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Category Archives: The 4-legged kids

Tripod

Last Sunday I received a panic stricken call regarding my one horse who is around 24 years old, typically in great shape and has been my horse since she was 4 – she was on three legs, and the 4th leg was swollen about 3 times normal size. The important thing to realize with this is that if a horse needs to lose a leg for any reason, you can’t just amputate it like a dog – they have to get the pink stuff. All four legs mean survival in flight animals, anything less means death.

By the time I got to the barn, she had amassed a throng of followers who were standing around looking at her, as if their stares were going to make the swelling magically go down. I had already called my vet, who proceeded to tell me that “a lame horse is not an emergency” to which I replied, and excuse the language, “her fucking leg is swollen from hock to ankle. Would a foot abscess cause her whole leg to blow up?!” Perhaps it was the tone in my voice, or possibly the fact that my step father had driven the whole 10 minutes to the vets farm, but he did eventually realize I wasn’t blowing smoke up his ass and about 20 minutes after I cussed him out over the situation, he showed up at my barn, with numerous shots in hand. What occurred next involves pushing a tranquilized, muscle relaxed 12oo pound animal, with 3 legs, up a hill and let’s just say it wasn’t a pretty site.

Since that horrible afternoon, my mom (God bless her) and I have been trading off medicating duties as my mare is on oral antibiotics twice a day, a pain medication twice a day and an antibiotic inter muscular injection once a day and frankly, it’s a pain in the ass to deal with alone. Happily, she’s doing much better 5 days into her captivity and excessive medication and it does my heart well to see her improving day by day. The swelling has all but resolved, she’s not in near as much pain as she was on Sunday but her patience is wearing thin. Horses, by nature, are herd animals. They like to be with other horses and it causes my mare great worry to see the rest of her herd mates in the top of the upper field, while she is locked in the paddock at the barn. Every day I see her to give her her medications, treats and fresh hay and water, and every day I tell her she’s got to deal with this shit until the courses of antibiotics are finished, much to her shagrin.

Yesterday, I pulled her out of the paddock and into the yard to give her an opportunity to do what horses do – eat grass. She was so calm and collected, I even took her off the lead and gave her free range of the yard while I mucked her stall and got her meds together. Tonight when I went to care for her during a break in the monsoon that the mid eastern seaboard is currently dealing with, I thought I’d offer her another opportunity to get some chlorophyll and since she has always been afforded the opportunity to graze in the yard in the two decades that I’ve had her, I tried my luck and took her off lead again, despite the fact that her friends were not within sight. DUMB MOVE. She lasted about 3 minutes, then let out a loud, exasperated whinny, turned on her back heels and took off across the yard, hollering all the way. It’s hard to describe, but this mare and I have a bond that only 20 years will create. Typically, I can just turn on my mean voice and she knocks off whatever it is that she’s doing, however, this evening, she wasn’t really listening. After a moment or two of stupidity, I was able to get in her path and she skidded to a stop with her face about 2 inches from mine. Needless to say, I hooked her back to the lead and didn’t let her off again until we were in the safe confines of the paddock.

My point with all of this is that I really miss spending time with my horse. There used to be a time in my life where I was either home, or at the barn, and I’ve really lost touch with that over the years. As I get older, so does she, and while she’s in great shape and health for her age, it’s reality that horse life spans are only about 1/3 that of humans. She’s relatively OLD in horse years – and one of these days, she’s just not going to be around for me to go see or let graze in the yard or feed peppermints to. Sometimes, it takes a traumatic event to really make a person see what it is that they have been missing, or want in life. When her time comes to go meet her horsey maker, it’s going to be a gut wrenching day for me since she’s been a member of my family for most of my life, so I’ve resolved to get back into hers from now until that sad day comes, come hell or, no pun intended, high water. She’s probably not going to let me get within 10 feet of her for a few days once she’s turned back out, but I’m not going to let that discourage me. She’s been such a wonderful horse, in so many more ways than a typical horse can be, and I’m going to get her healed up, and start giving her the love and attention that she deserves. It might even be good for MY soul to reconnect with the peace that I once found with my beautiful, old mare.

 

As if I couldn’t do it myself

I have two very sweet, very loving, very adorable little dogs. One is a Jack Russel Terrier and the other is some Westie/Cairn Terrier Mix of something – he most closely resembles Falcor from The Never Ending Story, but beings that my dog isn’t large enough to ride on, and he hasn’t mastered the ability to fly yet, I am still at a loss. Both dogs are pretty well-trained, not aggressive and they love each other like brothers and play together and with other dogs really well. For the most part, they are not typical terriers as they are very social dogs, they’ve never bitten a soul and they tend to spend more time laying on the couch than they do terrorizing, but sometimes, their Terrier nature bleeds through and I CAN’T STOP IT.

My house sits off to the one side of my property, as opposed to being centered on the property, so one neighbors house is only a few feet away, while my neighbor on the other side is 30 feet or more. Whenever my “close” neighbor is in her yard, she is always just on the other side of the fence and my dogs would often take that as if she were trying to invade their property and would then bark at her as if to say YOU’RE LUCKY THIS FENCE IS HERE OR ELSE WE WOULD MESS YOUR SHIT UP. I would yell at them, apologize profusely to her and she would always be kind and say things like “I don’t mind” and “it doesn’t bother me.” In fairness to her, she was seldom around and her yard is only about 10 feet by 10 feet, so the time she spent doing yard work was equal to or less than the amount of time I typically spend exercising.

Flash forward to the last couple of weeks – my neighbor sold her house and the new owner has moved in, finally. He seems pretty quiet himself, and anti-social to the point where it makes me slightly uncomfortable, as if there was something wrong with me which didn’t warrant a “Hello” now and again. Regardless, with my already reeling mind, I now also have to deal with the incessant barking of my typically wonderful dogs as they bark at the neighbor, who OF COURSE, had to have a dog of his own. My dogs have never had a dog just on the other side of THEIR fence and it pretty much drives them beyond insanity into a pure, unbridled psychosis. I’ve spent the last few days essentially pleading with them to cease and desist, and it’s gotten to the point now that I check outside first to confirm that the coast is clear. Instead of falling back into my agorophobic ways, I’ve enlisted the help of The Dog Whisperer. I don’t care if the dude and his wife are breaking up, he’s got some damn good logic when it comes to dog training, and my dogs wouldn’t be as good as they are if it weren’t for him. I should be more religious about the training, and if I was, they would probably be better behaved, but I struggle. And I digress…So, yesterday, I went to his site in search of a barking deterrent tool or training process and was directed to what I’ve dubbed asĀ  “The 13 cent solution.” The entry suggested putting 13 pennies in a soda can and shaking it like a Polaroid picture whenever the dogs barked. I like free things, or almost free things, so I put 12 pennies, not 13 because I have a thing for even numbers and I can’t imagine that one penny would make or break this experiment, into a soda can, duct taped those buggers in there and whenever the dogs bark or do something I disagree with – I shake the hell out of that can and say NO at the same time. So far, I do notice encouraging results, but I haven’t decided if the dozen pennies/soda can is going to be a solution to the barking embarrassment or not. I’m hoping that it works for me so that I can become less neurotic about being served with the possible noise violation that my dogs technically qualify for.

 

YAY! for ponds photoblog

WOW! I just realized that it’s been an ENTIRE MONTH since I have blogged about anything…I need to get my ass in gear, here! In the meantime, enjoy a few pics from my pond, because I certainly do. I have froggers!

Pond Frogger

Pond frogger on a lilly pad

Lilly Pad

Lilly Pad

 

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Tis a sad day in Whoville

Today is a sad day, my friends. My beloved Cornelius has turned belly up and kicked the bucket. I have to say that I am rather upset regarding this turn of events. I mean, Cornelius wasn’t just a COOL fish, he was THE AWESOMEST fish, ever – he watched me when I was in the kitchen, he’d always get real excited whenever I was around his brandy snifter, and he was definitely a decor accessory since he was just about the same color as my kitchen walls. It was cool to watch him puff up and get all crazy over his reflection, too. I’ve walked past his fish bowl countless times this afternoon, only to catch myself sighing when I don’t see his little red and blue fins swimming around. Honestly, I noticed about 2 days ago that he was acting strangely. He had lost his voracious appetite and appeared to have a belly so swollen, he looked like he was going to give birth. It was later in that day when I noticed his equilibrium being off – and anyone that has ever had a fish knows that as soon as they start doing that sideways swimming/floating crap, it’s only a matter of time.

As I watched him quickly deteriorate today, I remembered why I used to hate having fish. I hate watching them go – it’s always very long, violent, sad process. Most of the time, you’re lucky enough to just find them floating in the morning, but when they go during a time where you keep seeing them, keep walking past them as they fight against dying…it’s really difficult. I hate death in general, be it by man, animal or vegetable, but there is something about watching a fish essentially suffocate which is really heart wrenching. Eventually, after some convulsions and incessant laps around the tank, they just stop swimming altogether or they start laying sideways and you can see them gasping for air. I always seem to end up feeling this complete and utter helplessness. The one when you know that they’re sick, but there is literally nothing that you could do for them? I hate that feeling…There were a couple of times where I had to tap the glass to see if he was actually still among us, or if he had shuffled off to meet his maker, and it was the third time I tapped that there was no response. Suddenly, and finally, my poor, ill fated Cornelius had reached the end of his all too short life span.

His funeral was short and brief, he wouldn’t have wanted me to make a fuss, but you must know that he will be missed. I will have to evaluate the joy vs resentment that this stint of owing a fish again, has brought up inside of me, before I decide if I will purchase another or not. It seems silly, but I just don’t think there will ever be another Cornelius. And I’m not really one to settle for second best anymore.

 

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Oi! Where HAVE I been??

I had always imagined that the sun would surely supernova before I ever uttered these words: I just haven’t had a lot to say lately. I know, those who know me are thinking “Is she sick?!” “OMG! She must have been on the Psych floor!” or “The girl has finally lost it” but rest assured, I am not, was not and did not. Life has just been busy and I’ve been doing all that I can to remain as active in the evenings as humanly possible, as that is what has been keeping much of my negativity at bay. Something about being outside just releases endorphines or something and I always feel BETTER about life and myself.

Anyone that I speak to knows that I have been having a fence built. Mainly, it’s to cage my 4 legged children in my yard and to alleviate everyone in the neighborhood from hearing me scream at them each time I let them outside. STAY! IN! THIS! YARD! is a call not often heard any longer, as my fantastically awesome fence is FINALLY complete, and I really couldn’t be happier about it!! It was a long time coming – I’ve lived here for 3 years now – but oh was it worth it. Both of my dogs are of the terrier variety, and both typically have more energy than me, and both often times drive me to threats of tearing off their legs within the first hour of me being home thanks to their hyperactivity. Especially Russel – I love him, but some days, I really think it would be easier to come up with my own plausible theory on the creation of the universe than it would be to cope with his “puppy-ness.” On top of him only being – OMG! He’ll be a year TOMORROW! – I totally just realized that – ::BLINK:: Anyway, on top of him being only a year old he’s a Jack Russell Terrier (and no digs on the ridiculousness of my pet’s naming conventions). Yeah, shoot me now.

Thankfully, the awesomeness that was 4 Mexican’s over the course of 3 weeks – yeah, I know, but we had a LOT of rain – has turned out to be the best thing to happen to me since the first time I heard the sound of Jimmy Page’s guitar. God bless illegal immigrants!

And, since I’ve been so wrapped up in distracting myself I managed to completely forget about Russel’s birthday, I must apologize publicly for my oversight. *I’m sorry, Russel.* And I will take the fact that you follow me to the bathroom with such blatant disregard to personal space that even Howard Stern would blush, as an acceptance of my apology.

With promises of blogging again more religiously, all-the-while continuing to work on not being so damn self deprecating:
Unrequited

 

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Easy like Sunday Mornings

Of all the places in this entire HOUSE to lay, my pups both feel the need to be as close to me as possible. Some days, I feel like they’d crawl inside of my nasal cavity or ear canal, if I let them, just to be thismuchcloser. That gray thing that they are both laying on so comfortably? Yeah, that’s my leg.

Taken with my camera phone, needless to say, quality is not what this one is about…

Lazy Sunday Mornings

 

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Sunshine does a mind good

OH! What a sight I must be:

Purple tye-dye shirt, dyed purple/red hair pulled back in a pony tail, jeans, sneakers, a Zune and a dog off of each arm, just trotting along. Through the windshields of each passing vehicle, through the sun glare and the visor-shielded faces, I could always make out a Cheshire Cat-like grin. I can imagine their thoughts as Bless that poor, INSANE girl! or What was she THINKING?! or maybe How does she have any HAIR left?! Whatever the thought may ACTUALLY be, it still IS nice to bring a smile to someones face. Even if it is at the expense of my anonymity. People NOTICE you when you’re walking up the street and have a Cairn Terrier (although mine doesn’t really look like THESE…) on the right and a Jack Russell Terrier on the left.

Yet, despite the embarrassment, despite the fact that my knees were aching as I walked up the never-ending hill, despite the fact that although they only weigh 18 pounds and 14 pounds, when they take off in opposing directions, they might as well be competitors at a tractor pull AND despite the fact that I walked passed a man who reminded me STRANGELY of my ex-ex-EX (ASSHOLE, to those who know) whom I have had horrible suspicions may be living in this area for a WHILE now….I’m probably going to walk tomorrow, too. Mostly because it makes the Terrier brothers quiet for the evening, which in turn, is worth it’s weight in the gold of my sore joints and apparitions of ex-boyfriends. In fact, I’m probably going to walk every day that I can, or at least every day that I motivate my fat ass get up OUT of my chair. Which hopefully, will be often. Or at least, more often then current, which is just a dickhair shy of never. But, with the tangible affirmation that a pair of pants, I had YET been able to squeeze into, UNTIL TODAY, now fit me, I am most likely going to continue doing what-so-ever-I-may to stay the course that is the SHRINKING OF MY ASS, and that shall be advantageous to all. It was a joyous day, indeed.

 

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