Wednesday, January 13, 2010

the first of a few warm days!

Although it was really cold this morning, the day warmed up to about 46 degrees, which felt downright tropical after the last few weeks. My morning relief was complete after breakfast tubs when Salina walked out to the gate that leads to the front field. She has not asked to go out with the entire herd in awhile, and although she will always willingly walk out if you lead her, it was nice to see her at the gate.

Of course as soon as I rushed to open it, Keil Bay came up and wanted to visit, so we spent a minute clarifying that no, he wasn't going into the barnyard. He headed back to his hay pile and Salina and the donkeys walked through.

For about an hour after breakfast the entire herd stood out front soaking up sunshine.

After some time spent enjoying the horses and donkeys, I discovered that Keats, our one solid black cat, had a very yucky ear thing going on. Daughter and I swabbed it out and dislodged some of the gunk, and when I checked on her later in the day it was cleaner than it had been. Tonight husband took a turn. She is not rubbing or scratching it, is eating normally and seems comfortable and not in pain - and while it is fairly gross, I already have a vet consult on Friday morning, so unless something worsens tomorrow I'll put that on my list to address then.

When I went out to the barn again I found Salina and the donkeys in the back field. She hasn't been back there in over a month, and she was checking things out. The donkeys were quite happy to escort her. The geldings had traveled to the far corner of the front field where they were nosing a patch of red clay.

This time of year I often leave everything open so they can range around and eat hay and munch on whatever they can find growing. Unfortunately there isn't much growing - so they chew tree bark and dig for minerals - it's usually late January/early February when they seem to start craving grass. Last year I gave them a month of Barlean's Greens in their feed tubs, which I think helped alleviate the intense desire for spring.

Late this afternoon daughter hopped on Cody in the back field and walked him around a little bareback and with no bridle/halter. He was pretty good for a few minutes but then seemed to be heading off into the sunset with her - until we realized he was going to the back gate to the arena, where he patiently waited until I went and opened it. I had to laugh - I guess this means he is ready to go back to work!

I barely got inside this evening before I had to break up a cat encounter between Dickens E. Wickens and our neighbor cat. When I finally got the neighbor cat to go home and Dickens to come inside, they had been through two skirmishes, two containers of cold water tossed at them, and a big flashlight beamed into their eyes. And Dickens was holding up one paw. The list for Friday seemed to be growing, but then I realized he was just holding up one paw and then the other, almost in a slow motion kneading gesture. He ate dinner and seems fine.

It's too early for spring to be in the air, but it almost felt that way today! Tomorrow should be even better, with temps in the 50s. If I don't post about a ride on Keil Bay, someone please fuss at me!


Michelle said...

Sounds lovely! Yesterday was nice here as well and I couldn't wait to go hop on Tiny! (Unfortunately, my spring fever got the best of me and I was ill equipped for the sudden chill that arrived by the time I saddled up to ride!)
Here's to hoping that this week continues to improve. I'm ready to thaw out!

billie said...

Yay, Michelle! Glad you are getting some warmer air and some riding time!

Grey Horse Matters said...

Sounds like a good day,except for the skirmishes and poor Keats. Hope he feels better soon. Now go get on that big beautiful bay and take a walk around!

billie said...

I did! Will write about it tomorrow... :)