Day 31, May 30th 2018
Lots of orders to fill today so did little with the horses. Took some updated pictures of Grace in the evening sunshine and wow you can really see the differences now! I have been told several times by my equine chiropractor, Gene Crampton, that a horse in extreme pain will not hold weight. After adjustments I can see this is very true as many horses start to put on weight soon after he works on them. Its not a one shot deal but is definitely plays out as true. After less than a week after body work by Jodi Pierce (of Better Horse Body Works) Grace is showing quite a difference in weight. She is also more relaxed and more willing to be touched. I have known from the beginning that part of her “don’t touch me!” issues was about being in pain and hot nerve endings but I had to wait until the point where she would accept being touched by a new person before I had her worked on. She was very skeptical of the body work but Jodi is very patient and understanding (as I stated before) and so she was able to get some work accomplished. Eventually Grace will see Gene as well, but she is far too bound up for chiropractic to have positive effect. I often get asked “chiro or massage?”…well the best answer is BOTH! However, timing is everything! When it’s a long term issue, chiro can actually do a lot of damage to the muscles so starting with massage is the best. When it’s a recent issue (your horse flipped over, crashed, etc) then chiro is generally the best place to start but it has to be done before major muscle soreness kicks in. Once the muscles lock up, its best to start with massage, get the muscles healthier and then “reset” the skeletal system. This does not account for all the different types of modalities (varieties of body work) but is a “general” statement. Masterson Method, Tens Units (electrotherapy) Telly Touch, Cranial Sacral and Aah Lights etc all have their place in healing the body and can generally be used at any time as they are not heavily invasive. However, practitioners are not available in every area. Gene Crampton, btw, is far beyond the basic “chiropractic” but is one of a dying breed. With the onslaught of modalities not being allowed to be used by any other but a vet, alternative practices that are not “vet controlled” are growing in popularity, as is horse owners doing more of the work themselves. While I can (and do) massage, minor chiropractic and other things, I prefer to bring in the “big guns” for the big issues. Its simply a matter of finding those you can trust.
Day 32 May 31st 2019
As I was filling orders and limited on time yesterday, I was not able to clean up Grace’s face. I was happy to note that after 3 days it is much less of a mess than normal! What that translates to is that the sarcoid is not dripping as much, therefore not smearing all over her face as it swings around. It also looks far smaller and more “dried up” today, with the base looking much smaller in diameter. It has shrunk about an inch in length and I think about an inch in diameter. The base is for sure smaller, which means the root is shrinking! On a down note, I noticed a nodule on her belly today. Hopefully her immune system will defeat that before it breaks open as that would be a very difficult place to treat. Her skin on her topline is also having a hard time healing though its improving, just not at a rate that makes me happy. She wasn’t happy about her face being cleaned but she did actually let me scrub the front of her left ear, which is new. The back of the ear is still a mess as she really doesn’t want me touching the high point of her poll yet. She obviously is having pretty heavy duty headaches.
Day 33 June 1st 2018
Busy day wrapping up orders for the week. The Men are going to be tearing up my herb room and insulating it as we have not had a chance to do that yet in the new place. Got to keep the herbs fresh! All the equines went back out for the day as the showers passed by and barely wet the ground. Probably didn’t really need to bring them in but since Grace still hasn’t completely healed from the rain rot, best to protect the skin. I also noticed she really doesn’t like rain hitting the sarcoid.
Day 34 June 2nd 2018
Spent the day with the horses lazing about and me doing a lot of yard work. Still a lot to do but the yard is coming together bit by bit. We will be expanding the garden next year to include a bunch of organic carrots and some other horse friendly goodies. I have more fresh herbs planted and eventually the yard will be filled with herbs so the horses can have fresh as well as fresh herbs to cook with. If we stay here long enough, we’ll be redoing all the fencing and turnouts with herbal hedgerows planted so they at least have some seasonal herbs to much on.
Day 35 June 3rd 2018
A beautiful Sunday and all the horses stayed outside! I allowed Grace back out into pasture for some grazing. Too much grazing and her feet start to get warm so she is only going to get out a couple times a week until the grass dries up and then her and Mara can stay out together. The minis are starting to shed out nicely though very patchy. The addition of paprika and ginger along with the rest of the diet change seems to be working on getting the hair off! Yeah!
Day 36 June 4th 2018
Sun on, sun off (wax on, wax off). A bit too much glaring sun today to let Grace outside so her and Mara are lounging around in the barn until this evening. Grace loves being out after spending a year locked up in a stall but you can tell she recognizes that flies aren’t going to bother her In there. I ordered a new fly catcher called “The Sun Shine Spot Fly Net Trap”….I have stinky traps all over and hate them but they do the job. Hoping this will take place of those! It’s a never ending battle since the neighbors do nothing for fly control and we are surrounded by unkept horses and cows. Flies are annoying to us, but its really Grace who pays the price. Time to call Spalding Labs and get our fly predators!
Day 37 June 5th 2018
I spent a busy day filling orders and wasn’t able to spend much time with the ponies. My mixing machine for the Iron Horse products lost the pin that holds in the wheel that runs the whole machine. I took it apart, I put it all back together. It ran for a solid minute and broke again. “sigh”. I’ll figure out a way to fix it but it wont be today!
Day 38 June 6th 2018
GIANT STEP FORWARD TODAY! Mady and Theresa came by today to pick up product so I took them out to see Grace, who was in her stall. She came up for a scratch on her face, and as we were talking SHE TURNED AND ASKED ME TO SCRATCH HER BACK! Okay so for most people this would seem like nothing, but for a horse who is very protective, this is HUGE! Then she turned more and asked for a tushy scratch! I still have not been able to pick up her back feet because she is still very protective and “kicky” and Im just not going to fight her about it right now. Jodi (as you probably recall) was able to barely get to her back end to do a bit of massage work and threatened to kick her as she got mentally overloaded with someone touching her. So for Grace to turn her butt to me and ask for a scratch is a monumental step of faith! Im so pleased!
Managed to fix my mixing machine today! Hopefully it holds…made several batches of Iron Horse (et al) and product heading out the door!
Day 39 June 7th 2018
Jodi Pierce came by today while Grace was still out in her turnout and Grace asked once again for scratchies. I scratched her till my arms about feel off and when I pulled my hands back, she went to Jodi for more scratchies. Jodi also visited Mara, who immediately asked to have her withers scratched. I had been doing some follow up massage work on Mara’s withers and was showing Jodi how she was feeling so much better. Mara is another one who is very protective of her backside and still will not let me pick up her back feet without a huge fight. Though unlike Grace, she never offers to kick!
Later in the day Vet Tech Johnnie came by for herbs for his new project horse. He is a bleeding heart like I am and wants to try and save everything. His latest project is much like mine…a horse with Cushings. I am pretty sure Mara also has Cushings, which is most likely why she was rehomed.
Mixing machine back to being broke. I think its time to hardwire this baby back together!
Time to make a trip to Harbor Freight!
Day 40 June 8th 2018
Filled the remaining orders for the week, all accept one. That one will be fulfilled after the mixer is fixed. Brought the horses in for the night as the rains came in and Grace still has issues in the rain. The old ladies also need to be kept warm and dry. They don’t have enough sense to come in out of the rain! =D
Day 41 June 9th 2018
Our newest herd member has arrived! Misty is a 20 something grey mini who has foundered, has a cresty neck and is obviously sight impaired. She is very shy but super sweet and wants to be loved on so much but somehow learned to not trust humans. I don’t have any history on her other than her last owner had her for "some time" before giving her to us as she recognized Misty’s issues were beyond their knowledge to deal with (Misty was given to her as well). She had no idea a previously foundered horse should not be on green pasture and that her cresty neck was an issue! Very nice family, just ignorant of horse issues. Ignorant is fixable and they are willing to learn new things but Misty (previously named “Dancer”) is in need of special care for the remainder of her days.
Funniest thing about the day…just as Misty arrived and we walked her into the barn, it started hailing! The hail was about pea sized and it hit our metal barn roof very loudly! The minis were out back of the barn and normally come when I call but of course refused to come in out of the hail like silly little girls. They are still old ladies however, and still have fairly thick coats so I had to go herd them back into the barn for their own good. Of course they didn’t cooperate and by the time I got them back in the barn and in their stalls, I was soaked! Fortunately it was fairly warm for a day with hail so it was worth a laugh and just a minor inconvenience. The hail storm lasted for all of five minutes and melted immediately. The rest of the day being rainy gave me time to spend with the horses.
I also spent the morning with my good friend Pam. Pam has been a mini owner and shower for upteen million years and came and looked over my gals. Pam actually knows the lady who bred Amber and Sandelee and the lines they come out of. Apparently they are very well bred little minis! Too bad they aren’t younger, it would be fun to have babies from them!
All in all, a very fun and exciting day!
Day 42 June 10th 2018
Spent the day playing Scrabble with my Aunt and Cousin while the ponies enjoyed a quiet day in the barn munching on hay and listening to the rain on the roof. Misty, while eating the hay just fine, is having a hard time getting use to her mash with herbs and is not drinking water so today its wet hay and simple pellets and rice bran until I can sneak in some herbs. While I was cleaning I put her and Amber and Sandelee next to each other in adjoining turnouts. They seemed to get along a lot better than Misty and Mara so for the time being she will be a part of the mini herd.
Day 43 June 11th 2018
Put the mini herd out today as the sun has returned! Its still all wet outside but they are happy to be out. I put out three ground feeders with mash in them, hoping that Amber and Sandelee would show Misty that the food is “ok” and not going to kill her. There was some minor squealing and pushiness but no fighting. I feel like I’m running a senior center!
Day 44 June 12th 2018
Brought the horses in today as it started raining. Noticed Grace’s neck was all covered in “hives”! I must have mixed the fly spray too strong…not an issue with most horses but Grace has very tender and reactive skin. As it was already late by the time I noticed it, I had to wet towel it off instead of hose it off. She was not amused. Misty went off to a stall by herself and was also not amused. However, being beside Mara was causing some cranky mare issues. Mara does much better beside Amber and Sandelee though I did notice she tried to intimidate them but they are well seasoned old ladies and didn’t take the bait. Misty is still not drinking out of a water bucket so it will be wet hay and really wet mash for a while. At least she is now eating her mash, thanks to the help of the old ladies who showed her it was delicious (and if you don’t get yours eaten we will eat it for you!)
More rain for the night, and the farrier coming in the morning, so the girls are all staying in for the night!
Day 45 June 13th 2018
Farrier day! Bobbi showed up at noon to trims the girls so I took advantage of “barn day” and started spring cleaning. My barn is absolutely over run with spider webs so that’s on the “to do” list. I don’t have a problem with spiders, they have their job. However, they absolutely MUST stay out of my living areas! So its eviction notice day! I was already dirty and itchy by the time Bobbi arrived but made some good headway.
We started trims with the new mini Misty. I was right! Her feet looked like they had been allowed to grow out super long and she had indeed foundered. Her front right hoof was very twisted and it will take several trims to straighten it out. However, they looked like they were not currently in founder condition but recovering so she’ll be on her way to recovery.
Amber and Sandelee gave Bobbie their usual amount of spoiled old lady crap, which is mostly humorous. Bobbi is very patient with them and they only give her enough grief to show they are still “relevant”.
Mara still has a lot of fear issues when people are near her back end, but Bobbi sweet talked her into all four feet actually getting trimmed. No signs of foundering (which with the huge cresty neck and previously being on grass, was a real concern!). She actually has pretty good little feet and she didn’t offer to kick Bobbi so all is good!
Grace threw a bit of a tantrum but Bobbi only worked on her front feet. The back feet are not in critical condition yet and so we’ll leave that for another time and work on the trust issue for now. Grace has come a long way, but we still have miles to go!
Time to head back out to the barn, clean stalls, and continue cleaning! Typical of horse people, my house can be a disaster (and generally is due to the grandkids rampaging through it every day) but the barn be dirty? Say it isn’t so! Only 8 days left of spring and I need to get the barn cleaned before I run out of spring cleaning mojo!