Monday, 18 August 2008

A day I would rather not repeat!

Well the old boy gave me one hell of a fright today!

I thought I had lost him and then, when I realised I hadn't, I thought I might!Went out to feed out this morning and the old boy was not grazing with his girls. The girls were stood up on the hill looking at the far end of the paddock and did not come down for their hay. I called Bados & he did not appear so I wandered up the hill to look for him - calling every step of the way. As I walked I passed a number of 'crop circles' where someone had obviously been rolling, a lot! I got more and more worried the further I walked and the more crop circles I found. I got to the top of the hill and still nothing (but more crop circles). By now I am panicking and walking faster. And then I see him, in a muddy heap up against a fence, deathly still. I call again ... nothing.

So I YELL! And, he moves! Rushed down to find him in a sodden and trembling heap soaked through from the tips of his ears to his toes. This old guy is 28 years old and tough as old boots so it was terrifying to see him in such a state. He had so much mud in his eyes that they were swollen nearly shut and weeping and there were cuts over his back legs. He kept whickering at me and it was a cold shivery whicker that just broke my heart. When asked, he clambered to his feet and I checked him over and could see nothing that warranted not moving him so, slowly, we made our way back through the paddock to the road and home. It was a slow tearful journey but I could not take him through the paddocks home as feared he would get himself stuck in the bog in the next paddock.

Got him home, changed his rug and rang the vet. Cried lots. Took him up to the shed, rubbed him down with towels and hay, cleaned his eyes as best I could and stuffed a layer of thatched hay up under his cover - he was still very shivery. And then we waited for the vet (and cried some more!).

The vet took about two hours to get to us but by the time he arrived Bados had made nothing short of a miraculous recovery. He was nibbling on hay and his gut was making lots of noise and, he farted! It was the best fart ever! John (vet) was pretty impressed with his heart rate (50) and said his gut sounds were fantastic and his colour good. I apologised for wasting his time but we both agreed, better to be safe than sorry! He had brought the blue juice with him and sounds like it has been a very tough few weeks on the oldies with lots of old horses simply not coping with this dreadful weather.

He's now boxed (begrudgingly - he would rather be out with his girls I think) and wrapped up as warm as toast and he can bloody well stay there until the weather improves. I am emotionally spent! What a day!

Pic of the old boy this summer just gone:

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