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"Kitty's New Friend"
By Buck Kalinowski
Trafford PublishingCopyright © 2011 Buck Kalinowski
All right reserved.
Chapter OneHigh in the hills of Montana lived a woman named Mrs. Nancy. She and her family had a big ranch called THE ANNIE OKIE RANCH. It had acres and acres of fields, big shaded trees, flowing streams, and a beautiful pond that never ran dry even in the hottest of summers. The ranch had 600 acres with over 60 horses and 200 cows. It was hard work making sure all the animals were eating enough and had plenty to drink. Once in a while the cows would get injured from barbed wire or coyote attacks, and it would take several of the ranch hands to round them up and bring them in to get doctored up. Mrs. Nancy loved making animals feel better, just one look in her eyes and they could tell she had a loving and caring spirit. The years had been good to Mrs. Nancy. It seemed that God was always blessing her for her kind heart, which she was known for far and wide.
Now it was springtime, which was always an exciting time for her. At this special time, many of the mares on the big ranch began delivering their new born foals.
On a ranch when 30 mares are expecting, it's a busy time and sometimes it can be a little scary when a mare is having a foal for the first time. Will the foal be able to find the milk? Will the mare want to care for her baby? Will the herd accept the new member? This year, Kitty, who had been a little orphan horse, was going to be delivering her first foal. Kitty had a special place in Mrs. Nancy's heart. As she thought about the coming birth, Mrs. Nancy recalled that winter morning three years ago when she first set eyes on the tiny foal.
She was out one winter morning checking on her mares when she came across one of her prize horses, Annie Okie. She was Kitty's mother. She was a champion cutting horse and had won many awards by cutting or separating a cow from a herd. She had such amazing cow sense. Mrs. Nancy had trophies and pictures all over her living room. Okie, as they called her, had taught Mrs. Nancy's kids to ride. She was such an honest horse, a real part of the family. Mrs. Nancy could remember clearly that Okie delivered her foal three weeks early. As she approached cautiously, there was Okie lying lifeless in the falling snow. The sight broke her heart. Mrs. Nancy realized that Okie must have exhausted the life right out of herself during the foal's birth due to the foal's enormous size. Having no mother's warm breath to lick the wet body dry, the foal just laid in the snow and the freezing wind hammered the newborns body. Somehow she was standing bravely, a furry shivering foal, whitish in color, her ears frozen, and big brown eyes that said help me. As Mrs. Nancy approached her, she whinnied for her mother to get up and pushed her little nose into her belly looking for some warm milk. Mrs. Nancy kneeled next to Okie and promised she would take care of her little one and thanked her for being such a wonderful horse to her and her family. She then patted Okie's face one last time as a tear fell from her eye then froze by the time it hit Okie's cheek. She then reached for her cell phone to call for help. Soon the ranch hands arrived to help get the little orphan baby back to the ranch and bury Okie on that mountain top where she always liked to graze.
The foal was named Kitty because her little ears got frost bite and weeks later broke off. Her little half ears are what gave her the name Kitty because she looked like a kitten.
Kitty lived in Mrs. Nancy's garage for the first few months of her life and a bond formed between them, as Mrs. Nancy became the only mother Kitty ever knew. Every morning Mrs. Nancy would read her Bible and pray that Kitty would grow strong and be a great horse like her mother.
Kitty eventually went out with the other mares and foals. At feeding time Kitty would go over to the kitchen window where Mrs. Nancy would have her milk waiting for her. A little nicker from Kitty at the window said, "I'm here".
Some mornings Kitty would go to the window and listen to Mrs. Nancy praying. She would always perk up when she would hear Mrs. Nancy say her name. "Dear Lord, be with my little Kitty, let her know there is love in this world and let her grow up to bring joy to others".
This was a special time for Kitty. She was now three years old and was going to have her own foal in about three more months. Mrs. Nancy thought back on the first time she saw Kitty and how she had always wished she would have made a great riding horse like her mother. However, none of the ranch hands wanted to break her because they said she looked goofy. "Mrs. Nancy, the other guys would laugh at me on that horse", they said. While growing up, Kitty heard the laughter from the other horses and only had the kitchen window to go to when she felt sad. Sometimes she would just hide by the back corner of the house or rub her nose on the glass if she saw Mrs. Nancy in the kitchen.
Excerpted from "Kitty's New Friend" by Buck Kalinowski Copyright © 2011 by Buck Kalinowski. Excerpted by permission of Trafford Publishing. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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