Sunday 21 August 2016

Horses and more horses

Well, the Brabant Stud we leased took a turn for the worse at the beginning of summer. He become seriously ill and we thought we would lose him. With daily medical attention he slowly made a recovery ( he got an infection in his leg that turned septic). Due to the massive doses of antibiotics, his loss of condition and difficulty in moving we were not sure if he would be able to cover the mares we had.
He has since made a good turn and is well on the road to recovery.

Last week we decided to preg test some of the mares, and so far the three we tested are all in foal to him.
So, we are all super excited to get some brabant babies from him next year.

Other news, Jess bred her Quarter horse mare Loretta and she too is in foal to a lovely quarter horse stud. Next year our spring should be full of lambs, calves and foals.

The baby we had this spring is doing just great. She now has a name and that is "Sandy", however looking at her markings she should perhaps have been called "Chicky" or "Ducky"..

Sandy is doing great and will be my future riding horse, being draft x quarter, she should make a great mountain horse. She is pretty a can be.

Missy, our Brabant mare did not foal this year, we had hoped she was bred last year, but she came up empty. She will still be preg tested to see if she caught this year.

Other horse news, Smoky and Crackers have had a fair amount of cattle work to do, these past few weeks.
Crackers is heading back to college with Jess,
and both should further their education this coming year.

The two new pups are also expanding their education,
They are doing great with the sheep so a meet and greet with the big horses was next on their to do list.

Some advice from Sherlock Homes for young Kushi:
"Horse's are dangerous at both ends and crafty in the middle." 

So, far all is good and the horses are pretty gentle with the pups.

Wednesday 10 August 2016

Some interesting reading about LGD

A small scale study conducted in Australia looking into "how" LGD work... It was found in this study that it is not as territorial as some people think, as the dogs did not seem too concerned about predators entering their territory, however they did reduce /prevent large scale predation by "shepherding behaviour and boisterous vocalisations of guardian dog".
Brings some interesting discussion points to mind about close and territorial guarding, predator dog interactions, displacement of predators, terminology ( they authors talk about shepherding behaviour in LGD).
Would be interesting to redo this study here in Canada with the larger and different specie predators such as cougar and bear. Looking at various husbandry measures would also be interesting; range land, cut block vs pasture set up, various LGD breeds, perhaps the maremmas are less territorial than some other breeds?
 Any summer student looking for a research project? Here is the study:

Monday 8 August 2016

Happy Birthday Roy

Aaah sweet sixteen!
I suppose it is more like sixteen going on 14 for you!
Happy birthday to my most favorite son.
You are sweet, kind, loving, affectionate, a great help, fun, hard working and oh so stubborn.
I will take credit for all the first few qualities and dad is probably responsible for the others!

Your arrival into this world 16 years ago was fairly eventful.
You held off coming into this world until about midnight, and then it rapidly became a medical emergency and you needed out in a hurry.
That trend has somehow remained with you, procrastination and then all engines go..

AS I mentioned it was quite eventful, after a whole day of contractions and little progress, the doctors decided that your birth was not imminent and you would probably hold off until the following day.
Eric was sent home to go and sleep and I remained in the hospital under observation.. just in case.

Close to midnight I thought that my water had finally broken and that you would now decide it was time for the grand entry.
I quietly mentioned it to the nurse, she checked and pandemonium broke out. Instead of my waters breaking it was blood.
Gynecologist was paged, ultrasounds made and the conclusion was that my placenta had separated from the uterus.
You needed to get out as you were in distress, and the only way was an emergency c-section.

The nurse explained that they would get the operation room ready, call in the nurses and  anesthesiologist. I could give Eric a call but they certainly would not wait for him to arrive.
When things around me get chaotic, I calm right down, so I called Eric and in a calm tone of voice casually mentioned that the doctors decided to do a c-section and that he should maybe make his way to the hospital. As I was super calm, Eric did not think that it was an emergency. He took a shower, shaved, changed and then hoped into the car.

Meanwhile at the hospital, I was wheeled to the operating room, a male nurse rushed in half dressed as he did get the emergency call. We waited in the hall as the rest of the medical crew arrived.
Everyone was getting ready when someone realized that the operating room door was locked.
The key was apparently in the next town over and needed to be collected.

Eric was slowly heading to the hospital at midnight, he saw a vehicle driving behind him at a high speed, it started to flash its lights, Eric, being Eric found this rude and decided to drive in the middle of the road refusing to allow this rude and obnoxious driver to pass. At a certain part of the road the vehicle could finally pass him.

As I am waiting in the hallway with  the medical team for the nurse with the key to arrive.
At a certain point the nurse comes in and apologizes for being a little slow, some person was obstructing the road and slowing her down...A few minutes later Eric casually strolls in, he mentions to us about some crazy driver on the road on the way to the hospital...
The realization at that moment was rather comical.

Anyway, within a few minutes they had me in the operating room, ready to go in and get you.
You were born, safely.
I remember looking over to you while they were still closing me up, you were laying on your stomach and you were the cutest thing ever. You had these small black hairs covering your body and I remember thinking that you looked like a monkey baby.

After, your abrupt entry into this world you thrived.
You are now a big strong strapping young man, still full of fun and games.
You are a joy to be around, although we regularly have to roll our eyes at you.

You are a great help on the ranch, you are the best help with puppy photo's and you are the animal hugger supreme.

Happy birthday Roy, we are happy you are our kid,
 and my favorite son ever!

Saturday 6 August 2016

Wild flower glory

I love weeds, because they are the ultimate in wild flowers.

Was out in the bush and took some photo's of how fluffy/whimsical/pretty nature can be. The textures, colours and feel are amazing and all these pictures where taken within a few square feet.
Enjoy the "feel" of these wild flowers.

“A weed is but an unloved flower.” 

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