Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Yet another barn fire

Sitting in the family room as I write this, my view is of the birdfeeders which is quite active this time of day. I mix a variety of feeds and thus rewarded with a colorful display outside of a 12 foot wide window. Cecil the cat usually likes to walk on the sill pausing from time to time as something catches his eye. But today he and Ripley are sunning themselves...

and yet just as life continues.... I heard about another barn fire on Monday, and once again struggle to grasp what seems to have become an epidemic. Is it because I have become more aware of them since Suki's barn fire, or has there been an increase in the frequency? Sometimes it feels as though I am obsessed with barn fires. The most recent one occurred in Montanna at the home of Martha McDowell, an upper level US eventer. Martha was featured in an article in April 2012 Practical Horseman, describing how this busy mother of 4 manages an upper level eventing career. The initial news items about the fire were very basic with little information available at that time. A student who was asleep in a nearby trailer woke to see the fire, but when firefighters arrived 20 minutes later there was nothing that could be done for the 19 horses housed inside. While some of them belong to Martha, many were the beloved partners of boarders. This article appeared yesterday, and I believe that it really captures the devestation surrounding this tragedy. Reading the quotes from owners brought me to heart goes out to them, as once again, I am reminded just how fortunate I am that Suki survived. I don't know why the link is not appearing as an actual link...
Suki has a new habit if I arrive at the barn while she is still outside. There is a second gate to her pasture which is near the front of the barn. When I get out of my car she and Banker walk over to that gate, hanging their heads over for treats, without the threat of the hot wire that is on the fence. The Aquafor seems to be working quite well on Suki's neck, and it appears to be not as dry the next day. With cooler temperatures the girls are back to wearing heavy sheets, at least for now. Suki's green Rambo has a lovely sheen of grease on areas that are not covered by the shell. The shell itself is completely disgusting and I should have taken advantage of this cooler weather to use the heavier mesh sheet with the pocket while I wash the shell. It is supposed to be pretty chilly over the weekend so I will wash it at that time (hopefully I will remember). Sunday night I had left Suki without her padded bandage on the graft site (not by choice)but with the potential of remaining inside on Monday because of rain I felt pretty safe. On Monday Suki was outside briefly in the paddock between rain showers while her stall was being cleaned but didn't roll...YAY! Looks great!

Nikki had her teeth checked on Monday. Overall they looked good, with the exception of two loose baby incisors that the dentist removed. I'll bet that was the reason for the head tilting while on the lunge line. I think she may have been trying to push the bit against her teeth. It was interesting, though how while under saddle she didn't try to do that, accepting the bit as willingly and softly as she usually does. The puffiness in Nikki's ankle seems to have gone down a bit but I decided not to work her on Tuesday anyway. Meghan will take a look today. I asked her to only ride her on the flat, because I don't want the extra strain of over fences work. We are supposed to go to a hunter show on Sunday, but I am considering not having her go to this one. In addition to the ankle, it is supposed to be a bit rainy, which could make the footing sloppy adding stress to that ankle. I would rather be overly cautious than cause additional harm. Nikki really does not appear to be sore on it so maybe I am just a worrywart! I will be curious to see what Meghan has to say.

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