Thursday, April 16, 2009

Rosie update

Rosie's front teeth started coming in right on time last week. She is trying harder at grazing and sharing her mom's grain. And I've had to discourage mutual grooming when I'm scratching her to avoid any biting habits because she's starting to catch my shirt in her teeth! I've been allowing them to graze in the back yard most evenings, but it's a challenge since they have to share the yard with the dogs. TJ the old lab mix doesn't even notice, Lucy the Dachshund watches and follows with interest, but Alex the greyhound with the broken leg thinks it's a great game when Rosie runs around. It's the craziest sight seeing the greyhound running on 3 legs chasing the filly around the yard with me bellowing at Alex trying to make him stop. It's not easy to make a chasing greyhound stop, even one on 3 legs. So far I don't think he has scared Rosie, but I'm trying to avoid that completely. There's few things worse than a horse who's scared of dogs. Alex just thinks it's a great game, and Rosie is not much bigger than him, so apparently it's even more fun with someone just your size. Hopefully this weekend the new pasture's fence will be complete, and I can move Tucker and Spartan over there with the other horses to give Gem and Rosie some grazing space besides the back yard.

I think I've produced an Indian Shuffler! I thought I saw it right after Rosie was born, but I wrote it off as learning to walk. When she figured out cantering, it seemed to be all she did. But I've seen it a few more times now, a funny amble between a walk and a trot. Her dad is Ulrich bred, but I didn't think shuffled. I've never ridden her mom, but I don't think I've ever seen her shuffle either. I'm so excited, I can't wait until she's old enough to ride! Now I'm wondering what I'd get if I bred Gem to a known shuffler. I just have to figure out how to encourage the shuffle in Rosie. I don't want to lose it.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Animals can be a pain in the...

After work yesterday, I picked up Katie from school and took her to soccer practice. It was ridiculously cold and windy for April, and I forgot my coat. Luckily I had an extra sweatshirt in the truck. Anyway, practice ended a little early, and we headed home only to find a pile of dog poo from TJ, our 15 year old lab mix. Not his fault, I always have to remind myself as I clean up the mess. He just can't hold it anymore. I got the dogs' dinner ready while they were outside. Soon after they thundered in and began scoffing down kibble, I noticed some blood drips on the floor. Looking around, it was easy to identify the source: the tip of TJ's tail. He must have caught it on something in his rush into the kitchen and tore a chunk open. There was a quickly-growing puddle of blood forming under his tail as he ate. I grabbed some vetwrap and gauze (which of course was handy thanks to the frequent bandage changes of the greyhound's broken leg) and did a quick wrap of the tail until I could shuttle him outside. When they finished their dinner, I ran them all out and went to work cleaning. When I was satisfied with the disapperance of the blood spots, I went to check on the dogs outside. TJ had slipped off the quick wrap and wagged all over the back porch spewing blood all over the side of the light gray house. UGH. I fetched more vetwrap and gauze and wedged him between my already blood stained knees to bandage his tail all the way up the the top. I knew it needed elasticon to stay on, but my next priority was washing off the house and deck. So I proceeded to hose off the side of the house on the terribly blustery day. Upon completion, the dogs and I went back inside. I had missed a call from my daughter's riding instructor, so I sat down for a minute to call her back. She had come by earlier in the day to pick up my Katie's pony Sandy to borrow her for a riding lesson, and she had called to give me an update. Kelly got home while I was on the phone, and in TJ's excitement, the tail wrap came flying off again. Blood all over the kitchen AGAIN. This time, with Kelly's help, I got the elasticon over the third wrap, and we cleaned the kitchen AGAIN and treated the blood stains on our clothes so I could do an unexpected load of laundry.

I went out to feed the horses later and Rosie has decided to play the I-wonder-what-kind-of-game-she'll-play-with-me-if-I'm-on-my-hind-legs game. She soon learned that I play the I-don't-let-horses-get-up-on-their-hind-legs-around-me game. She gave up pretty quickly and settled for scratches and pets. But she started anew this morning. This time bigger and stronger. So I got bigger and stronger. I never scared her, but I think she got the idea by the second or third time. We'll see what's next...

Friday, April 3, 2009

Agile filly

I took a few 3-day-old pictures with my phone last night because I didn't happen to have my camera with me. I'll take better pictures this weekend.
Rosie LOVES to canter! She seems to either be walking or cantering wherever she goes. She does the most beautiful flying changes, and she seems very agile. She throws in little feel-good bucks now and then. She's inquisitive and becoming more and more friendly as she learns how good it feels to be scratched! She grooms me while I scratch her. She's interested in her mom's grain and already attempting "grazing" (it's awfully hard to graze successfully with no teeth!) It's amazing to see her develop so fast.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Foal update

My 5 year old daughter Katie decided she wanted to name the filly Red Rose. We compromised and will call her Rosie. I think her registered name will be Gems Phat Red Rose, but I haven't entirely decided. Dr. Nicole Ferguson came out Tuesday evening to check up on Rosie and Gem. Both were perfectly fine, and Rosie's IgG was adequately high. Rosie had become a handful at less than one day old, but we were able to contain her for the exam. Later that evening when I put the girls in their stall, I attempted to dip Rosie's umbilical stump in iodine. I soon found that it was no small task. Rosie had decided that I was a big monster, and iodine ended up everywhere. Last night I decided Rosie needed some undemanding time near me, so I pulled up a bucket and sat in the stall for a long time. Curiosity of course got the best of her, and she came over to check me out. She still wasn't sure, but she wasn't running away. I left it at that. This morning after I turned them out, it started raining pretty hard. Rosie was a little agitated by this new feeling. When the rain slacked off a bit, she cantered and bucked around the paddock occasionally pausing to rub her front legs with her nose to counter that strange tickly water-running-down-the-legs feeling. When she came back over to check me out again, she rubbed her wet head on me which gave me the opening to start scratching all her itchy spots. She soon realized that I wasn't so bad since I had awesome grooming fingers. Yay, I think we're over the scary monster stage! Let's hope she remembers by the time I get home from work tonight!