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“I am certainly not

an advocate of allowing a known twin pregnancy to continue and I know all too well the risks and expenses associated with twins.”

The happy, healthy twins celebrate their first birthday.

accomplished by conservative measures with the skill and dedication of Darby. The boys had been home about ten days when we were

first able to let them out in a small open area in front of their stall. They got to take their first sunbath and they so enjoyed it! Shortly after, Dr. De Vos gave the green light to give them the whole pen to play in. What a joyful day. For months, their corral looked like a day-care center! German and Darby made regular weekly visits to help make sure everything continued in the right direction.

BRIGHT FUTURE

Today, both Pancho and Lefty are big, strong and healthy yearlings with no physical issues. That’s amazing to me, because Lefty’s knee in particular was not expected to recover without surgical intervention. As a baby, his front knees banged into each other when he tried to walk and Dr. Erin and her team told me candidly that I couldn’t really expect him to be much more than “yard art” without surgery. German makes regular visits to the farm to work with

the colts and keeps a close eye on their physical progress. He is very pleased with them as yearlings and is looking forward to their competitive future. I consider German one of the finest horsemen I have ever known so when he said that his regret is that we can not repeat the breeding, it brought tears to my eyes. I credit our incredible team— Dr. De Vos, Dr. Erin Byrne, farrier Darby Holden and trainer German Baca, with turning “our two little miracles” into the healthy, strong, and well-mannered youngsters they are today. Without any one of them, the outcome would have been much less optimistic.

50 November/December 2009

Sometimes it’s bittersweet to look at them, especially Lefty. He looks very much like Mollie, although a bit more refined, while Pancho has his daddy’s Lusitano

blood written all over him. Lefty is still the mischievous one and Pancho is just a calm spirit who loves to play with the toys. I am certainly not an advocate of allowing a known twin pregnancy to continue and I know all too well the risks and expenses associated with twins. I would never have knowingly chosen this path, but feel very lucky to have two sound and healthy colts at the end of it all. I believe you simply have to play the hand you were dealt and do the very best you can. In the end, I doubt I will breed again any time soon.

A very special mare would have to join our ranks. In addition, I’m not set up to manage a stallion, so I plan to geld both Pancho and Lefty in the coming months. Their sire is local and if I chose to breed again, I would go directly to him. I do know I will always keep the two of them together here on my farm. My goal is for these two to be the best that they can be and goodwill ambassadors for their breed, demonstrating the value of the Iberian Warmblood. As part of that, all three of us will go into training and our sights are set on the Dressage arena. Fortunately, I have a wonderful trainer and teacher in German Baca. I am confident that under his tutelage, the twins will become honorable representatives of the breed and we will achieve our goals. Look for them in the future in the Dressage arena under their fancy-schmancy registered names: San Basilio (Pancho) and San Delancio (Lefty). I welcome you to follow their progress at www.

thecrosskranch.com.

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