Sun Pony Ranch

Diary of novice (clueless) ranch owners

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


Had a scary incident with Joey last night. I was feeding in the evening - had thrown hay to the south pasture where Joey, Rio, Romeo and Jack are living currently, then threw hay to the other three pens. I came back to start doing grain - and Joey was laid out flat on his side, while the other three were eating.

This is incredibly out of character, and in fact all 4 of them had been at the fence eagerly awaiting dinner. I yelled to him a few times, but no response. Fortunately when I opened the gate to run out to him, he rolled up on his sternum. He didn't look colicey because he was so calm, but he didn't want to get up either. But soon he made an attempt on his own to stand so I encouraged him. But he never could stand all the way. He couldn't even get his front legs underneath him - for a while all four legs were bent, shakey and barley holding him up. He staggered around a bit, and it was with relief on my part when he finally went down again. I called the vet's emergency number, but had to leave a message (grrr) so I called the direct number for our actual vet, and left another message. (grrr 2)

About this time he did get up, and managed to stand all the way up though was still pretty shakey in the front. The emergency vet returned my call and I gave him the latest. He asked if he was interested in eating. I grabbed his grain bucket and sure enough he dug right in. Definitely not a colic issue then. The vet was about 45 minutes away, so suddenly I had time to stand around and wait -- never mind graining the rest of the horses.

And... my brother called! Heh - was as good a time as any to chat, so I filled him in. By the time the vet arrived it was nearly dark though, so Dave came down and shifted all the horses so we could get Joey into the pen with the light post. By this time he was nearly recovered, though. Standing quietly and would eat all the hay we wanted to hand feed him, but he wasn't interested in putting his head down to eat from the ground. And though quite willing to walk, he did still look discombobulated.

The vet was pretty baffled. Course we've only had Joey a few months, so don't know much about his history. Nothing in particular has changed in his routine recently. The vet drew blood to go do some chem panels... which could be very useful to have anyways since he is underweight and we need to know if he's getting the nutrition he needs. Beyond that though the vet will be looking for some paralysis type disorders. The blood results should be in this evening, though the vet didn't seem to hold high hopes that anything definitive would be revealed.

This morning he was (still) up and seemed completely normal, including grazing from the ground.

*keeping my fingers crossed*



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