Friday, June 24, 2011

VACATION TIME............!!!!

I will be out of touch until after the 2nd of July.  We leave in the morning & it seems the more I look around the more stuff needs to be done before we leave.  None of it really matters as long as the animals are taken care of, & I know they will be in good hands.  

I just wish Sha'ba & his habronema lesions on his sheath were in better condition.  Unfortunately this is the worst time of year the flies are out in force & because it's dry they go for any moisture they can find.  If it happens to be a sore I guess that is a bonus....!!!!  But as long as there is zinc oxide on the area as a barrier to keep the flies from landing on his sheath, he will be OK.  When I get back I can deal with the ones that are already there.  

Everyone else seems to be doing OK, although I'm sure they are getting pretty tired of having to shake their heads & stomp their feet constantly because of the flies.  I'm not sure but I think flies have developed a taste for fly spray, it certainly doesn't deter them for very long.  

This morning when we were cleaning pens, I saw Jenny lay down to roll in her favorite dusting place.  Unfortunately she was too close to a prickly pear & rolled right in to it.  What a mess that was........!!!   She stood real still & let me pick out all the spines I could, but there were still the little tiny hair-like ones.  I used the Furminator & it didn't take long for the "gathering" to begin.  They all need to be brushed, but that is one thing that gets left out around here unfortunately.  Daisy & Frijolita showed up front & center waiting their turn.  So I gave each one a 30 second brushing, not much but as least they didn't try to follow me in the feed room when I got done.  

I hope by the time we get back, it will have cooled off some.  It would be nice to get some rain, but we're so far behind now, I don't know if we'll ever get caught up or not. 

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

There's some good news coming from the fire area, some people & their animals are getting to go home.  I wish everyone will have a home to go to, but something like 60 homes have been burned, so going back is going to be a big disappointment for those folks.  

A friend had gotten in touch with Arbico to see if they could donate some of the fly predator wasps to at least the 2 largest holding areas for animals, the Sierra Vista Riding Club & the fairgrounds at Sonoita.  She asked if I'd get in touch with them also, the theory being, the more people get in touch with them, the more apt they are to help.  So I e-mailed them yesterday.  

Next thing I know I get an e-mail back, wanting to know where I was, how many animals & RV's we had at our place, & telling me when they would hand deliver the wasps & release them on the property.  WOW they really stepped up to the plate quickly.  I wrote them back & told them I was out of the area, but there was definitely a need in those 2 areas, so hopefully they will take LOTS of wasps down there to help with so many animals being in one area. 

Also heard from a woman yesterday that was involved in getting a donkey out of the area & to safety.  She was trying to find a trimmer to trim his nasty feet

She said the people where he was wouldn't even admit that he was theirs, they said they'd just open the gate & he could leave if he needed to.  The people that were gathering up some other animals, just added him to the mix & it sounds like they are already in love.  I guess he's being a good ambassador for donkeys......!!!  I gave her a name & haven't heard back so hopefully they can get his feet done.  

One tiny little problem, he is an intact jack, so we  also discussed what to do next once his feet are trimmed.

She seemed to think the owner will not want him back, but I told her to keep track of the costs involved, just in case. 

Yesterday afternoon when John went out to do round-up, he found a golf ball from the San Pedro Golf Course "soaking" in the Ritchie automatic waterer.  The ravens love to soak bread from the chicken pen in the waterer & leave it there.  I guess they've been to the golf course & thought they found an egg or something.  Once they figured out it wasn't going to "soften" they just left it there. 

I guess we're about ready to go on our week long vacation, Saturday morning.  Trained the last of the people that are going to take care of the animals this morning.  So all we have left to do, is get our bags packed & hit the trail.  And of course not worry......!!!!!  LOL

Monday, June 20, 2011



I got a call from a woman in the area a few days ago, asking about the grant  Kathy at Longhopes Donkey Shelter in Colorado has available to help with gelding costs for rescued donkeys.  

It took us a few days to finally connect, but I found out this morning that she has PeeWee from the mammoth rescue........!!!!!
It seems she was out at the Sierra Vista Riding Club grounds that is one of the places, displaced animals are going.  They have a lot of ground, in fact Rusty said it's looking like a big RV park out there.  A lot of the people that brought their animals out there to safety have also parked their RV's for the duration to have a place to live.  

Rusty said she was walking around & noticed a bunch of long ears, & was drawn to one of them a great big mammoth donkey.  She went over & petted on him awhile, & then asked who owned him.  The guy she asked said he was the owner.  She asked if he was for sale & was told he was promised to a rescue up by Kingman, in fact he was planning on hauling him the next day.  That is how I found out that Tom had indeed had to evacuate. 

So a few phones calls back & forth, between Last Straw Horse Rescue & Rusty, & she was now PeeWee's aka Jeremiah's new Mom.........!!!  Just talking to her this morning this is going to be a great home for him, she spent about 3 hours working with him to do some trimming on his feet.  He's such a "big mush" if she makes over him & messes with him a lot, he'll just be a big pocket donkey, a REAL big one.......!!! 

There are at least 2 large holding areas, the riding club & also at the fairgrounds in Sonoita.  They have everything from chickens, & rabbits to cows & pigs.  Lots of great people donating their  time & effort to help where they can.  Patti is headed down to Sonoita with a load of hay this morning.  As I understand it a lot of the horses are coming in without fly masks, halters or leads.  Most of the local feed stores are taking orders for supplies, & then people are coming around & picking them up.  I hope this doesn't go on for much longer, or the feed stores will deplete their inventory especially in the Sierra Vista area.  One of the feed stores down there, Jem's Feed Store is very close if not in the evacuation area, so not sure how much help they can be. 

If anyone would like to donate - is collecting donations for buy feed & supplies.  Mark your donation so they know it's for the fire emergency.  Also - .  They had 160 acres of pasture burn up last week, a one of their horses is still being treated for burns.  They've also opened up, as a place for people to bring their horses, but of course they have no resources since their pasture burned up.  

I heard this morning that - has been evacuated, don't know that for sure, but they certainly are in the middle of where the action is.  I would imagine some of their volunteers are taking care of their horses until this is over. 

Sunday, June 19, 2011


The fires are really starting to freak out this part of Arizona.  So far they are about 50 miles south of us, but areas of Sierra Vista have gotten pre-evacuation notices, which is scary with all the subdivisions & infra-structure they have down there.  So far 3000 homes have been evacuated & about 12000 people have been displaced.  That doesn't even begin to tell the story of animals & trying to get them taken care of under horrible conditions.  I heard of one area that had over 240 horses & were expecting another 150 before the day was over.  Just the logistics of feeding & caring for that many animals that are already stressed is a daunting task.  There are a lot of volunteers that are helping & collecting supplies all over Tucson & Cochise County. 

I saw a plea on the internet from some people that had to turn their 3 horses loose, when they left.  They had loaned their trailer to a friend that was closer to the fire to move his horses.  When he tried to get back into their area the authorities wouldn't let him go in, so they had to leave their horses.  I hope they find them & they are OK.
Just heard the new fire on Ft. Huachuca was a backfire they set that got away from them.  You know I would really be unhappy if my home was destroyed by a fire set by authorities that obviously needed to know more than they did. 

We went to the races last night & some friends were there.  They were evacuated a few days ago, & are staying in a motel.  All of the motels are filled to capacity.  They are hoping they can get back into their home by Monday, I hope so.

Trained another person this morning that will take care of the donkeys while we're gone.  I think that makes 6 trained & 2 to go, when they get back next week.  They all seem to think it's not going to be a problem, sure hope they are right.......!!! We'll be hitting the road, Saturday the 25th & should be back Saturday the 2nd of July.  John is going to hook one of the vans to the stock trailer.  He had planned on doing that anyway in case they needed to haul someone to the vet.  But with the fire situation the way it is, I hope they don't need it for something else.  Of course they have over 700 exotic birds to worry about if the fires did get this far north.  Our son lives in NW Tucson, wonder how he'd like to have a bunch of donkeys & a couple of mules come to visit for a few days?  LOL  Wonder how their horses, Sonny & Sassy would like the "visitors"?  Probably not much. 

Thursday, June 16, 2011

FIFTY YEARS LATER.........!!!!

Do they even do studio set-ups like this anymore? 

Well it's been quite an adventure so far.  I'm not sure John knew what he was getting himself in to, but according to him, he's still having fun.  Thanks to the Air Force we've seen a lot of the world, & got to live in many interesting places.  I can't imagine doing anything different........well maybe winning the lottery, but not sure that would have made much difference in our lives.  

It certainly doesn't seem like 50 years has passed, of course at the time, I don't think we could even envision 50 years, we were pretty young, & didn't have a clue about what direction our lives would take. 

Right now the fires in Arizona are really causing havoc with people's lives.  We've gotten in touch with all the people we know in the fire areas & let them know if they need to move their animals, we have a trailer, & the animals can stay here if need be.  Of course we're suppose to leave on our week long vacation the 25th & the staff from the Oasis Exotic Bird Sanctuary will be taking care of our animals.  The way the fire is moving, I'm sure we will know what's happening in the next day or two.  

We're going up to the Grand Canyon & do something I've always wanted to do, white water rafting.  Not sure it's John's thing, but he's willing to go along.  (the story of his life, poor guy, sure am glad he still thinks he's having fun...!!) When we get thru they will fly us out of the canyon in a helicopter.  That should be interesting, neither of us has ever flown in a helicopter before.  Then we're going to head up to Bennett, Colorado, to visit with Kathy & Alan at Longhopes Donkey Shelter.  Kathy came down here a few years ago, & I want to see how a "real" rescue operates.  She is a great person & a whiz at finding homes for her donkeys.  Over the years she has something like a 90% adoption rate.  Then we'll head back down this way & back home, to see how our "fur" kids are doing.  I know they will do just fine, & they will be in great hands with the staff from the Oasis, but we're both going to be like first time parents.  This will be the first time we've both been gone overnight in 10 years, I just hope we can let go & have a good time.  I'm sure once we get on the road we'll be fine.   

THEY ALL HAVE A HOME.................!!! YIPPEE!

Tom, bless his heart has put the word out there & made it happen.  Of course taking on 6 extra unhandled animals probably helped him work on finding them good homes, as soon as possible.  LOL

#1 aka PeeWee is going to become a mascot for Last Straw Horse Rescue, in Golden Valley, AZ  He is just a big overgrown baby, Tom said he was even at the bottom of the pecking order, even though he towered over the others.  

# 2 is going to get his prayers answered, he's going to be turned out on 110 acres with a bunch of mares to make little baby mules.  Not sure if he'll know what to do with mares, but I'm sure he'll figure it out.

#3&4 the matching brothers are going to be trained as a team.  The guy wants to get them ready to be in the Tucson Rodeo Parade next year.  I would imagine if they make it, the announcers will think they are mules.  For some reason people seem to think if they are big they are mules.  I have a picture of a little mule with a saddle on his back, & he is just over knee high to the guy that is standing with him.  People don't realize they come in all sizes.

 Can't you just imagine what is going thru the horse's mind?

#5 Tom is going to keep him for riding & packing.  He made quite an impression on Tom, & a couple of times in this "dance" Tom had him going to a new home.  But the last I heard, he's back in Tom's "string".  

#6 aka Jasmine is going to a woman up by Wittman, that use to live close to Benson & had been out here to visit with our donkeys.  At that time she only had 1 donkey she had trained to pull a cart.  Since she moved she's got a trained mule, & plans on having the same trainer work with Jasmine.  

The fires in the area are really causing a lot of problems for a lot of people & animals.  We have offered a place to bring donkeys if needed.  I'd like to hope it won't be needed, but it seems like the fires just keep growing.  We've only had smoke a couple of days, but today is very windy here, & probably a lot of other places too that don't need it. 

Pepper scared me to death last night at feeding time.  We had a couple of the people here training for taking care of the donkeys while we're gone.  I looked over & Pepper was standing in Jenny's pen, which is right next to his pen.  I looked away for less than 30 seconds, looked back & he's on the ground.  Not normal behavior, especially at that time of day.  I walked over to him & he was breathing heavier than I would like.  He raised his head up but acted like it was heavy.  I checked his gums & they were purple.  I yelled to the girls that they might get to see an emergency, which of course freaked them out.  I yelled for John & by the time he got down from the garage, Pepper was on his feet & his gums were pink.  I have no idea what happened, wonder if he had a slight heart attack or something?  He was ready for his supper & tried to run his gate when they brought in his mush.  Maybe a TIA, one of those mini strokes they keep warning us about.  Whatever it was it seemed to just pass on thru, with no residual repercussions.  He's over 35 & about as fragile as he can be.  But doesn't seem to know it or care, he likes to be where the action is.  We try to protect him from the other donkeys, but he doesn't make it easy......!!!  Old Buzzard.......!!!!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

ANOTHER PRETTY BOY...........!!!

 THANKS TOM.............!!!
 # 5 got some more foot trimming today & also got to wear a saddle.  Tom said he "preferred" to have his feet trimmed, laying on the ground......!!!  Actually I think he probably thought if he threw himself on the ground, Tom would give up...........that didn't happen, he got his pedicure anyway........!!!  I don't think Tom has probably lost one of these power struggles in a long time, if he ever lost one..........!!! LOL

Tom is starting to get some interest in some of them, # 1 & 2, the 2 roans, & the jenny # 6.  So far no one has asked about the 2 brothers, # 3 & 4.  Tom thinks they are brothers, they look just exactly alike, if anyone wanted a matched team, they'd be perfect.  They are about 3 inches too short to be mammoths, which means they are large standards & are actually pretty good size.  Tom's talking about keeping # 5,  at least for awhile.  Actually they all are pretty nice donkeys & really clean up nice. 

Monday, June 13, 2011

Well I found out what happens if I don't update the blog for a few days.  I get phone calls.........!!! (G)  

The last few days have been a blur.  Can't even tell you what we've been doing, but we've been keeping busy at it...........!!!  

Tom has been keeping us apprised of what's going on with the 6 mammoths.  They haven't been handled, but the owner was obviously kind to them, they like attention & readily come up to you to be fed treats or even just petted.

Remember the picture of the one that was so scared when we were trying to load him, that his ears were just hanging?  This is a picture Tom took of him, after trimming his front feet, a little grooming, & about 5 minutes to get the saddle on him.  He really is a special boy I think, he would make someone a great family donkey.  

Tom has done quite a bit of hoof trimming.  The jenny was pretty good he said.  Today he trimmed # 5 the youngest jack, & although he managed to get the front hooves trimmed, it wasn't an easy job from what he said.  

 Before the trimming began

 That's a nasty looking foot.....

What a difference a little trimming, OK in this case a LOT of trimming can make......!!!

That has got to be more comfortable.......!!!!

Thanks Tom for taking the time to take pictures as you go along, it really shows how out of control feet can get if they aren't trimmed on a regular basis.  Or in this case probably not trimmed at all, at least for a long, long time.............!!!!  

As a lot of you know, Arizona is having a lot of fires right now.  Today I heard about one of the horse rescues in SE Arizona that literally got burned out.  All 160 acres of their pasture has been completely burned out.  And in the process one of their horse got burned pretty bad.  Now they are going to have to buy hay, which they hadn't planned on doing.  If anyone out there has a couple of extra bucks they could part with, I'm sure Horse'n Around Rescue at Hereford, AZ would appreciate it.  Right now hay in this area is selling for about $17 a 3 string 100 pound bale, & they have around 50 animals.  That's a horrible shock for a rescue that is use to pasturing their animals.

The plans for our trip the end of June are starting to fall into place.  Three of the people that will be taking care of the animals have already done their "training".  Two more are training this Wednesday.  That leaves 3 more to be trained before we leave.  That doesn't even count Michelle that will be staying in the house & taking care of the cat.  Gee, who knew it would take so many people to replace us........!!!! LOL  I'll call the 2 local vets & let them know they might be getting a call while we're gone, if something unforeseen happens.  I don't anticipate any problems but with animals you never know.  

Gus has been doing real good, & I thought about taking his boots off for awhile this morning.  I had said I was going to keep him in the boots until he grew out new hoof growth at least half way down his feet.  So I decided to stick with my original plan.  He doesn't mind the boots, they haven't rubbed on his legs, so there really isn't any reason to take them off.  Except when I take them off every morning to dump the dirt & gravel out of them, he lays his head on my back.  Do you know how heavy a donkey head can be?  Pretty heavy.  His Mom says he's always done that.  I think her back must be in better shape than mine.........!!!! LOL

Friday, June 10, 2011

MAMMOTH MOVING DAY..............!!!!

Yesterday was the day..........!!  We met Tom down at the acreage the mammoths were on, & also a couple of neighbors came over to help.  They had been feeding the donkeys, & were a lot of help.

That is a lot of donkey, folks, when you're use to seeing little burros even big burros...............!!!!  Although our Jenny girl is a mammoth, she is just barely an inch over the height standard of 54 inches.  

This is Tom leading "PeeWee" down to the end where the trailer was parked.  Tom isn't very tall, but next to PeeWee he looks pretty little.  We were really surprised at how well they behaved.  We don't know if they had ever even had a halter on, let alone been led.  They were confused & not sure of what we wanted them to do, but the 1st four loaded pretty good.  

The last two not so good, they took about 2 hours, of pushing, pulling, begging, pleading, but never once kicked or tried to run us over.  

This guy was the most scared, he shook almost the whole time it took to finally get him in the trailer with the other three already loaded.  The set of his ears is "I don't know what's going on & I'm scared", poor boy. 

This was the last hold-out it took about 3 1/2 hours total to get them loaded.  The five jacks loaded in Tom's trailer, & we took Jasmine the jenny in our trailer.  

It was starting to get dark by the time we got to Tom's house & since we were already going to be REALLY" late feeding we hung around to watch them unload.  They unloaded real well for Tom, he sure seems to have a gift at working with them. 

He tied them all up as he took them out of the trailer, & once they were all out, he started untying them, & letting them loose in a large pen.  It didn't take long to find out which one was the meanie.  Actually he was after the youngest one for some reason, Tom thinks he's  just a baby only about 2 years old. The older one was after him with a vengeance & it took a few minutes to get the younger one out of that pen.  We were afraid he was going to really get hurt, as vicious as the other one was.  The other four seemed to get along OK together, so not sure what that was all about. 

This is Jasmine with a couple of Tom's mules,  they seemed to think she was pretty cute.  She didn't seem to think much of them, except to send a couple of nasty kicks their way.  That seemed to make her even more interesting....!!!!!!  Typical boys I guess.......!!!!

Got home about 9:30 PM, went out to feed & of course there wasn't a donkey in sight, not even Sha'ba.  Rang the bell & they started wandering in, slowly.  Everyone showed up except Jack the mule.  Went ahead & fed everyone else, & John went over to Burroland with his flashlight.  After what happened with Noelle this spring, we really get anxious when someone doesn't show up.  Pretty soon I saw John's flashlight coming back, came out of the feed room to ask him if he found Jack.  He had found him over in a corner way on the other side of the 20 acres, just standing there.  First thing John took his fly mask off, gave him a treat, & started walking back to the 10 acres where the pens are.  He said Jack got right up behind him, so we think he couldn't see well enough with the fly mask on to walk around.  He also doesn't hear very well, so the others might have got away from him, before he knew it.  He usually follows Rusty the other mule, so it was scary when he didn't show up with Rusty.  Whew......!!!!!  We stayed up until after 1am, so they would have time to finish eating.  Boy morning came early this morning...................!!!!  LOL 

Look what we saw in the back yard this morning...........!!!!

Last summer John's cousin Gene & his wife Bitsy worked like dogs in our backyard trying to make it look good.  When they left it looked great, & we kept it up pretty good, until the 3 degree temperatures we had this winter.  Killed just about everything they planted except this Night Blooming Cerise, not sure how it's spelled.  

We had been watching the plant over in Burroland for a couple of years & tried to protect it so the donkeys wouldn't stomp it.  So Gene & John went over there, dug it up & transplanted it in the back yard.  This bloom is the result, guess it didn't mind getting moved to a safer place.  They have such pretty blooms, but you have to catch them pretty soon after sunrise, or they just droop into a blob of nothing.  Glad we noticed it. 

Wednesday, June 08, 2011


Had visitors from Gus' past today.  Sheryl was instrumental in getting Gus out of a bad living situation & Hope is a volunteer at the rescue where he went for awhile until he was adopted by his present owner.  

I guess he made quite an impression on a lot of the volunteers at the rescue, & they wanted to come & visit with him.  On the way here they picked up a little kitten in the middle of the road, that had probably been hit.  You might know the local vet is out of town.  We couldn't find anything really wrong but he seemed to be a little lethargic, so they plan on taking him to a vet up in Phoenix when they get back.  

They also brought goodies, like carrots, apples, graham crackers for everyone...........!!!   YUM!  

Gus is quite a ham when it comes to company.  He posed & stood so they could make over him & really enjoyed all the attention.  In fact when they went to visit with the other donkeys in their pens, he watched them as long as he could.  Guess he wanted to make sure they would come back to see him.  After they visited with the others, they groomed on Gus for quite awhile.  I was getting worried, if he would have any hair left.......!!! (G)  Then he walked with us down to his favorite dusting hole, so they could see it.  When he found out they weren't carrying any treats, he showed them how he eats "wild food" i.e. mesquite leaves.  

I think a good time was had by all, they said they might even come back.  It's about a 3 hour drive, so it would be quite a drive, but we've driven farther to do something less interesting, so they may make it back.

Tomorrow is mammoth moving day, & everything seems to be in place.  Tom is going to haul the 5 big boys, & we'll haul the jenny.  I plan on taking pictures, hopefully I'll have a chance.  Stay tuned........!!!!!

Monday, June 06, 2011


Quilla & BlackJack entertaining new friends

A friend of mine has a birthday party for herself every year.  What makes it unique is, she always has everyone bring presents for a horse charity/rescue/sanctuary etc, rather than bring presents for her. 

We were the recipients this year.  Really had a great time, lots of good food, & got a chance to visit with friends I hadn't seen in a long time & meet some nice people I hadn't known before.  It's a shame we get so involved in life, that there's no time to relax & just enjoy "visiting" on a regular basis.  Everyone brought goodies for the donkeys, fly spray, buckets, bag balm, even a neat poo rake.  John tried it this morning & pronounced it really nice.  Patti said she had one & loves it.  Someone even brought a salt block, those suckers are HEAVY......!!!  

We even took 2 donkeys as "objects of interest", since everyone else were horse  people.  I had decided that BlackJack & Quilla would be good candidates as show & tell "items".  I went to round Quilla up in the morning, put a halter on him & started to lead him up to the pen area.  Usually he's pretty good about leading, but for some reason, he just couldn't leave Tula's side.  He jerked away from me, & took of running.  Of course if one runs they all run, so it was like stampede of silly donkeys.  It was hot & sunny & chasing them around wasn't really what I had planned for the morning.  Unfortunately Quilla didn't get THAT memo.  I followed them around for probably half an hour before John noticed & ask if I needed his help.........!!!! YES!  Although it didn't make too much difference.  Tula finally got tired of having to move & went in her pen.  Once she was out of the way, Quilla went in one of the pens & we had him.  

I had planned on washing him, since he's had fly spray on him & then rolled in the dirt.  Makes for a rather filthy looking white donkey.  Instead he got a "sitz" bath of sorts, I hit the worse looking places & hoped they thought the other spots were his.  He does have some spots but his are gray, not dirty brown.  Catching BlackJack was no problem...............time to load...........Quilla went in like a good boy, BlackJack decided he didn't want to.  The last time we hauled BlackJack he hopped in like a trooper.  It's almost like they are messing with my mind, & believe me some days there isn't much there to mess with........!!! (G)  Finally used a butt strap on him, after he kicked back to show his displeasure.  Of course then I showed my displeasure, so by the time he was loaded, we weren't speaking to each other.........!!! LOL 

Patti had a nice pen set up with fresh water, & lots of wild food growing in the pen, so they had a great time.  People went over,  petted them & fed them timothy pellets we brought with us, so they had a fun afternoon too.  

When it was time to leave, we loaded Quilla first, & he hopped right in.  BlackJack, no hopping, not even any interest at anything except pulling back on the lead, & kicking to show his displeasure.  BJ has never kicked before I really don't know what his problem was.  I was hoping they'd show all the horsey people how well behaved donkeys can be.........well that went out the window I guess.  He finally hopped in like it was his idea, but not before he had shown everyone what an "ass" he could be.  

Got home a couple of hours after normal feeding time to a crowd of "anxious" donkeys & mules.  This is the group, that on any given day, takes their own sweet time coming in to eat.  Obviously we are operating under different standards depending on who is late...........!!! 

Saturday, June 04, 2011

Wookie one of the kittens we had "fixed" in January, just left for her new home.  I put an ad up at the vet clinic for her & the 2 boys, Julius & Snooky.  Hopefully someone will want the boys too, they love to play with each other & hang out together, so it would be nice if someone wanted both of them. 

When the woman called, we said we'd try to get them into the spa room so she could see them.  They hadn't been in the spa room, since we let them out after they got healed, so I didn't know if they would go in or not.  No problem, they came right in & started looking around to see if it was still theirs, I guess. 

Wookie was a little stand offish much more so than she use to be.  But she has been hanging out with her Mom, Hobo & of course Hobo is feral & plans on staying that way.  I guess she told Wookie to stay away from those mean, nasty people.  I'm sure once she gets settled in she'll warm up to the family.  They have 3 boys, so that should be interesting.

Not much going on around here, although the fly season is picking up pretty quick.  I can't imagine what it would be like, if we didn't use the traps & predators.  You can tell which donkeys aren't real healthy, the flies are attracted to them like a magnet, Sha'ba, Cisco, Quilla, Jenny all have a problem. BlackJack doesn't even need a fly mask, flies don't like him much. 

This morning when John went out to "start the dance" as we say, they were all over by the mini pen.  That is where the sun gets warm first, & believe me they know it.  Even though it was only in the 50's last night, they obviously wanted to be where it was warm.  I've read that equines prefer temperatures between 40-80 degrees.   Usually Gus is in his pen at feeding time, he seems to have a built in clock.  But this morning he was hanging out with the rest of them in the sun.  Rather than go ahead & get in his pen, he waited until John had time to escort him.  If he isn't in his pen, he always waits for us to take him there, not sure what makes the difference.  But he's done it enough that you can tell that's the way it's suppose to be done, from his point of view..........!!!  If I've learned nothing else over the years, the one thing I have learned is, human logic & donkey logic have absolutely nothing in common.......!!! (G) 

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Well it looks like the mammoths, all six of them are going to the same place.  A local man that has been around donkeys & mules all his life, is willing to train them & find good homes for them.  He has a wonderful set-up, arena, round pen & pens to separate them.  All in all I don't think we could have found a better solution for them.  With some training they will be much more adoptable & will have a better opportunity to go into a good home & stay there.  Thank  you Tom, for being willing to get involved.  We'll help move them next week, hopefully that will go smoothly.

I guess summer is here & fly season is in full swing, although we are still getting cool nights.  Sha'ba & I are fighting the battle of the habronema, he has 2 pockets of the little monsters on his sheath.  I find as many as I can twice a day, dig them out,  & cover the area with ivermectin to kill the rest of them if possible.  Once they get started we have to deal with it until next winter.  Poor little guy, although he doesn't seem to mind all this attention, it has to be sore.  

Gus is still doing good with his feet.  He seems to have recuperated from the trim last week, & is back to moving around at will.  I've thought about taking the boots off & see how he does, I'm still thinking, don't want to set him back if I can help it.

Everyone else seems to be doing good.  Of course everyone is wearing fly masks now, I'm having to put sunscreen on Quilla & Gus' front legs where there is no hair.  There was an interesting article in Equus magazine last month about skin problems caused by sun sensitivity.  It wasn't exactly like what the boys have, but close enough to make me read it a couple of times & try to digest what I was reading.  They have both been overweight, & when Quilla was snake bit last fall they did a sonogram on his liver & said it was enlarged & not shaped right, possibly from fatty liver disease.  The liver seems to be involved in photosensitivity if a couple of the enzymes are tested & elevated.  One of the causes can be from eating certain plants that cause a buildup of chlorophyll in their system that overloads the liver.  If the liver can't metabolize it 

 From 2009, when Quilla came here, hasn't been this bad since, thank goodness...!!!

quickly enough & the chlorophyll ends up in the blood stream they can get sensitive to the sun.  The skin breaks open & bleeds which of course attracts flies & it's a vicious circle.  Alfalfa hay seems to be one of the plants than can cause it.  We don't feed alfalfa, but I know Quilla was fed alfalfa for years.  Gus has only eaten grass hay for the last few years, but we don't know what he ate before then.  Unfortunately if the plants aren't removed from their diet when the problem first starts, they will be sensitive for life.