Doc Randall tells this story about mares, stallions, unwarranted breeding programs, and the sensibilities of the rural post office.

A client had a nice band of Quarter Horse mares, the admiration of many a rancher and cowboy for several counties. Unfortunately, ranchers and stranded cowboys were not the only ones to admire these cavvy-savvy four-legged beauties. Those sorrel blazes and the delicate turn of their fetlocks caused a Percheron stallion in the neighboring pasture to find them quite charming as well. So charming, in fact, that the lusty gent liked to jump the fence to come over and visit them. A lot.

You know where this is going. And yes, I know, again with the testicles…

After several heated conversations between the Percheron and the very unamused rancher, more than a few unauthorized equine visits, and a foal or two that could not be registered due to its half-Percheron bloodline, neighborly relations were at an all-time low. This was made worse by the fact that the unhappy rancher couldn’t determine the owner of this love ’em-and-leave ’em Percheron. The rancher caught the Percheron, loaded him into the trailer, and brought him into Bridger Vet.

“I don’t want to hear from you again until this is taken care of!!” barked the rancher, his truck spewing gravel as he gunned it back for the state line.

As ordered, Doc Randall made several calls and finally found the stallion’s owner. He explained the problem and the angry rancher’s proposed solution. The owner conceded, and Doc Randall gelded the lusty Percheron. True to form, he had the offending testicles out on the counter. After a few mandatory jokes regarding their size, the vet tech asked dad what to do with the evidence.

“Send them down to that rancher,” he tossed over his shoulder on his way out the door, probably to go look at someone’s cows. “He’ll know this guy is ready to go home then.”

She was a vet tech with Norwegian sensibilities, not one to question what seemed a reasonable course of events. And so she boxed up the no-longer-offending testicles and dropped them at the post office for delivery.

Now, it is still common in rural areas to keep a post office box, collecting mail once or twice a month rather than daily. After a week in postal captivity, the organic matter in that package began to make itself known in a rather unsubtle, nasally offensive manner. The postmaster called up the rancher and told him in no uncertain terms that he had a rather ripe, leaky package that he needed to pick up immediately.

“What? From where?” sputtered our fair rancher.

“Bridger Vet,” barked the postmaster, “and hurry up because it stinks!”

Our fair rancher blanched, guffawed a few times, and managed to croak out “Just go ahead and throw it out. I don’t need what was in there anyways!”

So, what can we learn from this encounter?

  • Good fences make for good neighbors. They also help to prevent unauthorized acts of pregnancy.
  • Make friends with your postmaster. After all, you may need him or her to call you when you’ve got waiting mail. Of course, modern postal regulations against shipping organic matter prevent this sort of thing from happening nowadays, but we still recommend being on good terms with the post office. Some good christmas cookies or a six-pack of your finest homebrew might go a long way towards avoiding a science experiment gone wrong in your post box.
  • Unless you really do want more of that animal, spay it, neuter it, geld it, band it, or castrate it. Life will be a lot more pleasant for all involved if you aren’t having to check fence lines or watching to make certain that nothing gets out. (This wise advice applies to dogs, cats, horses, cattle, goats, sheep, hogs, or any other farm mammal.)

As for the fair rancher and the Percheron, nothing else was heard from either regarding unwelcome visits or wayward bloodlines. Rumor has it that any packages from the vet clinic were picked up promptly henceforth, although he has promised Doc Randall to one day get even with him. And the post office? Well, it’s always smart to stay on the good side of any federal entity, especially one that knows where you live. That’s good advice, right there!