Horse News

Field Report/Video: Cloud the Stallion has a New Son

Update by R.T. Fitch ~ author/president of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Cloud walking much better today

Cloud proving that he is well by adding his 2 cents worth to the “Stud Pile”

Please excuse the brevity and total disregard to any journalistic skills but Ginger Kathrens, of the Cloud Foundation, and myself have been up on the mountain for two days in row and it is beginning to tell on my stamina BUT; I am elated to say that we were privileged to spend the entire beautiful day with Cloud, his family and dozens of of other wild horses who names Ginger knows at the drop of the hat while I can’t even remember my own the bulk of the time.

I won’t be very formal and will leave the final report up to my much more knowledgeable, and sometimes more resilient, partner Ginger but for layman’s speak there are two important developments to note, today;

One is that both of us are in total alignment with the observation that Cloud is walking much better today and improved markedly as the day went on…the inserted video will highlight this.

Cloud and new babySecondly, late in the afternoon while Ginger and I were planted for hours watching Encore, prisoner of the band stallions, we heard some distant noise so I opted to investigate and hike to the source.  Well it turned out to be Cloud defending his two mares and foal from Jack the bachelor stallion who was trying to steal them.  I knew that Ginger would want to film this but part one of the fight was over before I could even say, ” What the …heck?”.  But Jack was stupid enough to come back out of the woods for a second attempt and Cloud kicked the living you-know-what out of him with his hind legs WHICH I was watching closely due to his recent injury.  He did great with no hesitation and trotted back to his band in a victory trot without any hitch in his gitty-up.  Looking good in my book.

So in a nutshell, Cloud is good and getting better, his new son is cute enough for me to use the word cute in public (which is not real macho but totally describes him) and tomorrow we are continuing our spring documentation of the magical and wonderful wild horses of the Pryor Mountain Range.

The Cloud Foundation and Wild Horse Freedom Federation are working in tandem for the betterment of the wild horses and burros.

Keep the faith, folks…the Force of the Horse® is with us.

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47 replies »

  1. Thank you so much R.T. for the update on Cloud. Such great news and a real relief that he’s doing well! He looks wonderful on the video, along with his new son. (-: I can only imagine how excited Ginger is and I’m sure you both are having a wonderful time. Great report….thanks! (-:

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    • Ok, I’m probably going to get lots of push back on this but here goes…
      Maybe it’s time to gather up Cloud, his two mares and new son and put them some place “safe.” Cloud has enjoyed almost two decades of life as a wild stallion in the Pryors. We all know that his reign won’t last forever. I hate to see such a noble animal become injured, then outcast and finally succumb to either illness, injury, starvation or predation. I hate the thought of him suffering.
      As Cloud has been such a remarkable and successful ambassador for the plight of wild horses could he not continue to be of service in that regard? Is there not some property somewhere near his beloved mountains where he could live out his remaining years producing more foals and left unchallenged by other stallions?
      For all of us who have grown to care so deeply about this pale palomino stallion I would wager that none of us want to read about the day his life will most likely end in an unsavory (and possibly painful) way.
      I know, nature is not always a kind mistress. And I’m sure there are those who feel nature should be left to take its course. What I’m asking is for thoughtful consideration. That maybe, just maybe, there can be a win/win for horses and humans alike.
      No matter what lies ahead I am rooting for that little colt who grew into such a valliant stallion. May equine angels always hover near him.

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      • I hope Cloud stays free and wild. Capturing him seems like it would be the harshest injury.

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      • Considering Cloud’s age (almost 19), how much pressure he’s been getting from other stallions, and the fact that he is recovering I think the best option for him is to leave him in the wild. The outcomes you listed are not the only possible outcomes for Cloud. There is a chance he could make a full recovery. Even if he doesn’t and he loses his band, there is still quite a bit he could teach the bachelors. Older horses have the hardest time adjusting to life in captivity, and although I try not to anthropomorphize animals, based on my observations of wild horses I have a feeling Cloud would rather live out his days in his habitat than be removed even if it means being in physical pain.

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      • Perhaps you’re right travelandnature. I suspect Cloud would “want” to stay in the habitat he knows best. Still horses do adapt. The BLM rounds up entire bands and sells many. I’m sure you’re aware that there are wild horse competitions. I have a neighbor who has two wild horses in his care. A stallion when he was captured (now gelded) and his daughter. Both seem happy. Would they prefer to be back in the wild? I really don’t know. I just hope and pray Cloud never has to suffer excruciating pain. I believe he will recover from his current injuries but we all know he won’t last forever. I know removing him from the wild flies in the face of what the Cloud Foundation stands for and I admit I’m torn. I myself dread the day when I read about his passing. And based on the number of people who were so worried after his most recent battle and subsequent disappearance I know I’m not alone.

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      • Yes, I am aware that horses adapt and some have been in competitions. I do also know that the older a horse is the harder it is for them to adapt. If the concern is having ambassadors for horses at competitions there are currently more horses in holding than in the wild, so I would rather see one of those horses be adopted.
        If the concern is about Cloud’s suffering, then I still think since he is recovering and has a band he should remain where he is. I might reconsider if he were getting worse and alone, but even then I would still prefer he remain on the range.

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      • What your saying gives me a giddy feeling in my heart at the thought of protecting him and sheltering and keeping him safe. But it goes againt everything we’re fighting for. What does it say about our desire to see them all live free and die in their own world if we say “No, that world isn’t safe enough, we need to remove them.” Yes, Cloud has been a remarkable stallion ambassador and we’ve all rallied behind him. But when the day comes, our hearts will break, we’ll cry alot, but we’ll rally behind the legacy he leaves behind. He’s well represented on the mountainop and if his new foal is his last foal, or he has five more before he goes, this is his life, this is the life we fight for him to have. Not just him but all of them.

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  2. Cloud is SO important as an ambassador for public education. So many of us are here because of Ginger’s PBS series. I now have a new number one on my bucket list… to see Cloud, his herd, and the Pryor mountains. But alas being disabled I doubt it will ever happen. That is unless Publisher’s Clearing House visits me soon.

    Thanks for the update and you’re continued efforts for the cause!

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  3. Woo Hoooo Cloud looks awesome , so elated Cloud is getting better,is it his from behind the left back leg????? his new son is beautiful, Thank you RT and Ginger may the force of the Horse always be with you and guide you both………………..

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  4. makes me so happy to see Cloud and his family doing well.. what a cutie pie his new son is… much love and prayers for them.. to stay free…

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  5. Cloud looks sound in the front – but his left hind leg almost appears to be injured somewhere around the stifle? The video was before he mixed it up with Jack? Probably the constant walking & going up & down the hills will help to heal him.

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  6. Please correct me if I’m wrong RT, but I understood from Ginger that Encore is with Knight, London, Inali, and I believe Hamlet. But their observations this week are that Knight has seemed to claim her and defends her boldly against the other bachelors.
    Thank you RT for your commentary and video on the herd–we’ll look forward to what you and Ginger find today.

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  7. Good question, Sandy. What exactly does that mean? I was kind of wondering how much physical distance there is between Cloud’s band and the bachelors and Nimbus now, too? Have you observed them within scent, sight or vocal detection range?

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    • I would think by RT’s report, that they must be in close proximity. As RT stated that he heard noise (while watching Nimbus/Encore) and hiked to where Cloud was getting challenged by Jasper/Jack. So they must not be far from one another. Hopefully (I would like to see this) Nimbus will get back to her family band. Could she be okay out like this as a yearling? Perhaps. But is it the most ideal situation? No. She is only a yearling. Aside from the fact she could get bred, she could could injured in all the “bachelor games”. I personally would like to see her back where she belongs for a bit longer.

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    • According to RT’s report, while they were watching Encore/Nimbus, Rt heard noise and hiked to find Jasper challenging Cloud. So I am guessing they are in close range. Is Nimbus okay in this situation? Maybe. Is it ideal for a yearling to be here getting possibly bred and or hurt in bachelor games? No. I would like to see her back with her band and hopefully that will happen soon if they are that close.

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  8. Oh, and I’m very glad my instinct that Cloud was just out there somewhere doing the “injured band stallion” thing, has turned out to be right. Looks like that leg or foot is tender/painful, but it’s good to see that he doesn’t seem to hesitate to put weight on it. The troubles of being a band stallion surely do not outweigh the rewards— like the company of his mares and that beautiful new baby. 🙂

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  9. Thank you for your dedication and for sharing this video, I only wish I could get to see these beautiful animals in real life. Curious and to how close you were, did he know you guys were there? He certainly still favors the leg, poor guy. Just hope he does not have to battle anyone in the near future.

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  10. thank you for the hard/rewarding work of keeping track of Cloud and all the bands – for this video – others – all the marvelous pictures – very rewarding for me to see these horses – and yes, Cloud is such an ambassador to his world

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  11. I get so emotional when I read up dates, thinking of all of the wild horses out West and their future. Thank-You so very much for all you and your foundation does for the Wild Horses. Bless you Deb

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    • Thanks, Debbie. We are only a few of many organizations and people (including YOU) trying to save the wild horses and burros. Thanks for reading our blog.

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  12. Cloud almost looked like stringhalt on that right hind leg. He wasn’t limping on it, but he had more action in using that leg. Not sure what causes stringhalt, but it doesn’t seem to be bothering him. So anxious for him, and that baby is beyond cute!! Thank you for the update.

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    • Dear Patricia, I saw that also, it is not as drastic as some i have seen, most often is is known to be neurological , Clouds may be just an injury and it will heal …….. Hope there are not anymore battles for him !!!!!!

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    • Makes me think of a horse with a stifle injury – maybe that’s where he got kicked. Front leg seems good from the video.

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    • Depends if your looking front to back or back to front hehehehehe , it is the Left Leg from the back view…………………………….

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  13. Thank you for this video of Cloud and his small band. I cannot imagine how he must have looked just after the fight because his movement is still hard to watch even now.

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  14. Such Great News that Cloud is doing better!! Thank you R.T. and Ginger for keeping us informed and sharing….

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  15. i have watched all the pbs series i love cloud . i hope its not nerve damage ,but didn’t seem to stop him against the boys ,haha .what wonderful baby.send more video if you can ,we would love to see more of them all . thank you for all your hard work .again thanxs

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  16. So glad to see that Cloud is alive, walking and doing his stallion thing of kicking the heck out of that bachelor, Jack, even while favoring his leg. Now little Echo has to get back and Nimbus has to get back to her band. Then things will be better. Thank you for sharing the health of our icons.

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  17. No one but a horse person would understand why watching a horse poop can make us so happy. Cloud should never be captured. He has earned his right to live and eventually die in the wilderness he calls his home. This is the natural way for wild horses and like any good ecosystem should not be messed with. Hey. If it works don’t try to fix it; and judging from Clouds poop it’s working.

    Thank you for he beautiful video and the updates on this herd. It’s magical seeing the this way. It’s so painful to see the others penned up by the BLM.

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  18. There is nothing more awful then having to see a Magnificent Wild Mustangs made to stand away from his herd , it is heart wrenching to have to witness it , and be unable to set them all free and be where they belong on the Range, in 1971 CONGRESS UNANIMOUSLY felt this for them , Hench the Roam Act !!!!! These Fabulous Beauties were Born to be Free, it is our JOB #1 to make this their Reality for all time ……………..We eat sleep and weep and dream this for the Mustangs Freedom…… My Fondest wish for the Mustangs is that we together Make this Happen, at any costs !!!!!! Their is nothing more beautiful as seeing ,feeling and watching the Freedom Reek from them on the Range where they are meant to be !!!! Each one of us must deliver their Freedom back to them !!!!!!

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  19. First choice is always the Range, but if a Mustang is in Dire Jeopardy of losing his life, and we are the care takers then i am sure the choice would very accordingly to his need for help, i could not stand there and do nothing but watch him die….. I do respect wildlife and I respect life and that is why I couldnt !!! If the Higher power did not want me to assist and or help he would not have given me the tools to assist… or placed that decision in my path… Therefore I am bound to help !!!!

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