Monday, 28 August 2017

Autumn Health check

The nights are getting longer now, and colder.  It is dark when I get up in the morning :(  So I have decided it is time to change the horses back so that they are in the field during the day and in their stables at night again.  I think they are ready too as they are standing at the gate when I arrive in the mornings now ... usually a sign.

Autumn seems to start in September and some leaves are definitely starting to turn yellow and fall.  The fields around us have been harvested so I will start on my Autumn clean up in the next few weeks.  So check out my You Tube channel for more on this.

I also generally have a bit of a tidy up and health check of the horses in the Autumn.  They have just had their tails washed and trimmed a bit shorter in case we have a lot of rain and end up with mud everywhere (hopefully not)!  I find spraying conditioner in the tails also helps to stop the mud sticking to their tails so much.  In the next week or so I am planning to pull Basil's mane and trim Chesney's and Tommy's with the 'solo' comb I have.  Chesney hates having his mane pulled so I find this is a good compromise.  Tommy's mane I am leaving longer and just keeping it from getting too scruffy at the moment.  I am still not sure whether he would look better with it neatly trimmed but it doesn't really matter!

During August they had their last Worm Egg Count of the year and as usual just Tommy needed worming.  They will have a Tapeworm test at the end of September and that will be it until their annual worming for Small Encysted Redworm nearer Christmas.

Annual vaccinations and dentist visit is due in October.  As my horses don't mix with others at all and don't get out and about I only vaccinate for Tetanus and Flu.  The vet generally gives them a quick heart rate and respiratory rate check too while here and also sedates Chesney for his teeth to be done.  I have had annual dentist checks for many years and definitely recommend it to reduce the chance of problems.  Older horses can have more issues and with a 23 year old and 16 year old it is  even more important now that I get it done.  As Basil is missing a tooth his teeth won't wear evenly so that is another reason for him to have regular checks.

I check the horses over each and every day for any injuries throughout the year, although this is much more tricky in the winter when it is dark when I am there in the week.  It is important to know what is 'normal' for each of them so that I can quickly identify a problem.  Basil is very slightly lame at the moment and if you didn't know him you probably wouldn't notice but I know him so well.  He has a new tiny little soft lump on the fetlock and I think this is related so he is having some time off!  He and Chesney have quite a few lumps and bumps now so I have to be able to tell which are new and which have been there for a long time so that I can quickly identify a problem.

Laminitis can still claim victims at this time of year so I am still careful about the horses grazing.  In some ways this time of year is more tricky because of the lush grass and the colder mornings, when there is dew and frost the fructans are higher in the grass.

Fly Bites are still something I try to look out for too.  Basil was stung by a wasp this time last year which gave him a big swelling on his back and made him go totally loopy.

The summer seems to have gone by so quickly, I am hoping for a few more good weather days in September to enjoy and have lots of things planned!

Have you seen last week's video 'Tail Washing and Brave Tommy' on my You Tube channel?   
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Until next time!


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