Monday, June 10, 2013

Life goes on.

It's been a while since I posted. A lot has happened, some good, some bad. I guess the biggest news, for us, is we finally came to the end of the journey with Jack. Losing him cast a pall over the whole farm. I wasn't really aware of how much our daily routine revolved around him and what was going on with his health until he was gone. It sort of threw us all for a while.

During this time, Storm developed a large swelling on his jaw. We didn't know if it was a tooth problem, an abscess, or possible a lymph node issue. We couldn't find any external wound and it didn't seem to faze him, so it went on the back burner while we focused with other things. It turned out to be an abscess which opened on its own and we could clean and dress the wound.  

As soon as Storm was on his way to recovery, Donny stopped eating. By now I was just having a WTF moment. It seemed like everybody, including me, was falling apart. Last year Don had an abscess under his chin, which had caused him to stop eating for nearly two weeks. I suspected this may be a similar problem. For a couple of days, I was able to coax  him into nibbling some equine senior food, but he eventually stopped eating altogether. When that happened, I had to mix up a product called Fibrevive, basically alpaca mush, and syringe feed him.

I have never been comfortable with tube feeding, and feeding with a syringe worked just as well. It takes  a little more time, but it  works. Up until now, I have been using a turkey baster to do the job, well the old turkey batser had pretty much been destroyed over the years and I didn't have another one. I did, however, have a giant syringe that was used to inject brine (or whatever flavoring you desire) into a turkey. It held about 60cc of fluid. I took off the metal needle portion, (and by I, I mean Jim) reamed out a bigger hole, attached some flexible tubing and viola! Alpaca mush feeder extraordinaire!

Mean while, I had started Don on some antibiotics that I had left over from Jack. (with my vets blessing) Five days after starting the meds, Don started to nibble at food again. By the seventh day, his appetite seemed to be back in full swing. We'll keep an eye on him for the next couple of weeks, but I'm hopeful that we got this one cured.

It hasn't all been drama around the farm. We had another cat-trapping event. We caught eight cats this time. Well, really nine, we re-caught one of the cats from the original trapping. So much for the theory that the cats won't go back into the traps a second time. We caught him fairly early on in the evening, so we gave him some food and water and left him in there. He didn't seem any the worse for wear when we let him back out in the morning. Now we're down to just the latest round of kittens to spay and neuter so we'll do this again in September when they are big enough.

We also got our yarn from Zeilinger's. That was exciting. We sent in two different colors and they sent back solids and a ply of the two colors together. I was really pleased with how it came out. Since we're still in the middle of  doing some remodel work on the house, the two VERY large boxes of yarn have taken up residence in the middle of the living room. Someday we'll be done, and the yarn can get put away.

While we have been tearing apart our house, Jim and Dot have been busy building a gazebo at their house. We like to tease Jim about his collection of "stuff" and the mistaken idea that some of my friends have about him running a scrap yard, but he got his gazebo put together for less than twenty bucks. It even has electric lights and there is a plan for a ceiling fan in the future.

So we're getting back into a routine. Hopefully things stay quite through the summer, I've had enough drama for one season!


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