Well it has been pretty busy here. We got home from the trip to Carson, (Earth Day Celebration with Rocky and Robin), the long road down to Las Vegas to drop off the Rock Star, back to Carson to the prison to pick up 2 mares and foals and deliver them to a beautiful ranch near Sacramento, and finally arrived home, safe but tired.
Collins has about 1600 miles under his belt and will hop in the trailer all by himself. (I am SO PROUD!) After spending one (and only one) night in the trailer, he had quit jumping in on his own. But now he is back to my little man and just "loads up" by himself. WOOHOOO!! (This is also a really good indicator of how much he is NOT bothered by travelling or spending time in the trailer.) His wounds are nearly healed and he is still friends with the dobermans. So that is really great news that he isn't terrified of dogs, per say. However, if he hears one in fighting mode, he can definitely show some signs of worry.
We will soon be introducing him (again) to Romeo and DaBubbles. I am looking forward to pairing him up with DaBubbles, our miniature, as he is much smaller than Collins. Dabubbles will teach him that although Collins is much bigger than DaBubbles, he will still not be able to boss DaBubbles around, even if he is the 'biggest". Since he will soon be bigger than me, I want him to know that respect has nothing to do with size. We have waited a little bit longer than normal to introduce him to his "horsey brothers", due to his injuries from the dogs. We didn't want to take a chance of a wound being re opened or Collins getting "hit where it hurts". But it is imperative that he learns respect from the horses as soon as possible. Where his natural mama would smack him or bite him when he is out of line, as much as we try to make sure that we are right on top of correcting his bad habits, there is nothing on this earth as good as his real mama, or other members of the herd to teach them about respect. This will keep us safe when we are around him when he weighs 1000 pounds, and save him a lot of heartbreak and stress while he learns his manners and what he needs to know in life. Since he already spends about a quarter of his time on his hind feet, striking and playing, it will be even more important that he respects our space and doesn't accidentally hurt anyone.
It is quiet here with out our beloved girls, and my heart is still breaking. However, I am glad that I posted what happened, even though it was so difficult to do. I am amazed at the number of people who have contacted me and said the same thing or something similar had happened to them. I was told that there was even a young mom in Nevada whose toddler had went outside through a doggie door, only to be killed by the family pets. Please pray for the family. Although I don't know the exact details, I do know that this young mom will always have to live with this and she only needs love and prayers, not prosecution. It was a horrible accident and I think that we need to remember that although we love and trust our animals implicitly, there is always a tiny chance that there could be a tragedy we weren't expecting. We cannot always predict how they are going to react.
Thank you for all your support and for being part of our rescue. If any of you are good at fund raising ideas, please call me. I could seriously use some help in that area. Would love any ideas for a fun event. God bless, stay safe and give your loved ones big hugs and kisses while you can!
p.s. Please remember that now that Rocky is safe in his new home in Las Vegas, and yes, I am still crying a little bit, we need to concentrate on finding Romeo a forever home! He is a beautiful yearling and as sweet as can be!
Sorry it has taken so long for another update. Been a tiny bit on the tired side. Collins is a very smart little colt. He has figured out how to wake me up, any time and for any reason. The problem is that he knows if he makes loud noises, I check them out. So he does it on purpose when he is bored, and all night long. One thing he is not getting though, is rewarded for this bratty behavior. He has enough "me me me" tendencies already, without teaching him that he gets his way that easily. However, the damage to my couple of hours of sleep does get done. :) But since he has been colicky at times, and you have to make sure that he doesn't start rolling or whatnot, I wake up at any noise anyway. You are always "half-awake", fearing the worst, and he has had quite a few nights where he has been truly uncomfortable and needed help.
But he still has to wait til I am ready for his feeding etc. He definitely would have been one of those babies that nursed a little bit, all the time. Of course that is awesome if he is with his momma. We are still fighting his "tum tum" issues. We had him examined by the vet and he thinks that it just has to "run it's course". His lungs sound awesome, his heart is very strong and he has lots of gut noises. We are trying to modify a few things, such as gradually adding goat's milk and then weaning him off of the Foal Lac. With some foals this works awesome, while with others the issues get worse. The vet does feel very positive though, that it will just take time, and maybe quite a bit of it. He said that some of the babies have a tougher time when they are not on their natural milk. So we are just doing what we can. Thank you everyone for your suggestions for his "tum tum". It is always amazing how many things help different little ones with various issues. We always appreciate any input. The vet did also mention that with his "ATTITUDE AND ENERGY", he thought he would pull through these tough times.
It is so hard to watch when they are stressed or uncomfortable. While we follow the vet's advice on how to treat what is going on, it is still awful knowing how raw their little hineys get. No matter what you do, there is discomfort and we can only do the best we can with what we have. Our beautiful nursery is now "decorated" with the issues from his "tum tum". But after he gets bigger and better we will be able to scrub the stains off the wall. The nursery is officially "broken in". I have to say the nursery is working out perfectly, (THANKS TO OUR WONDERFUL SUPPORTERS WHO MADE IT HAPPEN!!), although we have had to make some modifications due to the fact that he was ready to jump over the gate, climb up the gate etc. But it is easy to keep clean and for that I am forever grateful, although that does require constant scooping and clean up. But I love a clean smelling stall.
If anyone wants to help Collins be more comfy, we need to get some "CORONA", and no, it is not for me. :) It is a cream for his "tender area". The semi local feed store (about 60 miles round trip) does not have any in stock. ALSO, ANYONE WHO HAS GOAT'S MILK OR ACCESS TO IT, WE ARE LOOKING FOR SOME. PLEASE CALL ME AT 530 474 5197 at your earliest convenience if you have any extra. We would be happy to buy it from you for Collins.
He has grown at least several inches and is just as energetic and playful as ever. He is being very respectful for his age, and I just have to point away if he starts getting to close when he is bucking and kicking and playing. I have never ever seen a baby spend so much time on his hind legs. He plays outside most of the day, every day, and we are getting to the point where it is safe and he is past his quarantine time to bring in a "companion" horse. Now I just have to figure out who is best matched with him.
ROMEO & ROCKY are both doing very well after being gelded. Rocky was pretty tender yesterday as he had to have a much more extensive procedure, but all are well and feeling much better today.
God bless and thank you so much for all your support and the help you have given us, whether it is prayers, good wishes, bringing food so I don't cook (especially loved that one), or financial help with the costs of caring for the critters here. You are amazing and we are so blessed to be part of such an awesome "rescue community". Please don't hesitate to keep coming and visiting. We so enjoy the visits and it is a wonderful way for people to spread the word about our beloved Wild Horses. Also, it is "garden time" for the non mountain folks, and we have lots of "mustang magic" to mix in your soil.
Take care and again, Thank you for everything!
Click the pictures to enlarge
All is well, though quite fragrant, here at Chilly Pepper - Miracle Mustang. We have had lots of visitors, two legged and four legged as well. There are some big changes coming up, and although they are the right moves for the rescue, they bring heartbreak along with the happiness.
I am back from my surgery much sooner than I thought. It went well and now I just have to catch up on everything. Our friend Ross came over to help me do a much needed trim on Donkey's front feet. Donkey is still pretty sensitive and nervous. He is starting to trust me, and that is very important, especially when handling feet. So I started to slowly proceed with his trim, hoping he would be ok. (Apparently the last time someone tried to trim his hind feet they scared him quite badly). So we are just taking things slowly and carefully. He gave me his foot with very little stress and everything was going well. However, all at once, he panicked and exploded. Seems like Patches was banging his foot on the gate and that was just too much for him along with the outside rescue cats hangin' out. He whipped around and did his 360, and then tried to take off. I simply got out of the way. Now Ross has been around these critters for years, and although it involved a little bit of "mud diving", he managed to keep hold of Donkey, which in the long run is so important. I have worked with many animals who were "trained" to run away and get away when they were scared. By keeping hold of the rope, Ross made sure that Donkey did not learn a very bad habit. He did not learn that he should panic and run away. He learned that he should stop and it would all be okay. We then quietly finished up and he went on his way. Donkeys are so different than horses. I am constantly surprised at how much differently you handle a donkey than a horse. It is so cute though, because Donkey figured out where the kitchen window is and he will come and visit to get a bite of apple or a piece of carrot. He is so sweet.
As for our four legged visitors. Matt and I have seen Mama and baby bear prints in the snow, traveling along the fence line. However, the other day when we had some visitors from Redding, we noticed the bear prints in the snow in the yard. Apparently they were "helping" us with our garbage disposal. Now the cans are locked up safely, as I am sure the items in there are not the healthiest for mama bear and her cub. Our favorite visitor (well, not really under the circumstances) was the skunk. Now apparently getting "skunked" does not bother any of my dogs, as they do it over and over and over. Matt opened up the front door and the smell was so strong it didn't even smell like skunk. It was much farther past that. I had to leave immediately as the odor was so strong it had me doubled over. I have never smelled anything so strong. I can't believe that the dogs don't learn their lesson and stay away.
One of the other changes at the rescue is that "Patches", our beloved therapy miniature, has found a wonderful new home. Amid the tears before his new owners arrived were also happy thoughts for his future. The folks that adopted him are some very wonderful people that we met when they came to visit the critters. I have to say that I am proud to call them friends. They do foster care for children, and I can only imagine the heartbreak they go through. I am broken hearted every timed we place one of the foals that we help, and they are all going to wonderful homes. So I can honestly say that they are amazing people and Patches will get to continue to provide his "love and therapy" to not only them but all the children who come to their home to share their love and care. They arrived in their suv and after Patches got a last minute mani/pedi, he walked up his little ramp and into the back of their car. He just fit and was happy and relaxed as they left to start their new adventure.
Other big news; Rocky, my beloved Rock Star has found his forever girl. We will be delivering him to the Las Vegas area to a wonderful young woman you may have heard of. Her name is "Rockin' Robin", and she is also known as "Wild Horse Robin". She is an amazing and truly dedicated youngster that has devoted her life to saving and preserving our wonderful heritage, the American Wild Mustangs. She founded the group "YEA", Youths' Equine Alliance, and is making big waves on behalf of the horses. To all you kids out there who want to help keep mustangs like Honey Bandit, Rocky, Romeo etc. alive and well, visit her web page at http://www.yeaspage.com and joing the fight to preserve YOUR HERITAGE. Wild Horse Annie and the school children are what made the difference for the Wild Horse and Burro Act of 1971. We need to continue to protect them and make sure that generations to come will have the privilege of viewing the amazing mustangs in the wild.
Right now she is working on saving up to get Rocky gelded and transported to Las Vegas. We are not charging anything for our time and travel, but she is raising the funds for fuel and his gelding, as that is not in our budget. She is actually moving to be closer to where Rocky will be stabled and Rocky the Rock Star will be the Ambassador for YEA! So we will all get to watch the two of them as they grow up together. Again, I have cried a river already, but as usual, our little one is going to an absolutely amazing home where he will be loved and have a wonderful life. Now, we just need to get a home for Romeo.
As the little ones move out, we are geared up for the next critical foal to come along. Although of course we don't want any foal to be without it's mama, we are certainly anxious to be there for the next little one that comes along.
We want to thank y'all, as always, for your continued support and for being part of this "community rescue". They say it takes a village to raise a child, but it seems to take the world to raise a foal. God bless and stay safe. Don't forget you are always welcome to come and visit. The snow is almost gone and the horses are starting to shed out. Could that mean spring is getting here soon? We sure hope so. Also, don't forget to tell the folks at "Lowes" that Honey Bandit sent you when you start your spring shopping. We are extremely grateful for all their support too.
Take Care and "git 'er done"!
As usual, life is keeping us pretty busy. I spent a good share of New Year's eve, dreaming about parties, dancing, pretty clothes and lots of sparkles, as I spent a very cold hour digging through ice and snow with a shovel and a flash light, to find the hose that I had so carefully drained. It has been awhile since we had a "real winter", and although I remembered to leave the faucet with a drip so it wouldn't freeze, and I remembered to drain the hose, I forgot one really really important fact. You have to actually be able to find the hose to use it. But it was another great lesson of how we need to improve our winter prep. I have to say there will be many things that we will do much better next year!! :)
The horses are all doing well, although we are feeding about twice as much as normal due to the cold and snow. But everyone is happy and the youngsters are growing quickly. Romeo and Rocky have the cutest "winter jammies", and the Rock Star has actually mellowed out quite a bit. I think being pushed around all the time by Honey Bandit has crushed his little fantasy that he was "it". He and Romeo are pretty equally ranked, and although they will both push each other around a bit when it is time for grain, neither one of them seems to be the boss of the other. They are more like brothers, pushing and shoving but never in a serious way. I think mainly they are sticking together to stay away from Honey Bandit as he is being quite bossy.
As I looked out in to our winter wonderland, I cannot ignore the beauty of where we live. The snow is frozen, and sparkles endlessly on the trees and in the sunshine. The icicles bring back warm childhood memories of days passed. There is something so magical about looking out and seeing icicles glistening along the eves. It looks as though everything is covered in diamonds. (I just love the sparkle). The air is crystal clean, the sky a brilliant blue and the world feels clean and beautiful. I can hear the crunch of hooves as I see a resigned Donkey trudging through the ice and snow. You can tell by the way he looks that once again, this is not his idea. He is followed closely by the Rock Star and Romeo, and bringing up the rear, all puffed up and proud, is Honey Bandit. Honey Bandit normally seems like my little old man, but he seems to be thriving in this cold winter weather, He absolutely loves pushing the others around and making them crunch through the snow. He is getting a little too pushy around the food though and is almost ready to go back in with the "grown up horses", who will put him in his place. But for now, he gets to be the boss and think he is a "big shot".
We had taken HB to the Palo Cedro Christmas celebration, but this time we left him in the trailer, instead of putting him in his pen. He was extremely irritated and promptly turned his butt on me and proceeded to pout the rest of the evening. Needless to say, he will be back in his "corral", available to mingle with his adoring public next year. He has been going through a big growth spurt lately and is turning in to a very handsome young man. It makes me sad though, because it is as if that year of 24/7 care never happened. He doesn't seem to remember much of anything we did back then. He acts like he has never seen a blanket before. PTL he does not need one, but it amazes me that after spending nearly 24/7 with him for a year, and actually moving out and building an attached bedroom so we could sleep with him, it is like it never happened. Rocky, on the other hand, remembers everything. But I guess it was just the extent of HB's condition that made him forget, kind of like when you have surgery and don't remember much. But seriously it would be nice if he remembered as it would make him one of those "bomb proof" ponies. The Rock Star isn't scared of much. Romeo is still extremely sensitive around his head, and when he was sick a few months ago, he seemed to have one of his little times when he couldn't remember much. But he has been doing very well and as long as we are gentle and soft with him, he will have one of the softest heads around. Rocky, Romeo and Chilly Pepper are all available for adoption.
The nursery is turning out to be absolutely adorable, and we won't have to use "diapeys" on a regular basis. It is also going to be a Godsend as it is the one place that I will be able to bring in the babies for hoof trimming and winter training. The stall is large enough for 3-4 "critical foals" (if there are any left by the time NDoA gets through), so we are getting the place much closer to where we need it. We cannot thank you enough for being part of this and making all of this possible. Even if you cannot actually adopt, please feel free to come and visit the babies and the rest of the critters. We love the visits and will never forget that this is your rescue and we are just lucky enough to be hands on. God bless y'all and we thank you in advance for your continued support, prayers, visits and love for the critters in 2013. We will be sending pix soon, so you can share the smiles.
We also have several miniatures that we are trying to help place. So if anyone has been looking for a mini, look not further. Just call us at 530 474 5197 or 530 3339 1458 for more information. I also want to thank everyone again for the help and support as we were able to get the tank warmers that we need. It is so amazing to have water instead of ice blocks, and it is crucial for the horses' health to drink enough water. So many horses colic simply because they don't drink as much water in the winter. So thank you - you guys rock!!!