Saturday, February 28, 2009

I hope all this sunny warm, almost hot weather isn't a sign of an early summer. Last night it was down to 30 degrees, so hopefully we'll cool off to late winter, early spring temperatures again.

Yesterday I found out that Friolita has a big mat in her tail. Most donkeys don't have enough tail hair to mat & if they do it's so coarse, it won't mat. She has very fine hair, a long mane & a very long tail. At least for a donkey. This mat is a big wad & will have to be worked out probably with the help of some hair conditioner. The problem is.........she does NOT like to be groomed. I don't want to cut the hair if at all possible, since it would probably take years to get the length back. My plan is to tie her up, & have John pet & feed one end, while I work on the other.

Managed to get Rusty wormed. I had some "feed in" wormer that has a flax seed base, & he ate it. Unfortunately it isn't manufactured anymore, so next worming time I'll have to get more creative I guess. I don't know why they discontinued making it, although price wise it was rather expensive.

We had a nice young couple out for a tour this morning & another tour tomorrow morning. The donkeys really enjoy tours, they have learned to beg really hard to get those pellets.

They will get fed early this afternoon, tonight is the first night of stock car racing for the new season. They love to get fed early, but they hate to have to stay in their pens until we get home. John is going to let our grandson drive tonight, although John will hot lap the car. This year is our 40th year of being involved in dirt track racing. Being in the military, sometimes there wasn't any tracks where we were stationed. But if there was a track in the area (within 100 miles) John usually built a car & we "went racing"...........!!!! Actually the farthest tow we did on a regular basis was 120 miles one way, & that was every Saturday night. We were younger then, I think.....!!! (G)

Thursday, February 26, 2009

WORMING TODAY...........!!!

Everyone got wormed this morning............well everyone except Rusty the mule. Tula & Jack got wormer in their feed. So did Rusty, but he obviously has a sensitive nose or taste buds. He is a real pain to worm the normal way, so I'm still working on a "Plan B" for tomorrow. I always taste anything before I give it to them, & the wormers don't taste that bad. But some of them really fight the battle. Can't remember who it was, but one of them, spit the whole mess out, PLOP.......right on the ground. Not a problem, I always buy extra.............!!!! (G)

Well we have returned the extra live trap to it's owner & our final count was 17 or 18 depending on who's telling the story. Somewhere along the way we lost track of how many skunks we caught. John is still setting our trap in the chicken pen every night just in case, but we haven't caught anything for over a week.

Judy's ACTH test results finally came back & she is Cushings. Not a big surprise everyone that sees her says she looks Cushings. Today we had a couple come out to see the donkeys. So besides getting wormed this morning, they all got to stay in their pens until the people got here, which was afternoon. Judy had been pacing the fence & chortling to let us know we needed to let her out. By the time the people got here, she was so irritated when we came over to her pen, she promptly turned her butt around to us & stood that way, until we moved on to Jenny's pen. The people weren't donkey people, & got quite a kick out of it, when we explained what was going on. It was more important to her to register her opinion of her mistreatment, than it was to get on the treat gravy train, I guess.

Friolita isn't going into a pen to eat now. She eats outside with Buster, Lucy & Rocky. I am hoping she & Rocky will become buddies. She is such a sweet natured little girl & he is so gentle, they would make a nice couple. She's been here less than a month & has already figured out the "tour" routine. As soon as the people showed up & we started walking towards Sha'ba's pen, Friolita came over to get some timothy pellets & petting. Then she walked with us, in case we wanted to give her more pellets.

Once the people left, we let everyone out. My goodness you would have thought they had been in prison for years, the way they acted. As much fun as they have roaming around, I find it sad that so many equines spend a lot of their lives in stalls in barns. For an animal that loves to move around as much as they do, it must be very unsettling to be cooped up most of the time. No wonder a lot of them develop, behavior problems, like weaving, & cribbing.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


This showed up on the Yahoo Donkey Group Site:
Thanks Melinda

1. get a bucket, fill with warm water. add epsom salts until diluted. get donkey placed in cross ties, pick up foot, slide bucket into place. place donkey's foot in tub.
2. retrieve tub from corner of barn, get towel to dry off your face.
3. refill tub with water and epsom salts. shorten cross ties. pick up donkey's foot and place in tub.
4. retrieve tub from other horse's stall, retrieve donkey from his own stall. find bailing twine to fix broken cross ties. wrap towel around head to dry hair. check rapidly bruising toe for signs of breakage. rocks in bottom of tub to weigh down. snub donkey to wall of stall. refill tube with water and ebsom salts. pick up donkeys foot and place in tube. hold other front leg.
6. pick self up off of stall floor. find place outside where tub was flung. retrieve donkey from neighbor's garden, pull rocks out of donkeys water bucket. call spouse for opinion on whether or not wrist may be broken. Explain multiple times to emergency room staff that you did not fall off of donkey.
7. return to home, enlist spouse to hold donkey. hobble hind legs. tie up front leg. fill tub with water and salt. slide tub into place while pinning donkey against wall.
8. apologize to spouse as they view hoof prints across favorite shirt. wonder if water and epsom salts is bad for new wrist cast. check out burgeoning black eye from broke hobbles. retrieve donkey from cattle across the road. share laugh with cattle farmer about how fast donkeys can move on 3 legs.
9. go to grocery store to purchase ice packs, ibuprofen, more epsom salts and scotch.
10. call vet and ask them to come over to show you how to soak a foot. pour self tall glass of scotch while waiting.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Sha'ba is entering a new phase in his life. When he came here about 7 years ago we were told he was about 40 years old. His incisors were just nubbins, but he still had enough teeth in the back to eat hay. The last time we had him checked by Bert the equine dentist, he said there was nothing he could do with the teeth Sha'ba has left.

For years he has gotten a lot of his calories from soaked beet pulp & hay pellets, but was still eating hay. Recently I posted a picture of a hole he dug beside his hay bunk, & wondered if anyone knew why he was digging like that. In hindsight I think he was showing frustration at not being able to eat hay. He hasn't eaten hardly any hay for a couple of weeks, just the pound or so of soaked mush. A few days ago I decided to up the amount of mush I was feeding him & he is eating all I'm giving him........and still not messing with the hay. Poor little guy, he hasn't acted hungry, but I would imagine he has been. He's been eating prickly pear cactus like crazy, but he's always done that. He was so starved when we got him, we thought maybe that was all he had to eat. I will keep giving him more mush until he reaches a level where he leaves some in his feed bucket a couple of times. Who knows maybe we can get a little meat on his bones. He doesn't need to gain much though, although he gets around real good, sometime in his life he has broken his right rear fetlock & it is now fused. So he doesn't need to be carrying a lot of extra weight.

I thought with the extra mush he would leave the cactus alone. NOT........!!!! The first thing he does when he goes out of his pen, is head for his favorite cactus patch. Unfortunately it's getting pretty small, I've told him there isn't going to be any cactus left, if he keeps eating it.

Tula is no longer limping, thank goodness I wasn't looking forward to trying to get up close & personal to find out what was wrong with her. Frijolita is walking much better also. We've started letting her go out at night again. We still don't know if she has been over on Burroland yet or not. I assumed that's where she pulled her groin, but anytime we see her it's on this side of the property.

I still haven't heard anything on Judy's blood test for Cushings. I guess I'll have to get in touch with the vet tomorrow & see what plan B is. Since the girls aren't limping now, I don't know if I will have the other vet come out after all. I was going to have him draw more blood while he was here, to send to a lab of "MY" choice..........!!! (G)

I guess I'm going to have to start giving a little talk, when we send a jenny to a new home. I have had 2 different homes call one was frantic, & one just puzzled, with clacking slobbery mouths, & other, to the unaware, weird behavior. I'll admit jenny flirting, looks like they have something caught in their mouth, or have a kidney problem, but I guess it's quite the turn-on for the guys. And of course some male donkey even though they have been gelded, continue to act stupid. For years we didn't take jennies, for that reason. Life was much simplier with only guys. But I'm glad we did start taking jennies, otherwise Buster would have never found Lucy for his security blanket. SPRING.........AIN'T IT GREAT..........? The other day little 34 inch Cheyenne was trying to get Chester's attention in every way she could. He seemed to think she was kinda cute, even if she can almost walk under his belly. I think the logistics of that relationship, doomed it from the start.......!!!! (G)

Friday, February 20, 2009


This morning Judy's owner stopped by to see how she is doing. He has a new little pug puppy named Frank. Of course puppies besides being little bundles of wiggly cells in a fur coat, also have no fear of anything. He seemed to think the donkeys were really interesting. Pepsi was absolutely enthralled with the little squirmy thing, when Rory got in his truck to leave, Pepsi stood there until the door closed trying to keep track of the puppy. Maybe it's the first thing he's seen that is smaller than he is...........!!! (G)

I am still waiting, not patiently for Judy's blood test results. At this stage I don't think there will probably be a result, it's been 2 weeks........!!!!! Frijolita is still lame with her groin pull, & now Tula has come up lame. This is going to be a little more interesting. For all practical purposes Tula is wild, & always will be. She hates to be cornered, she hates to be touched, she hates to have people in her space. I have a call into a new vet in the area that is suppose to be very good. If he comes out to check out my cripples, I think I will have him pull blood on Judy & hopefully it will find it's way to a lab that can come up with results.

As for checking Tula & her lameness, we will probably put her in one of our squeezes we've made out of a stationary corral panel, & one that is attached on one end. She has no problem going into one, for some odd reason. I would imagine he will have to give her something before he can put his hands on her effectively.

I asked Rory if Judy has any treats she really likes. Unfortunately not...........!!!! She is really being a witch about taking her pergolide. I have her on a minimum doseage, until I "get the results of the missing blood test".............!!!! I have tried her on just about anything that sounds like an equine would like it. She "ain't" buying any of it. I even resorted to trying a tiny piece of bread about the size of a quarter, applesauce, capsule, applesauce, another tiny piece of bread, & a light covering of molasses. Unfortunately everything in that treat is bad for an insulin resistant, possibly Cushings equine. Doesn't matter I guess, I casually dropped it in her hay bunk & left, since by now anything given by hand or encouraged is looked on as suspicious. When I checked later, it was still there, moved off to the side, as not worth her time.................!!!! GRRRRR..........!!!!! Mules are so smart...........!!!! (G) I don't want to have to tie her up twice a day & try to ram it down her throat. Since the battle of wills hasn't gone very good at all, I'm sure a battle of strength, wouldn't go much better.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


This morning when it was round-up time most of them went where they were suppose to. Last night I noticed Tula was limping on a rear leg just like Frijolita. I have no idea what they are doing to hurt themselves. If it was anyone other than Tula, I might suspect dogs or coyotes were chasing them. But I've seen Tula in action, & don't think most canines would have the nerve to take her on.

Tula might be "gimpy", but she's still the head jenny. Three of the minis went in their pens like little angels. Cheyenne decided she desperately had to stay with Tula. She leaped, & jumped, spun & ran, even jumped over a jolly ball that got in her way to stay by Tula's pen. I went out & chased her towards her pen, & the lightbulb finally went off. She lined up at the gate, I opened the gate & all she had to do was walk in. But, NO............she tried to spin around & take off again. I just happened to be standing in the right place, to grab her mane & put a head lock on her. I'm lucky they've never figured out how much stronger they are than I am. (G) I managed to get enough of her thru the gate, so I could close it. WHEW! I really don't need all this exercise..............!!!!!

Courtney is suppose to come out today to trim some toes. Those victims are still in their pens, which isn't going over very well. I did let Frijolita out, she's too lame to stand on 3 legs long enough to trim, although she is improving slowly but surely. Chester, Judy, Jenny & Pepper are still in their pens. Everytime I go outside, they let me know they have been forgotten.

Judy & I are still fighting the battle of giving her a pergolide capsule twice a day. They must have the most sensitive lips in the world, she sure can pick out the capsules no matter how I hide them. This morning I tried applesause, on a small sandwich of bread. I held it out to her & she took off. So I put it in her hay bunk & walked off. She walked right over & ate it. She is more than willing to take carrots, etc from your hand, so I'm not sure why the unwillingness to eat something that I know has a capsule in it, but she isn't suppose to know. I need to see if she will eat peppermint. If so, I can have them compound her pergolide with peppermint flavoring.

Monday, February 16, 2009

This morning we found Judy's pergolide capsule from last night in her bunk. After she had eaten her hay, we found not only that one, but the one from this morning also. Hmmmm! I had been cutting a vitamin E capsule in half, sticking the pergolide in one & the consistancy of the gooey stuff inside, hid the little capsule, or at least it had before. The thrill of a carrot wore off a few days ago. So I tried her with an orange, which most of the gang think is really tasty. I got within 3 feet of her with a 1/4 orange & she took off. I don't want to have to syringe it into her twice a day, it's not a good way to develop a relationship. She still isn't sure I'm worth her time & effort anyway........!!! (G) So I tried a piece of apple. After a suspicious smell she took it, but didn't eat it with relish, although I didn't find the capsules in the little pieces she dropped. That took care of this morning, tonight will be another battle of wills probably. I swear when she looks at me, it's like someone looking at a bug under a microscope. We haven't done anything invasive to her, but she sure thinks we're up to something on a regular basis.

I've been trying to get 1/2 a bute into Frijolita for her pull groin muscle for a couple of days. The first time or two she ate a carrot with the bute hidden inside. Starting yesterday, no more carrots, THANK YOU VERY MUCH, & I also get a suspicious, hurt look from her. Last night I tried mixing the bute into applesauce..............!!!!! NOPE! So this morning I mixed it with a little pancake syrup, applesauce & enough water to go thru a 60cc syringe. She was easy to give it to, although swallowing it took awhile. I'm not use to all these judgemental types. Most of my guys, will eat bute dropped in their feed buckets, well except for Pepper. He's more like these two. She's walking better although not putting a lot of weight on the right rear. I checked her groin this morning & it's still very sore, but I went ahead & let her out of the pen to roam around. Hopefully a little exercise will help it feel better.

I'm still massaging Chester's bad leg every morning. This morning when I was stretching it, he pulled back, which is good. He was mouthing all the time, so I assume it felt good. Then I heard a little pop noise. I was afraid we might have hurt something, but he kept mouthing. He has really been walking good. Martha seems to think if we can keep working on the leg & keep the tendons from shortening, that he will continue to improve. He'll never be sound I don't think, but the leg doesn't seem to be painful. When he first came out here about 2 1/2 years ago the frog on that foot was atrophied & was not working & he was 3 legged lame. Right now the frog is almost down to the ground, which is great. Maybe it will start working as a shock absorber like it's suppose to do.

John saw some flies on poo a couple of mornings ago. I hope that doesn't mean we are going to have an early spring. I don't like to start putting on fly masks until at least April. Actually putting & keeping fly masks on these guys is a lesson in futility anyway. There are enough of them that see fly masks as toys to keep us busy putting them back on or trying to find them. The woman that has made them for me for years, is no longer making them, China & the price of material basically priced her out of the market. Unfortunately the commercial ones don't hold up like Betty's did, but I've got a few extra ones. Once they are all gone though, we'll be going thru fly masks at a rapid pace I would imagine.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

When we went out yesterday morning, Frijolita was standing out by the pens, 3 legged lame. She was holding up her right rear leg & not wanting to put weight on it. We got her in Chester's pen & I checked her leg. I have read that 75% of leg problems on equines are below the knee. And 75% of the problems below the knee are in the foot. BUT the place to start checking for a problem, if there is no obvious swelling or blood is the hip & work your way down, including the groin area. I worked my way down the whole leg & foot & there was no reaction, until I started over again, & this time checked the groin. BINGO! No swelling or heat, but I would imagine since our property is rougher & rockier than what she is use to, she probably slipped or something & pulled a muscle. So she has been in Chester's pen ever since. Chester is eating with Tula in her pen, much to her disgust. She likes Chester & they hang out together, BUT, their togetherness doesn't seem to include eating together. He gobbles his & takes over hers, so I really can't blame her. It's funny in a way, because if they are out on the property, she calls the shots.

This morning Frijolita seems a little better, although with her stringhalt problem I would imagine it might take awhile for her to heal. She's not happy being in a pen, & isn't eating all her hay, as a rebellion I guess. Either that or she doesn't like our hay. She is definately not a piggie eater, like some of them are. I'm surprised since she has been in with 3 other donkeys for years. I guess they were all polite ladies at feeding time.

Yesterday morning after that crisis, I was watching Jenny follow John into her pen, & noticed she was short striding on a rear leg. Since her foot problems are her front feet, I watched her closely. All of a sudden the foot knuckled under, just for a moment, she caught herself & walked on. I have no idea what is going on there. Courtney is coming out this week to trim, so I will see if she has any ideas.

Even as I write, John is out hauling #17 or #18, depending on which one of us is right........!!!! (G) After a lack of skunks for 4 nights we we hoping they were all gone. So I guess he will be setting the trap in the chicken pen for the forseeable future.............!!!! If they didn't find yummy cat food in the trap, the next step would be dig under the chicken house & have chicken.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Frijolita is settling in pretty good. She gets along great with the other donkeys, but we still have to "encourage" her to go into her pen to eat. Of course we also have to encourage some of the others & they have been here a lot longer than she has. She's very sweet, although she isn't a cuddly type of donkey. I'm still hoping she & Rocky will bond, they would make a cute couple. He finally settled down & quit acting like a idiot, but I'm not sure she will forget their initial meeting. She does have one little weird manner that I've never seen before. She will not eat pellets. I have tried both timothy & Lakin Lite & she doesn't even seem to recognize them as food. She really likes the "natural" browse she's finding on the property though. At the rate they are all eating the "natural" browse there isn't going to be anything left. You know how you see a pen with a lot of horses in it, & it looks like a vast wasteland of dead trees & stubby stumps sticking up here & there? That's what it's going to look like around here before too long.

I'm still waiting for the vet to get the results on Judy's Cushings test. I'd sure glad this information wasn't needed in a timely manner. She's doing good, although I'm sure she would do better if we knew for sure she had Cushings & if so how much pergolide I should be giving her. I'm giving her a minimum amount until I hear from the vet.

The skunk update is good news. John hasn't had to haul a skunk for 3-4 nights. He has just been setting a trap in the chicken pen, & not on the porch. He wants to continue setting the trap for awhile, just in case one is passing thru & would like a chicken dinner. We're arguing on how many he hauled, I thought it was 17, but he says it was ONLY 16.......!!! Either way, it was a lot of skunks......!!!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


This is Frijolita's first few moments of being out of a pen. Actually that isn't true. Yesterday morning when we were moving her from the stock trailer pen, to a larger pen, Rocky decided to act like an idiot. You know how silly little boys act to impress girls. To say the least, not only was she not impressed, neither were we. She jerked away from John & the race was on. She was running, he was running, & we were losing ground fast.....!!! (G) He caught up a couple of times, & she let him know in no uncertain terms that she didn't appreciate silly little boys. She thumped him pretty good a couple of times on the chest, & one time on the jaw. He made the mistake of being nosy & going into the pen around the stock trailer, & I was close enough to close it. Of course by this time she is all upset by all the chasing, & wouldn't let us pick up the lead rope. She finally went close to Sha'ba's pen, I ran him out, & we got her to go in it.

But this is the first pictures of her being out officially this morning. She came out & promptly ate a poor little greasewood bush that had managed to survive the rest of them. Since then I've checked on her a few times, & she hadn't "found" the other donkeys yet. I think they are all on Burroland, at least that was the way she was looking, & braying last time I was out.

We were suppose to get snow last night. I'm happy to report the weatherman was wrong about the San Pedro River Valley, although a lot of areas around us got a little bit. We got a few flakes, along with a little rain, but today is sunny.

Heard from Chili & Tirza's new Mom. She said we didn't need to worry about Chili taking over Tirza's food which we had talked about. It seems Tirza's is in charge of If & WHEN he can eat, drink or go in the barn. Sherry said she had to intervene. I think it's funny, but she was worried at first. Chili needs to lose a little weight anyway. But after a couple of days, they were settling down, & Tirza's was laying down with him standing guard. So they are bonding, & he is learning quickly who is going to be in charge. Since she is only about 17 months old, I thought she might wait awhile to become head jenny, but guess not......!!!! (G)

Only set one trap last night, over in the chicken pen. Didn't catch anything, John said something had been in the bait, but didn't trip the trap. Probably a mouse.

Monday, February 09, 2009


We still have Frijolita in a pen of corral panels around the stock trailer. This is Max visiting with her. I think everyone has come around to welcome her, although I don't think she's too impressed with anyone yet. We are going to move her into a regular pen today. BlackJack & Cisco got moved into Chili's old pen, & she will go into their larger one. Of course Cisco & BJ think we have lost what little sense we ever had. In a few days we will probably let her out to eat with Lucy, Buster, & Rocky. Who knows, maybe Rocky will get a girlfriend out of the deal.

She has a slight problem with her hind legs & her front feet have lots of ridging on them. The problem with her hind legs is probably stringhalt something I haven't dealt with before. So I guess I'll be on the internet trying to learn what I can about it. The problem with her front feet is why she is here, hopefully with lots more exercise than she's been getting she can start growing more normal hoof wall.

She's a pretty girl, a little standoffish, but that's to be expected. She was originally a BLM donkey taken off the range. She has spent 8 years in a wonderful home with the same routine & donkey friends. So this is all new to her. I'm sure once she gets use to us & the place she will fit right in.

As I write this John is hauling off #17. We haven't caught any skunks over in the chicken pen for a few nights, just on the back porch. So we're probably going to stop setting a trap on the porch, & continue to set one in the chicken pen, just in case. We don't care if they roam around & come in the back yard. We just don't want them getting in the chicken pen.

Saturday, February 07, 2009


I thought skunks were solitary animals. I've mentioned this misnomer to other people & found out that isn't always true. One friend said he had a momma & 7 (I didn't even know they could have 7) under his boat dock for awhile one time. Then another friend just laughed & regaled us with stories of his skunk infestation a few years ago. He said he doesn't even know how many he had. I don't care for his method of getting rid of them though. Ours is much more entertaining, & they live to migrate another day........!!! Probably back here, where the crazy lady serves such good "trap" food.........!!!

The count is up to 14, some hooded & some striped. Haven't caught a spotted yet, guess they didn't get the memo about the good food. The last 2 we caught were rather agitated, compared to the others. We think they might be repeats & already know the drill.

A couple of mornings ago I rode with John to the designated skunk release spot. None of this turn them loose at the first convenient, no.........somehow he found what looks to us like prime skunk country. Of course it's so far off the beaten path, he has to use 4 WD & even then it's not an easy trip. How do guys find places like this...........???? When he opened the trap, the little guy just waddled off like he had all the time in the world. There's a large patch of brush & once he was in there, we couldn't even see him.

I hope there aren't too many more. We've made a deal, John hauls skunks & I get to clean the pens by myself most mornings.

Today was a long day. We got up early to feed so the pens could be opened before we loaded up Chili for a trip to his new home Northwest of Tucson. On the way, we stopped in Oro Valley to pick up Twinkie aka Galleta Dulce, who was going to the same new home. Once they were delivered, we went back to Oro Valley, & picked up Friolita to bring her out here.

This is Twinkie, now known as Tirza & Chili in their new home. They look like they've always been together, except for her occasionally throwing a half kick his way, just to make sure he knows who's boss.

Both Chili & Tirza's families are having health problems & Friolita has health problems. So, we put together an adoption that gave Chili & Tirza's a new home with wonderful people that will continue to spoil them in the style they have been accustomed to. With Chili gone, we had a spot for Friolita to come out here. I might add, she wasn't the least bit interested in leaving her home where she had lived for 8 years. She has only been in a trailer one time years ago, & was fairly tramatized by the whole experience of loading & travelling. When we had Diego here for a couple of days before he went to Texas, John put corral panels around the back of the trailer & we put his food & water in the trailer. By the 2nd day he was flying in & out of the trailer like it was no big deal. We set her up the same way, so hopefully she won't harbor bad thoughts about a trailer. She'll get a chance to get use to the trailer, & also all the other fur kids will get a chance to check her out.

It was dark when we got home, so I'll try to get pictures of her tomorrow. She's a pretty girl, but she's got some problems with her feet. We're all hoping the rougher land out here will give her feet more natural movement. She's been on an acreage, but it is flat & pretty soft living.

Striker the ex-tom cat, struck out on his own the first night we had him home from the vet. We had planned on keeping him in the cage for 5 days to give him time to heal. But he had other ideas & managed to get the door open. Actually he didn't get it open, he managed to get the door pushed out enough at a corner to squeeze out, at least that's what we think happened. The latch was still latched & he was gone. At least he had a whole can of fish/shrimp cat food before he left. We had never seen him before he got in the trap. So the chances are, we probably won't see him again.

Thursday, February 05, 2009


Doesn't look like a Happy Camper does he? Believe me, he wasn't & isn't. Two nights ago we set the traps as usual. Later I checked the one on the back porch & it had been sprung. John went to cover it up, came back in & said "we don't have a skunk". What we had was a large very unhappy tom cat. When you have lemons you make lemonade, right? There was no way I was going to let him go, without having a little corrective surgery done on him, first. We got him in a cage, which wasn't easy. In the process I named him Striker, for cause.....!!! (G) Yesterday morning I called the vet clinic & of course they were busy, busy, busy & were going to be until next week, when the vet was going to be gone for a long week-end.

Not all vets will neuter wild cats. To say your patient is ungrateful & will make you pay, if he can, is an understatement. Our local vet puts them in a small crate, puts the crate in a plastic bag & gases them long enough for the cat to go to sleep. Then they can run a line in a vein & proceed as usual. But not all vets are willing to make the effort & take a chance on getting hurt.

But they took pity on us & said they would do it after hours last night. Got a call this morning to come & pick him up. He hasn't lost any of his attack mode, I'm sorry to say. We put him in the 2 x 4 cage we had been using to move the chickens to the garage every night & put him in the hay barn. The first thing he did was turn the food, water & litter box upside down & fling everything everywhere in the cage. Then he hid in the big pile of straw we had put in for a bed. At least he knows how to use that.........!!! (G)

We'll try to keep him in for 5 days before we turn him loose, I'm sure we'll never see him again.......!!!! Hobo the female will not even walk close to the trap, so John is trying to get her tamed enough to hopefully get her in a crate., for a trip to the vet. Then there is a big yellow tom cat that could use a little corrective surgery, if we ever catch him......!!!

John reset the trap that night, & caught a skunk. Caught another one last night, but haven't caught any in the chicken pens for days. We really don't care if they are around here as long as they leave the chickens alone. He will continue setting a trap in the chicken pen for awhile. If we put something smelly & tasty in the trap, if one gets in there, maybe the trap will be more interesting than a chicken.

The donkeys are all doing pretty good right now. I'm still soaking Judy's foot, although she isn't limping very much at all. Never have seen any openings where an abscess broke, so still don't know for sure what was wrong with her. Haven't heard the results of her ACTH test for Cushings yet. Hopefully the lab gets it right this time.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

# 11

Well # 11 was in the trap on the back porch this morning. But the good news is, no skunk in the trap over in the chicken pen. So we're debating whether to leave the chickens in their pen tonight, & set the trap outside or go ahead & haul the chickens back to the garage. We'll probably go ahead & haul them, just to be safe. John said when he let this one out of the trap, he wasn't happy & sprayed a little. We think he might be a "re-catch", & knows the routine......!!!!

I got a call this morning that just breaks my heart. A woman & her very ill husband have to move to the northwest closer to their son. They have a jenny, & her 15 year old son. They also have A 26 year old mule & his younger lady who is 19. They are all in excellent health................BUT............. they haven't been able to find anyone that would give them a wonderful home like they have now. The woman is so heartbroken, she is talking about staying here & letting her husband leave without her, which isn't an answer to the problem either.

So if there is anyone out there that would like to give a good home to some nice gentle animals, that are in a situation thru no fault of their own or their Mom, get in touch with me.

Courtney trimmed some of Judy's frog, but didn't find anything really wrong that would make her limp on that foot. She'll be back in a couple of week's & we'll see how Judy is doing by then. I'm still soaking her twice a day & will for the forseeable future I guess.

Martha seemed to think Chester has a little more mass in his chest area & his leg seemed to be looser to work with. Of course he's probably more comfortable now that he knows what she is going to do with him, when she starts poking & prodding. I'm sure that would make a difference in his state of relaxation. Max, the horse almost turns into putty when she works on him. You can tell he really enjoys it. We decided he would be a great horse for a massage school to have. He's big enough to be intimidating if someone was hesitant, gentle as a lamb, & very reactive to being touched. If he likes it, you know immediately, if he doesn't he lets you know, but not in a mean or dangerous way.

Monday, February 02, 2009


Well last night we didn't catch any skunks..... but we caught 2 yesterday, so we're not closing up our trapping business just yet. We'll set the traps & drag the chickens over to the garage tonight. If we have another good night, tomorrow night we'll set the traps but leave the chickens on their roost. They are getting so use to the drill, they don't even fuss when we pluck them off the roost & put them in the cage.

Martha & Courtney are suppose to come out this morning, so Max & Chester will get another massage & Courtney can look at Judy & see waht she thinks. I'm still soaking her foot, but she's still limping a little. My education on hooves & feet isn't that good, so maybe Courtney will have some ideas.