Thursday, April 22, 2010

Monday, when I took Jack to the vet, I got there, went in, sat down on the bench holding the poor sick Jack, and began my wait on the vet. A rather large man already seated, wore a muscle shirt with his granite company advertisement on it, baggy baskeball player type shorts, tall white socks, and sandals. His glasses were thick as bottle bottoms and he looked like he uncomfortably felt he didn't fit the bench we were perched on, but he had a quiet and peaceful energy to him. He glanced over at Jack and said "sick puppy huh?" And so we picked up a conversation of two folks who didn't know each other but were at a place for a shared reason, our pets' health.

His next comment was, "My grandfather would roll over in his grave at this". He was making a reference to the tv that was on in the waiting room talking about pet insurance, pet health, Jack being sick, the reasons of our both being here, his dog that he was waiting on, and how things have changed so drastically in how we have come to treat our pets medically. "In my grandather's day, or even my dad's", he said, "the dogs lived in the yard, no fence, got table scraps, no shots, no vets,  and if they got sick or hurt they got a kind bullet to ease them on to the next life."

It really has changed, in my memory of having dogs, as to the level of sophistication of care for them. I know more about their dietary needs, or in Jack's case what he shouldn't eat, than I do about my own. When I was a kid, the dogs got rabies shots yearly and that was it. None of them ever went to the vet for much else unless they got hit by a car, since no leash law had them running around loose. How many dogs did I know growing up  whose lives were ended prematurely by the wheel of an auto? Many. But the idea of the level of care we now provide is amazing from where it came from.

The question looms then, at what point is it justified to help so much in their lives and what is their health worth? What is their financial value? I speak of pets, yard dogs, with no fancy pedigree, no breeding value, just an animal that has found its way into your life and home, and needs help. Like Jack. How much do you go out on the financial limb when the wallet of the home is stretched bare from the world economic dump we are all in? I don't really know and am regretably, getting very close to having to decide. Donations are being accepted.

Jack remains at the clinic with IV drip providing dilution to the fat running thru his veins and a bit of some form of sugar to keep his strength up since the poor boy hasn't had food since Monday ingestion of the half gallon of grease. His blood markers have improved quite a bit and he has good moments and then some where the pain is a bit too much and needs coaxing away. My hope is for a good night and a good report tomorrow so that he can come home to finish the recouperation. We shall see on that.

Today, though, was a day of moving horses around the different paddocks, regrouping, and such to get ready for the arrival of Joline's foal, due in roughly 3 weeks. Joline is very far from being a spring chicken and I am really trying to keep stress for her at a minimum doing this, and so it was a process begun today. I moved her and Robijn into the paddock where the silly fillies, the 3 year old Flemmingh sisters have been hanging out for some time, and them to the paddock by the pond. Moving, disrupting the norm, always makes me stress, cause I never know what they will do to hurt themselves, especially young ones. As I turned the out, sure enough, up came the tails and up came the heads, and off they went.

These fillies are so laid back in nature normally and rarely get above an amble, that I haven't really had a chance to watch them in a long time. So today was great. It was the affirmation of why I bred those mares to that stallion. These girls are some kind of fancy. Now that they have shed winter fuzz and are glossy, round, and are looking like young adult horses, to combine that with their absolutley outstanding movement, was just a treat. I was absorbed in the beauty of their grace and athletic energy. The saying goes, that to judge young horses, to look at them at 3 days, 3 months, and then 3 years. Now at almost 3 years, these fillies are a delight and once again, open my eyes to optimism and potential. They are almost 25 years worth of what I have been breeding for. Nice to get a spot of high reward for your efforts sometimes.

So tomorrow, my best laid plans, will be to finish cutting the grass in the bottom below the pond dam, bush hog the front field as well, get a carriage drive in with Sunset, and very hopefully, go pick up my over eating, fatapotomus, Jack.   

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