Matt and I just got back from about a 1400+ mile trip. We had been receiving lots of requests to come help with the foals who were being born in the feedlot of the auction yard. Many of the babies are merely hours or days old, and their lives begin helplessly listening to their mother's desperate screams as they are forced on to trucks, torn away from their newly born babies, headed to a horrible death at the slaughter yard.
We have been trying to raise funds for an enclosed horse trailer with living quarters, and although we did not have one, we ended up borrowing a trailer that would allow us to make the emergency run. We found out that although God blessed us with a safe trip, this is NOT adequate equipment for rescues like this. It was so cold that there was no way to stop overnight and keep the babies warm. So we had to make a 16 hour drive, although a good deal of that was stopping to care for the babies, give munchies and let them move around. With an enclosed trailer with LQ we could stop, keep them warm and be able to rest for a bit which would make all of this much safer. But God blessed us with a safe trip and wonderful folks who provided hot water along the way so the babies could have warm milk. They had blankets and were as toasty as we could make it, but not the best situation for sure.
When we arrived in Yakima, the first two nights Matt got to sit in the truck, trying to stay warm, while he waited for me to tell him when the baby needed to be picked up or laid down. No place for him to sleep. I meanwhile, was in a gorgeous, yet open barn, in 36 degree temps with wind enough to drop the temperatures significantly. Maverick was clearly crashing, and if we didn't get him warm and more fluids, he would not last the night. So armed with heat lamps, multiple blankets and a heater, I spent the night with him. We would get up every hour and he would walk through the freezing barn, drink a bit of milk, and then go potty. The 5 days prior he had been refusing to drink and had suffered a severe bout of colic amongst all the other issues. He was at death's door, and the barn was too cold.
The next night we put a heater in the horse trailer we had borrowed, along with a heat lamp and tons of blankets. Once again it was so cold you could not even sleep. We still had to get him out to move around and try to get his blood moving enough to warm up his legs. These were seriously the two worst nights I think I have ever spent.
The next day Matt discovered an unused building and turned it into an awesome foal room for the folks who were trying to help these babies. So from now on, their babies will have a much better chance at survival and it will make it easier for the volunteers to actually stay with them to monitor them. Woohoo!!! You CANNOT take newborn or critically ill or orphaned youngsters and stick them in a barn or leave them outside. There have been folks who got lucky, but that is not the most common outcome.
We actually had an emergency come in about midnight one night. She was a foal that had been "rescued" by a lady named Lindsey, who is associated with a foal rescue in Yakima. (The rescue knew nothing of the appalling and deadly conditions this foal was being kept in) The baby's temperature was 96 after we had started to warm her up. (A normal foal temp should be about 101) She was skin and bones, nearly comatose and maybe would survive for an hour. Everyone there jumped into action and we were able to keep her alive until the next morning. Miracle of miracles, although unable to get up or down, after we stood her up she was able to walk around for a bit. She again started crashing and we provided fluids and other treatment until the vet arrived. Shortly after that the Sheriff and Animal Control showed up and the angry "rescuer" wanted her baby back. She had supposedly raised money to rescue 500 babies the year prior and had left this baby alone outside in the cold, knowing she was sick. Several hours later her ex-husband came to pick up the baby. Of course everyone who had spent the night keeping her alive was devastated, as we had saved her to go back to "hell". With the sheriff in front of us there was nothing we could do. We have to stay legal, although we were heart broken. I asked the ex-husband who was going to take care of her and he said he was. I asked him did he know how and he said no, but he would do his best. I told she was dying and to keep her as warm as he could while she left this earth.
Then another miracle - he actually took her to the vet, bless his heart. He told us that HE was the one who sent her to us, knowing she was by herself out in the cold and would never make it through the night. The rescue was notified and we were told the adopter stepped up and paid for her vet care and stipulated that Lindsey could never have access to her again. The latest update I received was that she is up on her own and drinking milk and would be headed to her forever home in about a month when she is stable. Once again God had a plan and a reason for us to be there. (I believe the rescue is taking steps to prevent this outcome from ever happening again.) This baby starved for a week, and although antibiotics had been prescribed, she had only received one of the doses out of 10, and was left alone outside with a bucket of milk in freezing (or near freezing) temps.
While taking care of Maverick around the clock, we also were helping with the other foals. We would be bringing back four, and two of them are in extremely critical condition, one is also pretty sick and one is pretty darn healthy compared to the others. However, the two "healthiest" ones were extremely colicky last night and all four are in dire need of prayers.
MAVERICK is extremely critical and has lost 90 % of his hair. the Vet in WA told me that was the least of my worries as it was not life threatening. (She thought it was from malnutrition and the stress of the auction yard and losing his m ama) We need soft t-shirts to cut up and make "covers" for his neck and legs so he can go outside in the fresh air. Small human style baby blankets could also be used to help cover him. He is a little fighter though.
If you would like to help these babies, you can visit our website at www.chillypepper.weebly.com or go to Paypal at Palominodancer@yahoo.com. The costs for the formula alone for four babies for one month is $800, and that is the tip of the iceberg. Matt and I are happy to go and help these orphans and we really appreciate all the folks requesting that we do so to continue being part of this journey for these babies. Anyone who would like to visit please contact us at 530 474-5197.
Here are some of the much needed items for these little ones. Vaseline, Stall Bedding, Foal Lac Powder, Foal Lac Pellets, Grass Hay, Mineral Oil, Baby Wipes, Plastic Gloves, Probios, Biosponge, Honey, Human style baby blankets for Maverick.
Our shipping address is Chilly Pepper - Miracle Mustang, 34694 Sidebottom Rd., Shingletown, CA 96088
If you order milk powder, we do receive mail at this address :) http://pet-supplies.drsfostersmith.com/search?af=type%3Aproduct&view=grid&w=foal lac (where you can order milk if you would like )
We appreciate all the continuing love and support.