Sunday, May 29, 2011

Dedicated to the Boys

We have four adult rams and a wether now.
Yearling Dorset cross ram Pokey, in the left foreground, and our Shetland Mule wether Socks in the back left, next to Socks is Little Red Oak Ash (2 yr old Shetland), on the right in back is Ward Harwell (2 yr old BFL) and Sommarang Hansel (yearling Shetland) in front of Harwell. Yes Hansel was in the rise at shearing and he needs to be cleaned up.  I've got some ewes to clean up too.

This photo was taken in the morning, just hours before Pokey's near death experience with the loose woven wire fencing that separates the grazing areas. Fortunately I was home when it happened. I glanced out the kitchen window through the leaves to make out some white legs hopping around and thought those dang rams must be fighting again. So I grabbed my glasses and went out on the deck and I could see that it was just Pokey with his head stuck in the fence. So I ran out there and could hear him fighting for breath. When I got closer I saw that this head went through one square and then back around and through another square! OMG, there was no way I could pry him out of that. He was foaming at the mouth and frantic.  I had to run back to the house to get wire cutters.  And of course I don't know where my really good ones are right now, so I grabbed two hoping one would work.  Back out to Pokey still frantic and foaming and trying to breathe. When I finally got him cut free he staggered away, head hanging down, making raspy breathing sounds.

By now the rest of the rams were aware of the situation and they all came running. They flanked him on both sides as he staggered into the shade of the trees. Only days before, Pokey and Hansel were duking it out for their place in the group and Harwell was the referee,stepping in between them, knocking one away from the other, until things had settled down.  And now here they were as a group, all standing around Pokey looking concerned.

I called the vet who suggested #1) dexamethisone or #2) banamine (both will reduce inflammation and swelling).  Darn, my Dex is pretty old, so I opted for the banamine.  Pokey was laying down and his breathing had quieted by the time I gave him the injection. The rest of the rams went back to grazing and he laid around most of the day.  I was glad to see him get up when I went out with a little alfalfa pellets and corn later in the afternoon.  And that evening as I headed back into the house, it was sweet to see Pokey and Hansel curled up together with Pokey's head resting on Hansel's back.

He's doing well now, so much so that Little Red Oak Ash was giving him grief again yesterday. It was nice to see them acting concerned for a while there, but in the end, rams will be rams!

2 comments:

  1. So glad you saw him! I found an alpaca in that predicament once, but they have long, think necks. Can't imagine how a RAM managed that!

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  2. I'd say that Pokey is a mighty lucky boy that he has such an attentive shepherdess! Congrats on the save...

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