Relative Something

*this* John W. Hays' take on things and experiences

Mounting Stress

with 4 comments

Things started out normal when I served up the evening portions of feed for the horses last night. Would that I be so lucky to experience no more drama from the horses while I’m the sole caretaker. Mia spilled some of her food, which is not out of the ordinary, but she walked away from it, which is. Her abnormal behavior held my attention long enough to recognize something was amiss. Fresh drama ensued.

She didn’t appear to be in pain but she definitely wasn’t feeling right. She laid down and rocked on each side, got up and walked a bit, then repeated. I feared she may be experiencing colic. Eventually, she began to cough up and indications aligned more with an instance of choking. I made a phone call to consult with our handler from This Old Horse, Johanne, and we agreed on a plan.

As dusk rolled to darkness, I set about haltering Mia and getting her to walk, separating her from the other horses and then removing the hay I had just set out a short time earlier. I had to run up to the shop for an extension cord so I could plug in a water bucket to give her easy access to water under the overhang. When I got back, I caught Mia scrounging for hay off the ground.

Then she made a trip down to drink from the usual waterer as if all was back to normal. Normal for her maybe. I was drained by another dose of stress on top of all the doses before in the last two months. Why do our animal issues always arise amid bad weather? Thankfully, we didn’t need to call and ask the vet to come to examine Mia.

Since she seemed to want hay, and it would serve her well for keeping warm, Johanne agreed I could make a small amount available.

I went to check on Mia one last time before going to bed and found her to be doing just fine. It seemed okay to bring Light through the gate so they could share space through the cold and snowy night.

It was snowing heavily but there was no significant wind yet. That is predicted to start later today. I don’t know if the horses have a sense of the blizzard that is about to hit but conditions are expected to get much worse for them.

Since I am on my own with the horses, we have agreed thus far on avoiding a move into the stalls and everything that entails. If the overhang proves insufficient in offering adequate protection when the winds kick up, I may be forced to make that move anyway, despite my aversion to dealing with any more stressful challenges.



Written by johnwhays

December 22, 2022 at 7:00 am

4 Responses

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  1. Good Luck


    December 23, 2022 at 10:35 pm

  2. We have had to do the same with getting a horse who appeared to have colic to walk around. Fortunately, I was not alone and it was not snowing. Unfortunately, Thoma was kicked during the process but was able to avoid most of the blow. I do not like horse drama.

    Jim Parker

    December 22, 2022 at 9:31 am

    • I have my sights set on a future where Cyndie is able to help me out there again. It’s tough filling in for the person who actually knows how to take care of horses. They sure are great animals when they are calm and collected, but, yes, the dramatic incidents are taxing.
      Happy that Thoma didn’t suffer the full impact!


      December 22, 2022 at 10:24 am

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