Jack’s Smoky Charger


This horse.

To say he will be missed is an understatement and frankly, not easy to say period.

Or to write for that matter, but I will try.



He was an older horse yes.  But he was as sound and healthy as the day is long.  In fact in the years that he was with us he was never sick, never lame or stiff, and never needed meds of any kind.  At twenty-six he truly was a picture of health even for a horse half his age.



We had to have this wonderful horse put down two Saturday’s ago.  The veterinarians are stumped at this time as to what was going on with him.  His blood tests showed nothing out of the ordinary.  The best guess is it could have been an extremely fast growing tumor that finally grew around or right on his spinal cord.  Whatever it was, it was almost instantaneous in his discomfort and level of reaction.



Within eighteen hours, there I sat with his head in my lap and then he was gone.  Out of our lives.  We’ve had old horses before but this one didn’t go as I thought it would.  I thought he’d show signs of age.  Of arthritis or some such.  I thought perhaps a colic, a twisted gut.  But no.  No this one.  This….this took us all by surprise.



Below is what I was able to type out and post on my Facebook page that morning:

Smoke is no longer here. I know he’s happily wandering around and grazing up on Gold Hill in Sagle, Idaho.
I want to thank you for all your prayers. I feel like they were just as much for us as for Smoke.
Also, an enormous thank you goes out to everyone who made it happen that we could keep such a great horse in his last years… Nichole (last name withheld) for spotting him that day. Lisa (last name withheld) for trusting us, whom she didn’t even know, by allowing him to come clear out East. Myra (last name withheld) for choreographing his trip. And my dad, for bringing him to us. (And he fussed about the granite rocks he hauled the year before!)
He was loved and respected here by everyone and anyone who crossed his path, plus he was beyond perfect for our boy Jake, just as I knew he would be.
Ever the consummate gentleman and tough guy, he gladly ate the treats we offered him this morning right till the end.
As the man who bred and raised him once told me, “You can’t force him into nothin’ but you could talk him into anything”. There wasn’t any need for either today. He was ready.
Jacks Smoky Charger #2681395
May 5, 1987 – November 23, 2013


Jacks Smoky Charger weanling



Heartbreaking to think a simple scene such as this one from the front windows will no longer be. 

We are grateful for much…For the time we had and all the wonderful memories.

Thank you Smoke, we love you and miss you more than mountains.


16 thoughts on “Jack’s Smoky Charger

  1. Oh…..this is so sad. My heart is aching for you. Although I’ve never owned a horse, I sure know how much it hurts to lose a kitty, so I can imagine it’s much the same. Sending you a hug. How’s Jake taking it??


  2. I’m so sad for all of you……he was an amazing horse indeed and one who certainly brought a lot to your family in many ways. Loss is just awful ANY time, but somehow holidays make it hurt just a bit more. I’m sending you big hugs and my true sympathies for your loss Dee……….

    Love, Pam


  3. He is so lucky to have someone write such a GRAND tribute, he sounds like he was amazing and lucky to have a family that loved him. It makes me think of the dogs I’ve had and miss so much!!! Hope you guys are doing better!!!


  4. Ah, I’m in tears reading this. Takes me back to when we had to put Rose down… Like Myra said when I asked if she had heard about Smoke passing, “He couldn’t have asked for a better home to spend the last years of his life and he probably lived as long as he did because of such good care.”


    1. I was in tears writing it. Indeed, he did have the best of care and grew to really dig his stall fan in the summer ;) However, I’m betting his health and longevity was due mostly to good bloodlines. Thanks, you commenting means a lot to me. :) ~d.


  5. The loss of a loved horse is sooooooooooo sad.
    It takes years for the heartache to go away.
    Are you coming home for the winter……………it would ease the sadness.


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