Well the title is a quote from Hamlet but it fits this post well enough .
the next quote is the status I posted on FB this morning ,which will explain ,I hope where this train of though sprung from
"I have laughingly said in the past that horses are born looking for a place to die. Just because I was laughing doesn't mean I was wrong . Treating a lovely huge gouge in Cactus' leg for the foreseeable future.A long way from his heart but still..."
Got up this morning at my usual time "sleepy o'clock" and started to have a cup of coffee, but the horses were talking already so I headed out to feed.Most are still on pasture but I have a few that are being supplemented with hay now . Fix did his usual morning dance and Jewels and Harley were good .Then I got to Cactus , all seemed well with him as he rushed up to meet me,then I glanced down.He had a gash above his knee about the sized of a deck of cards ,with a skin flap hanging .Sigh here we go !
I let him eat for a bit while I gathered supplies then haltered him(though why I bother I don't know he is a peach to treat!) and set to work, he stood well and let me clean and examine the wound ,the skin flap may or may not slough off or may need to be cut off in time but because the wound was so fresh I decided to dress it in place .
which is where we come to the title of this post ...
I try very hard to keep a full first aid kit on hand for the horses(also for me ) .Dressing supplies , wound treatments etc. Why? because very often the faster you can treat a wound the better that chance are of it healing well.
Not only by having supplies, but by having eyes on your horses as often as you can.The difference between seeing a wound in the first hours to day that it occurs and a couple days in can be huge . As for that skin flap? well if it even stands a chance of adhering back it had to be dealt with PDQ, that said it still may come off, I just felt as angry and as fresh as the wound was it was maybe kinder to let it be before poking around in it more,the fate of that flap will be decided in a couple days , but letting the inflammation go down for a bit won't hurt him.
Readiness is also in educating ourselves.
Educating in how to manage wounds, how to bandage , how to assess, whether the wound is in fact something we can manage on our own or whether we need veterinary intervention.
And with that ,how do we report and request service from our vet should we need them.
Yes they will weed though the ramblings of a panicked phone call, but they are far better able to help you if you can report clearly what has happened , the history of the animal as it pertains to the current incident . Vital signs etc. Building a relationship with your vet is also a good idea, (after all not everyone has an honorary niece as a vet! color me spoiled!LOL) Its very nice when they know who and where you are.
And readiness, in the handling of our animals. Cactus is a good boy , and due to the injuries he sustained before I had him , has had his legs handles A LOT.Plus he is very trusting and sensible
But what about others, I have had a couple situations over the years where a horse has been injured ,the horse panicked My old Jewels mare comes to mind and others ) what is the plan then? well I had a set up for the cattle that I was able to run her into get her in a small enough space without her panicking and we were from there able the ge the vet to sedate her. However you do it , you need to have some form of a plan , and some form of facility to make it happen. But the best course of action is to have them used to being handled and trusting you so that when they are injured and upset , you are the safe place . Easy enough to do with the average pony or one you have raised, but what about the rescues or the adopted Mustangs?
Have a plan
Have a full kit
Keep your eyes open
and as always
That's it for me for the moment , hope everyone has a great weekend , and has few or no occasions to dip into those first aid supplies!
Welcome to Fern Valley
Here in central Alberta prime farm country,my husband Martin and I work together raising beef cattle and Appaloosa horses. Fern valley appaloosas have long been known for their quality of temperament conformation and color.I have recently rediscovered a love of writing and have published 2 collections of poetry. "Telling Tails" and Tails Trails and Campfire stories" . I look forward to a future spreading my wings as an author and as a horse woman .