Saturday, May 22, 2010

Lucille – 5/22/10

Lucille arrived here the same weekend that the Fairmont horses were seized and I’m just now getting around to introducing you to her.  Please forgive me. 

Lucille was turned over to us by someone we’ll call Aaron.  Aaron’s dream had been to breed his Paso stallion to a mammoth donkey jennet to hopefully get a gaited mule.  Aaron’s health isn’t the greatest so he thought it best to get on with the dream and order a 10yo 55” jennet from what he thought was a reputable farm in Kentucky.  The donkey’s name was Lucille Ball and she was $750, plus another $300 for shipping.  The day of Lucille’s arrival came which much anticipation and excitement, but ended in frustration, disappointment, and anger.  Because what stepped off the trailer was not a healthy 55” jennet, but a starved and foundered 50” 16 yo jennet covered in rain rot and possibly pregnant already.

Aaron kept Lucille for a month, feeding her, treating her rain rot, and doing what he could to make her comfortable.  His vet palpated her and concluded that she wasn’t pregnant.  Whew!

Then Aaron’s health took a turn for the worse and he could no longer care for his horses the way he wanted to.  His Paso stallion, Percheron/Appy cross gelding, and molly mule are now for sale, but he knew he couldn’t sell Lucille the way she was and wanted to make sure that the sweet old gal got a loving home. 

Since the timing of her arrival coincided with me running around like a chicken with it’s head cut off trying to care for the Fairmont horses, I never got pictures of her when she arrived five weeks ago.  You’ll just have to imagine her about 150lbs lighter than this:




Because of her previous founder, I’ve had to take it very slow with the feed and the turnout.  She’s up to 45 min on the grass and 2qts Strategy twice a day and is still doing well.  The rest of the day she spends in her pen near the house eating hay.  She’s still very tender-footed on the front and it looks like someone just took a hacksaw and chopped off the elf shoes before they stuck her on the trailer headed to WV.  There’s nothing for Brannon to work with yet, so we’re just waiting for her hooves to grow so he can start shaping them back into what they should be.

She’s been wormed with Zimecterin Gold twice since coming here and is on Strongid C.  Since she still has a huge belly, I think I may get Doc to palpate her next time he’s out.  Over the past year I’ve learned not to always trust other vets!

Her rain rot was mostly gone by the time she came here, but she still has little sores all over.  They’re pretty itchy and she’d stand for hours if someone would just scratch her.

She is the SWEETEST donkey in the world!  She’d rather have attention than eat and will stop chewing if I walk over and pet her.  Every morning she watches me through the house windows and will bray at me if I’m not moving fast enough towards her feed.  She welcomes me home with a bray and alerts me to anyone coming down the driveway.  She’s a gentle soul that seems to enjoy the company of cats and chickens, and barely bats an eye when Xena’s play gets out of control and takes her under Lucille’s feet.

Needless to say, I LOVE this donkey!