Thursday, August 6, 2009

Chapter 9

By Susan Kanode

When we were at the 2008 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo (NFR), I heard someone talking about imprinting. I wasn’t sure what that meant, so I asked around and the other mares and I came to some conclusions.

A lot of the mares in Las Vegas in December are pregnant, so we get into some pretty heated debates. Imprinting with horses involves taking a newborn foal and exposing it to outside elements to influence the foal’s behavior when it grows up.

So we all got to wondering what kind of imprinting goes on in the bucking horse world. We decided we start imprinting our babies even before they are born. For instance, the first time I bucked in 2008 was at Belle Fourche, S.D., in July. At that time, I was about 10 weeks pregnant.

I went from Belle Fourche to Vernal, Utah; Rock Springs, Wyo.; Caldwell, Idaho; Bremerton, Wash.; Omaha, Neb.; Valley City, N.D.; Dallas, Texas, and Las Vegas. I bucked at all of those places at least once and I took my baby with me jump for jump. So, for me, this imprinting stuff makes sense.

I’m not a philosophical horse. I don’t stand around and wonder why the grass is green, the sky is blue or why there are prairie dogs. My world is pretty cut and dried. I love to get in the air and take a cowboy with me. I like to eat and spend time with the other horses. Most of all I like being a mom and hope that I am raising the next generation of bucking horses. And, if I can imprint a little of my experience on them along the way, it’s just that much better.

After Las Vegas, I went back to the ranch at Riverton, Wyo., and took it easy until my next baby came along. Once again, I gave birth to a filly. This one looks just like last year’s baby, but boy does she have a different personality. Last year’s foal was full of confidence, was inquisitive and wanted to learn. This one has all of that and then some. She has a fire in her eye and is probably the most impatient little one I’ve had yet. She wants to do everything and do it now. You should see her play in the pasture. She’s already learning to get in the air.

My first performance this year was at Belle Fourche on the Fourth of July. Once again, I’m imprinting a baby and have one by my side. It was performance time and we were back in the pens and most of the mares were sorted off. I was in a pen with three babies and trying to explain to them what was going on.

My baby and Rainmaker’s were with me and I thought they were paying attention. But that baby of Rainmaker’s was getting a little anxious and the next thing I know, she had jumped over the fence. That fence is probably five and a half feet tall and that little filly cleared the fence, just nicking it with her back feet. I was amazed and once more I’m thinking this imprinting stuff might really be working.
They got the babies sorted off and settled down and it was time for us mares to go to work. I’m pretty excited about that since this is my first time to buck in 2009. I’ve been telling my baby how much fun it is and that it’s the greatest job in the world so it’s time for me to go put some action behind my words.

The cowboy that has me is Kaden Deal from Dupree, S.D. I know he was just over a 100 miles from home and I hope I made it worth the trip. He seemed calm and collected but I knew he was excited to get on me. I felt a little tug on my mane and saw one of the guys with him pulled out a piece of my mane, coiled it up and put it in his hat. I wonder if that means he wants to ride me, or maybe he just thinks if he has the hair of a champion with him, he’ll ride like a champion. I’ll be watching for him next year.

If you have been keeping up with my stories, you know that last year, Lyle Welling from Crawford, Neb., won the rodeo at Belle Fourche on me. I tried to psyche him out a bit by stalling at the gate. It didn’t work.

This year when Kaden nodded his head I was ready! I exploded out of there, dropped my front end and he was still with me. Another buck, another jump and he’s loosening up a bit. Six seconds into the ride and it was bye bye Kaden.

Then it was back to the pen and story time for the babies after which they proceeded to take their naps. They do have the life. Another exciting thing happened at Belle. My oldest baby who is appropriately named Western Movie had her first rodeo experience. She was in the bareback riding for the Challenge of Champions which puts high school rodeo stars from Wyoming against those from South Dakota.

Well my girl did me proud. She took J.R. Vezain from Wyoming to a win. She still has a lot to learn, but she’s smart and wants to buck so I think she’ll get it figured out. She also went with us to Vernal so she got a little road experience too. She’ll stay at the ranch now until next year and believe me when I tell you I have high hopes for her.

So I’m thinking about Western Movie and am starting to see a trend here. I’m now listening to people talk about movies and thinking about names for my offspring. This year’s baby has now been weaned and is spending pasture time with Khadafy and Frontier and I hope they can teach her some things.

Like I said, she has a fire in her eyes and a mind of her own. If she gets a movie name, I think it should be Bewitched. She has that personality that wants to draw you in and bewitch you, then she’ll do whatever she wants. Of all my foals, I’m probably the most excited to see what she is going to do. It’s either going to be really really good, or really really bad. She has an intensity that if she puts to work for her it will be awesome.

Watching future generations like we do at the Challenge of Champions gives me hope for the rodeo industry. They had bareback riding and saddle bronc riding and both winners went on to win championships at the National High School Finals. JR won the bareback riding for our home state of Wyoming. The two-title winner in saddle bronc riding was Dawson Jandreau, from Kennebec, S.D. Congratulations to both of these young men.

We left Belle Fourche and headed to Vernal, Utah, where I bucked off Mo Forbes. He has a reputation of letting people know exactly what he thinks and I was wondering what he was going to say. I thought I had a pretty outstanding trip and I guess Mo agreed, because I heard him say that he sure would like another shot at me and that I was phenomenal. Thanks Mo, I hope you get me again.

I bucked again at the Big Wind Round Up in Riverton, and this time I one-jumped Tate Owens. I don’t know how high he went in the air, but I know he looked like superman flying through the arena. I’m thinking that 2009 just might be my year. We have a little time to rest and we are off to Caldwell, Idaho and Bremerton, Wash. I can’t wait to see what happens next!

My name is Miss Congeniality and I’m proud to be a Wyoming bucking horse!

2 comments:

Lil Miss Rosalie said...

I'm a HUGE fan of you. I've been reading about you on the Ultimate Horse site until I just recently found this blog. I think you're an awesome horse and just keep on buckin'. :)

Atul said...

miss congeniality movie is a mixture of action crime comedy and adventure, it tells the story of an FBI agent who goes undercover in United States beauty pageant to prevent a group from bombing the event. I had
watch miss congeniality movie
trailers , seems to be nice