Sunday, June 20, 2010

Father's Day

This will be my first Father's Day without my dad. I had him with me for 48 years of my life and I treasure every one of them.

I've always liked this quote: "Anyone can be a father, but it takes someone special to be a DAD."  So true, and this was my dad, all the way through.

I was his only daughter, his only child. We had a special bond. I finally figured out recently what that was and it was unconditional love. He was, and always will be, my hero in my eyes. I feel blessed to have had such a wonderful Dad.

So, on this special day for many people, if you have a special Dad or Gran-dad in your life, tell them how much they mean to you.

This is the first year in my adult life I have not made a rhubarb pie for my dad on Father's Day. His mother made him rhubarb pies when he was a kid and even into his adulthood. They were his favorite. I know my rhubarb pies could not have been as good as hers, but Dad always told me they were delicious. I doubt he would have told me they were awful, even if they had been.

I miss you Dad. You are forever in my heart! 

Friday, June 18, 2010

Vaccines, the necessary evil

Here I am, a month past my last post. Haven't been doing very good at this blog thing. 

Update: Haven't accomplished much with the horses, again. In one word-RAIN. Another word-FLOODING, One more-THUNDERSTORMS

While I realize folks here in the midsection of the US have suffered through much worse than we have locally, I feel I am forever at the mercy of WEATHER. 

Yesterday was the first day in a week we hadn't experienced heavy rain and/or storms of some kind. May, and now June, have been very wet. We are now in a heat wave of over 90 degrees each day. 

I am past the age of enjoying hot days out in the sun. So, my next move must be, to try to get back with my horses in the early mornings as long as we get a dry spell.

I do not have a covered arena. I have two open fields. I have a run-in stall area, nice, but  mud is a major issue during times like these. Thus, my  two horses have once again, basically, become pasture ponies. I'm sure they're happy with that situation, though a bit bored. They are getting grazing time since the front field is open. Takes some of the boredom out of they're system for a few hours a day. 

Yesterday I gave my two guys their yearly vaccinations. I have been using the Fluvac Innovator 5 combo. When I administer the injections I always keep an eye on the horses for any swelling for the first hour. In the past I haven't had any problems but I always think, maybe this time. No, they managed fine by the time I fed them later in the evening.

Today, however, I'm seeing the typical lethargy I notice every year after I've given my horses their injections. So, when I see them in this state for the next twenty-four hours, I can't help but wonder- Are the vaccines we give all our animals simply a necessary evil for the duration of twenty four hours of misery for them? Or, would they survive if we didn't vaccinate? 

Of course, I realize, they don't really know they're miserable. They don't really understand what's going on. But I know I see the change in them, and I know the vaccines are what is affecting them. I've seen it every year.

I know, I know, the vaccines are arguably the best protection for them, but the older I get the less and less I like having things injected or added to my own body. I always have faith I'm doing the right thing for my horses, and other animals, but I know the vaccines definitely affect my guys for about twenty-four hours. That period of time is enough for something to go haywire.

Does anyone else see this in their horses?  If you have a big event coming up, do you vaccinate earlier so it doesn't interfere with the event?

I'm running a little late this year on vaccinations. Buddy, our cat, has developed cat asthma which is requiring steroid injections every couple of months. I'm also wondering about that. But about 24 hours after Buddy gets the injection, he is no longer coughing. I've read that at his age, he's eight, the shots could bring on diabetes. Great, another diabetic in the house! I'm a Type 1 myself. Sure wouldn't relish the idea of giving my cat an insulin injection. Have enough trouble getting the Frontline Plus on him monthly. Which brings to mind yet another question...What about all this flea and tick repellent we put on our animals?

Well, at any rate, horse vaccinations are done for the year. I'll just have to keep an eye on them for a couple of days. I doubt they'll have any problem with the rest and relaxation part since that's pretty much their daily activities right now anyway.