Monday, November 22, 2010

Final Plans

We made the final plans today. We are going to set Ms. Denali free this Friday. It's so weird to have a day, and to know after that day I won't have a horse. It is snowing like crazy in Seattle, so I didn't get out to the barn. The vet called and said Denali was happily eating all bundled up warm. I'm so glad. I am actually grateful for the extra days, it was suppose to be tomorrow. The snow is actually very peaceful. It happens so rarely in Seattle, and so it makes it special.

I have a really stupid question. Is it wrong for me to take all of her tail? Do I do it before or after? Suggestions from those of you who have gone through this.

I was at work today when I got a whiff of Denali. I had on my scarf that I wore yesterday, and it brought me a huge smile, and then lots of tears. I actually am pretty proud that I only cried a few times today.

I also wanted to say thank you, all of your kind words and suggestions. They really do help a lot. I just keep telling myself that we are doing this while it's hard on us, and not on her. I'm hoping that Friday we can let her run around for the first time in 8 months. I can't belive it's been 8 months since this downward journey started. I'm afraid she'll fall, but I just want her to be able to be a horse one more time. I don't know what to do.

24 comments:

Golden the Pony Girl said...

I am so sorry you had to make such a horrible decision, those are the most horrible decisions we have to make as horse people. I guess it is the price we pay for getting to share our lives with these amazing creatures.

As for your tail question I have never known anyone to take the entire tail though I do not see why not. I took a braided lock of each of my horses tail. I did it after the fact, though I don't think that matter either. I don't think there are rules for these things just do what feels best.

Frizzle said...

I took most of Mac's tail, starting just below the dock (you want to get as much as possible, so it will be easier to make the necklace, bracelet, whatever). And I did it afterwards, because of course I didn't know he was going to pass away. I've stayed with a few friends' horses when they were being put to sleep, and I always take a lock of hair from the mane and a big chunk of tail hair afterwards. But you could certainly do it before, as well. It really doesn't matter much now, since it isn't fly season, so she doesn't really need it.

I'm glad that you don't have to go through this the day before Thanksgiving; I know it's going to be difficult no matter when you do it, but at least you will have one more thing to be thankful for on the holiday.

As long as your vet thinks it okay to let Denali go for one last run, that's great. I'm sure it will be nice for you to see her being a "real horse" again.

*Hugs!*

Ashley said...

Me personally, I don't see anything wrong with taking the whole tail...I would do it after I think. And let her run free, just do whatever your gut tells you to do in the moment. I don't think your heart will lead you wrong during that time. She has endured the falls already so what can it hurt. I think she would be grateful to have that freedom before she is truly set free. But you know her best, just follow your heart.

Mrs Mom said...

Speaking from someone who was not able to get any tail or mane hair or anything when it was my gelding Jacks' time-- get tail hair. Get as much as you can.

I'd probably get it after though. (Jack was an Appy. He had a "thing" about his few tail hairs, and I know taking it before would have served only to piss him off. He was a character to say the least...)

We will be thinking of you non-stop. Be strong. Keep her in your heart, and when you can, have something special made of the hair. I really wish I had been able to with Jack.

manymisadventures said...

Take as much tail as you want...she will not mind, and it's important to you. When I was in a similar situation, I did it after.

I am so so sorry to hear this :( I know there's nothing any of us can say to make you feel better. Hope everything goes smoothly and Denali enjoys her chance to run, and I'm sending good thoughts and support your way.

SprinklerBandit said...

My thoughts and prayers are with you guys. Thank you for being willing to let go of Denali instead of keeping her alive and miserable. It's a horrible choice to make, but I think it's the right one.

achieve1dream said...

I agree that you are making the right choice. It can be the greatest gift we can give our pets when they are miserable and/or dying. I know it's hard. I just found your blog today and I've been reading it for about three hours now and it breaks my heart that you're going through this. You and Denali are in my prayers.

Also I agree with Ashley. There is nothing wrong with taking the tail.

Miles On Miles said...

Do whatever your heart and your gut tells you at the moment. My thoughts are with you now and will be all day Friday. Peace to you and your beautiful Denali~

Andrea said...

Nothing wrong with taking the tail whenever, or however much. Hell, I took Quincy's whole forelock along with a huge piece of his tail!
Hugs.

Sydney_bitless said...

The whole tail is fine. You can make A LOT with a whole tail. Whatever you do once you cut the one end strait(closest to the tail bone)DO NOT trim the ends strait no matter how tempting it is to make the bundle look super neat. From having received a few bundles like this it can be a nightmare to sort the hairs to make something of any great length if it's all neatly bundled and cut on both ends.

Give Denali lots of hugs and kisses from me and my guys.

Snowhawk Przhevalsky said...

Were she my horse, I would take the whole tail, after she's gone.

I regret not getting more of Bandit's fur, but I did have my mom clip a pretty good chunk of Max's tail for me to keep. The dogs I grew up with were my "brothers."

She's had an amazing mom, and you're both in my thoughts and prayers.

Amanda said...

I would take her tail! I would do it after. Have a keychain made from some of it... braid some of it around a picture frame, with a picture of her in it...

Prayers and hugs for you. I wish Seattle was closer to me, I would be there for you. You are so brave, selfless and a wonderful horse owner. Every horse should be so lucky to have a momma like you!

Kate said...

Take some tail, some mane, however much you wish. You are brave and strong to do what is necessary - our horses need us to be there for them at times like these, even though it's very hard for us. I faced the same thing with Noble this past summer and know how hard it is.

Jess said...

I'm so sorry to hear about Denali. When my Doobie died I specifically asked not to have any part of him kept - I even gave away his halter. Months later, a package arrived for me. Some friends cut out pieces of his tail anyway and had a bookmark & keychain made. When I saw them, it brought back all of the pain that was the day he died, and I ended up stashing the "reminders" in a corner. Every time I look at them it wrenches my heart. I prefer to live through good memories. Physical things are too hard for me to keep.

Drillrider said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts during this difficult time. It made me cry today remembering when I had to put down a 9 year old paint gelding in the prime of his life. I didn't take his tail and I wished I would have. I would ABSOLUTELY take the tail afterward though. Let Denali be a horse and pass with dignity and in all her glory!!!!!

You are brave to do the right thing for Denali and don't let anyone else tell you otherwise!!

Drillrider said...

Thanks for sharing your deepest thoughts during this process. It makes me cry remembering when I had to put down a 9 year old paint gelding in the prime of his life.

I would ABSOLUTELY take the tail afterward. Let Denali be a horse and pass on with all her dignity and glory.

You are very brave for doing the right thing for Denali, even though it is tearing your heart out. Don't let anyone tell you any different or that she is "just a horse"!

MyHorseFaith said...

When I lost Faith, the night before I groomed her to the nines, and part of that was cleaning and taking some of her tail. I didn't want to take all of it, but its a personal choice.

I took it during our grooming session rather than after because I wanted to remember those last moments together- and it worked. I still remember that night.

Gingham said...

I can't think of any other way to express my sympathy and support for you. You are a wonderfully compassionate owner, and Denali knows that. we're here....

Anonymous said...

When I had to put my mare down last year I got there very early, gave her a bath and a good grooming, took a ton of pictures of the two of us together and then cut the whole tail off and her forelock. I would say do it before. I wouldnt have been able to do it after, I was to much of a mess. Also, I say let her run around too. Let her be free for a bit.

Muddy K said...

Trust yourself, because you do know what to do. If it's the right thing to let Denali run on Friday, then it is. Those moments are for all of you. There will be magic in them, I promise you that. I'll be thinking of you.

smazourek said...

I'll be thinking of you this week...

I wish I'd taken my arabian's tail. I only have his forelock and that's not enough to do anything with. I can tell you that I know exactly where it is right now, and he died 7 years ago.

Kristen Eleni Shellenbarger said...

I'm keeping you in my thoughts...non stop. Take as much hair when you feel is right. Enjoy the quiet and peace when she runs around and know she will continue to run painfree forever

Chelsea said...

I have large pieces of the tail of every horse I've lost. We always cut tails before the process has begun.. it seems "easier" than taking it after. Its still not easy. I suggest you take the tail..you'll appreciate having it afterwards. I'm so sorry you're going through this, but it is the right thing to do for Denali.

If she were mine, I would let her run around on friday. She'll appreciate it, even if she does fall. <3 many good thoughts for you & Denali

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

I took Rojo's entire tail after he died, because he died so suddenly from a broken leg, and the euthanasia was violent(a gun) to ease him of his suffering quickly.

I was glad to take his entire tail, not only for the items to be made (Sydney of Bitless blog did an amazing job for me) but also just to stroke his thick tail hair and breathe in his scent after he was gone.

The tail hair is the most important, though, if you are wanting items made. I believe the only items that can be made with mane hair, because of it being less course than the tail, are fobs.

Contact Sydney for more information, though.

((((hugs))))
~Lisa