Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Fascination

Yalla! is fascinated with everything! She also likes to chew on everything! The other day she had the yellow string, that's temporarily tieing the fence panels, in her mouth, and was chewing on 8 inches of it for about 5 minutes before she spit it all out.

She likes to play with the chain and snap too. I'll bet it won't be long before she learns how to open gates!

She likes to mouth her mama's tail too. I had to get a picture of this! It's hard to reach the ground when your legs are so long!I am fascinated with her coat. She has gotten quite fuzzy! But she has all these ripples in her coat. Look again at the first photo and you'll see all the ripples. It's also very noticeable in the next couple of photos. The top of her tail stands out in all directions too.

I am wondering what color she'll be when she grows up. I expect she'll turn gray but a tiny part of me is hoping for a bay. I don't see any white eyelashes and her face is very dark!



Fascination - song: Fascination, artist: David Bowie, album: Young Americans

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Sunday (winged things 6-28-09)

I have six active swallow nests in my barn right now and each one has three babies so I thought I would show some of the little cuties.


Sunday- song: Sunday, artist: David Bowie, album: Heathen

Saturday, June 27, 2009

I've made good friends

This weekend has been a good one. And it's still only Saturday!

I spent Friday morning cleaning house. I have a looooong ways to go but it's a little bit improved.

Then, at 1:00, the horseshoer came and gave my horses pedicures, well, trims. He said the little one's feet looked good and wouldn't need anything done until she was 4-6 months old.
In the afternoon, I had tea with two of my neighbors. Yes, tea in the afternoon, with china cups and cloth napkins. My neighbor set a very nice table, mind, with cloth placemats and china ware. There was cheese, crackers, grapes, and muffins to eat along with the nice hot tea. I was rather surprised when she invited me, I mean, usually neighbors share cups of java in the morning with a coffee clutch, don't they? She has lived overseas for several years and I guess she got in the habit of having high teas. My other neighbor was there as well and the three of us made good conversation for several hours. Alas, I didn't take any pictures.

I took my leave and went to feed all my animals. I got my shirt dirty, not a surprise. Whenever I feed the horses, I always seem to get dirty. So I changed tops and put on some clean jeans, might as well, right?

I met my daughter and her boyfriend for dinner in town. Boy, I felt underdressed! The ladies were all wearing dresses or dressy pants. Even my daughter had on a nice sundress. Oh well, at least my daughter's boyfriend was wearing shorts. We enjoyed excellent bacon wrapped filet mignon, potatoes, and salads, although not in that order, lol.

Saturday, I rode Scout and ponied Nadia. We rode around the neighborhood and out to the "back forty." I trotted and cantered a few times down the fields. There was a garage sale next door and several large pieces of machinery down the way, front end loaders?, but my horses were unfazed, nice! I met my "tea party" neighbor and her two little dogs out for a stroll, but the dogs and horses were all okay together as we passed.
Then in the afternoon, my blogging buddies, Dan and Betty, came all the way from Corrales to see my new little Yalla! I turned Annie and Yalla! out into the arena for some running fun. Yalla! even went through the gate first this time! Normally, I've had to coax her through the gates with Annie by going back and forth.Lisa came over to visit too. You can make her hat out, lol. Sorry, Lisa.
Annie didn't run too much although she did give a few nice, strong trots, but Yalla! ran all over the place, when she wasn't investigating everyone and everything with her mouth.
Eventually Yalla! tuckered out and took a nap. She readily let Dan lay her down flat and pet her.Betty also came over to pet the sleeping filly while Annie wanted everyone to remember that she was around too. Annie kept coming over and swinging her rear at my guests. She wanted to be rubbed on her hind end. Jeez, we started a bad habit, Annie.

She also likes her neck rubbed, now that's a little nicer! She curls her upper lip down and her lower lip trembles. Gosh, it must feel good!Although the sky looked rather threatening, we only got a couple of drops as it passed by.
FYI- Yalla! is now at 110 pounds. Tomorrow she will be two weeks old and she has already gained 27 pounds!
Thanks, Dan and Betty, for coming out to the other side of the mountains to see us. Thanks for the banana bread too. It's excellent! And Lisa, thanks for stopping by. I always enjoy seeing you, my good friend. PS- I missed you at the tea! ;) But really, I did enjoy it, just wouldn't want to do it every week.
I've made good friends - song: I Dig Everything, artist: David Bowie, album: Early On

Monday, June 22, 2009

Vision of Y'Allah!

Yalla! has become very, very inquisitive. Everything must be investigated. The other evening I gave her a ball to play with. It's too big but she found it interesting anyway. She rattles the chain that latches her gate. She chews on ropes and mouths green plants. She plays in the water bucket and investigates her mom's hay.

Today, Lisa and I turned Annie and Yalla! out to play in the arena. Of course, they ran around a bit.

video


But Yalla! also investigated whatever she could find. She loves to chew and mouth everything because she is cutting teeth.

While we were outside, it rained a few drops and then a lovely rainbow appeared. You can just about see it next to Annie's profile. After we brought them back in, Yalla! lay down for a nap. She readily lays back for me now and contentedly put her head in my lap.
Lisa wanted to see her little teeth and hooves for some photos...
and there it was!Do you see it?

Now Jesus he came in a vision
And offered you redemption from sin
I'm not sayin' that I don't believe you
But are you sure that it really was him
I've been told that it could've been blue cheese
Or the meal that we ate down the road
Hallelujah



song: Bus stop, artist: Tin Machine, album Tin Machine

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Sunday (Tricolor 6-21-09)

I'll start off my Sunday Stills with a "bang" of color!


For more Sunday Stills, please visit here.




Sunday - song: Sunday, artist: David Bowie, album: Heathen

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Run Around

This is Yalla! at three days old. The way she keeps looking at the camera, doesn't it look like she's showing off and running just for me? Alas, no spronking!

video

Run Around - song: Funtime, artist: Iggy Pop and David Bowie, album: The Idiot

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

I'm invisible

The foal was born early Sunday morning and I spent all day Sunday watching over them and showing them off to friends and relatives all the way into Sunday night. My mom even drove down from Angelfire to see the new little one.

Lisa, my mom, and I finally had those strawberry daiquiris to celebrate. When I finally crashed around 10:30 PM, boy, I was tired! I must have been up over 40 hours!!

Well, Monday morning, I arose fairly early, around 6:30, and felt sort of refreshed. I had to go to school and run some errands so I left for town around 11:00. My daughter came out an hour or so later to see the filly.

I was sitting in class and I had a text on my phone from my daughter. She wrote, "Important, call me!" I left class and called her. She told me she and her friend had gone to the barn to see Annie and the filly and the filly was not there!

She was missing!!!

I couldn't believe it! The filly was only one day old! What could have happened to her? I had visions of her falling into the water barrel and drowning.

My mom went to get Lisa and her boys to help search and my daughter and her friend kept looking around the entire neighborhood.

Where could a tiny foal have gone to? They told me that Annie was standing silent in her stall. Scout and Nadia were interested and watching but they always do that.

I was trying to stay calm because I was 30 miles away and there was nothing I could do. I suggested that she had laid down and rolled under the paddock rails and to look all over in the barn.

My daughter called me back and said that they had found her. Lisa's boys found her standing in the stall next to Annie's, as if nothing had happened at all. But, she wasn't there when they first looked. And they didn't see her in the barn when they looked.


Where did she go?

I guess that she really did roll under the rails and because they were almost together Annie didn't get frantic. Or maybe she was getting tired of her newborn? Do horses get postpartum depression? Poor thing, she was still having huge contractions. Only Annie knows the real story.

My daughter had the huge chore of leading the filly out and around the barn to Annie's stall.

Whew! I give her enormous credit for a job well done. She wrapped her arms around the little body and kind of tugged her along, with the filly getting frantic at this point because they were heading away from her mama.

I did some research on Arabian coat color and I found some interesting facts. It is universally believed that the original horse was a drab little dun-colored fellow with a bay-type coat that could vary slightly as a camouflage measure according to the area in which he lived. I think Annie's filly has an invisibility cloak.

Today, at three days old, Lisa and I turned Mom and baby out in the big arena for some leg stretching. The little one was jumping two strides sideways yesterday. She was so cute, backing up to the fence and bolting down the paddock, wheeling around and running back. She definitely has her daddy's cutting horse moves and her mommy's racing blood. We decided she needed a bigger area to stretch out in and that Annie probably could use the outing too.



I have decided on her formal name. I think I will call her Kaheema Fantastka after her parents and grandparents. Her mother is Fantastyk Gal and her grandmother is Fantastka. Her father is Kakhem Sahib and her grandfather is Khemosabi.
I was going to call her Kheema for short but I have changed my mind. It reminds me too much of cancer (my husband died of pancreatic cancer) and the word, chemotherapy. Watching her run around and frolic so much, I decided that her barn name had to be special. I googled Arabic words for fast or quick and I came up with a common word for "let's go" or "hurry up".

Ladies and gentlemen, I'm pleased to introduce Yalla!



I'm invisible - song: Conversation Piece, artist: David Bowie, album: Heathen extras

She was born, part II


After the foaling, I gave Annie a warm oatmeal mash. However, she still retained the placenta so I tied it up in knots. That way she wouldn't tear it. I tried pulling on it but I could feel it beginning to tear so I called the vet back. I don't know what happens when it doesn't get passed but I've always heard that they should expel it by around 4 hours post partum. I certainly didn't want to risk infection.

The foal had already had a few BMs so I didn't need to give an enema after all, which was good.

Around 9:00 the vet showed up and gave Annie a few shots: a sedative, and something else, an antibiotic, I believe. She flushed out the uterus and told me that if she didn't pass the placenta by noon, I was to give her another shot of oxytocin.

She checked over the horses and said that they looked good. The foal's dropped pasterns should improve over the next few days. She wanted to come out for the SNAP test on the foal in the morning to test for colostrum levels since it's best to do this test at 24 hours.

At noon, I gave her the oxytocin shot. It was easier giving her a shot this time, but not easy! The first time that I ever gave a shot to a horse was last summer when we were trying to get Annie in foal. Always before, it was my husband that gave the shots. Annie was great about it. It's only my squeamish stomach that objects.

I saw the beginnings of contractions again so I began pulling on the membrane. Annie backed right up to me as if she knew this had to be done. Inch by inch, it came out. The cord was warm, ropey, and elastic. It was bloody too. This was grossing me out but I knew I had to do it.

After a few minutes of pulling and waiting, pulling and waiting, there was no more inside of her.

Hallelujah! I bagged it all up and threw it aside for the vet to see.

Baby was spronking all around us. She would nurse a few minutes, struggle to lay down and then nap a few minutes, struggle to get up and walk, trot, and spronk around, and then go back to nursing. I saw her walk under her mom a few times, lol. Won't she be surprised when she grows up a little more and can't fit?

The next morning, Monday, the vet came out early and took some blood for the test. They tried to test it right away but, alas, the assistant had brought the wrong test kit. Luckily, there was still enough sample! They went back to the office to run the test there. A few hours later the vet's office called and said that the results were fine.

She was developing a soft bowel movement so the vet suggested giving the foal some probiotics. I drove over to the vet and picked them up.

Now, I have to give her the probiotics as well as dosing her umbilical cord with iodine. I've also been measuring her weight. The first day she was 83 pounds. Yesterday, she was 86 pounds. I forgot that working with foals was so difficult. I have to practically tackle her and then I need a third hand for the probiotics. It's a good thing that as soon as she was born and taking a break laying down, that I laid her head back, despite her protesting. Last night, to do her umbilical cord with iodine, I waited until she was laying down and again pulled her all the way down. She's still resistant but not too much. Annie is watchful when I work with her baby but very accepting. I guess she must have been a wild baby too. lol.

Monday, June 15, 2009

She was born

Well, folks, it's true. The princess has arrived.

My Arabian mare, Fantastyk Gal, Annie, delivered a healthy little filly very early yesterday morning. As you know, Lisa and I have been camping at the barn for a week now. Saturday night, we joked about having strawberry daiquiris but I said that if we did we'd definitely sleep through the foaling. Ha ha! So we opted not to drink. Then, because she was 'waxing' and seemed very restless, I suggested we take turns staying awake and watching so that we wouldn't miss the birth. Since Lisa is a night owl, I suggested that she take first watch. lol.

I had been up since around 6:30 AM so around 11;30 I lay down. It seemed like right away, Lisa was quietly calling to me. Did I even shut my eyes? It must have only been a half hour or so and she said that Annie was attempting to lay down. Her four legs would kind of crumple but she resisted laying down. I got up and we sat in our chairs, watching and shivering from the cold night air. The wind blew fiercely all around us.

Earlier in the day, I had turned Annie out for some exercise and she had ended up in the far stall, which is Nadia's regular stall. I decided to lock Scout and Nadia up in Annie's usual stall which is a double run and two stalls that are open to each other. This way the middle stall, Scout's usual stall, was open for us to sit in and watch Annie.

It was a really dark night. We watched a pair of mice skitter past and shadow play around the water barrel just a few feet from our feet. Eeeek! The coyotes howled in the distance. We listened to the wind blowing the barn doors and many other unidentified noises.

Some time later, the air stilled and the moon rose making the night a little brighter so that we could almost make out horse shapes. Annie lay down carefully, and dare I say, painfully, only to quickly rise up again. She pooped and peed and nibbled at her hay, only to go poop again. We knew it was time but how long was she going to be able to hold back?

Scout and Nadia lay down in their pens for some sleep. Annie still paced, backing up to the wall to rub her tail and butt on the wooden stall wall. She paced and stared out into the night. We were afraid she would walk to the far end of her paddock into the darkness away from us. She seemed to be watching us to see if we were sleeping. We feigned sleep, although it was extremely hard for me to stay awake, and waited. The wind kept blowing and it was getting colder.

Finally, Annie just seemed to pee and pee and pee some more. We knew it had to be her water breaking. Then she lay down right in front of us. We were amazed but couldn't move for fear of upsetting the flow of things. Our only light source was a battery lantern that we had eventually dimmed. I had a pocket light that I pointed on her and we had a perfect view of her back legs. I wonder if she actually turned that way thinking that we could help her out in some way. Lately, she would turn her rear to me and back up, spreading her legs, as if I could make her feel better.

We were frozen in place and literally amazed! After all this time waiting, it was finally happening! What do we do now? We agreed to do nothing, except take pictures, hoping the flash wouldn't affect Annie and the birthing too much. I was so very, very glad that Lisa was with me through this. She has been a part of this from the beginning, going to the vet clinic for all the ultrasounds, the artificial inseminations, the waiting, the mare watch... THANK YOU, LISA!!!! You have captured some wonderful photos!!
Anyway,
we saw a white bubble appear. It grew larger. Then we could make out something white and black in the bubble. It looked like a stick. It must be a leg!Was it a leg? It seemed like forever but it must have been only seconds. We thought that another leg appeared next. Then, we could just about make out a tiny head in the bubble. She kind of stopped pushing at this point and we were horrified. What should we do? Could the foal suffocate?

We decided to help out. I had been told to make sure the foal could breathe even if it's not fully born yet. So I ran to Annie and knelt in all the blood and muck and tugged at the sack around the baby's head. I didn't even know if it had been fully born yet. The sac was very elastic and strong! I couldn't break it open! I panicked.
I could feel the foal struggling and grunting, trying to breath. Finally, I ripped it open. But, still the foal couldn't breathe because the nostrils were pointing down with the bag covering them. I had to feel around under the head and remove the heavy membrane from around it. It was horrible and scary but I knew it had to be done. Success! The foal, dark, wet, and warm lay gently breathing. I checked my cell phone and the time was 3:40AM.
Lisa told me the foal was completely out so I grabbed a towel and began lightlyrubbing the wet foal down. It was so soft to the touch! But the night air was so cold that I kept gently rubbing at it whenever I could. The umbilical cord had already broken so, almost immediately, the foal tried to rise, plunging forward in it's feeble attempts to find it's legs. I was afraid that it would crash into the pipe rails so I tried to guard it, continuing to wipe it down with the towel. I tried to help it nurse as well. By this time, the other horses began a chorus of neighing and running around. Scout and Nadia were frantic on one side of us and Baby Doll was neighing and pacing on the other side of us along the fence. Lisa became the assigned photographer as I had my hands full so almost all of these photographs are thanks to her and will probably be shown on her site too.

Annie was on her feet now. The foal, standing on wobbly legs, found her Mama and attempted to nurse. Annie was thrilled to see her baby, nickering softly, and softly nuzzling her. The foal was dark, with a big spot on it's forehead. It had thick feathery ears with pointy tips and a curly little mane. It had a nice jibbah forehead and large eyes with dark lashes. But we still didn't know what sex it was!


So, with the striped towel wrapped around the little body for warmth, on one of it's calmer moments, I lifted the tail for Lisa to photograph. It was just too dark to see clearly. She looked at the preview and declared that it was a little filly.

We marveled at the little miracle and Lisa's three children came out to join us in the dawning light. As the sun came up and the foal dried off, we noticed that she was a light brown color with a dorsal stripe running down the length of her back. She even has zebra stripes on her legs! She has a very dark chocolatey mane and tail. On her head, she has a star, a very thin strip and a little snip on her nose. She's beautiful!! She has crazy waves and ripples all over her coat. I can't tell if she'll have any socks because her legs appear tan. I am pretty sure she going to turn gray.

Oh well! I'm okay with that, I guess.

Andrea is clearly the winner with her guess: 4:00 AM 6/14/09, a bay to gray filly. She was almost 100%! I will be sending you a prize. Thanks, everybody, for playing along. It sure was crazy waiting, wasn't it?
But that's not the end of my day! Oh, no, only the very beginning!

Annie didn't pass the placenta like she should. I tied it up in knots so it wouldn't drag the ground. gross, I know but I've 'been there, done that'!

You may recall that I posted about Scout being born years ago, on the day before. Well, the vet we used then told us that we would only need to give the newborn foal an enema and dose the umbilical stump with iodine. Otherwise, no additional care was necessary, unless there were problems.

Yep, Beighley didn't pass the placenta. The vet told us to pull on it and tie it into knots so it wouldn't drag the ground and call if it didn't come out in another couple of hours. Long story short, it didn't come out. We could feel it beginning to tear so we called him out. He gave her shots and waited a bit. Finally, she finally passed it and everything was fine after that.

So, when Annie didn't pass the placenta I knew it was going to be problems. I had previously called the vet to ask what I needed to do for birthing and she told me, "Nothing, really. Call us after the birth and we can check everybody out."

So, I waited until 7:00 (a more decent Sunday morning time) and called the emergency line. When I spoke to the vet, she asked if the foal had had a bowel movement. No. Did I gave her an enema? No, was I supposed to? Had I dosed the umbilical with iodine yet? No, was I supposed to? Anyway, I had bought iodine, gut instinct, I suppose, so I went ahead and dosed the stump of the umbilical cord. She told me to get an enema for the foal and if Annie didn't pass the placenta in the next hour, to call again and she'd be along shortly.

To be continued...


She was born - song: Day In, Day Out, artist: David Bowie, album: Never Let me Down