Sable is our weather girl. By that I mean, if the weather is bouncing around temperature and pressure wise, I know to keep an eye on her. It is inevitable, if the atmospheric pressure is wonky, Sable’s tummy will go wonky too.
I watch for those little signs of equine tummy upset…pawing (she’s not a pawer, so when I see it, I know, tummy is going off), excessive flehmen response or a twitchy upper lip, pacing or walking in circles, turning to look at or bite at her sides, and cranky llama ears. It’s little things, things that most folks wouldn’t notice, if they didn’t know her. We are blessed to have our girls at home, so I watch for these things.
Friday was one of those days. It started with her pacing a large circle, with her head swinging in to look at her right side. I saw it from the living room window, and knew I had to get my butt outside.
When I got out there, she was lying down. Not in distress, but just lying. So I didn’t make her get up, but she did get up as I climbed the fence. She came to me, with that upper lip twitching. Oh boy, I knew I had to get on this fast, or we’d be facing a full-blown colic episode.
I keep the vet’s phone # on speed dial, both in my cell phone and on the house phone. So, a quick call, some advice, and an admonition to call him back and let him know this time! Last time this happened, I was told to walk her for 1/2 hour, and let him know if things got worse-he was more than 45 minutes out from us on another call anyways, so, I had to handle the situation until he could get to us. Well, in the half hour, she dropped a whole lot of manure, and released (what smelled like) a metric tonne of gas! So I didn’t call him back, because we didn’t need him to come out. Apparently, I was supposed to. Okay then. Now I know.
In the time I was on the phone, Sable laid down again. I left her lying, and set about to giving her a back massage. I know full well, I massage her back, and the gas typically works its way out. Boy howdy, did it! Whew. Thank goodness we were outside, because wowzers, the stink! LOL! But, typical horse owner with a horse with a tetchy tummy, I celebrated the fart. 😛
Oh and did she relaxed once that fart came out! That was a good sign. She dropped her head down onto the ground and dozed. It’s hard on a girl, to have an upset tummy, and it takes a lot of energy out of you. Especially when you can’t burp the gas out, and have to wait for it to come out the other end.
I continued to rub her back while she dozed…once I was hearing snores, I took a few pictures.
You’d never know she wasn’t feeling 100% here. Once some of the gas pressure released, she definitely felt much better.
You can see her belly is wet here…when I first came out I thought it was sweat, but no. It was from her lying in the snow. I had some cloth mitts in my pockets, so that once she got up, I could dry her belly a bit.
She got up shortly after this, and I resumed her back massage. I also tried to push the pressure point in her mouth, but she wasn’t having that. That’s something I have to work on with her more. Ever since her last deworming, she’s been mouth shy. I can’t blame her, the dewormer is yucky, yucky stuff. However, if I need in that mouth, I don’t want her flinging her head up to stop me. I can’t have that. Which means the syringe of apple sauce comes out…have to show her that it’s not always the yucky stuff when Mama wants into her mouth. 🙂
It wasn’t long after that when The Kid came home from school. She grabbed Sable’s halter and lead rope and took her for a walk…
We knew Blonde Girl was going to be just fine when she lifted her tail and dropped a huge pile of manure. Kid walked her for a while longer, and once we saw no more signs of tummy upset, we let her off halter and she ambled away. We spent the evening and night checking on her, and as the weather settled down again, she was fine. Thank goodness!