly spray. It's not oily either. Mix it four parts water to one part citronella during the worst of the fly season. ___________________________________________________________________________________
FLY SPRAY RECIPES
Fabric Softener Repellant: A golf course near my home passes out Bounce fabric softener sheets to the golfers to repel insects. Next time you go riding tie one to your Horse's headstall and stick one in your back pocket. It works better than ANY fly spray I've ever tried. The flies won't even fly around you.
6 year old mare mule - steps out front on trails - click here for more info:
Contact Danny Clark 573-701-3118
Dollar The Mule is For Sale:
contact Cindy K. Roberts 314-971-0208
Head injuries are one of the common injuries suffered by horse and mule riders. FYI - You can still suffer a concussion injury with or without a helmet.
What is concussion:
Concussion can occur following sudden violent movement of the head, usually by being struck or in a fall or collision. Most damage is caused by rotation and acceleration (e.g. spinning of the head caused by a blow to the side of the head).
Concussion may occur with or without loss of consciousness.
What should you do if a concussion occurs?
• ALWAYS assume a cervical spine injury if the person is unconscious.
• If there is any risk of a neck injury, stabilize the person's head and neck, then get help.
• When appropriate support (doctor or ambulance crew) has stabilized the neck with a collar, the person may be taken from the area on a scoop stretcher or spinal board.
• A doctor or sports medic should make a thorough medical assessment, record the symptoms and events leading to the injury, and make further hospital referral if required.
• No concussed person should return to riding or similar activities until they have been cleared by a medical professional.
A responsible adult should stay with the concussed person for at least the next 24 hours.
BRAKES, POWER STEERING AND YOUR MULE: Take 10 minutesto work with your mule before taking off down the trail. Work on the power steering first -- and by that I mean ask your mule to turn his/her head around to the right and the left. You can do this from the ground and also from the saddle. From the ground, simply stand at your mule's side as while facing forward, pickup on left the rein -- and gently tug his head over to the side to the left. If he attempts to step off with his hind take your right rein and pull back to stop his movement. Repeat this exercise with the left rein. He will get the concept in a couple of tries, and once he gives to the rein pressure -- give an immediate release. This is a simple and quiet way to asking your mule to give to you.
Ask for the rein back while standing on the ground in the same position. (Having your mule backing to slight pressure will help to re-enforce the whoa from the saddle.) Pick up on the reins and ask with your hands, pull and release simultaneously always giving immediate release when your mule gives back to you. Repeat these exercises from the saddle.
WISDOM TO A HAPPY MARRIAGE:
A couple was celebrating their golden wedding anniversary. Their domestic tranquility had long been the talk of the town, and on this special occasion, a local newspaper reporter paid them a visit. He inquired as to the secret of their long and happy marriage.
"Well," explained the husband, "it all goes back to our honeymoon. We visited the Grand Canyon and took a trip down to the bottom of the canyon by pack mule."
"We hadn't gone too far when my wife's mule stumbled. My wife quietly said 'That's once.' We proceeded a little farther when the mule stumbled again. Once more my wife quietly spoke: 'That's twice.' We hadn't gone a half-mile when the mule stumbled a third time. My wife promptly removed a revolver from her purse, hopped down off the beast, and shot the mule dead."
"I started to protest over her treatment of the mule when she looked at me and quietly said, 'That's once.'"
MULE NEWS: When employees at S&K Technologies here arrived at work on Monday morning after Superbowl Sunday, they found the gate to their headquarters shut tight. And they could see why.
The company's grounds and parking lot had been converted into a temporary corral for 30 to 40 horses and mules.
"It's pretty funny," said Amy Yalon, marketing manager for S&K. "They're all over the place, walking up and looking in windows. When I went outside to take pictures, one of the mules tried to walk into the building."
Turns out that Sunday night, partway through the Super Bowl, S&K facilities manager Ken Krantz had gotten a call from law enforcement.
The herd of horses and mules had escaped and were milling about on nearby U.S. Highway 93.
A danger to both motorists and themselves, the cops needed somewhere to stash the animals, and quick, while their owner was located.
"We have eight to 10 fenced acres with a building in the middle of it and a steel gate on the road coming in," Yalon said.
Krantz gave them the go-ahead. Once the animals were safely inside, of course, that steel gate was shut.
Yalon, a horse owner herself, said she doesn't know who owns animals, but added that there was no sign of neglect. All appeared healthy and well-fed, and most seemed quite friendly.
"They're just walking around, eating the grass and pooping all over," she said.
S&K Technologies is owned by the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes, and is involved in work ranging from robotics research to environmental restoration through its seven subsidiaries, much of it through federal contracts with organizations such as the U.S. Air Force and NASA.
Employees occasionally arrive at work to find a black bear sampling the wild berries that grow on the grounds, Yalon said, but Monday's large horse-and-mule show was a first.
The company is headquartered in St. Ignatius and has offices in Arlee; Missoula; Bremerton, Wash.; Grand Junction, Colo.; Warner Robins, Ga.; Dayton, Ohio; Houston; Washington, D.C.; and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, where it does work for the Royal Saudi Air Force.
Only one of those offices, however, had curious horses peering in its windows and brazen mules thinking maybe they'd saunter in through the front doors on Monday morning.
Yalon said the herd would probably stay on the grounds for a day or two while the owner repairs whatever escape route the animals found and makes arrangements to get them home.
Meantime, she had just one request of anyone coming or going from S&K Technologies.
"If you come for a visit," she said, "please close the gate behind you."Read more: http://billingsgazette.com/news/state-and-regional/montana/wandering-horses-mules-corraled-at-high-tech-hq-in-st/article_07470cc1-3efb-5cec-92c8-73d54795216d.html#ixzz1nyGc1gQ9
Now available, Life Lessons In The Saddle & Around The Manure Pile by Cindy K. Roberts. "I HAVE READ THE BOOK TWICE! MY SIDES HURT SO MUCH FROM LAUGHING, THANK YOU - I LOVE IT!" ~ Paul Mareschal http://www.pjperformancehorses.com/index.htm