Sunday, March 15, 2009

Bad Girl!

Yesterday I was a bad, bad girl.  You see I'm a teacher by trade and this time of year is report card time which incidentally are due on my principal's desk Monday.  You may be wondering what the big deal is - but here we don't do the traditional report card with A,B,C,D and a comment.  Nope our report cards are over 3 page long documents with small type.  Pretty much all comments.  I'd say it takes about 20-30 hours from start to finish to do them - depending on how hard I work.  And I've kinda sorta started them.  

Why am I a bad girl?  Yesterday I spent the day outside with the animals.  Not inside in my office working.  I must admit I had a great time.  I went to town, to the feed mill and bought some plain oats.  Then I mixed up Whiskey's meds with applesauce and oats.  Caught Whiskey, brushed while she ATE HER OATS!!!!  This picky mare has been driving me nuts because I don't want to have to inject her twice a day or shove meds down her throat twice a day but she finally, finally ate her drugs!  Of course she wouldn't eat them again later but she did this morning so I don't know what her issue is.

Roxy, the foxy little girl actually let me catch her.  Yep, that's right I caught her without the chase game we normally have to do.  I must admit I've been working with her each night when I grain, just giving her some scratches and pets, not even making an attempt to go to her head.  And it's paying off.  I tied her up and gave her some nice brushing, then I pulled from her mane for a DNA sample to verify her parentage for AQHA.  I'm really excited about this little horse, I think she's going to be one of those special ones.  She's really starting to bloom hanging out with my superstar Whiskey, learning all of her nice personable traits.  (According to Parelli, young horses will learn behaviors from the older horses around them.)  I can't wait for the weather to stabilize because I'm going to do a whole bunch of the horsemanship with her.  Just imagine how steady and quiet, what a great foundation she'll have when it comes time to start her...  

Next, I checked out the cows.  The calves are starting to feel spunky bucking and staggering around the pen.  Then I locked Reba in jail, and had Tessa move the sheep into the plowed out corral (snow is way too deep to attempt anything in the fields).  And we went to work.  Tessa was so happy and focused to work.  We worked on a few minor things like not cutting corners on the short flanks and had a blast.  And then it was Reba's turn.  She ran and ran and ran.  Once she had the edge off I started to work on switching directions and going to balance when bringing the sheep to me.  She did awesome.  As much as it pains me to say this (I really love Tessa) but Reba is going to make a far better working dog.  She's got a better balance of instinct and biddability.  That means she wants to work, reads stock well and wants to listen to you.  All good things.

Once done I gave Bella some love.  She's obviously been eating fresh calf poop and maybe got some afterbirth (we remove it from the pens as soon as possible) because Bella had the trots.  Her poor bum was a sickly yellowy color - for those of you with calves think fresh baby poop color.  Descriptive I know.  I have this great stuff from the vet called Diarsanyl which is basically doggy Pepto Bismal.  (Tessa has such abdominal issues I always have a tube of the stuff.)  It'll coat her intestines and give her a chance to feel better.  The problem with dogs is if they get diarrhea too bad then it just gets worse.  So I stopped it before it got started and I'm happy to note her bum looks much better today.  Poor girl, the look on her face when I treated her was one of shock and horror -  you could just see her saying "What have I done to you?".

So now, as I continue to procrastinate by blogging and not working, I'm headed outside to get a picture of the snowy horses - yep that's right it's snowing - AGAIN - so I can post it with this blog.  
In the pictures:  Roxy feeling GOOD!  and Bella watching the action.

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