Friday, October 26, 2012

A Precious passing of time.

Several months ago I was forwarded an email with the picture above of an old, beat up looking mare that was on the ‘to be put to sleep’ list at the Riverside Animal Shelter asking if we could help.  She had been abandoned and found roaming around rural Riverside by animal control.  EqWBR had never worked with any of the animal shelters as this point so this was a new venture for us.   
Her arrival at EqWBR 2-12-12 skin and bones with arthritic legs
We made the arrangements and thanks to a group of wonderful people got donations for transport, medical care and groceries, she needed lots of groceries.    Dr. Ryan Heaton of West Coast Equine Medicine in Fallbrook met me in a large dirt area off Hwy 76 & Hwy 15 on our way to Ramona to give her a wellness check.   Bad arthritis in her knees,  a fused pastern/fetlock area (ankle) probably from severe ringbone and that same leg having a slight bend/twist from walking on the fused foot, but other than that, heart and lungs were great and she just needed food.   We determined she was in her early 20’s.

2-12-12 heading home to EqWBR from Riverside Animal Shelter - Her wellness vet check
Food she got, while we had pasture available she was able to graze to her hearts content.  She was fed grain daily and Previcox to help with the arthritis pain and quickly she put on weight and it was astounding to watch her run through the pasture and kick up her heals even with that stiff front leg.  She got along well with other horses and had her overseeing some of the youngsters we had here, and then keeping company with some of the others.   She was a hussy around the geldings….. lots of spunk to say the least.

The grass is greener on her side. 4-20-12 two months after arrival.
Trimming her feet was a challenge since she could not sustain and balance well with the arthritis and fused leg.  She could only balance on three legs for a very short time and when she had to put weight on the fused leg it was even shorter.  We were blessed to have several patient trimmers work with her over the months.  Thank you Ilona, Claudia & Dani for her great foot care. 

We got a call from neighbor and close friends, Dawn & Clint, asking if they could borrow Precious to keep their 30+ year old mare company.  So we agreed EqWBR would continue to provide for all her needs while staying with the neighbor keeping sweet Bailey company.  They became fast friends and both continued to thrive.

A birthday present for Johanna - spending time with Precious  6-18-2012
Last week, with the colder days and nights it became apparent that the pain reliever Precious was taking wasn't enough to help the added pain caused by the cold weather and she started to struggle walking, then even standing.  To get the weight off her front leg, she transferred it to her back end and that had now started weakening.  When I went to visit her and it was so hard to watch her.  She had even started bobbing and weaving her head out of the discomfort.   Both Dawn and I, being equine practitioners knew this was very bad, chronic and treatment would only be temporary. 

On Tuesday, Dr. Christi Garfinkel came over to examine her and we came to the same conclusion.  Though her mind was good and her spirit still feisty, her poor legs could no longer support her body without causing great pain and discomfort.   The hardest decision of all was made, to release her from her pain forever and that we did.  Having to let a horse go always brings tears, even from the vet.  Quite prayers were said and Dr. G lovingly placed a beautiful fall leaf on the shoulder of her deceased body as a tribute to her life. 

Sad and tearful moments watching her pass, crossing the rainbow to heaven.  It has been a few days and I am now able to rejoice in her life and you should rejoice too.  So many people helped, in small and big ways, to make her last months on earth HAPPY and love filled.  She thrived, she ran and kicked up her heals, she squealed at the geldings like a young hussy and brought smiles and laughter with her antics to so many people. 

Precious with Bailey late summer 2012
Thank you all for your support, thoughts and prayers for this sweet mare.   Abandoned and left to fend for herself till picked up by animal control.  She was a fighter and taught us all to try just a little harder and give life all we can.   If she could, we can too!

Blessings to all who touched her life and if you are having a down day or struggles in your life, please think of Precious and her fight and will to live on and draw strength from that. 

She touched many lives with her spunk, sassy attitude and was truly a Precious treasure. 

RIP Precious mare and run pain free!

All our love,


Equine WellBeing Rescue Inc. is a 501c3 Public Charity
Donations are tax-deductible
Federal Tax ID# 45-2835562

If you would like to donate so we can continue to help horses in need and save them from starvation, abuse, abandonment, and other unfortunate circumstance, please click the donated button below or mail a check to the address below.   Your donation is appreciated so very much!

If you would prefer to send a check to EqWBR, PO Box 324, Ramona, CA  92065
The generosity of so many caring people allows us to care for these horses in need.

Thank you all so much!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Chica's Summer Vacation

Chica’s Summer Vacation August 2012

It’s the middle of August and boy has it been hot at home, over 100 degrees for many days.  I sure am glad we have air conditioning.  Who would think you would need it in San Diego, but we are 35 miles northeast of San Diego in the lower mountains and the temperature is somewhere between the coastal temps and the desert temps and this time of year the coast is 20-25 degrees cooler. 

Luckily we were going on vacation to the mountains in Arizona.  A place called the Sitgraves National Forest near a town called Forest Lakes.   Funny, because my mom graduated from Forest Lake High School in Minnesota, and both of those towns have lots of pine trees.  This was the first trip to Arizona I have been on in a couple years so I was really looking forward to it. 

The temperate in the deserts has been 110-120 during the daytime, so we left after a long, hot work week, on Friday night about 7 p.m.  We stopped in Yuma, AZ, a desert town , just across the border from California to get gas because it’s way cheaper there, filled up with fuel and on the road. 

Didn’t get too far down the highway when someone pulled beside us waving their arms for us to pull over, and we did, only to find out we had no tail lights or running lights.  Mom was driving, so she had to leave the flashers on till we got to the next exit with a gas station in a tiny place called Tachna, to see what was wrong.  It looked like the town only had the gas station and a few other buildings and that was it.  Dad tried to figure out what was wrong, but we kept blowing fuses and he couldn't fix it that late at night.  Did I mention the inside door handle broke of the door while he was trying to fix the lights?  He was pretty mad so we got back on the highway, driving with our flashers on till we got to Gila Bend.

Driving all the way with our flashers on didn't seem to be a problem.  Up and down some hills in the heat of the night, pulling a trailer, it made sense we would be driving slower so that justified our flashers being on.  It was still close to 100 degrees and it was almost midnight.   Good thing we could run the generator and the RV air conditioner the whole time while we got a couple hours sleep.  Boy is it hot in Gila Bend. 

We got up early and drove around and to the other side Phoenix as quick as we could.  It was almost 90 degrees already and it wasn't even 9am.  Up this long highway and we got to a really pretty place called Payson.  I saw I a sign for a cabin Zane Grey used to live in, don’t know who he is, but must be someone important that they were telling everyone where he lived.  Nice thing was that it was cooler up here.   A little shopping and we were on the road. 

We finally made it to camp mid-day on Saturday.  Scotty, my husband, and Bella, our daughter, who live with Miya and Steve, got to the camp several hours before us.  I was sure glad to see them. Since they live in Santee, CA, I don’t get to see them that often.   Now we would have almost a week to be together.  Scotty, handsome as ever, was very glad to see me.  I guess they are right when they say ‘absence makes the heart grow fonder’.   He looked good, really good!  Bella looks a lot like me, but has longer hair and typical teen, talks all the time.  

I don’t know that I have ever seen such tall trees and so many in one place.  We have pine trees at our house, but these are really, really tall.  Almost everyone at the camp had dogs and most of them were friendly.  I like to go visit them all, but mom gets a little mad if I am gone for too long because she has to come looking for me.  I like to visit Juan and Kathy’s the best.   What can I say, the owners are really friendly and sometimes they give me treats.   Why wouldn't I want to go visit them all?

All these people belong to a trail group called the White Mountains Open Trail Association (WMOTA), and they build and maintain trails throughout the region, and this was their monthly camping trip, this month in the Sitegraves National forest along the Mogollon Rim.  The small group of people that were there when we arrived call themselves “Razr Ratz”, funny since they don’t look anything like the rats I have seen.  They drive “side-by-side” utility vehicles that can go for miles and they carry tools and winches to move fallen trees and rocks off the trails so everyone can use them.  I think that’s really nice of them.

Every day they went out on the trails so I got the RV all to myself to nap as long as I wanted.  When they would get back, I would hear all about the trails they had been on.  Mom and dad were really disappointed after the first trip out, Bill and Lynn (they live with Lucy and Bella), saw Elk, but all mom and dad saw were a bunch of sheep grazing on both sides of the trail.  We have a sheep at home called Griffn, nice guy, but I can see why they were disappointed.

After the rides, we’d all go sit around the fire and have happy hour.  One of my favorite times because everyone would give me treats when mom wasn't looking.  I like happy hour!   Everyone would tell what happened on the trip that day and make plans for the next day.   They were driving up and down as many trails as they could find and trying to put them together to make one long ride for the group to all take on Saturday.  Each day more people arrived and sadly some had to leave, like Bill and Lynn, and Doug, Laura and her sister Donna. 

Scotty, Bella, Steve and Miya left too.  They were going to stay in Show Low and visit a place called Fort Apache and Hawley Lake.  I guess Bella got in real trouble while they were at Hawley Lake.  She was chasing after cows they let graze around the lake and went running after them, barking and got into mud so deep, she couldn't get her feet out and was stuck up to her belly.  Mud all over.  Steve had to go unstick  her and Miya was pretty mad she had to give her a bath when they got back to their RV.  Now I can say she’s a real ‘stick in the mud!”.     She must get that from her father.

It rained here a little almost every day or night.  The air was really fresh and things were green all over.  One day mom and dad went out by themselves to ride on trails further away from camp and they said it poured on them part of the time.  They were laughing about it and say they were really glad they had rain suits because they saw other people that didn't, trying to get out of the down pour by driving under the trees. 

They went for a long ride that day and parts of the trails they were on didn't get any rain.  That was also the first time they saw Elk.  All the sudden tree were running beside them so they stopped and those three crossed the trail in front of them and another eight crossed the trail behind them.  They got to watch them all, cows and babies, prance of into the woods.  Then later that same ride on a different trail they saw two bull elk, one with a huge rack run in front of them on the trail.  Guess they are quite a sight to see if you don’t have them where you live. 

One day we borrowed John and Tracie’s truck (they live with Frankie, Shadow & Lilly), so we could drive to Snowflake and Show Low to look at houses.  They want to move out here with the horses because there is so much more room.  They run a horse rescue at home and have been thinking if they had a place out here too, they could help more horses.  They already have land to grow hay, now they need a house to live in.  So we drove all over and looked at about a dozen different places.  There were three that were pretty nice.  I got to sit in the back seat all by myself and could see out all the windows, it was great.  

Several errands to run while we were there, the post office, store and Motor Vehicle Department to get something called tabs.  Dad and I hung outside while mom took care of that.  We ran into some really nice people that lived in Ramona, not far from where we live, before they moved out to the Show Low area.  They said they really liked it in Arizona.  Seems like everywhere we went, there were people who had moved there from southern California.   On the way back to camp we got caught in a really big thunder storm.  Thunder and lighting and lots of rain, we even pulled off the side of the road for a few minutes because it was raining so hard.  Wow, never see that in California.   And after the rain stopped, it smells SO good.  Got back to camp and it hadn't rained there.

More people had arrived and kept coming with everyone looking forward to that big ride on Saturday.  Lots more people at the happy hour and then they did a pot-luck, yum!   People all brought something called ‘comfort food’ and there was a lot of it.  They all seemed really happy then sat around the fire and told all kinds of stories.   Lots of laughing as they talked about something called the “flag of ill fate”.  Guess if you mess up really badly or do something pretty stupid, you get to fly the flag on your vehicle.  It sounds like someone new tries to win it each month, but John wins it more than anyone else.  If John wins it that much, they should give him a trophy or plaque or something to show how great he is at it, don’t you think?

While mom and dad were at the pot luck, they met some new people that drove over from San Diego too.  It was their first time to ride with the club and they were surprised to find two other families that lived not far from them at the same camp. They had lots to talk about and were even wondering if they knew some of the same people from back home.

Saturday morning came and it was time for the big ride.  Mom and dad did something called “tail gunner’, guess they were the last ones at the back of the ride in case anyone got lost or breaks down.  Maurice was the lead for our group, John and Tracie were lead for the other group and Juan was their tail gunner.  After all the rain we got the last few days there must have been lots of puddles because the Rzr came back covered in mud.  Glad I didn't go on the ride.  

We left first thing Sunday morning and we to see the “Rim Lakes View” not far from where we were camping.  I loved that.  We were the only ones there so I got to run around the paths, through the tall grasses and even out on the rock ledge.  Dad picked me up so I wouldn't fall off.  Boy could you ever see for miles.  It was really pretty watching the sun come up with all the trees down in the valley.   I think we were at about 7,000 feet elevation. 

After that we headed down in ‘the valley’ as everyone called it, meaning the Phoenix area.  People come up to the White Mountains to get out of the heat in the valley all summer long.  Even so, we had a nice private campsite that was free and compared to some state and national parks, there was hardly anyone here so it was wonderful. 

One stop on the way home was at Cablea’s because there isn't one anywhere close to us.  Mom said they had lots of elk, antelope and fish inside on the wall, taxidermy or something like that.  Does that mean the got a ride there in a cab?   Whatever, what I thought was so cool was that they had dog kennels outside and lots of grass to use, they even had horse stalls and water for people who wanted to shop and let their horses out of the trailer.  Pretty cool, I think!

I slept most of the way home.  Guess I was pretty exhausted after such a fun filled vacation.  Other than the heat, I will be glad to get home and see the rest of the dogs and Milo the cat and find out if they did anything fun while I was on vacation.  Hope I get to go again soon, mom and dad are lots of fun! 
Hope you enjoyed my vacation too!