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 Any ideas to make them get along?? Please help
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Country Bumpkin
Advanced Rider



USA
168 Posts

Posted - 12/25/2005 :  8:16:01 PM  Show Profile  Visit Country Bumpkin's Homepage Send Country Bumpkin a Private Message
Ok, so April has been here over a month and Squeaker has beat her up 3 times The first time was a few days after she got here. The second time was about 2 weeks ago I guess and I had just left them all 3 in the corral for no mmore than an hour or two.I came back and April was beat up. For the past couple weeks they have all gotten along in the big pasture just fine. This morning my mom yelled at me that Squeaker just kicked April into the fence and April was down. I thought" Oh my God, she's dead!" and I threw my clothes on and rushed out there.April was up on the other side of the fence and she had several scrapes and cuts on her back legs from getting caught i the wire.
Mom said she was watching from the kitchen window and April and Chanti were up by the gate and then Squeaker ran up,backed up to April and just started kicking the crap out of her. April was in a corner so she turned and tried to jump the fence and got caught and she was still getting kicked.
I caught Squeaker and led her up to the corral and put her in a small section of it so she wouldn't fight anymore.
I was so mad at Squeaker I had a good notion to whip her. I can never catch her doing it,she waits when there is no one out there. April doesn't aggravate them,she tries to stay away from them and when they get close to her she runs away. She is scared of them.
I don't know why Squeaker is acting this way.She has never fought so many times with any other horse here.
If I can't find some way to make Squeaker leave her alone,I have to either keep her seperated in the corral or little pen all the time OR sell her.And neither one is good.

Any tips or ideas as to WHY she is acting this way is very greatly appreciated! Is there any hope for April to become friendlier and not so scared of the other horses?

EZ2SPOT
Clinician

USA
3785 Posts

Posted - 12/25/2005 :  8:41:36 PM  Show Profile  Visit EZ2SPOT's Homepage Send EZ2SPOT a Private Message
The "why" part is easy; Squeaker is the dominant horse and is letting April know it!

Judging from the pictures you posted elsewhere in this forum, April is in pretty bad shape. I am guessing she does not have the strength or energy to get away from Squeaker when she gets nasty. Plus, isn't she in foal? That is just another drain on her.

What I would do is to keep them separate at least until April is in better shape. How do April & Chanti get along? If they are ok together, you might try keeping them together (separate from Squeaker), and let them bond. Then try again turning them all out together, perhaps for only short periods of time, at first, to see how it works out.

EZ2SPOT
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EZ2SPOT
Clinician

USA
3785 Posts

Posted - 12/25/2005 :  8:41:36 PM  Show Profile  Visit EZ2SPOT's Homepage Send EZ2SPOT a Private Message
The "why" part is easy; Squeaker is the dominant horse and is letting April know it!

Judging from the pictures you posted elsewhere in this forum, April is in pretty bad shape. I am guessing she does not have the strength or energy to get away from Squeaker when she gets nasty. Plus, isn't she in foal? That is just another drain on her.

What I would do is to keep them separate at least until April is in better shape. How do April & Chanti get along? If they are ok together, you might try keeping them together (separate from Squeaker), and let them bond. Then try again turning them all out together, perhaps for only short periods of time, at first, to see how it works out.

EZ2SPOT
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Stormie
Clinician

1630 Posts

Posted - 12/25/2005 :  8:58:02 PM  Show Profile  Visit Stormie's Homepage Send Stormie a Private Message
She acting like this because the herd order has changed and until they get set in it there will be more fighting then normal. Also since it is only 3 horses it is harder on them. The two old ones where friends and not this new guy comes in and maybe not Squeaker isn't the other horse's BF any more. Horses don't have our same feelings but they do get closer grooming friends and when a pair is split up by a new horse the more Dominate one will try to take it out on the others.

It can take months for the herd order to get set after a change. Sometimes you do run into cases where horses just don't get along and never will. The best thing to do there is to take the more problem horse out of the herd or take the new horse out.

Squeaker is not attacking to be mean, not really. She is trying to tell April that she is boss. When she went after April it was to make a point about April and the other horse not being together unless Squeaker says they can be. Horses show other horses that they are dominate over others by driving them away from doing things. Not letting the lower horses eat whatever they want. Being the first horse to drink. Not letting them in the herd, driving them off from a herd. Spanking Squeaker is not the answer. She is doing what is natural to her. She will not understand why you did what you did or connect it to the very basic herd reactions that she is doing. Even if you catch you spanking her is not what you should do. Not just because she won't understand it but because it would put you too close to danger and since she is already in boss mode she might turn to dominate you, before she figures out it is you. A better plan is to do what a horse would do.

In the herd, if you watch long enough, you will see that when a horse messes up or tries to be boss over a horse that is more dominate they don't just spank them. Horses give tons of warnings, Ears back, leg raised, swinging the butt around. All of these is 'normally' given first but if a horse keeps messing up the boss horse will drive them from the herd and in some cases keep them from the herd until they give in. So if it happens when you are right there, RIGHT there not across the yard, drive her off. you should use a whip and if you don't have one don't do anything. Your safety is more important.

Another thing to try is not pull Squeaker out but pull the 3rd out. If April and the other horse are getting long and Squeaker doesn't like that then pull that horse out for a few days and give squeaker a chance to bond with April. They are herd animals and sometimes when two horses that don't get along are left alone together they form a herd. Then bring the other horse back in to the herd. When dealing with larger groups it's best to let the new guy bond to one or two horses from the herd before turning out or even slowly upping the numbers so that it isn't the whole herd fitting for who is Boss, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, etc.

Even then the herd order will change daily, hourly sometimes as horses decide to try to move up, or someone is weakned by injury, illness, age, even being bred or having a foal can change a horse's order in the herd. Squeaker will probably be the herd boss but then again April might shock you and do something to top her some day. It is ever changing.
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Stormie
Clinician

1630 Posts

Posted - 12/25/2005 :  8:58:02 PM  Show Profile  Visit Stormie's Homepage Send Stormie a Private Message
She acting like this because the herd order has changed and until they get set in it there will be more fighting then normal. Also since it is only 3 horses it is harder on them. The two old ones where friends and not this new guy comes in and maybe not Squeaker isn't the other horse's BF any more. Horses don't have our same feelings but they do get closer grooming friends and when a pair is split up by a new horse the more Dominate one will try to take it out on the others.

It can take months for the herd order to get set after a change. Sometimes you do run into cases where horses just don't get along and never will. The best thing to do there is to take the more problem horse out of the herd or take the new horse out.

Squeaker is not attacking to be mean, not really. She is trying to tell April that she is boss. When she went after April it was to make a point about April and the other horse not being together unless Squeaker says they can be. Horses show other horses that they are dominate over others by driving them away from doing things. Not letting the lower horses eat whatever they want. Being the first horse to drink. Not letting them in the herd, driving them off from a herd. Spanking Squeaker is not the answer. She is doing what is natural to her. She will not understand why you did what you did or connect it to the very basic herd reactions that she is doing. Even if you catch you spanking her is not what you should do. Not just because she won't understand it but because it would put you too close to danger and since she is already in boss mode she might turn to dominate you, before she figures out it is you. A better plan is to do what a horse would do.

In the herd, if you watch long enough, you will see that when a horse messes up or tries to be boss over a horse that is more dominate they don't just spank them. Horses give tons of warnings, Ears back, leg raised, swinging the butt around. All of these is 'normally' given first but if a horse keeps messing up the boss horse will drive them from the herd and in some cases keep them from the herd until they give in. So if it happens when you are right there, RIGHT there not across the yard, drive her off. you should use a whip and if you don't have one don't do anything. Your safety is more important.

Another thing to try is not pull Squeaker out but pull the 3rd out. If April and the other horse are getting long and Squeaker doesn't like that then pull that horse out for a few days and give squeaker a chance to bond with April. They are herd animals and sometimes when two horses that don't get along are left alone together they form a herd. Then bring the other horse back in to the herd. When dealing with larger groups it's best to let the new guy bond to one or two horses from the herd before turning out or even slowly upping the numbers so that it isn't the whole herd fitting for who is Boss, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, etc.

Even then the herd order will change daily, hourly sometimes as horses decide to try to move up, or someone is weakned by injury, illness, age, even being bred or having a foal can change a horse's order in the herd. Squeaker will probably be the herd boss but then again April might shock you and do something to top her some day. It is ever changing.
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Hook
Trail Boss (Moderator)



Canada
6115 Posts

Posted - 12/26/2005 :  06:55:08 AM  Show Profile  Visit Hook's Homepage Send Hook a Private Message
If April and Chanti get along keep Sqeaker inside and turn him out alone. When April has regained some strength and energy then you can try again. April and Chanti should have bonded by then.

When one of my horse gets too agressive with another horse I will use a longe whip and make sure that the boss horse knows that the real boss horse ( my or I) doesn't like that behavior. We need our herd to get along.

Some horses become extra agressive with sick or old horses and must be taught that that behavior is unacceptable. Don't turn them out together until Squeaker understands the rules or April is recovered enough to hold her own.

You might try to stable them in adjoining stalls so they can become better aquainted and April is the only horse Sqeaker has contact with for a while. Please make sure that if you do this that Squeaker will not be aggressive enough to kick in the stalls.

I would not turn Squeaker and April out together by them selves until they had reached some understanding in adjoining stalls.

Hook(ed)......on Horses

"The best things in life are nearest: Breath in your nostrils, light in your eyes, flowers at your feet, duties at your hand, the path of right just before you. Then do not grasp at the stars, but do life's plain, common work as it comes, certain that daily duties and daily bread are the sweetest things in life. " Author: Robert Louis Stevenson

Edited by - Hook on 12/26/2005 06:59:22 AM
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Hook
Trail Boss (Moderator)



Canada
6115 Posts

Posted - 12/26/2005 :  06:55:08 AM  Show Profile  Visit Hook's Homepage Send Hook a Private Message
If April and Chanti get along keep Sqeaker inside and turn him out alone. When April has regained some strength and energy then you can try again. April and Chanti should have bonded by then.

When one of my horse gets too agressive with another horse I will use a longe whip and make sure that the boss horse knows that the real boss horse ( my or I) doesn't like that behavior. We need our herd to get along.

Some horses become extra agressive with sick or old horses and must be taught that that behavior is unacceptable. Don't turn them out together until Squeaker understands the rules or April is recovered enough to hold her own.

You might try to stable them in adjoining stalls so they can become better aquainted and April is the only horse Sqeaker has contact with for a while. Please make sure that if you do this that Squeaker will not be aggressive enough to kick in the stalls.

I would not turn Squeaker and April out together by them selves until they had reached some understanding in adjoining stalls.

Hook(ed)......on Horses

"The best things in life are nearest: Breath in your nostrils, light in your eyes, flowers at your feet, duties at your hand, the path of right just before you. Then do not grasp at the stars, but do life's plain, common work as it comes, certain that daily duties and daily bread are the sweetest things in life. " Author: Robert Louis Stevenson

Edited by - Hook on 12/26/2005 06:59:22 AM
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fracturedbones
Clinician



3424 Posts

Posted - 12/26/2005 :  10:27:56 AM  Show Profile  Visit fracturedbones's Homepage Send fracturedbones a Private Message
Poor April!

When I got the fjord gelding, the POA gelding gave him the business when I turned them and the TB mare out together. If I took the mare out of the equation, the boys got along ok. Things better and the fjord has learned to wield that butt around to keep the POA at bay. Pretty funny to watch when you compare the sizes!!

Doesn't look like April can spare the energy or efforts. I wouldn't put her through the stress of it all...not yet. If possible, I'd keep Squeeker away for now, no matter what.
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fracturedbones
Clinician



3424 Posts

Posted - 12/26/2005 :  10:27:56 AM  Show Profile  Visit fracturedbones's Homepage Send fracturedbones a Private Message
Poor April!

When I got the fjord gelding, the POA gelding gave him the business when I turned them and the TB mare out together. If I took the mare out of the equation, the boys got along ok. Things better and the fjord has learned to wield that butt around to keep the POA at bay. Pretty funny to watch when you compare the sizes!!

Doesn't look like April can spare the energy or efforts. I wouldn't put her through the stress of it all...not yet. If possible, I'd keep Squeeker away for now, no matter what.
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Country Bumpkin
Advanced Rider



USA
168 Posts

Posted - 12/26/2005 :  3:15:32 PM  Show Profile  Visit Country Bumpkin's Homepage Send Country Bumpkin a Private Message
All of you have been very helpful. I had Squeaker in the smaller area of the corral for 2 days and April and Chanti were out together in the big pasture,so they could get used to each other. I also thought Squeaker was jealous of April because I was giving her more attention and brushing her first,when I used to do Squeaker first at everything.
Yesterday I tied Chanti to the corral fence and I had April walk around her and I made them sniff noses and everything and today April was tied up and Chanti went over to her and was standing under the rope.Before when she did that,April would get scared and pull back.Today though she got a little tense but after a moment she relaxed and even put her head over Chanti's back lol.
I did some of that today with Squeaker.I made them get closer to one another gradually so they could maybe become friendlier and Squeaker never pinned her ears or kicked out.She let April get close to her and at the end of the session April wasn't scared to be around Squeaker.
So maybe if I keep doing that and let them be together for short periods while I'm there they will settle down.
When I first brought Squeaker home it took only a day for the fighting to stop and she was boss. It just seems that Squeaker is doing this for no reason because April isn't trying to be the boss over anyone lol and Squeaker definitely knows she is the boss.

Thanks for your help. I'll see how it goes over the next few days with them.
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Country Bumpkin
Advanced Rider



USA
168 Posts

Posted - 12/26/2005 :  3:15:32 PM  Show Profile  Visit Country Bumpkin's Homepage Send Country Bumpkin a Private Message
All of you have been very helpful. I had Squeaker in the smaller area of the corral for 2 days and April and Chanti were out together in the big pasture,so they could get used to each other. I also thought Squeaker was jealous of April because I was giving her more attention and brushing her first,when I used to do Squeaker first at everything.
Yesterday I tied Chanti to the corral fence and I had April walk around her and I made them sniff noses and everything and today April was tied up and Chanti went over to her and was standing under the rope.Before when she did that,April would get scared and pull back.Today though she got a little tense but after a moment she relaxed and even put her head over Chanti's back lol.
I did some of that today with Squeaker.I made them get closer to one another gradually so they could maybe become friendlier and Squeaker never pinned her ears or kicked out.She let April get close to her and at the end of the session April wasn't scared to be around Squeaker.
So maybe if I keep doing that and let them be together for short periods while I'm there they will settle down.
When I first brought Squeaker home it took only a day for the fighting to stop and she was boss. It just seems that Squeaker is doing this for no reason because April isn't trying to be the boss over anyone lol and Squeaker definitely knows she is the boss.

Thanks for your help. I'll see how it goes over the next few days with them.
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Hook
Trail Boss (Moderator)



Canada
6115 Posts

Posted - 12/26/2005 :  4:46:21 PM  Show Profile  Visit Hook's Homepage Send Hook a Private Message
I would say you have a perfect handle on this. Control the relationship until April is able to look after herself or Sqeaker no longer considers her a threat.

Hook(ed)......on Horses

"The best things in life are nearest: Breath in your nostrils, light in your eyes, flowers at your feet, duties at your hand, the path of right just before you. Then do not grasp at the stars, but do life's plain, common work as it comes, certain that daily duties and daily bread are the sweetest things in life. " Author: Robert Louis Stevenson
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Hook
Trail Boss (Moderator)



Canada
6115 Posts

Posted - 12/26/2005 :  4:46:21 PM  Show Profile  Visit Hook's Homepage Send Hook a Private Message
I would say you have a perfect handle on this. Control the relationship until April is able to look after herself or Sqeaker no longer considers her a threat.

Hook(ed)......on Horses

"The best things in life are nearest: Breath in your nostrils, light in your eyes, flowers at your feet, duties at your hand, the path of right just before you. Then do not grasp at the stars, but do life's plain, common work as it comes, certain that daily duties and daily bread are the sweetest things in life. " Author: Robert Louis Stevenson
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Country Bumpkin
Advanced Rider



USA
168 Posts

Posted - 12/27/2005 :  09:31:43 AM  Show Profile  Visit Country Bumpkin's Homepage Send Country Bumpkin a Private Message
Thanks Hook. I will keep doing how I am,since it seems to be working and if I ever catch her about to wup April I will discipline her right then. She is pretty good about listening to me though because when she pins her ears at Chanti or April I will say "Squeaker be nice" in a deep firm voice and Squeaker quits lol.
Do you think Squeaker could be jealous because Chanti hangs around her or because I give April more attention??
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Country Bumpkin
Advanced Rider



USA
168 Posts

Posted - 12/27/2005 :  09:31:43 AM  Show Profile  Visit Country Bumpkin's Homepage Send Country Bumpkin a Private Message
Thanks Hook. I will keep doing how I am,since it seems to be working and if I ever catch her about to wup April I will discipline her right then. She is pretty good about listening to me though because when she pins her ears at Chanti or April I will say "Squeaker be nice" in a deep firm voice and Squeaker quits lol.
Do you think Squeaker could be jealous because Chanti hangs around her or because I give April more attention??
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Red Hawk
Clinician



USA
5092 Posts

Posted - 12/27/2005 :  09:51:41 AM  Show Profile Send Red Hawk a Private Message
I do the same thing with Dove. I can tell him to be nice when he gets upset with another horse when I'm trail riding with someone or when he's bothering Terra in a controlled situation at home. The only problem is he knows the minute I'm not around and will do it anyway. In many ways, horses are just like little kids... they know when they can get away with something and when they can't.

"God forbid that I should go to any heaven in which there are no horses"
--Robert Browning

Don't walk in front of me, I may not follow. Don't walk behind me, I may not lead. Just walk beside me and be my friend.
-- Author Unknown
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Red Hawk
Clinician



USA
5092 Posts

Posted - 12/27/2005 :  09:51:41 AM  Show Profile Send Red Hawk a Private Message
I do the same thing with Dove. I can tell him to be nice when he gets upset with another horse when I'm trail riding with someone or when he's bothering Terra in a controlled situation at home. The only problem is he knows the minute I'm not around and will do it anyway. In many ways, horses are just like little kids... they know when they can get away with something and when they can't.

"God forbid that I should go to any heaven in which there are no horses"
--Robert Browning

Don't walk in front of me, I may not follow. Don't walk behind me, I may not lead. Just walk beside me and be my friend.
-- Author Unknown
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Hook
Trail Boss (Moderator)



Canada
6115 Posts

Posted - 12/27/2005 :  8:22:38 PM  Show Profile  Visit Hook's Homepage Send Hook a Private Message
I am not sure that horses can get jealous as we know it but they certainly comptete for attention. I would pay Squeaker attention to make sure he knows he is still your buddy but there is lot's to go around. You might want to make sure that he gets his attention last so he remembers more about getting it than if he watched you pay attention to one of the others as the last thing on his mind.

Hook(ed)......on Horses

"The best things in life are nearest: Breath in your nostrils, light in your eyes, flowers at your feet, duties at your hand, the path of right just before you. Then do not grasp at the stars, but do life's plain, common work as it comes, certain that daily duties and daily bread are the sweetest things in life. " Author: Robert Louis Stevenson
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Hook
Trail Boss (Moderator)



Canada
6115 Posts

Posted - 12/27/2005 :  8:22:38 PM  Show Profile  Visit Hook's Homepage Send Hook a Private Message
I am not sure that horses can get jealous as we know it but they certainly comptete for attention. I would pay Squeaker attention to make sure he knows he is still your buddy but there is lot's to go around. You might want to make sure that he gets his attention last so he remembers more about getting it than if he watched you pay attention to one of the others as the last thing on his mind.

Hook(ed)......on Horses

"The best things in life are nearest: Breath in your nostrils, light in your eyes, flowers at your feet, duties at your hand, the path of right just before you. Then do not grasp at the stars, but do life's plain, common work as it comes, certain that daily duties and daily bread are the sweetest things in life. " Author: Robert Louis Stevenson
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Country Bumpkin
Advanced Rider



USA
168 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2005 :  12:49:49 AM  Show Profile  Visit Country Bumpkin's Homepage Send Country Bumpkin a Private Message
Good point Hook :) Yeah RH,they are like little kids a lot! lol And when Squeaker tried to kick April one time in the corral I told her to get in that pen because usually when she is being bad I will put her in there for a little "time out".Squeaker walked over to the gate to the smaller section and stood there waiting for me to open it LOL. Then she went in and I said "Bad girl Squeaker" and she hung her head down and stood in the corner for the next 15 minutes. She's got a lot of personality,I swear.
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Country Bumpkin
Advanced Rider



USA
168 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2005 :  12:49:49 AM  Show Profile  Visit Country Bumpkin's Homepage Send Country Bumpkin a Private Message
Good point Hook :) Yeah RH,they are like little kids a lot! lol And when Squeaker tried to kick April one time in the corral I told her to get in that pen because usually when she is being bad I will put her in there for a little "time out".Squeaker walked over to the gate to the smaller section and stood there waiting for me to open it LOL. Then she went in and I said "Bad girl Squeaker" and she hung her head down and stood in the corner for the next 15 minutes. She's got a lot of personality,I swear.
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Hook
Trail Boss (Moderator)



Canada
6115 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2005 :  08:02:51 AM  Show Profile  Visit Hook's Homepage Send Hook a Private Message
Sounds like you two have a good connection. Keep up the good work.

Hook(ed)......on Horses

"The best things in life are nearest: Breath in your nostrils, light in your eyes, flowers at your feet, duties at your hand, the path of right just before you. Then do not grasp at the stars, but do life's plain, common work as it comes, certain that daily duties and daily bread are the sweetest things in life. " Author: Robert Louis Stevenson
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Hook
Trail Boss (Moderator)



Canada
6115 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2005 :  08:02:51 AM  Show Profile  Visit Hook's Homepage Send Hook a Private Message
Sounds like you two have a good connection. Keep up the good work.

Hook(ed)......on Horses

"The best things in life are nearest: Breath in your nostrils, light in your eyes, flowers at your feet, duties at your hand, the path of right just before you. Then do not grasp at the stars, but do life's plain, common work as it comes, certain that daily duties and daily bread are the sweetest things in life. " Author: Robert Louis Stevenson
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Country Bumpkin
Advanced Rider



USA
168 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2005 :  10:13:17 AM  Show Profile  Visit Country Bumpkin's Homepage Send Country Bumpkin a Private Message
Thanks Hook :)
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Country Bumpkin
Advanced Rider



USA
168 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2005 :  10:13:17 AM  Show Profile  Visit Country Bumpkin's Homepage Send Country Bumpkin a Private Message
Thanks Hook :)
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