Monday, November 29, 2010

GETTING READY FOR THE OPEN HOUSE

 This is what happens when you sleep around....!

Next Saturday & Sunday will be our  Open House in conjunction with the 30th annual  Cascabel Christmas Fair.  So this week will be a busy one getting ready.  I certainly hope the weather gets better by then.  It's been cold & windy the last few days.  The weatherman says it should be in the 70's, so we'll see if he knows what he's talking about.  

This morning I decided to try the foaming waterless bath for C.J.  You are suppose to spray it on, pat it in, & "voila"  clean animal.  NOT..........!!!!!!  I couldn't tell it did anything except make her hair wet, it certainly didn't clean her dirty white hair.  So I decided to fall back on an old trick my Daddy used with the show dogs.  He actually normally used talcum powder to keep the light colored dogs from getting dirty or staining their hair.  He raised & showed cocker spaniels & all that hair could really get messy in the kennel or when they were traveling to shows in a crate.  In a pinch he would use cornstarch.  I figured it couldn't hurt, so I took handfuls of cornstarch & rubbed it into her white areas.  I haven't brushed it out yet, but she certainly is looking whiter.  I've got to get some more cornstarch before I can do all of her.  But I envision her being bright & shiny by Saturday.  Some of the others that are light colored, Quilla, Lucy, & Rusty, could use a little touch-up too.  Probably ought to buy 3 or 4 boxes of cornstarch tomorrow when we go to town. 

Saturday, November 27, 2010

THE TIMES THAT TRY MEN'S (OR MY) SOULS



Well, this has been an interesting week or so.  I have managed to squirm out of doing Thanksgiving dinner for years, although I always had to listen to John whine about not having leftovers, when we'd eat out or at someone's home.  This year I didn't squirm hard enough I guess.  So I started gathering up my supplies, & getting organized & was really doing pretty good considering how long it had been since I planned a feast.  So 4 days before the big day, the hot water heater for the kitchen went out.  We use the instant demand heaters & they really are great..............but not when they go out & you would like to replace it immediately.  If it's propane, no one has them available without ordering them.  Since it would have to be ordered anyway, I went online & ordered one quite a bit cheaper.  But there was no way to get it before Thanksgiving.............sigh! 

One of my grandmothers use to do it without running water or electricity  after raising 7 kids on the farm, so I figured I should be able to survive the experience.  At least I had running water.................!!! (G)  It turned out just fine, although it's been awhile since I washed dishes by hand too.  Or heated water on the stove to wash "said" dishes. 

The heater still isn't here, but they e-mailed that it's on it's way.  John has messed with these flash heaters enough, that he probably knows more about one than a plumber would, so as soon as it gets here, he'll install it, & we'll have hot water in the kitchen again........!!!! YIPPEE!! 

Today we went to the stock car races.  It's been pretty cool around here, 14 degrees this morning, thank goodness they decided to have the races in the afternoon, so it wasn't quite so cold.  But we knew we wouldn't get home until after dark.  Sure enough, we came in after dark & the gang was waiting in a group by the feed room.  We ran in the house, changed clothes & I headed out to the feed room first.  Opened the door, flipped on the light switch and...................no lights.........!!!!  Just what we needed with a herd of hungry donkeys, mules & one little bitty mini horse past ready to eat.  So I got a flashlight & started getting everyone where they needed to be & getting feed ready, while John tried to answer the $64 question........WHAT HAPPENED TO THE LIGHTS?  Not sure how it worked out that way, but it took John almost the exact time to find & fix as it did for me to feed.........!!! Hmmmmm!  He found a melted wire in one of the junction boxes..........which brings up another question..........what caused it to melt?  Don't know that yet, but he did run a new wire & the lights & frig are working.  We race again tomorrow, & since he has the wire running on top of the ground I assume I'll be feeding again in the morning while he does a more permanent fix.  

C.J. the mini horse was limping when she came in tonight.  I checked her feet & they weren't warm, so hopefully it's nothing serious.  Got her blood work back & she is not insulin resistant, & her test for Cushings came back a little high but within normal range.  That's good news, she's got enough problems with her feet from being chronically foundered for a long time. 

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

C.J. IS OUT & ABOUT..........!!


C.J. is on a little hill, so she doesn't look as small as she is compared to Rusty.  When I let her out, she immediately started eating mesquite leaves & whatever else is available.  It only took Rusty a minute or so to figure out she was out & catch up. 

JACK TRYING TO FIGURE OUT WHAT THE HECK SHE IS DOING
None of the donkeys have paid any attention to her since she's been out, although BlackJack did appreciate her pen being open, so he could see if she had any leftovers.  She actually isn't a beet pulp type of gal, at least not yet, so there was enough to make him happy.  

The joints in her hind legs are real loose, they wobble when she walks.  Hopefully by getting her feet trimmed on a regular basis, & maybe not having foundering episodes, she can roam around & get some strength in those joints.  Don't know if it will help or not. 

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

It sounds like the boys are doing good in their new home.  One of the dogs got in with them again.  I guess Buddy spooked, but Honcho went after the dog, which managed to get away.  They have strung chicken wire around the bottom of the pen, so the dogs can't just waltz in at will.  Once the donkeys know the dogs are "family" members they should get along.  I guess there is a neighbor dog that thinks he lives there, he & Honcho have already smelled noses, so that should be OK too.  



C.J. is still doing good, it's probably about time to let her out of the pen.  Maybe this afternoon an hour or two before time to feed.  Rusty the mule is still hanging around her pen, so I would imagine once she's out he will go wherever she goes.  The donkeys haven't paid much attention to her, now that she isn't getting alfalfa hay.......!!!  (G)  Haven't heard from Courtney about coming out as soon as she can to trim some more.  Since C.J. did so well with the first trim, I'm anxious to see how she does with some more backing up of those nasty toes.  

I got some dry shampoo to "spiffy" her up a little before the Open House.............hopefully I'll have time.  She's a little black & white pinto & the white isn't white anymore.  I've never used it before, but it's too cold to bathe her, at least I think so.  

Poor Cisco, is rather lost without Buddy.  Cisco has always been somewhat of a loner, he was a roping donkey & was shut down when we got him.  He & Buddy ate in the same area, & usually came in together.  But they didn't groom each other or really didn't "hang" together.  Cisco is now  eating in Buddy's pen .  The first time John tried to put him in there, you could read his body language.  He knew that wasn't his pen & didn't want to go in it.  But I think he is enjoying eating without having to contend with BlackJack.  BlackJack can be a obnoxious boob when he wants to be, which is quite often. 

Sunday, November 21, 2010

BUDDY BRAT & HONCHO CHECKING OUT THE NEW DIGS
 
We hauled Honcho & Buddy to their new home this afternoon.  They will have goats, dogs & 3 little girls to entertain them.  Not to mention about 4 acres of desert grass & brush to eat.  Buddy has such a problem with his weight I hope he doesn't go overboard on eating.  We told the people they might not even have to feed them for awhile with all the good stuff they will have access to.  One of the dogs got in the pen while we were talking, & Honcho preceded to show his stuff.  They managed to get the dog out before it got real nasty.  They want the donkeys to keep the coyotes away from their chickens, & they probably will.  But they will have to be introduced to the dogs & learn to recognize them as family members.  
 
For some reason when John was rounding up to feed, Nicki went out of the feed room.  John said he was acting like something was after him, & he flew out the door.  Usually we just call him back & he runs back in.  Unfortunately for him BlackJack was standing on the porch.  John said he almost "met his maker", BJ got him down, but before he could roll him, Nicki got loose & flew in the door, John had open.  The problem with our dogs & donkeys is they have all teased & threatened each other thru the fence.  Anubis the other dog is a runner, so we couldn't let them out anyway because of the free range cattle.  Certainly don't need dogs chasing cattle.  
 
Had a call about a group wanting a donkey to carry "Mary" in their Christmas pageant.  We thought about it & decided Cisco would probably be the only one that might be able to do it.  So this afternoon John haltered him up, & I got a step ladder to get on him.  I miss the good old days when I use to grab mane & throw my leg over.  Of course that's been over 50 years ago.................!!!!  (G)  So I toddled up the ladder & climbed aboard.  He actually didn't really do much, he let John lead him about 10 feet & locked up.  Wouldn't move....when I was a kid I use to kick with great vigor, but I certainly wasn't going to kick him to get him to move.  I did manage to get off without using the ladder, of course he's built pretty close to the ground.  So I e-mailed the lady that I didn't think we had anyone that they could use.   He'd probably be OK in a manger scene situation, but they want to do a parade with Mary riding, & I don't think that would happen.   

Saturday, November 20, 2010

C.J. IS DOING GREAT.........!!!

She's perky, hungry, & all the trimming & cleaning out Courtney did on her feet didn't seem to make her feet sore, which is a miracle.  Courtney really took off a lot of hoof & all of her frogs, they were full of thrush.  I soaked her yesterday morning in White Lightening.      Courtney is going to try to come out in a week or so & see how she is doing.   I will try to get pictures of her feet as soon as I can, they sure look a lot better.  

Courtney & I are trying to figure out a set of boots for Jenny.  Lucy has done so good in hers.  We tried Jenny in boots awhile back, but she has a permanent sore right above her coronet that gets rubbed & becomes a mess.  But the boots made her walking so much more comfortable.  The problem with her feet is the extreme upright shape of her hoof, typical for a donkey, & hard to fit with a boot designed for a horse foot.  Hopefully we can figure out something. 
            
  

Thursday, November 18, 2010

C.J. UPDATE


THE LONG & THE SHORT OF IT.......!!!

Yesterday morning when we went out to feed, C.J. hadn't finished her hay overnight.  She also was breathing very funny, her flanks were beating with her heartbeat.  I hit the books, & came up with Thumps usually caused by overwork, stress, dehydration, that sort of thing.  She looked miserable & not interested in anything going on around her.  Called the vet & she moved some appointments around, so she could come out.  She didn't see anything really out of whack, & the blood tests didn't show anything that you could say, "that's it".  Even though C.J. hadn't acted stressed I guess there is a possibility, stuck in a 16 foot long trailer, hauled, put in a pen & many, many eyes coming by to stare.  Especially Daisy, who got thrown out of her pen, so C.J. could have it.  Daisy has been in a snit ever since, she stands with her nose against the gate, I guess to show us, how stupid we are...........!!! (G)  

The owners said she had been on grass hay, but the vet said maybe not.  We buy bales of alfalfa for the chickens, so I went over & got a flake.  Boy did her little bitty ears perk up & she became a Hoover vacuum cleaner, didn't even come up for air.  Her blood calcium was just barely low, but this morning after some alfalfa hay, & calcium by mouth, she's back to being her perky little self.  The vet said we'll give her extra calcium for a couple of days, & then start weaning her off the alfalfa, maybe give her some Lakin Lite pellets instead.  They are an alfalfa/bermuda blend pellet make in Arizona.  If getting enough calcium is a problem for her, they should help long term.  I know I'm not going to feed her alfalfa long term if I can help it.  

I went out to check on her yesterday afternoon after the vet left & there were 7 or 8 donkeys in her little pen, all trying to get their heads in her little hay bunk.  Not a pretty sight.  She was standing behind the water bucket, just watching them eat her alfalfa as fast as they could.  I yelled & they scattered, you think they don't know what they are suppose to do, & what isn't allowed?  BRATS...!!!  They had been on patrol around her pen, as soon as I put the alfalfa in her pen, & I forgot to put the clip on her gate.  Actually I didn't even think about it.  One thing about donkeys, you better think about it, or they will show you how smart they are. 

While the vet was here, she also checked Sha'ba's eye.  I had been doctoring it for a couple of days, but it wasn't really getting better.  Sure enough he had scratched the cornea, in the 3 hours he didn't have on a fly mask a few days ago................SIGH!  I think they do this stuff to see if we are paying attention.  That's his only good eye, so we want to make sure it stays good. 

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED........!!!

This is how donkeys (& little horses) greet visitors......!!!


So far, we're a little short on volunteers for this years Open House.  It will be  Saturday & Sunday, December 4th & 5th from about 10am to 3pm each day.  It's very easy, you would walk around with groups of people & show them the donkeys.  You don't even have to know anything about the donkeys, because their stories will be posted on the pens.  

If you live in the area & would like to help, give me a call:  520 212-5300
Thanks, Tish


Monday, November 15, 2010

C.J, THE EAR CHALLENGED IS HOME..........!!!!

 Her little ears are so tiny, it's hard to find them in her mane.  She is very sweet & cooperative.  When we were loading her in the trailer, although her feet hurt, she was trying her best to get in the trailer.  She loves to talk to you, if you talk to her.  Her little voice sounds like she's on helium, certainly a lot different than a donkey letting loose with a nice long loud bray.  

When we parked the trailer, of course the usual suspects were waiting to see what we brought home.  She whinnied & Rusty the white mule went nuts.  He was running around bucking, kicking & yelling.  I finally had to get a whip to let him know he was getting too rambunctious.  She stumbled out of the trailer, & followed John to the pen, as I guarded with the whip.  I think Rusty spent the night standing by her pen.  I don't have much hopes for this relationship, she's just a little over knee high to him.  He was the one that missed Shag  the most.  That was the little mini horse that broke his hind leg a couple of years ago & had to be euthanized .  So maybe he just likes to have little friends.

FRONT FEET
 BACK FEET


 RIGHT FRONT

LEFT FRONT












Courtney is going to try to come out Thursday & get some of the extra hoof off, so CJ will be more comfortable.  She is suppose to be Cushings, but she looks & acts more Insulin Resistant to me, so I guess we'll be doing blood tests, as soon as possible.

I asked the owner if CJ stood for anything, like maybe Calamity Jane.  She said not as far as she knew, but she liked that name, so I guess that's what CJ will stand for from now on................!!!!

Friday, November 12, 2010

THE MORNING PARADE

video

This is a few of the gang, waltzing in at their own speed.  This is actually after we had been trying to get them to come over from Burroland for quite sometime.  I was over in Burroland doing round-up, & John had the camera.  Kathy I know you will probably see this, so you'll get a pretty good view of Chester.  

It was in the low 20's again this morning, & when it's that cold they find a warm sunny spot & don't want to move, but once we get Tula moving the rest will follow.  If it keeps getting this cold, I might have to start putting blankets on Pepper & Sha'ba.  I've been keeping Pepper's blown knee wrapped & it seems to be keeping him more comfortable, at least he walks better.  Sha'ba probably wouldn't need to be blanketed, he's put on enough weight to keep himself warm.  But since he's locked in a pen at night he can't go find the warm sunny spots, so I'm sure he appreciates his "blankie".

Thursday, November 11, 2010

SKUNK PATROL AGAIN.........!!!


We were hoping no more skunks, but I guess that's too much to hope for if you live out in the boonies.  Of course now that Hobo & the kittens are living in the back yard, we had been getting a little lax about leaving food out all the time, so they could snack when they felt like it.  A couple of nights ago, John looked out & saw a black & white "kitty" having cat kibble, which scampered off when it saw John.  So he set the trap right outside the gate, hoping to catch the skunk before it got in the yard.  Also thought that might cut down on the chances of catching a kitten instead.  Within 15 minutes John had his skunk.  When he took it for a ride the next morning, everything went good until John was opening the door.  It slipped out of his hand & banged shut.  Although the skunk was still in the trap & covered by a blanket, he pooted.  Not much but enough to get on the blanket, which managed to get on John's gloves.  YUCK!  

So we have a new routine, which isn't going very well, from the feline's point of view.  During daylight hours there is kibble & milk available, after dark there is nothing to eat.  They haven't quite figured out they need to stock up while it's available.  Last night 3 of them were pressed up again the patio door, I guess to let me know I wasn't taking care of my duties very well.  

Chester might be going to his new home Sunday.  His new family lives in the vicinity of where we will be picking up CJ, the little mini horse.  It would be a good opportunity to kill 2 birds with one stone, relatively speaking, so we'll see if it works out.  I'll really miss Chester, I don't really have favorites, or at least try not to, but he is a special boy. 

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

REMINGTON & HANNA STARTING THEIR TRIP TO CALIFORNIA


Well the more things change the more they stay the same I guess.  Jerry has seen the doctor & been pronounced  "fit for duty".   He also has found a way to go thru the pens & pick up poo without having to drag the cart, so for now he's staying.  I really hope he stays for awhile, it's amazing how much easier chores are without poo & water.

The jenny & baby are in their new home & it sounds like the people are really enjoying them.  She's a very pretty girl, I've never seen one marked quite like she is.  She looks black but has a lot of white points.  The little jack is of course cute as a fuzzy toy, & full of himself from what I hear. 
Unfortunately his daddy hasn't found a new home yet.  I hope he doesn't end up with some of the ropers, that is what usually happens with jacks out here in cowboy country, if the people just want to get rid of them.  We could take him & have him gelded, but he's unhandled & needs training to be adoptable.  We just don't have the time that he needs. I've called the woman & left a message, hopefully between the 2 of us, we can figure out something.  

This Sunday we will be picking up a mini horse that is about 15 years old & is chronically foundered.  We haven't seen her, but it sounds like she has some pretty nasty feet, & spends a lot of time hobbling around.  Sigh!  Sounds like I'll be soaking hay in cold weather again................one of my favorite past times..........NOT! 

Speaking of cold weather it was 21 degrees this morning right before sunrise.  It's up to 67 now in late morning with lots of sunshine.  One thing about the desert, you can expect temperature swings sometimes as much as 50 degrees in a 24 hour period. 



Sunday, November 07, 2010

Advise for Horse/Equine People who are trying to Date Non-Horse/Equine People



Some things you Might not want to say in front of the a "Horse/Equine Challenged Person". These would be perfectly normal things to say in horse company, but not things you'd want to say in public or non-horse people might get the wrong idea!


His sheath was really dirty, but I cleaned it.
In the winter, he gets really hairy so I clip him.
Don't jump on him, sit down gently.
She wants to breed to my stud.
There's nothing like 17 hands between you legs!
He had a bad attitude, so we castrated him.
He's got a lot of stamina, you can ride him all day long.
Is she a maiden?
I wanted to breed to her stud, but he's all booked this season.
He's really good at walking and pooping at the same time.
She bites her baby if it behaves badly.
She's on a new diet, she's only eating grass.
If he's not good, just grab his lip and twist it or if he get's really silly we will resort to the twitch.
When I'm done riding him, you can have a turn.
They cut his toe shorter and he walks better now.
He's much better if you ride him with a crop..
Don't worry, it's normal for his mouth to foam.
All of her babies have been sold overseas.
I know she's going to have a baby soon because her butt is soft.
He has trouble mounting her because she's so tall.
She likes to roll in the dirt after her bath.
He has 64 babies.
He was about 6 months old when we branded him.
I have to use a stool to mount him.
If he's spilling his food on the ground, he might need a dentist.
I was listening to his gut sounds last night...
One testicle is visible, but I can't even feel the other one.

BOO HOO.........!!!!


I guess it was too good to last.  Jerry says he will be leaving, that hauling the poo cart around in the sand is too hard on his legs.  I disagree with him, it is hard on your legs, & your back.  (G)   He was hit by a car a few years ago, & left for dead in a ditch.  I guess his hips & legs were really a mess, but he gets around good.  Like a lot of us he's had to learn what he can & can't do, & this is too much for him.  So he will only be here probably until the end of the month.  We'll find little jobs for him to do, right now he's starting on cleaning up the back yard.  We've talked about getting a couple or even a single person with an RV to stay on the property, maybe this will be the catalyst to get a permanent pad with utilities built, so we could do that. 

So John & I are back on poo detail.  SIGH........!!!!

The flies are still out & about, usually by this time of year we aren't using fly masks anymore, but not this year. 

The kittens are living in the back yard, which is a pretty safe place for them.  There is a squirrel hole underneath a big mesquite tree, that Hobo has moved them into.  They aren't ready to be friends with us yet, but they do like the milk & cat food we put out.  

Friday, November 05, 2010

 This is what was on our back porch yesterday morning when we got up.  Actually there is the 2 looking at Nigel thru the patio door, & another little head behind them.  There is also another one for a total of four.  They ate lots of dry cat food, & milk played in the back yard, used the tree for a jungle gym & disappeared for the afternoon.  They were out a little this morning, but not as prevalent as they were yesterday. So I would imagine Hobo has moved them into the back yard at least I hope so.  If she tries moving them back & forth to the hay barn a distance of over 300 feet, coyotes, the neighbor's dogs or owls will probably get them.  I would rather she didn't have them, but now that they are here, I hope we can tame them, spay & neuter as necessary, & find homes for them.  

Yesterday, I got involved in an interesting slight of hand deal.  When we set up at the rummage sale for another rescue a couple of weeks ago, a woman came by & said she had a pg jenny & jack, (really, how did that happen?) she needed to find homes for & said she had an ad up at the feed store we were at.  Awhile later a guy came by looking for a breeding jack to breed mules.  I told him about the ad & took his name in case I heard something.  Got a call for a jenny to go with some sheep, told them about the ad, since I didn't have the woman's phone number.  Yesterday morning they called & said the jenny had her little jack about a week ago, the woman's husband was in the hospital, & she wanted the donkeys gone.  So I got on the phone, & the results at this time is, the people with the sheep picked up the jenny & baby yesterday afternoon, since it was about time for foal heat, I kinda revved up getting them moved ASAP.  We are trying to talk the guy into taking the jack at least for the time being, to run with his mares to see if he will breed them.  In 5 months if the jack hasn't done his job, he will take the little jack & raise him with the mares, & we will take the jack & have him gelded.  Are you still with me on this deal?  Whew!  I just hope the jenny isn't over protective of her baby with the sheep, & might try to squash them.  Then we might have to take them.  Sigh!  Not the best situation in the world, but better than no home at all I guess.  

This morning when John rounded up everyone he noticed that Honcho had a peculiar odor.  I guess he found a striped kitty last night.  He probably didn't get a full spray, but he was in the neighborhood.  We haven't seen any skunks since John's long running "rehoming" last year.  But I guess they are still around, just decided coming in the back yard or the chicken pen wasn't worth the long trek to get back.  

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

FLIES, FLIES, FLIES..........!!!!!



Although our nighttime temperatures are in the 30's (no freezing yet) when it starts warming up in the morning here come the flies.  We're still putting on fly masks & putting leggings on Jenny & Quilla to protect their legs from fly bites.  This time of year the flies seem to be particularly vicious, I guess they know time is short.  Our days are still in the 80's, so I would imagine until the daytime temperatures get lower on a regular basis, we will continue to have flies.  

This afternoon we will be taking Sunny in for his pre-op appointment.  I miss the good old days, when you took a kitten in , they neutered him & you brought him home.  Now it's a 2 appointment process.  That's fine for people that have extra time to waste, but we usually don't.  

We think his momma, Hobo has kittens again.  There is a trail in the new hay, at least I hope it's her trail.  She's finally letting us pet her without swatting us, so once the kittens are out & about,  one of us is going to sacrifice our skin & blood (read that to be me) to grab her, hang on long enough to stuff her in a crate.  First we'll have to figure out if she will come up on the porch if there is a crate sitting there.  She won't if the live trap is there.  And she will not eat canned food, so we can't drug her in food.  But she definitely needs to be spayed.  There is a big yellow tom cat that shows up often, I would imagine he's Sunny's daddy.  And the new little ones, of which I hope there aren't many.  Sunny had a brother or sister, we don't know what happened to it though. 

Jerry has settled in & is doing a great job picking up poo & keeping the water buckets filled.  He picks up 2 or 3 times a day & picks up in areas we never did, so it's looking much nicer around here.  

We'll have to start getting ready for the annual Open House, the 1st week-end in December.  This will be our 5th year to participate & it's always a lot of fun.  We don't do a whole lot of getting ready, but it still takes time.  This year we will have a pop-up shelter so whoever is sitting at the table won't have to sit in the sun or cold wind, whichever we have.  Last year was really nice, the year before, not so much.  Some friends are suppose to come out & trim trees, around the pens & along the driveway to make it a little easier & safer for people coming in.  We get use to ducking or stumbling around & over things, but you can't do that with other people especially "City Folk".  One year I wrapped a cactus with bright colored tape.  A little girl came to me & wanted to know what that was.  I told her it was to warn people, so they didn't get stuck.  She looked at me like I was nuts, but people have a way of walking into cactus.