August 2017 archive

Farm Friday 08.198.2017

It has been a relatively uneventful week on the farm.  Which is a pleasant change! My horse trailer has a bit more damage from the runaway roof than we initially thought it had, so it goes in for repairs next week.

Enjoy the farm pics!

 

Casey had a photo shoot last weekend for his sale ad. He’s so handsome!

Jessie enjoying some time cooling off in a puddle. Hairy dogs don’t love Texas summers!

The muppies are big enough to nurse while Mom is standing!

Mickey had a follow-up vet visit this week. The trip was very hard on him.

Caseous Lymphadenitis AKA Goat Abscesses (graphic photos!)

Late last week we noticed that one of our goats had a very large mass on the side of her neck. Upon closer inspection we found another mass. One of the masses had scaly skin and the other was just normal fur-covered. Great.

 

The uglier of the two masses.

From the other side of her neck. It was quite large!

 

I googled “goat mass on neck” and didn’t come up with anything specific so texted some pics to my regular veterinarian (he mostly only does horses, but is pretty awesome and will advise on our other 97 animals) to see what he thought.

He sent me a link to a document about Caseous Lymphadenitis and advised that was what he thinks it is mostly likely to be causing the masses on her neck. In a nutshell this is a bacterial infection that is difficult to cure and may cause death. Uplifting information for sure! He advised that if that is what it is we could wait for it to rupture or lance it and drain it. With all my experience with Sterling’s stifle and lancing and draining I felt very well prepared to give it a go.

If you are at all familiar pigeon fever in horses, this is caused by the same bacteria and seems to act in a similar fashion, just in goats instead of horses. The fluid in the abscess is HIGHLY contagious so all caution must be taken to gather the fluid when it is drained, keep the animal isolated until the wound is completely healed, disinfect the area where the animal is kept after it is healed and dispose of all bedding/feed/etc that the animal was exposed to during healing.

Turns out poor Punky (our goat) has about four abscesses and only one appeared ready to drain. Boot City and I got her situated in her new home, gathered our tools and put on clothes/shoes that could easily be cleaned and sanitized. I got the honor of lancing the abscess and draining the fluid while Boot City restrained the goat. I’ve seen quite a few abscess lancings in the past few years and this one was by far the grossest. I had a horse get pigeon fever twice in one season and this poor goat’s abscess released at least as much if not more fluid. I would guess about 8 to 10 ounces. She was not the happiest of patients so we moved quickly to get it over with.

The shriveled up skin after draining the abscess.

Now we will clean out the incision area with an iodine solution every day for three days and medicate the external incision with Furazone. The other three abscesses won’t be ready to be drained for at least a couple days. Poor Punky will likely be in isolation for a least a month or two. I didn’t snap a photo, but at least she has a chicken buddy! One of the broody hens has decided to stay in the stall with Punky. They are quite a pair!

So, if you ever need advice or information about lancing and draining an abscess, I’m happy to provide my firsthand experience and advice.

Horses Out and About

The ponies and I had a very productive and fun weekend!

We kicked off Saturday morning by heading to a lesson at the barn where I bought Coco when she was only a few months old. Her flat work has been going really well and I know she’s ready to jump, but I also know that I need some eyes on the ground to give me feedback to bring along a youngster. Being that this barn raised and trained her dam (as well as multiple half siblings), stood her sire, and two grandsires I value their input both as professionals in the hunter/jumper world, but also their knowledge of her bloodlines. They hadn’t seen her in person since she was a baby baby, so it was fun for them to see her grown up.

Coco handled the “new” place quite well. She looked pretty hard at some jump standards in the corners of the ring, but she didn’t say “no” to anything. She also handled the traffic in the arena much better than I would have anticipated. One of the down sides to keeping horses at home is that they don’t get much time in an arena with other horses. It took Sterling a year or two of showing before he stopped panicking about horses coming up behind him on the rail. I could feel Coco’s energy when horses would jump nearby, but she was never naughty.

We did lots of flat work, walked and trotted through some ground poles and ended the lesson by trotting and even cantering over a crossrail. The trainer’s feedback was that she jumps cute, even over such a tiny fence. She also really uses her hind-end into the canter transitions. Coco will definitely be a talented jumping horse, so hopefully we will get a solid base and get to start showing over fences next spring!

Pretty (and very sweaty!) Coco after our lesson.

 

The norm lately has been a lot of rain and random storms. Saturday night brought over 1.5″ of rain at our house! My horsey besties and I had planned a trail ride at the Trinity Trails in Fort Worth and we didn’t let the rain deter us! It was misting a bit when we set off, but it cleared up and turned out to be the perfect weather for a Sunday morning ride on the Trinity Trails. Plus the weather seemed to deter others from heading out so we didn’t see more than maybe 15 cyclists and that was it.

All of our horses thought the stripes in the parking lot were walkovers. It was funny.

It is delightful to live in (near) a city that is so welcoming to trail users. The Trinity Trails system has many miles of hiking, biking and horseback riding trails that allow you to ride right up to downtown Fort Worth. We got some pretty amazing photos!

This is Casey’s “but I want to eat all the grass not take a picture” pose! Downtown Fort Worth is in the backdrop.

Casey behaved really well. He looked at lots of things, but never spooked. There was a donkey on the other side of the river from us and he really talked to us when we rode by him! Thankfully we have Pablo at home because donkeys often scare the pants off of horses when they bray.

It’s so nice to have this much green grass in August. You wont hear me complain about the rain, that’s for sure!

Does your town have trails for riding, running or biking? Do you ever take your horse out?

Farm Friday 08.11.2017

Last week at this time the 14 day forecast was pretty amazing with most days having highs in the 80’s. Sadly the weatherpeople were mistaken and now the forecast is for more crazy hot and humid weather in Texas. Bummer!

Enjoy the farm update!

Sleeping Dragon.

 

The roof that landed on my horse trailer and Boot City’s flatbed trailer. Boot City got it all cleaned up within 48 hours because he is amazing.

 

One of myriad damaged trees.

 

The power company putting a new pole in our back pasture and re-hanging the wire that was torn down when the pole was knocked down by a fallen tree.

 

The Muppies are mobile!

The muppies started talking this week, too. OMG are they cute!

MUPdate!

I will start this post by telling you just how difficult it is to get decent photographs of 17 day old puppies! They were due for their first deworming so I took the opportunity to get photos of them whilst I was weighing and torturing them with Panacur. They range from 3.8lb to 1.8lb. They all have their eyes mostly open and are starting to walk. I’m pretty sure that within the next week or two they will be hell on wheels and able to climb out of their little pool in my tack room!

Animal. He is the chunk of the group!

 

Annie Sue was quite sleepy for her photo shoot and time in the scale.

 

Camilla was very cooperative and cute. Sorry, I couldn’t help myself.

 

Mary Louise was inquisitive and squirmy.

 

Betty Lou is PRECIOUS!

 

Gladys has the most striking coloring with an almost all white face.

 

His picture doesn’t quite do him justice, but Gonzo is also a pretty big boy.

 

Kermit is the smallest boy and he was the squirmiest! He tried real hard to get out of that scale and kept me on my toes!

 

Fozzie looks like a little fluffy bear.

 

Little Denise is the smallest of the muppies weighing in at 1.8 lb.

 

Last, but certainly not least, is little Rizzo!

 

Hopefully later this week and next weekend I will get some more good video. They are a very vocal and mobile crowd these days!

Casey Goes to a Horse Show

This past weekend I took Casey to a Stock Horse of Texas (SHOT) show in Sweetwater, Texas. As I’ve mentioned previously, I’m hoping to sell him for Mom and thought a horse show would be a good way for him to get some exposure. I had never been to one of these shows before so  had limited expectations. I read the Handbook prior to going and watched some YouTube videos of the classes to have an idea what to expect. From my research I concluded that SHOT is geared towards horses that aren’t “show” horses, but are just ranch horses. Somewhere in the middle. The classes offered are: Ranch Riding, Ranch Trail, Ranch Pleasure, Reining, Working Cow Horse and Cutting. I entered Trail and Pleasure since I felt the most familiar and prepared to show in those classes without making a complete fool of myself or my horse.

The show was Saturday so we went Friday evening in order to get settled, see what kind of horse I had and check out the digs.

The stables were quite nice. All new stalls under cover. Casey settled in with his hay immediately!

I was immediately impressed by the facility. All arenas were covered and the coliseum was air conditioned. AC with horse shows can be a mixed blessing, though. I was relieved that we didn’t show in the AC because on super hot days (and it is August in Texas) going from the hot warmup pen to the cold show pen can give your horse a BLAST of energy!

Casey’s stall was in the same building as our trail and pleasure classes would be held. There were a few Big Ass Fans which seemed to really help keep the air moving.

I was by myself at the show and didn’t know anyone so I didn’t get any photos or video of us showing, by I can attest that Casey was really good! We showed in two divisions; Junior (horses 5 and younger) and Limited (a non-pro division). I did two divisions to get more arena time. First thing to go was the Trail. We were able to practice all the obstacles the night before the show so I knew going in that the only thing Casey was a bit worried about was the log drag. We had practiced it a few times at home, but he just wasn’t quite OK with it yet.

I opted to do the Limited pattern first because it was a walk drag and the Junior patterns required a trot while dragging. All was well with the walk drag (which was in the shape of a figure 8 while dragging a log) until the rope got on the right side of Casey and we were going to the left. This causes the rope to pull on his rear end and he was pretty unnerved by that. We got it done, but it wasn’t pretty. Below is the score sheet from the Limited Trail. We were 116. You can see that we got pretty good marks until the log drag. Had we had a better log drag we probably would have been in the top 3!

We are at the bottom of this score sheet and ended up with a 69 1/2.

 

I thought our Junior Trail pattern was really nice, but evidently the Judge and I were on very different pages. The trot drag went better than I’d hoped, but it wasn’t great. Everything else felt rock solid.  The only thing I can attribute the penalties to was he may have touched the logs on the trot and lope obstacles, but I’m pretty sure he didn’t. I have a suspicion that Casey was a little bit too “show horse” for this crowd and the judge just inherently didn’t like us.

Junior Trail scorecard. Not so great, but not terrible.

 

I didn’t stick around to see the score cards for the Ranch Pleasure classes, but here is the recap. The classes were scheduled to go at the same time and I was first to go in the Junior and last to go in the Limited. One would think that the Junior would go first and the Limited after that. I stuck around the arena where the Junior was to go and was told by another exhibitor that they were looking for my number at the Limited arena. Oops! So we trotted over and in our class we went.

This pleasure was different from any I had done before. Usually everyone in the class goes in the arena together and the announcer calls gaits (walk, trot, lope, etc) and then the judge pins the class. The Ranch Pleasure had exhibitors go one at a time. You start to the right of the arena and exhibitors go one at a time. There are signs around the arena telling you what to do. This is my recollection of the Limited “pattern”: Extended Walk, Trot, Extended Trot, Lope, Stop and Reverse, Walk, Lope, Extended Lope, Trot, Stop and Back. Our walk was good, trot felt good, extended trot was happy, lope was smooth and nice, stop had Casey fall almost on his face, reverse was terrible, like he had never been asked to pivot before, walk was fine, lope was nice, extended lope was smooth and nice, trot transition was a bit bumpy, but not bad, stop and back was solid. Other than the stop-fall-on-your-face-why-cant’-you-pivot part it felt nice. This was the judge that REALLY didn’t like our trail pattern so I don’t have high hopes for how we did in this class.

The Junior pattern was basically exactly the same and we went a few minutes after doing our Limited pattern. Here is the overview of our performance: extended walk was fine, trot was very nice, extended trot was lovely, lope was awful, who knew the outside leg asked for the left lead and not the right lead CASEY?!, stop was better than the Limited, pivot was also terrible, lope, why do I have to lope again?, so that didn’t go well, extended lope was good, stop and back was fast (because we couldn’t get out of the arena fast enough). Definitely don’t have high expectations for much from this score card. Hopefully they will be posted this week and I’ll provide an update on Farm Friday.

Proof we were there, my shirt was popular and Casey is muy handsome.

I don’t know that we will do another SHOT show, mostly just because I don’t know that Casey is “ranchy” enough for this crowd. He definitely goes like a show horse. I could not have asked for a better behaved horse, though. The warm-up arena was completely wheels off and he never got flustered once. Sterling would have been in the rafters after 30 seconds. Casey didn’t spook at anything, he never didn’t try to do what I asked of him and he was generally fantastic. I really enjoy riding and showing him and may try our hands at an AQHA or Palomino show next. Whomever buys this horse will get a very solid citizen who is as pretty as he is sweet.

Farm Friday 08.04.2017

Happy FriYAY all! Casey and I are headed west to a Stock Horse of Texas show. This will be my first horse show in western tack in about 15 years! Hopefully all goes well and we get some ribbons and some interest in buying Casey.

This week has been delightfully less eventful than weeks past. Still lots of prescription meds in the cabinets for various animals, but most seem to be on the mend.

Catfish and Mickey snuggles before Mickey had his surgery. Catfish is always sweet with the little dogs, even though he can’t see them.

 

We got nearly an inch of rain this week and the temps have been amazingly cool. The forecast for the next 10 days has the highs in the low 90s and high 80s, which is remarkable for Texas in August! I’ll take it! Sterling got the all clear last weekend for turnout (with a quiet buddy) and walk/trot rides. It has been nice to be back in the tack for some easy hill walking.

Sterling also enjoys the rain. Why is it that the horse that is closest to the color white is the one that most feels the need to roll in mud? None of the brown horses have this dirty habit.

 

The muppies are continuing to eat and grow,eat and grow, and eat and grow. The puppy timelines say their eyes should be open by now, but they are taking their time and appear to be enjoying their eat and grow schedule. Very few workouts for these muppies so far. I’ll probably be eating my words a week from now!

Muppy pile!

 

Harriet is almost done with her post-heartworm-treatment meds and is ready for YOU to adopt her! She is so wonderful and will be an amazing doggo for someone.

Harriet found/made her very own doggy canopy bed. This is her new favorite place to sleep.

 

Happy weekend y’all!

Puppies!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Most everyone here knows that I foster dogs. I follow a few rescue pages on Facebook and occasionally something piques my interest. One of those pages is Sighthounds Worldwide Needing Homes. Because of the Beerhounds and our Whippet, Boot City and I are slightly obsessed with sighthounds. A couple weeks ago a person in Texas found what looked to be two Irish Wolfhound mixes on the side of the road. They were there two consecutive days so she succumbed to the tug on her heartstrings and picked them up. Both are young dogs and one was clearly a pregnant female. She kept the younger male and placed the female into a temporary foster home.

I, of course, was watching all of this unfold on the Facebook group and couldn’t help but throw my hat in the ring as a potential long-term foster for the mama dog. I have friends who want sighthounds after being around our dogs so I thought for sure I could find a few puppies homes. The mama dog is called Jesse and she whelped ELEVEN puppies a few days after being picked up off the side of the road. Perfect timing! She stayed with her temporary foster mom for the first week and once I was approved by the rescue group, I picked up the whole family.

Mama Jesse and her muppies!

Jesse seriously looks like a muppet, in the cutest possible way! She isn’t as large as a typical Irish Wolfhound so is most likely a mix. She also has a bob tail, which is not at all typical of a wolfhound. I have an inclination to think she may be a Wolfhound crossed with a Schnauzer. Regardless of her breed she is a FANTASTIC mom and is a super sweet dog. She is protective of her litter, but happily goes outside and plays with my other dogs. She seems to be feeding all eleven of the monsters with no issue with milk supply. I pull out the smallest puppies a couple times a day to give them time to nurse without competition from the bigger puppies. There are two that are nearly twice the size of the smallest puppies!

Sweet, sleepy muppies.

All of the puppers have some white. Two are brindle, but most are some version of tan with white. It will be fun to watch them grow and change and try to guess their breed cross. Some have half a tail, one has a bob tail and the rest have long tails. None have their eyes open yet, but they are already quite a lot more mobile than they were even a few days ago.

 

The feeding frenzies are getting crazier and crazier. She is sweet and patient with her little furry family!

If you are interested in adopting a muppy, please let me know! There will be an adoption fee and you must be approved by the rescue group sponsoring their care.