Thursday, March 25, 2010

Cathing Up

I cannot believe it has been so long since I did a post, so much has happened it is hard to know where to start! If you are a friend on facebook then you know most of the things that have been taking place, but if not then you should join. We are trying to get 300 fans by the April 3rd Low Cost Gelding Clinic, so please become a fan and help us achieve our goal.

Here goes the re-cap, it’s gonna be a long one:

First, we have officially filed for our 501 (c)(3) which means we can act as a legitimate non-profit and are able to send out tax deductable receipts the day our status is confirmed. This is huge since it now allows us to really go out, fundraise, and start applying for some grant monies. We are in need of so many things, one is funds to help supplement the gelding of horses in areas where a low cost option is not available at this time! Which brings us to our second item:
Our gelding clinics are such a success that we are on our second month with a May clinic in the works. We cannot thank Dr. Dewey of Bear River Mobile Vet and Cheryl from The Shiloh Foundation enough. Without the help of these two great people, none of this would be possible. Our April 3rd clinic is full and we have added a new gelding clinic form to help with all the inquires.  We currently have a 30 horse waitlist!
Today I was out to see a sweet little donkey who was in need of a new home. Thanks to a friend on facebook, we were able to collaborate and find Lin Donald and Tom Manuel of Indian Hill Ranch and Gardens. They have been looking to add a Jenny to their herd and fell in love with little “Pixie” today. She is 3 and has never really been handled but was extremely receptive to them and was very interested in the molasses treats and carrots they brought.
Arrangements have been made to pick her up and take her home on Saturday. Erika Williamson a barefoot trimmer and friend of The Hole in the Head Gang, helped out today and is ready to assist “Pixie” and her new owners with halter breaking and basic handling. It is so nice when we can all work together to find homes for those who need them without having to send them to a rescue. Together we can do big things and today we found “Pixie” a great new home with two donkey’s ready to greet her at the gate. I cannot wait to go see her at her new home at Indian Hill Ranch and Gardens, I picture her like this in a few months...
Today I was also up at Shiloh to meet Star. Star’s owner contacted me last week and wanted to talk about us helping her daughter who owned a 22 year old horse who was “skinny”. After several phone calls I was able to talk with the equine veterinarian who last saw Star in February and confirm over the phone that dental work was done on her and at the time she was a body score of 3, but had a healthy heart.
The owner was concerned about driving all the way out to Marysville since she was under the impression that we were located in Auburn. Knowing that Star needed our help as the owner stated many times that she could not afford to feed her the special equine senior diet she required I called Shiloh. No need to beg and plead with Cheryl who has a heart of gold, she gladly agreed to allow Star to be dropped at her place. So Star was left in Cheryl’s loving hands on Wednesday afternoon.
Cheryl said she was caked in mud and diarrhea so a nice warm bath was given and then she was showed to her very own stall where she whinnied happily at the other horses at Shiloh. When I came out today, I was amazed to see her with a little stumble here and there but a sweet demeanor and content look in her eyes. I put a blanket on and left her to eat her bran mash and senior with Galazy looking over her. We are not positive that we will beable to re-home Star, so if you are interested in sponsoring her care please let us know, with your help she could have her forever home here at BITS.
It was decided that Star will make the trip here to us on Saturday, as I am coming back up to see Hoss and Little Joe do some ground lessons. Last time I saw these two they were being penned up at our February 14th gelding clinic, untouched and wild.
Today , only a few weeks after coming to Shiloh they are happy, playful, halter broke and people loving little guys. I am so proud of them and Cheryl for their progress!
Okay, now the part I have been putting off for a week or so. I promised to be upfront and honest with all of our supporters all the time, and so our March 18th euthanasia clinic went off without a hitch. It was sad as always to let these horses go, but comforting to know that because of the help of Dr. Jen Jeske, Sacramento Rendering Co. and Lisa Dixon of Whimsical Farms we were able to help owners lay to rest their beloved pets without having to compromise comfort. The cost of rendering has gone up so much that many owners are unable to afford the cost of euthanasia and therefore many horses are left suffer due to lack of funds. The horses that come to the clinic were ready, and everyone who helped out was there to comfort and help in any way they could. Frisco Bey was 33 years old and a high prized champion in his younger days. His owner was upset to let him go, but I let her know what a rare treat it was for a horse to be with one owner for all those years. He was very much loved and cared for until the end.

Sunny was TB whose owner had moved and was unable to help him in his last days. She was trying to figure out how to lay Sunny to rest being so far away. When she saw our ad she asked if we could help. Thanks to Wendy, a great volunteer, we were able to arrange pick up of Sunny and overnight stay at Whimsical Farms. She could afford the normal cost, but needed help in facilitating the procedure. She was happy to sponsor a spot for a horse in need in as a tribute to Sunny and thanks for our help. It was a pleasure to be with such a sweet guy in his last moments, as he walked out of his stall you could tell his hind end was off and he was dealing with discomfort. Sunny was a gentlemen to the end, he enjoyed a big bucket of sweet grain and quietly went to sleep.
Sis was an older mare who was never trained to ride, but was able to spend her days out to pasture in peace. She had a few young ones who loved to brush and love on her into her old age. As the years went on she got old and her body began to fail her, so much so that she was unable to stand so that her front hooves could be trimmed. She was laid to rest knowing tons of love her whole life.
Angel was a sweet, loving 2 year old with sever club foot in both front legs. Her condition could not be corrected and she was uncomfortable. It is such a shame because this little one was as kind as they come. We are happy she was loved in her short time here and never knew a bad day.
Cammie, Walter and JP were all older horses who had been surrendered over to a rescue in the area. All were elderly and having a hard time getting around. It is so hard when a body fails, but there pain is over and they are in a better place now.
Sammy was brought to our clinic after he went blind in his second eye. He has been the beloved horse for a 4 year old cowboy for the last year and has known love, love, love from his family. The recent loss of sight was hard on him and he was showing signs of nerve damage. His owners wanted him to be laid to rest prior to any further deterioration. His owner stayed with him until the end; he was extremely grateful for all Sammy had taught his little boy.
Hope was a mare who had been rescued form a feedlot and then surrendered after her new owner realized how hard it was to keep and care for a horse. That was 4 years ago and Hope has known only comfort and love at her home with Lisa. Her eye was like this when she came,
and so was her bum knee. This winter was the worst on Hope, and she showed signs of pain and struggle more and more each day. There was little else to do to relieve her discomfort, so with tears in her eyes, Lisa let Hope go.
Our last girl was in retirement for 2 years with a mummified foal in her belly. She was lame the day her owner acquired her, but was now hurting too much to function. Lacey was so lucky to get 2 good years in at the end. She was extremely cherished and loved.
At the end of the day I was sad and tired, but thankful for all the help we received. Without compassion and understanding, we would not be able to help those who need it right now. I was not feeling so great as I stopped by my cousins house on my way back home, but thanks to a little dog named Thistle I had a great laugh as I was locked out of my car. Waiting for the tow truck to arrive with tears of laughter in my eyes I silently thanked God for all the animals in our lives, is there a better way to end a day?

We strive to help those who want the best for their horses. Today with the job loss and foreclosure rates horse owners are having to make tough choices and we promise to be there to assist them in any way we can. It does not all have to be doom and gloom, this week we were able to re-home a lovely little Jenny, save Star from further starvation and help 10 horse owners give their horses the respect they deserved at the end. Now I am off to write an article on our gelding clinic for an e-magazine with 22,000 subscribers. I will post the link once it is out. And if you missed it, BITS was featured in the other day….

1 comment:

  1. Having lost 3 last year it is never an easy thing to go through. My thoughts are with all of those who let their horses go, but I also wish to extend the feelings of gratitude on behalf of their horses.

    The owners were thoughtful enough to allow the horses a peaceful ending in return for all the joy horse has brought them. They will be frolicing in heaven in green pastures now, waiting for the day you can join them.