Saturday, October 31, 2009

Autumn Wind--the second day

Since the little colt had trouble with the heat on his first day, I decided to put him & Meg in the barn the next day. I fixed it up so they also had space in the aisle way and I put the two big box fans running in the stall and aisle. Autumn Wind had a good time exploring the new space and Meg settled in to eating her hay. All was well.
Until late afternoon when Meg started to colic. I had no reason to know for sure, but really believed that it was because she was in the barn. I gave her a banamine shot & moved them back outside that evening.
The next day, I finally had time to call her former owner and was telling her about Meg's colt and the ensuing troubles. The former owner said "Oh, we never could keep Meg in the barn as she would always colic. We had to keep her in the pasture all the time."
Well, gee. It sure would have been nice of her to tell me that so I could have saved Meg & myself a whole lot of stress.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Autumn Wind, the second day--Something About Meg

Returning to 1996, before continuing the saga of Autumn Wind, newly born, we need to know something about Meg, his dam.
Meg was not exactly my most typey Morgan; but she did have good using horse conformation & a wonderful pedigree heavy in the old Brunk Morgans (registered name, Kennel's Amarillo Meg). I first knew of Meg many years before I ever had her. Some folks in Missouri found her at the Iowa home of her breeder, an elderly man who was not doing so well anymore. Meg had been born in a pasture, raised in the pasture & was bred & had her foals in the pasture and had little contact with humans. She went to Missouri with a colt at side and when the Missouri folks went to register the colt, found that he did not bloodtype (this was the days before DNA) to the supposed sire. Opps. It took time & money & work, but finally the colt's sire was found. He was now a gelding in another state.
The Missouri people had told me about finding Meg, sent me photos, and kept me updated on the sire search. There was something about Meg that spoke to me. But it was some years later before she came up for sale. I did not hesitate; I bought her.
I knew that she was untrained so had her shipped direct to my trainer. She arrived with a hoof abcess so spent some time standing in a bucket until that resolved. Jennie (shown mounted in the photos) got her going nicely under saddle.
However, the sellers left out a lot of information about her that I had to figure out as we went along. Meg never gave indication that she had ever been abused, but she surely did not really trust humans. It was obvious that she had been a pasture broodmare and rarely handled and saw no real need for humans. But her good nature allowed her to tolerate hoof care and training and handling with good grace.
She did have sporadic mystery colic. It would happen only at dinner feeding & would go away after a shot of banamine. She had no sand that we could detect in her fecal matter and we just could not put a reason to her colics.
And then came the day after foaling. [to be continued]

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Hunting Cat Follies, Part 2

Feathers Everywhere!

I arrive home from the store to find feathers all over the living room. Apparently one of the cats managed to catch a bird on the cat patio & of course brought it inside. Feathers were on the couch, under the couch, in the bookcases, under the computer table, in the photo album table, drifting into the kitchen and dining room and heading for the bedrooms. This is not the first time they have brought a caught bird into the house but it is a rare occurrence. A lot of vacuuming later, the feathers were cleaned up.
I really don't like it when they get a bird. But I figure that any bird that can be caught by front claws removed cats (done before I ever had them) deserves to be removed from the breeding population.
I would rather they catch rodents which are destructive and messy and noisy (Ever hear one chewing on your house? It gets very loud.) and dangerous (They will chew the insulation off electrical wires.). Oh well, the cats do have fun.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Hunting Cat Follies, Part 1

Oh, Mighty Hunting Cat, it is 2-freaking-30 A. M.!

I was comfy in bed, in that state of not really awake, but neither asleep, when I heard "Sproing" from outside on the cat patio. It was the sound of a cat bouncing off the fence of the cat patio. I knew what was to come next, and, sure enough, next came "Thud. Crash. Flapppppp." This was the sound of a cat blasting into the house through the cat flap. Then came the "Yowwwl. YOWL!" as he called me to come and admire him and his catch. I got up, turned on a light, and admired him and his caught mouse. While I am always glad when he catches a rodent coming into or out of the house, I did wish it was not 2:30 in the morning. He then proceeded to play with it for nearly 1/2 hour.
A while back, I read in a book that domestic cats play with their catch because they are not hungry enough to eat it. They have the instinct to hunt, but not the hunger to turn off the hunt instinct and eat it. So they continue to hunt what they have already caught. And that is why they often do not eat it at all or eat only choice parts.
The Mighty Hunting Cat often does not eat his catch. And when he does eat all or part of it, he usually barfs it back up shortly afterwards.
I did get back to sleep, finally, with one less rodent living under the house.