Wednesday, September 29, 2010

What's Been Going On

Picture taken 8-29-2010.

Chrome is doing well. He absolutely loves being out on the lease land full time. I love it because it allows them to browse around and eat what they need and they move around a lot more like a wild horse would in search of food. Horses are built to be continually eating and moving all the time, so this is much healthier than being cooped up in a tiny paddock.

I've been asking about his hooves on a forum and they think he may have a tendency toward a club foot on one of his rear legs, but it almost never occurs in the rear feet so it may just be because he needs trimming done. I've finally located a farrier that I like. He should be coming out tomorrow to meet Chrome and work on his hooves. I'm excited and nervous at the same time. No one else has ever worked on his feet, but due to my back still being in a fragile state I can't work on them myself. Besides I don't know enough about it to correct any problems that may be occurring.

I've been cleaning out his front hooves daily and spraying them with salt water to help combat thrush (a fungus that's common in wet areas). The frog (the soft v-shaped center of his hoof) is starting to look healthier in both front hooves. I'm doing the rear hooves when my back feels up to it. I'm going to work on teaching him to pick them up easier using a rope so I don't have to use my back. Maybe when he is more balanced (through practice) I'll be able to clean them more frequently. Luckily I don't think he has thrush in the rear hooves or if he does it isn't bad yet. The salt water does seem to be working really well. Oh and the gravel in the barn is a huge help! Now if I have to put his hoof down to rest my back I don't have to start all over and clean them out again. :)

I've also discovered why part of his mane is ripped out. I thought it was because the donkey was grabbing it when they were playing, but it isn't. He's rubbing it out on a tree. I checked really well and didn't see any ticks or bites of any sort. It may just be because it's dirty. When I have the time I'm going to wash his mane really well (tail too!) and condition it. Maybe that will help.

This next bit of news probably won't mean anything to people who don't own horses but I'll explain it as best I can. I was worried for a while that both of his testicles weren't going to drop (can be a problem in dogs too so you might be familiar with it). It's called cryptorchidism and if you're interested an explanation can be found on wikipedia here. The reason this is such an issue in horses is because the surgery to get the horse gelded (castrated) is a lot more expensive and more likely to have complications then if both testicles are descended. It would also mean having to contact the owner of the sire and letting them know that one of the offspring is cryptorchid, because it is thought to be hereditary. I am happy to report that Chrome has two perfectly descended testicles lol! For a long time one was missing, then it was there but carried high and a lot smaller. Now it has joined it's fellow and both appear to be normal. :) Yay for not having to pay more lol and this also means we can finally go ahead and get him gelded. Finally! The reason we weren't able to get it done in the spring is because we were waiting to see if they would come down on their own.

We also got the results back from my husband's MRI. He has two bulging (herniated) discs in his back. :( They are going to start out treating it with rest and steroid injections. Hopefully it will heal up okay. I really don't want to go the surgery route if at all possible. If anyone has experience in this let me know anything that might be helpful please.

After what happened to Rip (Aslan's brother) my dad is ready to take a break from raising animals, so the goats will have to come back here. He's also giving us his turkeys. He's going to let Rip be a yard dog instead of a livestock guard dog. They love him too much to give him up. So this means we might possibly have to sell the goats due to financial reasons and space problems. We shall see I guess. Thank you all for your prayers and good thought. :)


  1. "I'm excited and nervous at the same time. No one else has ever worked on his feet, but due to my back still being in a fragile state I can't work on them myself. Besides I don't know enough about it to correct any problems that may be occurring."

    That's great that you've found someone who you trust to help you out. I hope you end up liking him and his trims.

  2. Wow, a lot of stuff has been going on. Congratulations on finally having an official stud colt--just in time to be gelded! I'm glad that worked out.

    All should go well with the farrier. I'm glad you found one that you think will work out. The right farrier is such an important thing. I bet he doesn't have a club foot--it really is rare in the hind feet. If he does, it must be a mild one. A bad one is so noticeably that you would have known about it, already. Coincidentally, my farrier is coming out tomorrow, too.

    Sounds like downsizing is a good idea--as long as both of you are hurting, anyway. If things change in the future, it is always easy to start up, again. I really don't know how you managed to begin with! You must have been spread very thin and exhausted a lot of the time.

    Besides, in a few years, you are going to have a horse to ride--you certainly want to have time to do it!

  3. You must be relieved about Chrome. A piece of good news!
    I was immobilized with a bulging disk a year ago. I was fortunate in that physio-therapy, with acupuncture, for two months fixed it. I have to be careful, but have full use again.
    I think you're making some wise decisions re the animals and glad to hear you'd never part with the horse, donkey and dogs :)

  4. I have reduced my flock size in the past couple of years because I needed to free up time for other stuff. So I think you're doing the right thing, hope your husbands back feels better soon :)

  5. Gosh - so much has been happening to you - and not all good! :-( I'm sorry to hear about you havign to sell some of your animals but I can totally understand the reasoning and I think you're doing the right thing. Sometimes it's good to take stock and look after yourself first. Besides, they do say quality over quantity. Hopefully, you'll be able to enjoy the remaining animals so much more - and hey, to a city girl like me, it's still definitely a "farm"!! :-)

    Sorry also to hear about your backs - my husband has a herniated disc but the advice he was given was that 99% of the time, it will heal of its own accord, with rest & rehab. Important to get physio & do Pilates, etc - strengthen core muscles, etc. Only time you would really need to consider operating is if it's really coming out and pushing on the nerves to the bladder or causing weakness in the legs, etc.

    I do miss news of Jackal on this blog!! :-) It seems to be much more horse focused. Not that I don't like horses - I think they're gorgeous and hey, I like Danes partly because they have similar elegant lines to a horse - but I do have a soft spot of Jackal! :-) Would love to hear how he is what training you might be doing.

    Anyway, good luck with everything and hope things settle down a bit for you!



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