Jan Swan Wood: PRCA season over, injuries, gold fish and grass founder | TSLN.com

Jan Swan Wood: PRCA season over, injuries, gold fish and grass founder

I’m back home again after nine days spent nuzzling that new grandson. It was tough getting myself out of Miller. I kept whirling back, wouldn’t move out, traveled with my head turned back, and even pitched a fit. After a liberal amount of doubled up rope over my backside and the judicious use of a spur in the shoulder, I finally got myself lined out and headed west. I finally quit blubbering west of Highmore. It’s amazing what a hold those little fellers can get on a person. I’m still walking the fence a little, but I think I’m going to live through it.

The 2010 PRCA season is over and the tallies have been made for the WNFR qualifications. Some of the races were awfully close and some shifted around during the Omaha rodeo. It turns out that Todd Suhn, Hermosa, SD, got nudged out of first place there, but still goes into the WNFR in second with $101,791 won. Gering, NE’s Dean Gorsuch is third with $92, 703.

Of the top 15 in each event, the northern plains region has six saddle bronc riders, three barebacks, five bull riders, two barrel racers, four team roping headers (three of those are Tryans!), and one team roping heeler. Of course, the aforementioned Todd and Dean are the two steer wrestlers. No tie-down ropers from this region made the finals.

On the injured list are saddle bronc riders Wade Sundell, Boxholm, IA and Shawn Stroh, Dickinson, ND with pelvis sprains and Seth Glause, Rock Springs, WY with a sprained ankle, though they all competed anyway. Bull rider Ardie Maier, Timber Lake, SD, suffered a concussion on Sept. 22 at Texarkana, AR, plus a strained shoulder. He re-aggravated a wrist injury (and probably his Doctor) on Sept. 24, so he is pretty sore all over.

I watch other pro athletes (those that play with balls) get a hang nail or jostled while playing and they are carted off the field and out of the game for six weeks. Cowboys are just tougher I guess. They’re also having to compete to earn money, so that gives them a different motivation. Quite a contrast though. The cowboy crowd doesn’t make the headlines when they do stupid, irresponsible and illegal things either, so that’s another difference. Go cowboys and cowgirls.

Team ropers Clay Tryan, Billings, MT and partner Travis Graves, Jay, OK, broke regular season earnings records with Tryan winning $146,608 heading and Graves winning $147,653 heeling. Pretty good income if there wasn’t all the travel expenses and suchlike coming out of it. Still, what a year. Great job, guys. They do make it hard for a parent to tell their kid to quit roping and go get a real job, though!

I know where there’s a big, stout, 16-year-old stud by Bills Rock and out of a Rapid D’Or mare. If someone out there wants to raise some full-sized horses, he would sure be the ticket. He’s gentle and halter broke, but was never ridden. Seems a shame that a horse that good is just standing around but the folks that have him aren’t using him. Drop me an e-mail if you’re interested and I’ll pass along a phone number. Those horses are the real McCoy using horses.

The ranch and rodeo world lost two more good hands this last week. Alvin Tescher, Beach, ND, passed away at the age of 89. He was a lifelong rancher, a rodeo hand, and a top horseman. He’s survived by his wife Betty, a big family of 10 kids, 28 grandkids and some great grands. He’s also survived by some siblings, though his rodeo hand brothers Jim and Tom preceded him in death, along with other siblings and two of his children.

Denny Looman, 69, Miles City, MT, died of a massive heart attack shortly after feeding his race horses on Sept. 25. Denny was a great saddle bronc rider in his time, and had racehorses for many years. He and his wife Linda have a son Yanzie that is just a little boy and was Denny’s constant companion. Sure sad for his family.

I would like to extend my sympathy to Bobby Harris, Highmore, SD and his family in the loss of his mother, Jayne Harris. She died peacefully in her sleep this week. I will have more about Jayne next week.

If you live in an area that has had cases of EPM in horses, here’s an update on the transmission of the disease. EPM, equine protozoal myeloencephalitis, is spread by a parasitic protozoan called sarcocystis neurona. Not all horses that become infected actually show symptoms, but when they do, it’s very serious and often fatal. It’s the disease that killed Dash For Cash, incidentally. Well, the good news is it isn’t carried by barn cats. They are an intermediate host, meaning they can have the protozoan in their system, but not pass it to horses. Raccoons, skunks, armadillos and otters are in that same category. Opossums, however, are confirmed carriers for the disease and pass it along through their feces. They are creepy little scavengers and get into grain bins and other feed storage areas in horse facilities, thereby spreading the disease through their droppings. If you have possums in your area, be diligent in keeping the feed for your horses out of their reach.

Coming back across South Dakota the other day, I noticed how green the regrowth was in pastures and fields along the way. In one pasture, I saw a morbidly obese Welsh sized pony grazing away on that lush grass, alongside a chubby Quarter horse. The owners probably never thought about it, but that green grass can sure founder those horses. An already fat horse is more susceptible, and any of the pony breeds particularly so. The cool nights and warm days set up a perfect situation for the onset of founder. If this scenario fits yours at home, it might be wise to get them off that green, fast-growing grass. Better to be safe than sorry, and all the guilt inducing sad horse looks in the world aren’t worth a lifetime of hoof problems and possible death.

I’ll be doing the fall gather of my goldfish before long. I put goldfish in our watertanks around the corrals and in the pasture and we just don’t have problems with mosquitoes. I know this tip comes on the wrong end of the season, but I was just thinking about it the other day, and decided to share the idea with you. I put three or four in each tank, and they eat the mosquito larvae before they can morph into mosquitoes. I feed them nothing and they thrive in the tanks year around. I move them all to a heated tank with a cover for winter, and they do fine on whatever is in the tank. They even worked on the grasshoppers that got in the tanks this summer. I’ll try to remember to tell you about the fish again in the spring.

Well, that’s my circle for this week. It’s been fun ridin’ with you.