August 1 st
Journey’s End Ranch Newsletter Aug.1, 2012By Cathy Ritlaw
Journey’s End Ranch Newsletter Aug. 1, 2012
July was a busy month. I spent a lot of time working to desensitize Cheyenne (the new mustang) from her fear of being touched. After she became used to being rubbed with a 10 foot pole, I got her to accept being rubbed with a 2 foot stick with a towel wrapped around the end. I was then able to get my hand on her withers, briefly, about 30 times. However, she started becoming defensive and took a few cow-kicks at me. After being severely kicked in the chest by Knickers in January and accidentally trampled by Raven several months ago, I am not going to push my luck with a frightened, 1200 pound mustang mare. She and the other mustangs were also getting agitated because of the fence separating them. I asked our vet about getting sedative to try to sedate her in order to remove the halter she has apparently been wearing for 7 years. He gave us the medication and I tried 2 approaches- using a “syringe pole” I made and putting the sedative in her feed (suggested by our vet). The syringe pole worked perfectly when I practiced injecting a cardboard box, but the attempt to use it on Cheyenne resulted in a bent needle and lost medication. Putting the medication in her feed only slightly relaxed her. I had bought a pruning stick which has no sharp outer edges and is 5 feet long. It sliced through an old halter as if it were butter. I had hoped to relax her enough with the sedative to be able to slip the pruning stick between the halter and her cheek, but that was not going to happen. I decided to turn her out with the others for now and give her a chance to settle into the herd, then take another go at it.
Cheyenne and Scout had been romancing over the fence. I was unprepared for the events which occurred after turning her in with the others on July 31, but within an hour, peace was restored and everyone is fine today.
We are in our monsoon season and that means rain, heat & humidity. I am going through 3 sets of clothes a day. I have also been trimming hooves like crazy as the moisture makes them grow faster and also makes them easier to trim. Nina and Esperanza had overgrown feet from a long time of neglect prior to arriving, and I had a local farrier come do them. We also sedated them, which makes for a non-traumatic and safer experience for all involved. I have trimmed almost all the other equines myself. I also soak them in Oxine/citric acid which kills thrush infections. Most of the horses who have come here have infected and neglected hooves. I began learning how to do natural barefoot trims myself 13 years ago. It is an emerging science and I am lucky to know quite a few people on the forefront, thereby learning from them and their books, articles & websites. Farriers now charge $50 for hoof trims, so we save lots of money by my being able to do it myself.
Florencia is 5 weeks old and growing fast. She is just adorable, with a friendly, affectionate personality.
The monsoon also brings us fabulous skies!
Susan Monty now has cards and prints available of “Mustang Sunset”, which features Scout and our other mustangs as models. http://www.etsy.com/shop/
Rhonda, the almost 10 year old beagle we saved from being put to sleep 3 months ago, came into heat a few weeks ago, much to everyone’s surprise! Our vet and the shelter had thought she appeared to be spayed. The amazing thing is that Carson, an intact male, has shown no interest in her, despite her advances towards him and the other dogs. Thank goodness! Carson is madly on love with Rainy and it seems he is a very loyal old fellow.
The low cost clinic usually will not spay such an old dog, but is making an exception, which will save us > $200 on the pre surgery lab work and spay itself. She is quite a character, very vocal, but sweet and funny. She loves her stuffed puppy and piggy and carries them everywhere.
Despite long hours caring for the JERAS animals, I always network animals from shelters via email and Facebook. In the past week, I was able to find two rescues and 2 adopters willing to save dogs from several local shelters. Networking does work and anyone can do it. Please help save lives. Shelters usually do not notify breed rescue groups when they have purebred dogs & cats. Anyone can look at shelter Petfinder or other websites and then google for specific breed rescues and notify the rescue of a purebred or even part-bred animal. You can easily share animals onto your Facebook or Twitter page from most shelter and pet websites.
As always, JERAS can only provide a loving & safe home to 28 animals with your generous help. This is a collective effort and it is only because of our donors that I am able to do this work. Your help is very greatly appreciated!
Cathy & the Gang