Thursday, March 31, 2011


RIP Noelle
This morning when we went out to feed Noelle didn't show up which is unusual.  She's always been good about coming in at feeding time, going into her pen & waiting for her carrot.  

After everyone was fed John went to look for her.  He found her dead laying in the big wash that runs across the property.  She had been walking along the bank & it caved in.  There was no struggle at all, I would imagine it broke her neck.  

She had just started to interact with the other donkeys.  When she first came, she didn't like anyone, then she started hanging with the mules.  She had been a companion for a horse for years.  But just in the last few days she had been showing more interest in the donkeys.  I would imagine she was with the herd, & they were on their way to their next special spot & she just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.  

She had only been here a little while, but they all become special so quickly.  We got such a kick out of her not eating hay unless there was some alfalfa in it.  John finally "weaned" her to straight bermuda, but it was a challenge.  

She was grumpy & opinionated, would not cooperate unless there was a treat involved. But she "allowed" me to scratch her withers, & although she tried to act like she didn't like it..........she did.    I'm sure if we had more time, she would have mellowed, we just didn't have enough time. 

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Lakota Camp, Pine Ridge 1891

Today was a good day for Gus.  He ate his breakfast, & then went out & stayed out most of the day roaming around.  We went to town this afternoon & when we came home he was laying down in his pen, with Quilla & Daisy standing guard.  I have no idea what that was about.  Maybe he's finding some new friends.  Daisy usually doesn't like Quilla, so I was surprised to see both of them in his pen with him.  Daisy left the pen when she saw us, but Quilla stayed. 

This morning when we doctored Noelle's eye, I noticed not only was it watering, but the 3rd eye which comes out from underneath was sticking up & is red.  Seems like we've been doctoring her eye for quite sometime, so I called the vet & she'll be out Friday morning to see if she can figure out what's going on.  Noelle's eye is clear & she can see out of it.  The vet said if there was something in her eye, it wouldn't have cleared up.  She asked if Noelle was any easier to work with.........!!!  She does pretty good as long as John doesn't run out of treats, but I wouldn't say she is cooperative.   

Monday, March 28, 2011

Gus & other things


I wish Gus would show a little more interest in his surroundings.  He seems rather lethargic, not really interested in going out & checking out 30 acres, he would rather just hang around the pen area.  I've never had one not interested in getting away from the pens, & investigating all the new interesting stuff.  He is even leaving hay in the morning.  I am feeding less hay than he was getting, & would expect him to be hungry, but he doesn't seem to be.  

Yesterday Cisco went over to Gus' pen & they were smelling noses thru the fence.  Gus actually shook his head at Cisco a little bit, which is about the most energy I've seen him put out since he got here I think.  

Right now just about everyone else seems to have spring fever.  They are running around, boys chasing girls, girls teasing boys & Lynn one of the minis is acting silly as usual.  When we have one of these "hormonal" parties Lynn always latches onto Tula.  Tula is the head jenny & for some reason Lynn desperately has to be touching her at all times, much to Tula's disgust.  She stays with Tula no matter where she goes, or how much effort she puts into ditching Lynn.  It's almost impossible to get Lynn in her pen.  First we have to extricate her from Tula's pen, then get her to go in a straight line towards her pen, rather than spinning around & running back to Tula's pen, screeching at the top of her lungs.  And Tula tries not to go into her pen, as long as Lynn is right by her side.  

When it's time to let them out, John usually lets the west pens out first, which is where Lynn is, Tula is in the east pens.  Lynn flies out of the pen, running & screeching, straight down to Tula's pen, to wait until Tula is released, so she can start touching her again.  Tula use to try to run away from her, but has given up I guess. 

We still have the 3 kittens in the spa room.  We might have a home for Snooky, but it's a home with 3 dogs & a doggie door.  He is still a little unsure of people, so I'm not sure that would be a good home for him.  We're working with him to get him a little more use to people, but he's still very cautious.  We're afraid if he got scared & out the doggie door, he'll get lost & scared. 

I haven't had the nerve to let them into the rest of the house yet.  Sunny & Nigel cause enough damage without adding 3 more.  Poor Moogee just hisses & swats at any of them that come close to her.  Sunny, goes back & forth from the spa room to the rest of the house.  The other day Moogee just "had" to go in the spa room, so I let her in.  She went in with guns blazing,hissing & swatting.  Not exactly the best way to make new friends, they all ran & hid, can't blame them.  So she hasn't got to go back again.  Sunny goes in, plays awhile, checks out their food, takes a nap & is ready to come back in the rest of the house.  He has the best of both worlds I guess. 

Saturday, March 26, 2011

GUS IS OUT AGAIN...............!!!!

This is Gus munching on one of the trees.  Jenny is watching with great interest.  Jenny is our local "working" girl, she likes the boys, & anytime a new one comes in she checks him out.   He pretty much ignored her & she finally went away.  

Yesterday he went back in his pen after a couple of hours & never went back out.  This morning he ate some of his hay & was getting ready to lay down in the pen.  I ran over & opened the gate so he could go out & get some exercise.  Most of our guys look at an open gate as something to be challenged & is best when it's behind them on their way to somewhere more interesting.  He finally went out & is now roaming around.  John picked up his hay & left the gate open, so he can go back in if he wants.  If he goes back in the pen we'll put the hay down for him, but we couldn't leave it there, with an open gate...........!!!!   I'd rather he stay out, roam around, & if he feels like laying down use one of the multiple dusting areas all over the property.  

Noelle's cheek was all wet this morning from her rubbing her eye.  We leave her fly mask on 24/7, so she hopefully can't get in there & do damage.  The eye looks good, we're still flushing it with penicillin every day & hopefully it will quit itching before she damages it again.  She is actually starting to look forward to us doctoring her.  I think the treats John stuffs her with is probably a big factor.  You have to watch her, if she sees your hand, she tries to grab a treat  whether there is one or not being offered.   I don't get involved in that part of the treatment, I'm the "bad" cop.......!!!! We'll work on changing that behavior once the eye is healed, this is better than having her spin & take off, or throw a kick.........!!!!  LOL

Friday, March 25, 2011


After everyone was doctored & finished with breakfast we let him out.  Left his fly mask off in case someone wanted to use it as a handle.  It was 28 degrees here this morning, so flies haven't really been a problem so far this year.  

You will notice in the picture his butt has not cleared the gate, & he is already chomping on a tree.  He actually left hay in his bunk.  I think he is use to having access to his bunk all day, so isn't in any hurry to eat, since it's always there.  He'll have to change his MO, when I came back from taking videos, there were 3 donkeys in his pen squabbling over his hay.  I ran them out & closed the gate, so now they are standing outside the gate, banging on it occasionally to see if it will miraculously open, this bunch doesn't let any morsel of hay survive, believe me....!!!! 

I've been out to check on him a couple of times & he's just walking around checking things out.  So far they aren't "ganging" up on him, first one & then another one goes with him for awhile, then they wander off & someone else takes over the "job".  

Quilla seems to be the most loyal, he's staying with him the longest.  Of course as usual the dogs bark like crazy.  Anytime a new donkey comes in the dogs act like they've never seen one before.  It takes a day or so, for them to start minding their own business again.  

Gus is pretty ouchy on his front feet stepping toe first, but the last time I checked he seemed to be  striding out better.  I would imagine he will be sore tonight, but hopefully after a few days, his feet will toughen up, Courtney is suppose to be back in a couple of weeks to trim some more.  If he moves around a lot that will help to keep his feet "trimmed" too. 

We'll be feeding early today.  Racing season has started & you know what they say, "there's no fool like an old fool".  After not racing since 1980, I am giving it another try this year.  A friend has a 4 cylinder Toyota that races in the Hornet Class,  in fact it's the one I rode in last year when Zach the young man that is away to college drove & we won a heat race.......!!!  Anyway Will ask if John would like to drive it.  John said he wanted me to drive, so I'm going to give it a try.  First race was last week, & I finished 8th after starting 9th out of 13 cars, so I guess it could be worse...!!!   When I came in I told the guys, I was going to put a squirrel tail on the back of the car, I think I drove twice as far as anyone else in the race, a lot of it off the track.......!!!  LOL

Tonight is practice, I think I need a LOT of it.....!!!  Way back in the "OLD" days, we didn't have power steering, or front wheel drive, & I was 30 years younger, so I've got a lot to deal with.  Our grandson isn't racing this year, but I told our son that he could park away from us if he didn't want anyone to know his old mom was out there acting silly.  He said he didn't care, & even gave me a couple of pointers, the front wheel drive is really throwing me. 

Last week, me getting ready to be rude, to somebody....!!!

Thanks Tim

Thursday, March 24, 2011


First picture of Gus, actually rather flattering, doesn't show his "fluffiness".......!!!!  (G)  His trim didn't seem to make him anymore tender-footed, which is good.  I don't know how much Courtney took off, but I'm glad he isn't "ouching" around today.  I tried getting pictures of his feet this morning, but he was standing in gravel, & the light wasn't right.  I'll try again later.  I have GOT to get a new camera, I guess I'm outgrowing this one.  My problem is I want a camera that takes gorgeous pictures, but it has to be simple to operate, because I usually don't know what I'm doing......!!!

He's got the run of 3 pens today, so far Justin & Quilla are the only ones to show any interest in him.  Those two are the ones that play with the jolly ball, maybe they want to make it a threesome.  

Noelle's eye looked good yesterday & she reacted to movement in that eye, so hopefully we're headed in the right direction.  I'm not ready to quit doctoring it though, until I know there isn't anymore red in the white part.  This morning she was really really good, for her & since the eye is doing so well, we let her out of her pen for the day.  Hope she doesn't find something to "rub" her eye on out there. 

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


Strange name, we'll just call him GUS.................!!!  He was such a good boy, he hopped in the trailer like he did it every day, although he was a rather "busy" traveler.  I think he "walked" the whole way, at least the trailer was moving around most of the time.  

We met Courtney on the edge of Tucson & she trimmed on his feet in the trailer.  Again he was a good boy, doubt that he had ever had power tools used on him before, but he did very well, considering, he was with strange people (well, people he didn't know......LOL) in a trailer, with another stranger molesting his feet with noisy vibrating "things", & traffic going by, in the dark. But he took it like a brave little trooper.  

We got home about 8 pm to a herd of crabby equines, since we were about 3 hours late for supper.  Got everyone in their pens, before we brought "Gus" out of the trailer.  We've learned that if the donkeys are out when we try to bring a new one to the pens, we really have more help than we need.  And the new one gets nervous because the others come up behind them.  Quilla is the only one now that doesn't go in a pen to eat.  As soon as Gus was in his pen, Quilla parked his butt at the gate staring at Gus.  Personality wise I think they might be a good match.  Of course most of the time when I try to match make, I'm wrong, so I guess I'll just let Gus decide who he wants to hang with.

We'll keep him in the pen a day or two, so everyone can come by a stare & he can get a chance to acclimate to the change in his life.  

I'll try to get pictures of him tomorrow, I forgot my camera today, & it was dark when we got home. 

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

NEW GUY TOMORROW.........!!!!!

We'll be getting a new herd member tomorrow.  He's a little fluffy, not bad & has a little trouble with his feet, but I'm sure Courtney will get that straightened out in no time.  

We are still doctoring Noelle's eye.  I had been wondering why her eye was watering so bad some mornings.  The whole side of her cheek would be soaking wet.  This morning I "caught" her rubbing & gouging her eye on the edge of the hay bunk hanging in her pen.  So John had to move the bunk out, of course it is the heaviest one we have.  It's homemade & whoever made it used sheet metal that is over 1/4 inch thick.  I keep telling him all this is good for building muscle, but he just gives me dirty looks......!!!!  I don't think he believes me.  

She is actually getting a little more cooperative, not "stand still & let us do whatever we want" cooperative.  But at least she isn't vigorously jerking her head around & we haven't had to tie her for a few days.  

Cisco & Daisy came in this morning with cactus spines in their faces.  Cisco has always been our little cactus eater.  He will dig it up & eat it from the root end, although I have seen him eat from the top too.  I took this picture a few years ago of him & Shiloh snacking away.  This is why we have very little cactus left on the property.  

Sunday, March 20, 2011

MOVIE STARS......????

This morning Jay called from Gammon's Gulch & said they were ready for the donkeys.......!!!! HUH?  They were suppose to let us know before 4pm yesterday, whether  or not  they were going to use the donkeys, since BlackJack had a problem with the pack saddle.

We were waiting for some people to come out for a tour, but fortunately they would have to drive past Gammon's Gulch to get to our place, so we figured we could cross paths on the road if they showed up.  

We informed BlackJack & Cisco that it was show time, put on their halters & headed down the driveway.  They started off real good, but all of a sudden Cisco decided he didn't want to go & stopped.  BlackJack was still ready for adventure, so I took off with him, & John stayed with Cisco to discuss the problem & come up with a solution.  The solution is, if he doesn't want to move he isn't......!!!  Simple huh?  I kept looking back & they'd move & then stop.  I wasn't having any problems with BJ except he was more interested in snarfing up the weeds & grass growing along side the road, than following me.  We got up there & John & Cisco weren't far behind, Cisco had finally decided this might be fun after all I guess.  

Just about the time we got there, a little car passed the gate, so I handed BJ's lead to someone & took off running, it's a "fur" piece, I could hear John yelling, "quit running you'll have a heart attack"......!!!  Wherever they were headed it wasn't here.  So I gathered up the camera, cell phone & some tea for John & headed back up there.

The donkeys were surrounded by a bunch of actors & crew, petting them & making over them.  I looked over by wardrobe & this is what I saw.

Funny, just a few minutes earlier he had on khaki pants & a black shirt, didn't take long for them to grab him for a make-over.  

The director came over to me to ask if we had some different colored lead ropes, the ones I grabbed were striped & green & didn't look very much like the 1880's.  

So I headed back home, at least I had enough sense to pick up the golf cart on the first trip back.  Picked up some leads, hopped in the golf cart & back to the movie site.  They were shooting the street scene with the donkeys, although Cisco decided there was too many ropes involved.  As an x-roping donkey he isn't a fan of ropes, he will tolerate one, but 2 or 3 is too much.  So they just used BlackJack.  There's enough ham in him that a few ropes aren't going to bother him.  They did a couple of practice runs, did a couple of shots & were done.  WOW! the movie a year ago, was suppose to be one day & ended up to be four LONG days.....!!!  

When I was taking the picture I didn't notice the cars in the background, I was enthralled with the bags of sand they hung on BlackJack to represent bags of gold I guess.  And trying to get them to stand still headed the same direction........!!!!

So we headed back home, John leading Cisco & me leading BlackJack while I drove the golf cart.  He didn't mind the golf cart, but he did mind not getting to eat the weeds, so he kept going from side to side, trying to get to the weeds.  I thought he might just follow John & Cisco if I turned him loose.  He thought that was great, & headed for the nearest weeds or "donkey buffet".  We finally got them to the driveway gate, & turned them loose.  

The tour never did show up, have no idea what happened to them.

Saturday, March 19, 2011


This morning when we went out to feed I looked at Noelle & noticed one side of her face was wet coming out from under her fly mask.   My first thought was, the eye has collapsed........!!!!  Shrieked for John, he came running, we "captured" her, took off the mask & the eye looked fine.  Still a little cloudy, but relatively dry, so I have no idea where all the wetness came from that was literally dripping off her jaw.   We doctored her this morning without tying her to the corral panels.  John is getting pretty black & blue from bouncing off the panels.  She danced around some, but not really any worse than when we had her tied, & we can get in the middle of the pen, which cuts down on things to bounce off of in the heat of battle.  

We got finished with her, & noticed that Quilla wasn't eating his hay, he was standing by the feed room......!!! SIGH!  He wasn't acting choked no drooling, or like colic, he was just standing & not eating.  I felt the favorite choke area on a donkey, where the head attaches to the neck & felt a small lump.  I worked it for a little while, but it didn't seem to make a difference.  He went over & laid in one of the dusting areas, didn't seem particularly restless or anything.  I told John I would go ahead & give him some banamine.  Banamine is really a wonder drug, for colic or pain treatment.  Unfortunately it can also mask what the real problem is, so it shouldn't be used at the drop of a hat.  Whatever was bothering him really didn't seem bad, although for him not to eat is pretty important.  I went in to get the banamine, came out & he was eating his hay.......!!!!  I honestly think they do these things for the shock appeal & the reaction they get from me.......!!!  Not really, but they do seem to like to make me worry.

Friday, March 18, 2011

BlackJack & I had an "interesting" bonding experience this morning.  They are shooting a movie up at Gammon's Gulch this week, & got an idea to use a couple of the donkeys.  They wanted them to drag a handcuffed man down the street being led by a miner.  If they think any of these donkeys are going to work that hard, I think they might get a surprise......!!!  LOL 

We have had a pack saddle for years, never done anything with it.  The other movie the donkeys were in, which incidentally, we've never heard anything about, they didn't need to be "dressed".

I've never put a pack saddle on anyone.  John had a jeep tour today, so I got out the saddle got all the straps & buckles going the right direction. I have saddled horses, but it's been a LONG time ago.  Tied BJ up & started putting the saddle on.  Looked at it & turned it around, I at least know the cinches hang from the right side.....!!! Got it all lined up, organized & decided to fit the breast strap & crupper or britchin, I'm not sure of the correct term for the part that goes from the saddle in 3 directions over the butt & under the tail to keep the saddle from slipping forward. 

BJ is a very mellow fellow, & usually goes along to get along..........BUT.........  he let me know in no uncertain terms that we weren't going to do THAT....!!!!  Supposedly he's been packed, but we've had him over 11 years, so it's been awhile.  I don't think they forget, but he obviously either never had one put on him, or had one & didn't want another one.  

So if he & Cisco are going to be movie stars, they will have halters, leads & that's all.  

For years the Oasis Exotic Bird Sanctuary have picked up 25 pound sacks of carrots for us when they get their produce for the birds.  It's not that much cheaper than buying them at the grocery store, but the carrots are gigantic, sometimes 3 or 4 inches across the top, which the donkeys love.

When we first started getting them I think a bag was like $ 8-9.  Of course it's been a few years ago, but this morning we paid $20.50....!!!!   YIKES!  Talk about sticker shock.  I can't imagine how much their total bill for produce has gone up, because with over 700 birds they use a lot of fresh fruit & vegetables, every day.  Glad we just get a bag of carrots.  Maybe I better start paying more attention at the grocery store, when I'm buying for us. 

I could see Noelle's iris in her eye this morning thru the cloudiness, so I hope that means it's getting better & she will be able to see out of it when this is all over.  The surrounding eye lid still looks swollen & red though, so I would imagine it's going to take a long time for it to completely heal.  John says she's getting easier to doctor.  I think that observation is because he is holding the lead that is tied around the corral panels, not because he is the one trying to get 3ccs of penicillin into her eye.....!!!!

Thursday, March 17, 2011


Talked to Linda this morning & she said the boys ate together last night & were doing great.  Buster had let her pull his tongue, so he obviously feels comfortable with her.  When I called she was watching them roaming around the big acreage, while the horses were still in their pens.  The mare is really nosy & wants to be in the middle of everything, so I'm sure she isn't pleased with being kept in a pen while those new "things" get to roam.  

Noelle's eye doesn't look much better this morning, but I did manage to get the pencillin in it.  It's still cloudy & she doesn't act like she can see out of it.  I hope that's just temporary, I would really hate for her to lose her sight in the eye.  They get their eyes poked all the time on cactus or mesquite, but we've never had one this bad before.  We offered to let her go out this morning, but she preferred to stand in her shelter. 

Wednesday, March 16, 2011


This is Buster & Chester meeting some of their new family.  Jon is talking to Buster, the horses are trying to figure out why these new "things" are getting so much attention, & Chester is    checking out Charlie, an Old English Sheepdog that REALLY REALLY wanted to get in with the donkeys. He sneaked in once, & Chester half heartedly  went after him, so I don't think it will take long for them to get use to each other.  

Buster has always really gotten upset when we trailered him.  He would sweat until the floor was wet & would rub his tail raw on the front of the trailer.  This time he did great, he's travelled with others before, but for some reason this time with Chester seemed to be OK.  

The vet came out this morning to check on Noelle's eye, since it wasn't looking any better.  I called her yesterday but she had an emergency, & couldn't get out.  The vet was willing to try to work with her without drugging her, even though we told her Noelle is difficult.  She managed to look in Noelle's eye enough to think it's probably been poked, & even syringe some pencillin in it.  We'll try that for a couple of days & see how it goes.  Tonight it didn't seem as weepy & she had it a little more open, so hopefully this will work.  I hope I can get it in her eye, she really isn't very cooperative. 

Monday, March 14, 2011

NEVER BORED.............EVER........!!!

Yesterday morning I noticed something hanging from Rusty  Mule's stomach.  I just walked over & flicked it off.  Well it happened to be a fish hook cactus spine & it's little friends, so he flinched.  I reached down to feel the area & he acted like it really was sore.  This morning it was swelled up more than it was last night.  I called the vet, (I really should put her number on speed dial, I guess) after discussing what antibiotics I had, opted for Baytril.  It might be a little overkill, but I have it & need to use it before it outdates anyway.  The problem with Baytril is, you can't give it as a shot with equines, only by mouth.  And it smells like paint thinner, I tasted it one time & that was enough. When I was giving it to Chester & Tula I mixed it with molasses & then in their beet pulp mix.  They ate it like it was good, but Rusty has a "judgemental" palate & I thought he might give me "the look".  I was really happy when he decided the molasses was worth it.  Hopefully in the morning it will be getting smaller.

This morning when Noelle came in she had a real watery eye, but it was open.  Tonight when she came in, the eye was still watering, & about half way closed.  She isn't easy to catch, put a halter on or work with.  I don't think anyone in her 24 years spent much time with her at all.  She likes men better than women, & will let John put a halter on easier than me.  Rinsed it out, looked at it & not only is it cloudy, but the white part is bright red.  Called the vet again, she can't come out in the morning, said I could use any eye ointment without steroids.  I just happened to have some, so we went back out & irritated Noelle again.  After John took the halter off, we got the brilliant idea that it would have been a good idea to leave it on, because we're going to be doing it again in the morning.  If it doesn't look a lot better we'll get the vet out as soon as she can come.  Eyes are nothing to mess with or to let go to hopefully get better.  Because they usually don't.........!!!!

Sunday, March 13, 2011


Buster has really surprised me, he & Lucy had been an "item" for years & he was never very far away from her night & day.  John let Buster into the pen while he was getting ready to move Lucy to her grave and Buster totally ignored her body.  But he was very interested in the leftover alfalfa and any crumbs of the treats I fed her thru out the day.  He has acted just fine ever since, behaving as he always does, except for going wherever Lucy would go. 

We had a couple come out yesterday to visit with the donkeys & interested in getting a donkey or two, because they like them, & also to be companions for their 2 horses.  They have a 31 year old gelding & if something happens to him, they want the mare to have other companions. 

The donkeys were loose on the property, & we found all of them together which was great.  Didn't have to ferret them out of the mesquite, one by one.  The people zeroed in on Chester & Buster.  I can't remember anyone ever showing much interest in Buster before, & it makes me wonder if things are falling into place as they were meant to be.  We did a home study today & will haul the boys to their wonderful new home with 20 acres & people that are crazy about their animals. 

Buster has been here for over 8 years, & Chester 5 & of course he had surgery on his leg & was on antibiotics for almost a year, so we have a long history with both boys.  We will miss them very much, but finding such a good home for them, is the most important thing we can do for them, & we will do it gladly. 

We are starting to see more bugs & flies as each day gets a little warmer than the day before.  Yesterday I put fly masks on Sha'ba, & Rusty & Jack, the mules & today saw a fly in Cisco's eye, so he'll get one tomorrow.  All these guys are fly magnets, we won't put masks on the others until they need them.  Once they all have to wear masks, they will have to stay on the 10 acres during the day without access to Burroland.  Makes it easier for us to find the masks that get used as toys........!!! 

The last few mornings Justin one of the minis & Quilla have been playing with a jolly ball.  This morning John said they played the whole time he was rounding everyone up.  I came out, they were still playing so I went in & got the camera.  By that time they were wearing out I guess.

Thursday, March 10, 2011


When we went out this morning Lucy was down & judging from the way the wood shavings were stirred she had been down for quite sometime & had been trying to get up.  I watched her try a couple of times & went in to call the vet.  She couldn't come until about 5 pm, so I gave Lucy some banamine & while we were doing chores we tried propping her up with a hay bale, but she was very restless.  After chores I told John that we were going to turn her over on the other side, in case that side was getting sore.  Turned her over & she managed to get on her feet & pooed, which might be why she was so restless.  She managed to stay on her feet all day.  Once she stood up John started wondering about maybe today wasn't the day.  But you could tell she wasn't comfortable trying to stand, & I wasn't going to 2nd guess what was the right decision for her.  

John is getting quicker at digging this is the 5th one he has personally buried. It only took him about 3 hours to get a spot ready for her.  I spent some time with her during the day, & everytime I went out I brought her some type of treat.  She even got "forbidden" alfalfa thru-out the day.  

The vet got here when she said she would, took one look at the way Lucy was standing & agreed with our decision.   Lucy went very quickly & peacefully, which I am always grateful for.  I'm really not very good at this & if it went a little bit wrong, I"m not sure what I would do.  

Lucy was only about 18 years old, had been used as a roping donkey until she shut down emotionally, then was used as a breeder to breed more roping donkeys, I guess.  She was going to be shot if we didn't take her.  That was 7 years ago, her feet were terrible then, hadn't been trimmed in a long time, & had been foundered at least once.  She had guttural pouch surgery the first year she was here, & we kept her feet trimmed. regularly.   She toddled along on those feet, had Buster as her boyfriend & got to do whatever she wanted until last fall, when she foundered on mesquite beans.  Although she did very well & pretty quickly was back to normal, that seemed to start the downhill slide for her.  In January she foundered again, & we thought she was getting better, but about a week ago, she really went downhill quick.  

If you love enough, you can still hear the bray after they're gone.

Rest in peace Lucy Girl...........!!!!

Tuesday, March 08, 2011


So far, so good I guess, she isn't any worse, but I wouldn't say she's any better.  Yesterday when we came home from town in the afternoon she was not in the shelter, on wood shavings where we left her.  She was out standing on the dirt & gravel.    GRRRRRRR......!!!  But by the time John went out to let the others out of their pens, she had moved over to the shavings & was laying down.  

I added 3 bags of shavings in the shelter, & she stayed in there all day today.  There doesn't seem to be very much heat in her feet, which is the scary part.  If her feet were warm, that would tell me there was possibly inflammation in there that hopefully could be treated.  But if there is no heat & she is having trouble walking, that isn't good.  

Courtney is going to be out Saturday, to hopefully trim Lucy & maybe we can get her back into the boots.  

Everyone else seems to be doing pretty good right now.  This morning I put a fly mask on Sha'ba.  His good eye was running for some reason, so I though maybe it might help to protect it from the sun & dust.  We've had a lot of wind the last couple of days, stirring up the dust.  When I took it off tonight the eye was dry, so I'll probably keep putting it on as long as we've got the "stinkin" wind.  

Tonight when it was time for them to come in, they were over in Burroland.  Instead of waiting, John went to get them.  They were way over in the far corner.  He said when they saw him they took off for this side at a run.  Of course he was following at a more sedate pace.  He said about the time he got to the open gate,  they were in the process of coming thru the gate headed back over to Burroland.  When they do stuff like this, we can't figure out if they are trying to entertain us or entertain themselves.  It's not like they don't know the drill, but every once in awhile, they like to show their independence I guess. 

Sunday, March 06, 2011

Lucy's front feet are really starting to worry me.  For about the last week she has really had trouble walking.  The problem with Pedal Osteitis is once they have it, the usual progression is downhill.  Lucy has been here over 7 years & her feet had been neglected for a long time then.  We have never had her x-rayed, but she has been trimmed on a regular basis, & fed a low starch & sugar diet, except for what "snacks" are available on the 30 acres.  

Last fall she ate too many mesquite beans & had a bout of founder, but really recovered pretty quick.  That's when we started putting her in boots, which she seemed to appreciate.  In January both she & Jenny foundered, neither one of them were bad, they just walked slowly & like they were walking on broken glass.  Jenny came out of it quick, & is now walking better than she has for months.

Lucy has continued to get worse, & is now standing with her hind feet parked under her body, to take as much weight off her front feet as possible. She is standing " over " her knees, & when she does move she lunges rather than walk.  I hope this is just a bad time for her, but she has such a long history of bad feet & poor hoof wall, I'm afraid she doesn't have enough working bone & lamina left in her feet to let her be comfortable.  We will do whatever is available to help her as long as she has a chance for quality of life.  But we will not let her suffer.  She is Buster's security blanket, and I don't even want to think how he will react without his Lucy girl, if that is what happens.. 

Thursday, March 03, 2011

ODD COUPLE.........!!!


The last couple of  days I've noticed an interesting couple.  Noelle is hanging with Jack the mule, & Rusty the mule is off doing his thing somewhere else.  I don't know if Jack knows or even cares that she is there, but it seems to work for her.  John said usually when he comes out in the morning the 3 of them are under the big tree between the house & the feed room, but during the day it's just Noelle & Jack.  Wonder how long this will last?  

Had 2 tours today, one was a group of Seniors from Phoenix.  I think everyone had a good time, although the donkeys thought we'd lost our minds since they had to stay in their pens until the people got here.  It sure doesn't take them long to figure out what's going on once the people show up though.  Daisy was particularly "cute" today.  She has learned to stick her nose thru the corral panels & beg in a way that really works for getting the people to let loose of the treats.  

I get to take Wookie kitty into the vet in the morning to get her stitches out.  She looks great, no redness or swelling.  I just hope she doesn't get in anymore trouble, wish we could find a good indoor home for her. 

Wednesday, March 02, 2011


 This is Jenny, she seems to be the ring leader in "boy" chasing.  At least the boys, mainly Chester, BlackJack, Quilla, Buster, little Justin, & slow gimpy Pepper are trailing after her wherever she goes.  Lynn seems to be the organizer, at least she tries to be in charge of who is doing what.  Unfortunately none of them pay any attention to her, no matter how much she runs around yelling.  Tula is usually the lead jenny & they all still follow her into her pen, but she doesn't seem to be the "party" girl right now.  Jenny always indoctrinates all the  boys when they come in, big ,little, old , young, she doesn't care.  We have a new guy coming in a week or so, I hope she doesn't wear herself out before he gets here.  She is really walking much better than she has for awhile.  

Lucy still isn't walking very good.  I've been checking her feet twice a day with the Ray-tek...........  So far her front feet temperatures are within 10 degrees of Buster's.  I figure they are usually in the same area, although the last couple of days he's been chasing after Jenny with the other boys.  I'm still giving her traumeel, maybe it's helping, I hope so.  I have some devil's claw powder coming so I'll probably try it in a couple of days, when I run out of the traumeel.  Right now her front feet are getting pretty long, so I'll not try to put boots on her until she's trimmed again. 

Sha'ba only had his microfiber blanket on last night, & hopefully it won't get cold enough again for his heavy blanket.  It's going to have to be washed before I put it away.  I haven't quite decided how to wash it.  It needs to be done in a washing machine.............BUT...... although I can take one set of straps off, the ones that go under his belly are sewn on.  I washed Pepper's blanket a couple of years ago, & the buckles ripped holes in the lining.  In fact I had to buy him a new blanket.  Anyone have any brilliant ideas?