Friday, May 23, 2014

Sweet Sweet Boy's continuing saga

Trying to determine the best course of action for my 30-year old horse, Natural, has been a short course full of hairpin curves and emotional hand wringing.

He's on a regime of Bute-less, an herbal supplement with devil's claw, yucca and B-12.  When the vet came out to see him and was told of the herbal route (as opposed to a pharmaceutical) he was a bit dismissive.  I anxiously turned to my naturopath, Suzy Sikora.  (The universe connected the two of us about four years ago and I am grateful down to my toes.)  She helped me put my jumping bean thoughts together about Natural's care. Thank you, thank you Suzy.

The boy has had one massage and I'm planning another follow-up session.  Interestingly, the massage therapist believes he may have suffered a trauma this winter -- either a fall or a hyperextension from a near-fall.  The plan is to get those muscles loosened up enough to introduce him to an equine chiropractor.  I was slightly more hopeful after the massage session.  The therapist reminded me we have the whole summer to see if the boy can recover.

No, dear readers, I'm not expecting a miracle, but at the very least will do everything in my power to give him some well earned relief. The vet called him stoic and the massage therapist agreed.  When she hit those tender spots he didn't buck or bite or try to race away.  He just stood there and said, "yea, that hurts".

That's my boy.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Shed Buds

A garter snake took up residence in the hay storage area of the donkey shed a couple of years ago.  I wasn't sure he had returned to his summer hangout until this morning.  I was mid-bend, almost reaching down to pick up some loose hay on the floor when I saw him all stretched out using the hay as a fluffy bed.  Usually he's coiled up atop a hay bale taking a snooze.  This morning I was worried about him. I politely asked if he was OK, but no response.  So I had to nudge his bed with the pitchfork and he stretched and said good morning.

All's right with the world.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Pasture Party Poopers

The big announcement... (fanfare in the background)
 We opened up the pasture yesterday for the season  
Big stuff for three little donkeys.  Yes, yes, yes they get to frolic and munch in their favorite spot.

Ha!  They certainly fooled me.

Yesterday they were allowed out for about 1.5 hours, today for roughly 2.5 hours.  We arrived home from a nearby Art Museum in late afternoon and I asked Rick to drop me off at the donkey yard so I could herd them in from the pasture -- enough spring grass for today.  Well, they were already wandering in ready for dinner hay.  What!  I had imagined I'd have to cajole and wheedle them in from all that grass.  Nope.  They wandered right in.

I had my Nikon with me so thought I might catch some nifty photos of the crew.  Fran was in one of her lovey-can't-get-more-than-2 feet-from-me  moods.  So this is the best I got -- Gabby through Fran's lovely ears.

Then there's Luigi, with his sweet woe-begone face.


Three little knuckleheads to be sure.

Saturday, May 3, 2014

From Father to Daughter -- passing on the tricks of the trade

Since the time the donkeys arrived at our home, Luigi has been competently opening the gate, once its unlatched.  I never bother to swing it open, I let him handle that.  Well, here you see little Gabby has learned from her father.

Little Miss Bossy thinks she's quite the herd leader.

This morning, Luigi treated me to a new behavior.  He opened the gate as usual, but then took a few steps backwards, flicked his nose at Fran and she walked out first.

Gallantry is not dead!