Dayo goes to a sleepover

Dayo is living a life of luxury on the farm, days in the front paddock with the mares, evenings in a huge stall with an “all you can eat” hay buffet, good feed, plenty of fresh water, and good friends. She still lines up against the fence to admire Bazinga and Sophia. the Lone Pine Paints babies, but she has resigned herself to the fact that she is not having a baby *right now* and spends more time at the round bale, and less time “brooding”.

In June, Chaos and I went to our first show of the season. In honour of this momentous event, Dayo was required to give up her stall and spend the night under the stars with the girls.

To put it mildly, Dayo was not impressed. It turns out she is a bit more of a “five star” girl. She likes her amenities, and can be rather imperious when requesting them. Turn in time is about 6 or 7 p.m., and she spent the next two hours pacing the fence line calling to Richard, telling him she had been forgotten, that a terrible mistake had been made. Eventually, after a brief discussion about how fun an overnight adventure with the girls would be, she seemed to resign herself to the inevitable, and with a disgruntled toss of her head and a pointed flip of her tail, ambled back out to the mares, still grumbling and calling.

Dayo was so unimpressed with her overnight experience that she almost charged Richard the next morning, determined to make sure that she was brought in for breakfast. At 3 p.m. that afternoon, she could be found pacing the fence line, guarding it so that no one could come in or go out until she was returned to the barn for her evening meal and a warm bed. This went on for a couple of days, until she realized that the sleepover was an extenuating circumstance and not a new routine.

Chaos, on the other hand, thoroughly enjoyed his night in the stall. He came to Lone Pines thinking he was a real ladies man. He is turned out with the mares in the front paddock as well, where boss mare Tia and the herd afford him “stallion privileges”. The thrill of the turnout with mares lasted about four weeks – until one day, seven of them went into heat at once. It a life-changing event for poor Chaos, and the little Heffner now enjoys his days soaking up the solitude of Dayo’s stall (dubbed “Chaos’ man cave” by day).  The hours in the cave are spent snoozing, eating, supervising Richard as he goes about the daily routine, and greeting all visitors who enter the barn.

It goes without saying that Chaos and Dayo despise each other. Apparently stall sharing is the ultimate affront in the world of “sibling rivalry”. When Dayo comes into the barn during the day to get ready, Chaos fixes her with his “death” stare. She responds with a vacant, “blonde” look. If Chaos is brought in after turnout at night, Dayo pins her ears at him and chews her hay aggressively over the door. Chaos responds by flipping his tail at her as he walks by.

Dayo still resents the sleepovers, and is still as loud and vocal as ever about them. Chaos enjoys them thoroughly, and more so, I suspect, because he can hear Dayo calling from the paddock, demanding her rights.

And so it goes…


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