“S” Memorial Horses
LAD’S DOUBLE SKIP (“SAILOR”) was a red roan Appaloosa. He stood 16.1 hands. A very gentle, easy-going horse, Sailor proved to be a great pleasure riding horse for his inexperienced former owner. Prior to that, Sailor was a Canadian National Champion on the line and shown in western and dressage. He retired to Ryerss in June 2008. Sailor passed away on February 24, 2012.
SALT was a grey Quarter Horse cross gelding who came to Ryerss Farm on December 23, 2011. Prior to retiring at Ryerss, Salt started his career as a lesson horse which did not work out because he was difficult to work with. One little girl (Portia the former owner) made a very special bond with Salt and was devastated to learn he was being sold from the lesson program. She went home and told her parents she had to have the horse, to which her grandmother asked to see her report card and bought her Salt in return for good grades. Salt and Portia spent many years together showing and winning championships until Portia had to go off to college. At this point she knew she wanted to retain ownership so she loaned him to Monmouth County Parks Systems SPUR therapeutic riding program for people with disabilities, where he did a great job for many years and finished out his working career there. Salt was a member of the upper barn herd here at Ryerss where he became close friends with May Day. He was always a barn favorite with many visitors and volunteers. Sadly, on January 19th Salt began to colic and the decision was made to humanely euthanize after he diagnosed with a strangulating lipoma. Salt was 29 years old. He will be missed by all who came to know and love him in past years.
SARAH, also known as Cookie Monster, was a 14.2 hand buckskin Quarter Horse cross. She was born in 1979 and held an active career in jumping and dressage, competing in many hunter and paper chases. She also served as a therapeutic riding horse until she suffered a leg injury. Sarah retired to Ryerss Farm in October 2007 where she enjoyed spending time with her friends in the main barn, Hurry and Wolverine. On June 7, 2014, we lost Sarah due to a fall, precipitated by neurological problems. She was 35 years old. Sarah will be remembered a sweet horse who loved visitors and was friendly to all.
NAMAR’S SASSY LASS was a golden chestnut Arabian. She stood 15 hands. Born in 1976, she was a great trail horse with a daring attitude, willing to climb and cross anything her former owner requested. Sassy was known for taking things out of pockets, rearranging laundry and untying lead lines. She loved carrots and apples. Sassy retired to Ryerss in June 1994. She could always be found out to pasture with her devoted friend, Pirate. They made a very striking pair! Sassy passed away on March 18, 2010.
SEHAM: Ryerss Farm was graced by a “Grande Dam” of Philadelphia in October 0f 2012 when Seham walked off the trailer. This beautiful jet black mare was literally rescued off the streets of Philadelphia by the PSPCA back in 2010. Soon after that she was adopted and privately owned and loved. Seham received the proper medication for Cushings and was a joy under saddle until she began having coughing episodes and was diagnosed with heaves, therefore limiting her ability to exercise.
It was not long at all after her retirement to Ryerss that Seham became partners with Matisse. There truly was no doubt that they were the most elegant couple on the farm: Matisse, a FEI level Westphalian dressage gelding…and Seham, a very fancy Egyptian Arabian mare.
Seham flourished in her retirement here at Ryerss, until one day she presented us with what mimicked a choke. She was treated and watched carefully but it became evident that we couldn’t “fix” it. Our conclusion was that she had suffered a mild stroke and lost her ability to swallow. She was eased across the Rainbow Bridge with dignity on Wednesday, November 27th, 2013.
Ironically, Matisse predeceased Seham seven months to the day. It is nice to know that they are together once again, forever and always
SEVEN: On Saturday, August 17th 2013, School Horses of Watchung (SHOW) retired Seven to Ryerss Farm. Seven gave 11 years of service to Watchung Stables. He came by the name of Seven simply because he was the horse in the #7 stall. He helped hundreds of riders win blue ribbons at shows and even taught riders how to fall off! By 2010, Seven had been retired from the lesson program because of arthritic changes in his legs and spent his days as a companion horse at SHOW.
After coming to Ryerss, Seven was always a bit of a loner and would rather hang around the barn grazing than go out into the field and join the other horses in the herd. One reason for his desire to stay close to the barn may have been his painful and sore feet and legs. At Ryerss, he was a fixture in the paddocks close to the area where visitors came and he was always happy to take carrots and treats from them. He was gentle and good with children. As time progressed his arthritis progressed throughout his legs until our veterinarian advised us that his quality of life had deteriorated greatly due to the pain he was dealing with daily. On September 4th 2015, Seven was humanely euthanized and released from that pain. Everyone who spent time at the farm knew Seven and loved him. He will be missed by many.
SHELBY’S JOY, a 15.1 hh chestnut Thoroughbred, was born in 1986. Shelby played polo in Florida, New York, Valley Forge Military Academy, Bucks County and Tinicum Park polo clubs, retiring from the sport in 2002. Shelby was known for her tenacity and speed on and off the field, as well as her diva-like personality. Shelby retired to Ryerss Farm with her friend Peri in August 2008. While at Ryerss she formed a strong friendship and bond with a group of other retirees (Sidney, Bounder, Woody and Sophie). Sadly, we lost Shelby on December 31, 2017 at the age of 32. Shelby was a lovely mare who got along with everyone and enjoyed greeting the visitors who came to see her. She will be missed. RIP Shelby.
SKIPPY: In June of 2005, Ryerss Farm became the final retirement home for “Skipper Four Socks”, a 27 year old retired police horse. Skip was affiliated with Bergen County Sheriffs’ Department in New Jersey for seventeen years. He received many awards for service and bravery during that time.During his time at Ryerss, he outlived many friend: Babe, Sugar and Mr. Bee, just to name a few. He was a loyal friend to many, both human and equine.
As his age started to catch up with him, all of us celebrated “another day with Skippy.” His appetite never waned, but the frailties of old age began to advance with each heat wave. The decision was made to help him across the rainbow bridge preserving the dignity that he always displayed even with his tongue hanging out. On the morning of July 15th, 2013, we saluted our dear Skip as he peacefully joined his old pals.
SMOKEY came to retire at Ryerss in December of 2007 after spending many years serving as a therapeutic riding pony at Sebastian Riding Associates. Before his career as a therapeutic pony, Smokey was privately owned by a local family. You can see pictures of him eventing on our Wall of Fame.
During his tenure at Ryerss, Smokey was known as one who could get along with everyone. He was a kindhearted soul and made many friends easily. He also outlived many friends. His most recent best friend was Wheaties, who always preferred to be with people more than ponies. However, Smokey and Wheaties grew to live in each other’s shadow. When Wheaties passed away, Smokey never put any effort into replacing him and finding another friend.
Smokey’s episodes of respiratory distress became more frequent and it was evident that we couldn’t fix his problem. The fear was that he would have an episode when we were not around and would perhaps suffer unnecessarily. So on Tuesday, May 8th, 2012, Smokey, at the age of 30, was helped across the Rainbow Bridge to join all of his friends. For many of us, the barn is not the same without Wheaties, who we fondly referred to as our ”Golden Retriever” and Smokey, who we remember fondly as our “Chocolate Lab.” The comforting thought for us is that they are now free of the infirmities of old age and together again.
SNOWCAP was a 16.1 hand Appaloosa who had a very sturdy, unique appearance and a sweet face. He was a pleasure horse. Born in 1983, Snowcap retired to Ryerss in October 2001. Snowcap passed away on April 1, 2011. Everyone loved Snowcap because he was very kind and gentle and good to everyone he met.
SNOWFLAKE was a 12.2 grey pony mix. Born about 1987, Snowflake was a therapy riding pony, retiring from the same therapy program as did Barney. Before Barney retired in 2008, Snowflake enjoyed teasing Barney by pulling on his tail or blanket and nipping at his fetlocks. Snowflake was a great therapy horse, since he was well-mannered, easy-going, and provided a smooth ride. Snowflake loved to eat and was great around children. He retired to Ryerss Farm in October 2009. Snowflake passed away on June 22, 2010.
SONNY (IHYDOC SONNY): In 2005, several horses were retired to Ryerss Farm together as a family from an estate. Sonny came in with Pirate, Matisse, Willy and Elmo to name a few. Sonny, was a sorrel Quarter Horse gelding born in 1984. He competed in lower level dressage during his working career.
During his almost ten years here at Ryerss, Sonny never did anything wrong. He was never out of sorts with horses or people and was always easy to get along with. He is best remembered for the ringlets in his tail and his innate capability of making you groom him and only him when you were in the field.
On September 26th, 2014 Sonny was diagnosed with an intestinal twist which had ruptured. We had no choice but to help him across the Rainbow Bridge. He was a gentleman to the very end and will be greatly missed by all.