Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Rainy Days...and Haflingers!

First of all, thanks for the happy birthday wishes to all who sent them!

Though a bit rainy and chilly in badgerland, it was another fun day. I have this feeling like even a bad day out an ambulatory equine calls is better than being always stuck in the office! Our first call was to give a shot of Desorelin to a mare This drug is a GnRH analogue that will trigger this mare to ovulate in a fairly reliable time period (~30 hours after the shot is given) so that she can be bred via AI. She had a 35 mm follicle yesterday (a "breedable" follicle, as we say), so she should be ready to go! We also checked on a stallion that had injured himself by running a T-post up under his left front leg and behind his scapula several weeks ago. Amazingly, he managed to miss of the vital structures near that area and, fortunately, the wound is looking great!

After that, a narcoleptic horse had to be updated on his vaccinations and needed to have his teeth checked. Narcolepsy can be a particularly dangerous thing in a horse, especially if you are riding when he has an episode! Fortunately, this particular horse is an aged lawn ornament and is never ridden. Next stop was to check on a horse with an abscess on his neck. It was lanced and a drain was placed. It was fairly gross as well...all kinds of "chunky" (for lack of a better word) pus came out. Up next was a prepurchase exam and some vaccinations. After that, we went to pull blood for a Coggins...and got the typical "while you are here, would you mind looking at..." question. That lead to checking another three horses at the farm, one of whom needed a West Nile booster, another who won't gain weight and yet another that is rubbing his tail.

And now for more horse fair videos! Following are three videos of some Haflingers during their breed demo. I spoke to some of the Haflinger people back in the barns and I must say that they were some of the nicest and approachable people there! Remember, this is was the third day of HUGE horse fair -- a day after 27,000+ people had come through -- so I would understand if some of the exhibitors were just a little bit sick of all of the noise and people and silly questions. Even so, the Haflinger folks were great, answering all of my own silly questions with enthusiasm and proudly introducing me to their horses and telling me all about them. The Icelandic people were the same way. If I procure future horses purely on how nice and happy their owners seem to be, it's Haflingers and Icelandics all the way! :)

And here are two videos of two beautiful Fell Ponies. They look like perfect minature draft horses, don't they? Very beautiful, sweet little horses! Both of the Fells in the videos are stallions. Grey Fell Ponies are extremely rare (about 1% of Fells)! I particularly love this line in their official breed standard: "The Fell Pony should be constitutionally as hard as iron and show good pony characteristics with the unmistakable appearance of hardiness peculiar to mountain ponies, and at the same time, have a lively and alert appearance and great bone."

That's it for now! I'll post the last of my horse fair videos tomorrow.

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