The Golden Carrot Newsletter's Archive
Newsletter - The Golden Carrot
August 10, 2006
Summer is either very busy, or very still at TGC - 2006 is practically dead. Here’s how it’s going.....
First of all - the website problems continue. I’ve had some people express an interest, but the bottom line is simply that it’s too big a project for anyone with a life. They start, but they stall out pretty quick. Forget the website.
Second, some health problems are becoming more severe. Partly due to the inexorable aging process, and partly because I don’t have enough bute to ease the days, and partly because I just don’t know what to do.
Charra, a horse you are not familiar with due to the out of date website, is a little paint mare with a swayback and an indomitable spirit. She’d be the kind of pony that would probably last forever, but she has, as many pink skinned paints have, a tumor - located on her private parts, which is growing and irritating the hell out of her. She rubs it on fence posts, and bleeds until I catch her, clean her up and remedicate it. I believe it would require a surgery to remove it - and who knows what after that. Normally, I consider this a ‘manageable’ disability, mostly cosmetic in nature, but it does seem to be growing. I assume this is why this little lady was dumped on me. When funds get better, I’ll get the vet out to see what he thinks .... and will keep you posted.
Joyful has developed a puncture wound in right hock. I have antibiotic and she’s on that now, as well as a daily cleaning and debriding, but I have to keep a close eye on this - if infection gets into the joint, it could be disastrous. Again, I’ll keep you posted...
Mitey Nice continues to go up and down with her founder. She is so full of stiffness and her feet hurt so much that we have a lot of trouble trimming her feet; I tried a product called Conquer as I had a high recommendation from a lady who had almost miraculous results on her older foundered pony, but really, the main ingredient is hyaluronic acid which helps joint function, so I didn’t really see how it would help, and in fact, I don’t really think it has. She is eating almost only senior feed now, like Malika, and lays down every night in her shavings, and still has a little more good days than bad but this older sturdy mare may not have a lot longer to be with us. I give her bute on her bad days, but don’t have a huge supply of that to work with and no money to buy more. With so many older horses with aches and pains that sometimes need relief, bute is a big expense here. $90 per bottle.... and I use a bottle up every couple of months.... sigh
Malika goes on and off her feed. She showed up for her evening meal a week ago with a bad abrasion on her hipbone, as horses will get when they lay down too much, or struggle to get up. I felt she must have got cast again, but extricated herself this time. Another older mare who is clearly on borrowed time.
PC had gotten thin in March, but with an extra half buck of senior feed each morning, he is improving his body weight. I’m going to increase him to a full extra bucket each morning in an attempt to get his weight even better before the winter hits, but have to wait for more funding before I can do it. PC is a big horse - 17 hands, 1 inch in height, with a warmblood’s build. It takes a lot of senior feed to keep this old guy in good form. Lucky for him that DeeAnn Bradley is a steadfast loyal sponsor.
Lucifer’s right foreleg more bent than ever, but he is still getting along, and taking care of Belle to the bargain. I watch his crabbed way of going and continue to be impressed at his cleverness - how gorgeous he must have been when he was sound! I’ve worked his shoulder and leg as much as possible, and it must feel good because if I miss a day, he walks up to me and bumps me with his head until I pick it up and start the massage and manipulations. I don’t think it makes much difference in the situation, but it must feel good or at least relieve some of the ache for him to insist on it that way. His appetite remains excellent and his zest for life is strong .... another lucky horse that his ½ sponsor Cheryl Cuttineau sticks with him.
CHANGE IN FEED:
The chaffhaye thing didn’t work out - not only did I buy 4 bags which had gone “bad” - and recommended the feed to a TGC patron who got the same stuff - but the saleswoman who said we could ‘work something out’ never followed through.
But it gave me an idea. One reason I like the chaffhaye is that part of the digestive processing is done before the horse gets to it. With my older horses, with bad teeth and old inefficient digestive tracts, this is a good thing. So I decided, when it was hard to locate hay I could afford, to start feeding pelleted feed such as Sacate’s Standardbred and Bermuda Blend pellets. There are some unexpected benefits. Although it’s a tiny bit more expensive, there is absolutely NO wastage (such as the stalky part of alfalfa which many of the older horses simply can’t chew), and the horses are actually making less manure. This was one of the side benefits of chaffhaye too. With some of the processing done, the horses are able to assimilate more of what they eat. Don’t worry, I watched carefully and weighed each horse’s ration carefully, to be sure they were getting the same ‘weight’ of feed. Of course, they are still getting their grass hay to munch on during the morning; and their senior feed too. So far, no one has lost weight. And an additional benefit is that the pellets come in 50 pound bags which I can move more easily than the 100+ pound hay bales.
Bottom line - if I can just get some money, I can be feeding more easily, a feed that is more assimilable and just as nutritious, and which creates less waste both in damaged and uneaten feed, and in less manure produced.
DANGEROUSLY LOW DONATIONS:
Donations have been very very low. My monthly expenses for these horses is about $2,000; in July, donations totalled $500. Although I got a part time job cleaning and feeding for the horses across the street in mid-May, between a broken down truck, and the expenses of the horses, I might as well be unemployed. My own bills continue to mount up - and now between a lack of feed, and need for shoeing to begin again soon, as well as trims I could not afford in the last shoeing cycle, the financial situation here at TGC is dire.
In mid July, I was given notice that Victor and Malika’s sponsor has finally given up. For two years, this wonderful woman supported V&M for her grandchildren; but she never got the credit on the website, and since they live in Missouri, never got to see the horses that she helped. I want to thank Mickey Brown for her help, and hope that when things pick up for her, she might consider coming back. Please note that she had the grace to let me know, and actually apologized that she couldn’t do more. That’s CLASS!
Navigator’s sponsor has encountered financial difficulties for the past two months and although she may be back, she doesn’t really know when. Navigator is a huge eating, shoe wearing, hard keeper Thoroughbred - this is a serious blow. Her sponsorship at least took care of his shoes and some of his feed; now this high maintenance horse is back on my plate alone.
In the last year, I’ve lost sponsors for five horses, but still have sponsors for Falcon and Prophet, Mary, Mitey Nice, Inch, Joyful, Lucifer (1/2), Topper, Shine (1/3); Peanut, PC, and Sunny.
Horses still hoping for sponsors are: Buck, Hava, Debbie, Bruhad, Charra, Sara, Belle, Malika, Victor, ChaCha, Shawnee, Josh, Beau and maybe Navigator.
And finally, $30/month will make you a half-sponsor for Lucifer; and $40/month will make you a 1/3 sponsor for Shine.
Ways to Donate
I attach a recent email from iGive.com . This is an on-line mall, with all the usual stores including Amazon, and Dell, and a zillion more stores. If you just go to your usual stores THROUGH the iGive site, you will benefit the Golden Carrot - with no cost to you! When I first told people about this, I know a lot of folks didn’t shop on line - but I believe now it’s much more common - and I beg you to please look at this site next time you want to buy, to see if your site is registered with them.
Shine’s ½ sponsor has children, and has pledged to speak with the school about getting the kids involved, either in the classroom, taking up collections for the horses; or bringing them to visit on field trips. I think this is a great idea and would be happy to help in any way I can - and the horses would be thrilled to have the visitors.
And how about you folks who work in offices? Can you take up a collection and sponsor a horse, even for just a month? It’s also a way to spread the word - you don’t know if someone you work with might want to sponsor a horse themselves, until you tell them about TGC. Can you help in this way, even if you can’t donate? Without a functional up to date website, I need help getting the word out.
How about a Lemonade Stand? Don’t laugh - Taylor and Bree made a donation of $110 from lemonade stand proceeds and a little extra. If everyone did that once, I’d probably have another horse or two sponsored for the year!
Please don’t forget - ANY amount of donation WILL help. Please, I cannot stress enough that even a couple of dollars from everyone will make a huge difference. Please don’t just assume that “someone else will donate more” - that “$5 is not enough.” If you set up an on-line bill pay of $10 per month, you probably won’t even notice it’s gone, and at the end of the year TGC has received $120 which would sponsor a horse for a month. If enough people do it - maybe a horse can be sponsored for a whole year!
I’m begging. Please don’t forget these guys. So many of them have been disregarded their whole lives, except for a couple of hours a week when they were required to “do their duty”. WE don’t like to be ignored, or taken for granted - why would we assume they liked it? But still, they did their jobs; they were patient and kind to the best of their ability - and now they need a little help, as we all do when we get older or hurt. There are enough people on this newsletter mailing list to make a HUGE difference for these horses, if we will all do something. And if you have ideas on how to raise money or interest, please do not hesitate to tell me. After 10 years, I’ve found out what works and what doesn’t, but am always open to new ideas.
Thank you all again for your support and efforts on behalf of the horses.