Thursday, January 17, 2008

Chubs 2

Chubs is fact, this whole thing is kinda hinky. Really.

He's been over to my place at least six times in the past year, getting loose from his crappy panel pasture and looking for companionship with the horses at my place. He has caused quite an uproar, resulting in me calling the local pony posse to do something about it twice. I hadn't seen him since October, although he did cross my mind during bad weather.

When my hub walked him home yesterday, he knew right where he was going. He was a perfect gentleman on the lead, halted easily, munched carrots, and hobbled right along compliantly. When was led up to the barn, the other two horses just looked.

Now think about that for a second.

They just looked. They didn't dash around calling. They didn't nicker, whinny, or scream. No trotting, no blowing, nothing.

Hub put him in the part panel section, and he promptly found bits of my soft, imported hay to munch on. After a few minutes, he wandered over to stand near the mare. Totally, completely at ease. When I got home, he was standing alongside her with the fenceline inbetween.

He had not really touched the really grassy local hay that was in for him, and had left half of the sweet feed my hub thought he should have (yeah well we won't go there on sudden diet changes, right?) As soon as I started feeding, I could see the "light bulb" go off and he made his way over to the inside panel, ears up and friendly. For the night, I just added some extra local hay for him to munch on. I watched him eat for a few minutes this morning and he's having some trouble taking decent mouthfuls of hay. I didn't see any quids, but he needs his teeth attended to pronto.

It is absolutely the strangest thing, his arrival causing no fuss whatever. I can only presume he was meant to be here.

First call this morning, the vet for a quick once over and a float.


Cedar View Paint Horses said...

You, my dear, are a saint. Chubs will thank you for your generosity.

suvalley said...

No saint here, just a common person with a wide streak of care ;)

Vet appt is next Tuesday, we'll take a look in his mouth. If he turns out to be mid 20s and crippled, then we'll probably give him a great summer and put him down afterwards. If he's in worse shape than that, then we'll put him down right away.

The humane thing is often the hard thing.

Cedar View Paint Horses said...

But it's for the best. Whatever time he has left will be good times for him, thanks to you.

CTG Ponies said...

Wonderful that he has found a home with you and the horses all know he's where he is supposed to be.

suvalley said...

Old Chubs got a trim today.

From the looks of his feet, it was the first time in at least six months-an awful lot of hoof wall there, poor guy.

I had tears in my eyes, watching his facial expression as the trimmer oh-so-carefully lifted legs to work on the hooves. We stopped frequently to give him some rest, so it took a good hour and a half. By the time we were done, some of the swelling on one fetlock was already starting to go down. He has pretty decent feet with good frogs, just has one front tht is very underrun, and both hinds have very high heels. I am sure some of the growth is due to how he has to stand to compensate for the damaged knees :(

All in all, he was a real trooper, and I was very proud of his ability to endure something that had to be painful-with very good manners.

Afterwards, I raked the stall clean and we watched him amble about. He moves much freer than before, but I did notice that the one front that was so swollen-he does stand with it pointed a bit. I honestly don't know if it's because of the hoof itself, or the atrocious knee. Whichever, I will be checking him this evening at feeding, to see how he's doing.

We talked about buting him for the trim, but as it turns out, he didn't need it. He just needed someone with patience and kindness (which my trimmer has in abundance) and a balanced hoof. We came a long ways towards that goal today.