Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Looks like a horse. Eats like a pig!

Since I've been home and not working, I've been feeding Kaci little meals throughout the day, trying to get the weight on him. Here's his program:

7:30 pm - 3 pounds of Purina Strategy, 2 flakes alfalfa hay, 1 flake Teff hay (to munch on through the day)

9:30 - 1 flake alfalfa hay

12:00 - 3 pounds Purina Strategy

2:30 - 3 pounds alfalfa pellets, followed by 3 pounds of Strategy once he's done

5:00 - 2 flakes alfalfa hay, 1 flake Teff hay

So I'm sure we'll agree that Kaci is being fed consistently, in ample quantities, and that the only time he should actually "feel" hungry is in the morning. Agreed?

So I went out a little early and gave Poor Lil Starving Man his alfalfa pellets, then grabbed the stripping comb and started through the herd, stripping the hair off since they are shedding. I started with Shyanna and The Boys, then came back to the barn to start through.

As I approached Jazzy's pen, I heard this God-Awful hacking cough and looked up to see Kaci standing with his head down and green slime hanging from his mouth and nose!
I thought, "Great! The big dork is going to suffocate right here and there's nothing I can do to help!"

I called the vet and talked to her and she said that when horses choke, it's usually just balled up in their esophagus and he'd probably be fine IF I could see that he was breathing.

I checked. Yep! Still breathing.

She said to give him an hour and if he was still having problems, to call her back.

So, to prevent this from happening again, I'm going to switch Kaci and Jazzy. The grain tub where Kaci is now is next to the wall shared with Angel, who of course begs as if he's going to share. As such, he's bolting his food to prevent her from helping herself, even though her nose is much too fat to fit through the bars. The grain tub in where Jazzy is now is on an outside wall of the barn and he'll have his back to the other horses.

I'm also going to soak the pellets before giving them to Kaci, AND give him less, OR pull his flake of hay apart and disperse the pellets in the hay. I've also heard that putting a BIG rock in the grain tub will discourage them from bolting their food.

********* UPDATE ***************

When I went to put Kaci's blanket on, he was having problems again. Earlier, he'd seemed fine - no snot, no coughing. I called the vet and she thought it was best that she come help him out. She gave him a mild sedative, then ran a tube up his nose and down his esophagus. The blockage was just before his stomach. Luckily, it was hay pellets. We put in some water, drew it out, put it in, drained the tube, and started over. After 10 minutes of really working, and an hour total time, the tube pushed through into Kaci's stomach. His muzzle ended up covered with snot and blood, but he immediately showed interest in water and hay. (I took the hay away for the evening.)

*soak the pellets* *soak the pellets* *soak the pellets* *soak the pellets*

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In other news, a gal who's name I know decided to take her one year old son out to the pasture to get some pics of his "first horse ride". One of the other mares in the pasture bumped the "picture mare", who then "goosed" forward. Guess where the baby ended up.

YEP! Right underneath the horse. So many people were all concerned and rightly so, praying for the baby to be alright. (Which, thankfully, he was)

I had to leave the site (online) because the only thing I could think of was:


The horse wasn't saddled. They were in "with the herd". She didn't have anyone else (read: ADULT) with her to hold the baby or grab him if something happened. And so many other things that I can think of that she did or didn't do. It was just epic stupidity that could have ended very very badly.


Karla said...

Glad to hear your vet got the blockage out. How scary.

Also Re the baby... I cann't fathom putting my one year old son on a horse, bareback, in the pasture with other horses, without an adult RIGHT there HOLDING him etc... Glad the little one is ok, hope all the "adults" involved learned something.

I also want to thank you. A little while back you posted a pic of Bullwinkles legs after he had got them caught in the fence. It saved me from having a heart attack yesterday when I went out to see my mare (who is out for training-the first time I've ever sent out a horse) and found a similar (tho much smaller) injury. The first thing I thought of was Bullwinkle and it instantly calmed me down. I'll be giving you an honorable mention on my blog today along with some pics of her boo-boo.

How are his legs healing btw?


fuglyhorseoftheday said...

That story about the baby is EXACTLY WHY I put those pics on my blog. So you're humiliated. Maybe you'll learn from it or someone else will and it is better than a DEAD child!