It's taking a lot of patience, but we are getting better. Slowly but surely, which is a good thing because Douglas wants someone to throw his ball! Thank you everyone so much for the get well wishes! Since there is only the two of us here we always plan for how to manage things if one of us gets sick, but it was a shock to both of us this time that Kevin went down with Bronchitis and me with a sinus infection at the same time. As anyone with a farm knows, no matter how bad you feel, some work has to be done, animals have to be feed, stalls need to be cleaned, no matter what.
I'm not 100%, I still can't hear very well , but I did feel improvement finally today for the first time. I was able to do some work, although out of breath, I had a little more energy. Kevin returned to evaporating sap today. We were ever so fortunate to get a cold spell in the last week which made the sap stop running, and now today, it's warm and running again just as we get back on our feet. Our cousin Greg stopped by to help, ah, work...
Monday night when I went up to put the animals in the barn for the evening, Izzie was limping quite suddenly. I got her inside and she let me feel her leg and look at her front foot. There was no heat, swelling, and nothing stuck in her foot. She could stand fine, just didn't want to put any pressure on that foot and was sitting it down funny.
Because of her having extra digits on her front feet, and having bad legs, we've feared something like this. The Vet said her feet might give out when she grows older and that's always been our biggest fear, but we wanted to give her a chance at life so we took her in and decided to do the best we could for as long as we could.
We've come this far. I let her rest yesterday and stay off it. Last night I racked my brain on what kind of medication I could offer her, and I realized I had Phenylbutazone, or Bute, which is used for horses. I did some research and from what I found it was safe to use, but not approved for food animals because it stays in the system for so long. We are not milking her, nor will we ever be eating her, so this morning I gave her a dose and then called the Vet. He told me he couldn't come until tomorrow morning, so I asked if I could do something for pain. They were not really sure so I asked if I could give Bute, which I already did, and he said that would be fine.
She was sore this morning, in pain, and although standing, she couldn't walk far, just out of her pen so I could clean it and replace the bedding. However tonight I saw a difference in her, she was standing not holding the hoof off the ground, but sitting it normally, minimal pressure on it, but it was different, so I believe the little bit of meds helped her. I am hopeful he will offer us better pain meds and anti-inflammatory meds to cure this, the only thing it could be is that she tripped, or stumbled, I can't think of anything else. Of course he could tell us it's her feet giving out, but I am so hopeful it's not time to deal with that yet.
You could feel spring everywhere outside today. This morning I went with Kevin to collect sap from our buckets, and didn't take my camera because I had left it in the barn. At one stop I almost stepped on a timberdoodle because he was right beside our ATV! He didn't run away either, he looked at me, I looked at him cursing under my breath because I didn't have my camera and he flew off a little bit to another tree. I walked over to him and again he just looked at me like "too bad you don't have your camera." and flew off. That's what I get for leaving it behind!
A "timberdoodle" is a Woodcock. Here is a great site about them http://timberdoodle.org/ they are so funny looking and they sound like a mix between a frog/duck when they talk. Before I knew it was them, I used to hear the strangest noise from our marsh in the dark when I'd take the dogs outside, and wonder what the heck it could be. Then one night coming home late from a walk just before dark, a timberdoodle came out in front of us on the path and made the noise! It's really quite comical.
Yesterday we lost a very good friend, and the biggest rabbit ever (maybe not ever but he was to us) Larry the rabbit died suddenly and unexpectedly. We took him in with 3 other older rabbits from a woman who was selling her farm and needed to rehome them in 2009. He was one of a kind, not just in his size but also in his personality and heart. There will never be another.
This is the now famous Larry picture, to all who knew him. It was taken early the next morning. We got home late that night with the rabbits and Buckwheat (our buck) who at the time was 2 days old. It was a 6 hour trip and Buckwheat had never taken a bottle before, it was a long night! I put Larry on a diet after he arrived because while he is a giant, he was also overweight. We got him to a healthy weight and he's been a wonderful part of our family. We'll miss him. I have great pictures of him with Norman and Douglas in the house, but I found this picture from the same day of him outside with Flavious, who was a puppy at the time. Note the sizes!
It will be an early night hopefully for us since I'll be up early for the Vet, and Kevin will return to boiling. He's still working now, and planning on quitting tonight at 10 PM.