December 31, 2011

pops passed peacefully away.

Filed under: General — Carol @ 10:43 am

mo, dionne, erin brent and i all shed tears at his passing.

rest in peace popeye, you were truly overflowing with goodness and grace.
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apologies and todays worries.

Filed under: General — Carol @ 6:00 am

i have to apologise…i f#&#’d up. i went yesterday to pay off the vet bills we have accumulated since zero balance day dec. 23 so we can start 2012 vet bill debt free….i was expecting 3 thousand or so between the three vets. ok my expectation was wrong cuz i had messed up and never did fully zero balance eastridge vet. for some reason i hadn’t gone back and finished off the paying them but i thought that i did. anyway…so last night i sat down with the cheque book and the online bank account and figured out every thing to the very last penny…with yesterdays payroll to come out and the 2 grand for the last load of hay still to go thru, i think there is barely enough to pay all of the vets really off so i will try to achieve a real vet zero balance day today. but there is no money left for any extras..like dealing with the muddy areas out at the barn and i will have to dip into the money i put away for january’s wages to pay the receiver general and saints liability insurences bills.

oh well, what’s new? the juggling act continues but at least the outstanding bill balls will be not so many or so heavy. i wish i did have more of a money head but sadly i do not…actually what i really wish for was that charities did not have to worry about being sued or paying governments and accountants..i wish everything surrounding trying to do good was free! still waiting for that roast pigeon my mother told me about to fly into my open mouth…i suspect 2012 will be another long year of pigeon-less waiting.

so…my real concern for the day…

i will get dressed in a couple of minutes and go give pops his 6 am dose of pain meds. i think i will just continue on and get all of the barn guys fed and out in the field too, just like a normal day but one that starts a bit earlier. i want pops to be able to get out on the grass and graze a little and just be with his friends like he normally does.

once the vet arrives and the ending of life process starts, all normalcy for everyone disappears. i know now that this is right for pops and today is part of the deeply held promise we gave to him. and i know that in a couple of hours, pops will be free and forever at peace and i think he will be content with it.

but as pops’ life ends and peace comes to him..there will begin great loss and pain in his farm family, both human and animal. watching percy especially acknowledge and cry out against another death, is always so very hard.

oh well..i will put that fear of his pain on the back burner and give them all a very good breakfast and an early but nice and cheerful start to another day.

please let pops and percy and everyone else be ok today.

December 30, 2011

i better do a quick update on the other not so feeling great animals tonight…

Filed under: General — Carol @ 7:34 pm

tristie is in at the vets..she stopped eating and seems to have some kind of painful throat irritation going on.

esthers bloodwork and urinalysis is back…looks like cushings disease so i will book her in next week for stim testing.

bruiser is home, that is a big and nasty looking incision but he doesn’t seem to care about it too much.

black bart is still not perking up as much as i would like him too but he seems to be holding his own.

manny is not doing great, i think his time is getting close, i need to have the difficult discussion with his foster mom.

pops has been resting quietly, laying down in his stall…i will check him frequently so please try not to worry too much..for now he is comfortable and ok and if anything changes i will post an update.

10 pm update..pops is good…he was up earlier having a poop and then some more of his hay. he just easily got up again now when i gave him his next set of meds so i am sure they will last him comfortably until the next dose. i gave him an apple and finally turned off the barn light so they can all sleep undisturbed for the rest of the night.

it really is too bad he can’t have these high doses long term, they are working quite well….the normal daily 24 hour dose is 10 units and by 6 am at 20 hrs, he will have had 40 units…but it is giving him a comfortable last night.

i am glad he is feeling ok tonight.

i am so sorry you guys to be such an indecisive freak..but it is not a false alarm.

Filed under: General — Carol @ 4:17 pm

it is the end of life roller coaster ride.

i left here after looking at pops on my break and i got a bad feeling…i gave him triple the dose of pain meds last night which would still have been on board..which meant i had no idea how much pain the drugs were masking. i called the vets back and asked them to still come out this afternoon and see what they think. brent is the one who originally rescued pops and brought him here and he is deeply emotionally invested in popeye’s wellbeing.

anyway..it was brent who came late this afternoon when the big doses were finally wearing off. and he said it is popeye’s time, he said it is not just the bad foot and leg anymore..the rest of him is feeling pain from his continual overcompensation of his crippled foot. he said the thought of putting him down where he was, when he never had a chance, had made him feel sick. he said putting him down now, when he had so much more good in his life, was ok.

i am to keep giving him high doses of drugs today…he had another triple dose and i will give him another double dose after 10 pm tonight and again at 6 am in the morning. the vet made the arrrangement with ccarsons to come and pick up pops body at 9am so brent will come here at 8 am tomorrow to help pops find a peaceful end. i want the other farm animals to have some time with pops before his body is taken away.

i am supposed to work at 7 am tomorrow but work has kindly rearranged my schedule and moved my appointments to 1030 so i can be here to see pops thru it all.

so the arrangements are made, a plan is in place, we have taken care of all of the ending of life details and now the heart break and sadness can come while i make sure his last night on earth is peaceful and comfortable.
love you pops.

i am so sorry to have upset everyone..but false alarm…(this time)

Filed under: General — Carol @ 12:39 pm

pops is much better today..that triple dose of pain meds last night, did the trick and kicked him back into feeling not too bad. today he was out grazing, getting up and down as the mood struck, janice said he was even scratching his face and back leg, looking pretty relaxed and comfortable.
so today is not the day for ending pops’ life…i do not know how long we dodged this bullet for but we dodged it today.
i am so happy you are feeling better today pops!

pops has been no stranger to suffering

Filed under: General — Carol @ 5:55 am

it is true he has suffered for a very long time, with loneliness, isolation, feeling forgotten, with pain, with the extreme difficulty in just simply standing or walking. i don’t think we ever even alleviated his full suffering here although we really did try.

but please understand that pops did find some value in this and his previous life. that simple minded man moved onto a property where there lived an old and abandoned and forgotten horse..i am sure pops’ feet were already bad from the neglect he suffered before. this man knew nothing about caring for a horse but he bought him good hay and he bought him senior horse feed that he probably couldn’t really afford. and every day he went down to that field and he said hello and he fed him the food that he struggled to buy for this horse who really wasn’t even his.

life is full of suffering…all around us. sometimes it is knowingly inflicted and sometimes we just don’t know any better. it is easy to focus our anger on something we can see so plainlly…like a sweet and gentle horse who has been crippled because of simple neglect.

but the issue surrounding pops and his suffering is much bigger than that..it is about human wants and needs and basic insatiable human selfishness and greed.

someone bred him, someone…(probably many someones) bought him and sold him and used him for everything they could get and no one stood by him and gave any of this back. pops is no different than most horses out there…they are used until they are no longer of use anymore and then we turn our backs on them.

that last man who tried to care for him was not the monster in this…our entire human race is. at least that simple minded man tried in his limited ability and complete horse care ignorance to feed him and give him friendship, kindness and daily company…that was more than the people who walked away and left pops there did before.

pops is not angry at him…pops is not angry at anyone. in his 30 years plus of living, pops learned one thing…living and being used by humans means…long term suffering.

there are many horses cold and wet, starving in fields around us. there are many, many horses bought and sold and ripped away from their friends and herds, there are thousands of once beautiful and valuable lives now being loaded into slaughter trucks, terrified.

pops is no different than gideon, czar, flicka, dixie, spritely, sparkles, lahanie, and swinger..it is just that his lifelong suffering stands right before our face and we CAN”T look away.

we let this happen every single day…we accept that it happens just like the horses are forced to do because this is what humans bred them for…to be discarded and forgotten after they are done being used.

December 29, 2011

i am afraid we may be losing pops.

Filed under: General — Carol @ 6:27 pm

bru did ok with his surgeries today…only 5 extractions but the cyst was apparently very large so he has quite a big incision on his back hip. he was still pretty out of it at the end of the day so he is spending the night at the clinic and i will pick him up tomorrow on my lunch break.

maybe’s eye is healing well…we are to continue with 4 times a day antibiotic eye drops followed by the tear gel 10 minutes later. the vets want to see her again in a week to reassess the healing.

esther was taken into the vets today, she had quite a lot of blood in her urine. she had a urine spec and bloodwork done and is started on antibiotics while we wait for the test results.

both she amd maybe really enjoyed their stop over at mcdonalds on the way home. maybe ate half a cheeseburger cuz she is tiny and esther had a cheeseburger and maybe’s other half cuz she is big.

black bart is still in a cage, he looks a bit perkier tonight so i think his double antibiotics are maybe starting to kick in. thankfully he has kept his appetite and is chowing down on his second can of food today.

pops is not good. he is down in his stall and in a lot of pain tonight. i called the vets and i am pretty sure that unless he is remarkably better tomorrow, that we will have to euthanize. the vet said to go ahead and give him another whopping dose of pain meds tonight and see if that helps him be more comfortable. i will check him until i think he is feeling better and if we don’t get there, i will call again for an emergency visit to give him something stronger to last him thru out the night.

i am not willing to risk pops going thru a week of unremitting agony in the hopes of some not possible miracle. we cannot fix his foot and his leg…5 different vets have seen him and all had the same opinion…keep going with him while he is feeling good and let him go when suffering begins and life becomes a burden to him.

janice told me today the cows surrounded pops while he laid out in the field. percy stood with his head down touching noses with him and emily stood with her head held lightly upon his hip. she said pops was not worried or distressed that they were so close with him and they were obviously carefully comforting him. those cows are the most compassionate of creatures..they know pops is not well and they care.

i am hoping for an overnight miracle but it may not come and if it doesn’t, i want pops to be free.

farm dreams.

Filed under: General — Carol @ 7:42 am

2 vet runs today (ok 3 cuz one is a morning surgical drop off and late in the day pick up)…maybe goes in for her eye recheck..to me it looks MUCH, MUCH better but not quite fully healed yet. and bruiser goes in for his dental and cyst removal.

also the security cameras are being installed today….2 to moniter people coming and going and 2 for the barn for monitering any sick animals during the nights.

we are also expecting a load in of sawdust..in an effort to cut operating costs we are going to try a load instead of the shavings we usually use. apparently they break down faster than shavings which is good because our manure pile is huge!

i am so hoping once all the bills are paid that we have enough money left to do a couple of more things…we need to get the current manure pile removed and we really need to bring in a bobcat and some gravel/new hog fuel and fix up the getting far too muddy areas….i have such a phobia about farm animal foot rot and mud.

we have one huge project that we have to complete before spring…that is refencing the lower pasture…emily got out last fall on the right side and a fallen tree took out the fencing on the left side. this will be such a huge expense…not sure how we will manage it but if we want to use that field for the farm animals, we will have to find it someway.

we also need to come up with a barn area hospital/recovery/very frail barn animal shelter and small paddock….it is much needed for edith, caroline, and pops long term and temporarily for someone acutely but temporarily ill, like pete. big sigh…that will cost even more big bucks.

actually what we need is a bigger farm..anyone know anyone who could give us one? bunny keeps buying us BC49 tickets and i keep buying the 649/lottomax but so far the powers that be haven’t decided to let us win anything. message to heaven…hello there, we really would put the money to very good use!

the good news is the vancouver foundation has very kindly awarded us a $15,000 grant to tear down and rebuild a decent barn yard bird housing and outside pen area which our birds so badly need.

oh well…i can sit around and wish for a better tomorrow or i can get dressed and slog thru today.

December 28, 2011

geez! what a balls up, gross wet day in rescue.

Filed under: General — Carol @ 7:24 pm

multiple vet calls…
pest had his appointment at 830 and did test negative to both felv and fiv.

bear did have his sutures out at noon and he still has an infection in the back incision..it is better but not completely gone yet so he is switched up to baytril.

odie has a pyoderma (deep skin infection) that just is starting today so i got him in and started on antibiotics too..while he was there we checked his blood sugars which are still high so we upped his insulin dose too.

black bart went back in this afternoon..his bloodwork showed mostly infection so he went in for a convenia injection, some more sc fluids and he also got some flagyl to start.

the farm vets came out today too…
edith is much better but probably will not return to the barns..looks like we have a permanent little shop goat for now. the vets said just to keep treating her palliatively..she is doing well with it..for now at least.

pete is not well today so they had a look at him too. he is running a fever so he had some antibiotics too. we are to watch him for a possible bladder infection because apparently goats can obstruct just like cats do..if he is heading that way they will do emergency surgery to open his urethra up again.

they also checked out pops and we had the quality of life discussion..the vet said i am right, he is not doing as well as he was. we are going to try to shift up his pain meds for the next week or so and see what kind of results pops feels. if he is not feeling better then we should look at putting him down. i do not want to think about that yet.

so much for zero vet account balances..that lasted 24 freaking hours. i don’t even want to think what we racked up today!

it was pissing down rain today..the animals got soaking wet and so did all of us.

i spent between vet times in the shop with odie, benny, buddy and daphne. benny and buddy mostly slept..daphne and odie dug around in stuff and played with the toys they found.

odie is kind of a bad dog…when i was out today i shut him up in the laundry room and clipped the gate with a leash cuz he has figured out how to unlatch the gate. when i got home the gate was still clipped but he had chewed the brand new leash in half. then while i am typing this, he is digging around the desk, trying to pull the computer tower out of the way so he can get whatever he thinks is hiding behind it. i told him to stop, and like any respectable northern dog, he totally ignored me. so i tugged gently on his tail to get his attention (which it did)..and said…look here captain kirk (his new nickname cuz he insists on navigating when we are in the car)..if you will knock it off, i will give you a shortbread cookie. he agreed so i gave him the cookie and when he decided there were no more to be had…he went right back to trying to dig out the computer cables.

i will tell you what he totally hates which i think is quite funny….june’s tail. she is forever whapping him in the face with it and being blind, he can’t see it coming so he gets whapped and winces, like someone just hit him and then he realizes it is that god damn tail again so he snarls at it and tells it to piss off. this makes june even more determined to cheer him up and make him like her again so her tail goes faster and he gets whapped even more til he finally in total disgust moves out of the way.

anyway..i quite like this dog..he has a ton of personality and he is a big baby husky drama queen which i do think is pretty damn funny. and what i like best of all is…he has a sense of humour..he knows exactly what he is doing and he likes that i fully know what he is doing and appreaciate the humour of it. i think all northern dogs want us to recognise their idiosyncrasies…it makes their bad-ness even more fun.

old dog needs new great home!!

Filed under: General — Carol @ 6:45 pm

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I know SAINTS is overfull as usual but I’m hoping you can help me re-home this sweet old lady. She’s roughly 12 yrs old and has some joint pain and being treated for an ear infection but otherwise seems fine. We have had her at our clinic for the past 3 weeks trying to re-home her since she was seized by the SPCA. We didn’t have the heart to send her back to the shelter. She’s a very calm and lovely dog. Loves her walks and of course her food! If you know of anyone that may want her (and if you could post her on the blog!) please let me know! If we can find a good home for her we will send her with a big back of j/d (joint support diet) and a bottle of metacam to get her started! Please let me know if you are aware of anyone who might be a suitable match!
Thank you!
Ashley