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December 2016

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DECEMBER 2016

Well, 2016 is done and dusted and as usual we are going to thank those generous donors of money over the past year: Maureen, Paws for a Cause, Julia, Raymond, Rhoda, Jill, Tish, Grass Roof, The Racing Association, Tersia, Nadine, Claire, Dalene and Andrew, National Horse Trust, The Thoroughbred Breeders Association, World Sports Betting, Kathy, Isabella, Peter and Val, Heidi, Fergusson, A N Other via Capitec, Ian Robertson Pharmacy, Facebook Auction Bidders, buyers, donors and Tracy, Cassie, The Donkey Sanctuary, All the birthday men and women who did not get gifts – but we were given money in lieu of, The Tack Recycle Shop shoppers, Nina, Thomas and Harry the donkeys, Ken and Cindy, A and M Marquis, Vivienne, Drought Relief donors, The Cottage Shop, Halo Stables, Christine, VP Equestrian Club, ABC, Feinstein via Werksmans, Stapes and Trish, PE Riding Club and all Race Sponsors for our annual Raceday. Never, ever, forgetting our Madame Chair who helps us with organizing our Race Day. Thank you, Ma’am. Our Sincere Gratitude for being the grist to our mill.

When you start off the month with a hysterical call about a dead donkey – died overnight – with the request that the carcass be collected and taken away, you know it is going to be a difficult one! A monetary donation received when the job was done.

Offset the very next day by a confirmation call of adoption for one of our beauties!

An early morning email discussion over a few days about what the best food and space for one of our adopteds.

Coming to work on a Saturday and finding one of our confiscates bleeding from the vulva, all down her legs and tail, had me going until I got a Vet in attendance. No foal, no afterbirth, the two boys don’t have nuts, so what the devil was going on. At the end of it all it appears that one of the two boys was feeling his oats and tried to serve the mare, scraping her tail on her vulva, causing the major blood loss. Handled and sorted. Although we did have to separate everybody until she was no longer in season!! (Lol – our Consulting Vets know we will ALWAYS bring them something different and new!!)

The Unit staff were very happy to receive their new shirts, T shirts and caps, making them easily recognizable to visitors.

One lame donkey is bad, but two?? Poor Douglas from Langa phoned to ask us to collect and fix. One hit by a vehicle, the other with possibly an old abscessing thorn wound. Took two weeks, but they are now safely back with their owner.

A Complaint received about a young horse tethered incorrectly and very dangerously was received. Insp Carla visited and managed to snap a picture of it all. There are correct ways to hobble horses if you need to, but it is difficult to explain to owners who don’t want to answer the ruddy cellphone! We found them and a touch of education ensued. An eye is being kept on this lot!

A few requests for Euthanasia assistance handled. Always painful, but it is not about the human, it is about the horse.

The Theescombe community was subjected to a wildfire in their area, over the hill. We heard very little about it, no phone calls unless you count the one at 23.35pm asking for help if needed. Luckily for horse and animal owners, the community came out in force, along with the Fire Department, Traffic Department and Neighbourhood Watch, and including our Madame Chair with her family and friends just out of a Racing Association meeting! Some of our Friends affected, but thankfully no loss of equine life, although it was pretty unpleasant for everybody. The SAPS Sector Manager has the Unit number and would have phoned for assistance if he thought we would be useful.

And then we have the alleged theft of a very pretty and much loved Welshie and the alleged ‘slaughter’ of the animal at an illegal abattoir. Yes, we have a few in this town, especially along the Swartkops River. Obviously a very sensitive Case, being handled by the SAPS detectives and various other bodies. Very, very sad. All that needs to be said here is that all that needs doing is to keep your animals on your property, with proper appropriate fencing and not allow them to stray – not that the Welshie was straying.

An alert was received from the owner of the new horse she had brought in that was very thin and that she warned us that we might get some phone calls. Again, we need to say that it is always better if you phone your Complaint in direct to the Unit, rather than trying to use ‘bush telegraph’ and hope that your complaint gets to us. We do not reveal our sources of Complaints. Then at least we get YOUR side of the story, not the ‘broken telephone version’.

Another year, another clean Audit! Chuffed!

Three adopted donkeys from SPCA Uitenhage hitched a lift in the Unit horsebox to their new home. Sure they will be well taken care of – real butt in butter story. Donation for the trip received.

Crazy stuff: Carla received on a weekend a phonecall from Highveld Horse Care Unit in Vereeniging(!) about a stray donkey on the Airport Road in PE! On phoning the probable owner, she was informed that they were already on their way to get him.

And then we got the news that one of our best Walmer Carties had succumbed to his MDR TB. But we were very relieved that we already had all his donks safely at the Unit. We are waiting for the family visit to arrange their futures. Should not be too difficult as we have a number of folk waiting to adopt donkeys!

We wish our little Jeff all the best with his proposed new vocation of working with austistic children.

A Complaint in the Free State received was referred to the Highveld Horse Care Unit as they have far more resources and manpower than we do and besides, they are a lot closer.

Stanley slotted in two Transkei Missions during December, sorting out 133 horses and some donkeys too. Pre Race Inspections for 500 odd. All sponsored by Phumelela and the Eastern Cape Gambling and Betting Board.

Then there was the Case of the stray horse, virtually unable to walk, stray, dehydrated, ‘yawning’ with pain, found by the Neighbourhood Watch. Our Veterinarian was asked to attend and after an Assessment, the order for Euthanasia given. Poor Boy. Case opened and besides a very rude and attempt at intimidation, we will see this through. Please, it is very important that when you have equines, you do your best to keep them from straying and if they are ‘sick’ attend to them often to see that they are eating and drinking. Please. The pathetic whicker and whimper when he saw somebody coming with a bucket of water, was really very painful indeed and reduced all to tears.

Diesel the pony was admitted for gelding and was returned within two days, hale and hearty. Money contribution received. Thank you.

A Complaint that may well lead to a Case being opened, concerning 10 horses, needed visiting, only to have the one pony with foal at foot, after a visit to the Veterinarian, decided her foal was in a safe place – with surrogate donkey ma – died all on her own needing no help. It is important to note that if your mare/filly is preggers or feeding a foal, she needs extra care and sustenance! ….and clean cold water, of course! The foal, Longshanks, currently doing his best to kill the 15kg Denkavit Foal Milk.

And then, ta da….Stan and Carla heading out to collect a donation, suddenly stopped and came hot footing back to the stables. On asking what was going on, Carla started gesticulating wildly that one of our two donkey jennies was giving birth in the camp. OK… Instruction time commenced. Thanks to many years to doing exactly this with Peter and Val Fenix, and having a live birth happening and an easy one too, all was very simply handled. Two hoofies and a nose presented correctly, Jenny moved to hospital camp, Stanley on hand to do a bit of pulling, everyone emotional about watching this miracle. Little Ronnie got up with little difficulty and what an exciting moment.

A complaint received from Rietbron, many, many miles away, was handled with the assistance of Joanne from Highveld Horse Care Unit.

The same day of the foal down, we were asked to collect by a very upset owner in Kwanobuhle. His jenny had been attacked with what appears to be a panga/kapmes and was obviously cornered and could not run away from her tormentors. OMW!! When she was brought to the Unit and taken out of the horsebox, I said, no ways, put her back in. She is going to the Vet!! Well, it took well on 2 hours to clean, shave and for two Vets with three of their assistants, our SamS (volunteer) to put in the multitudinous stitches, both muscle underneath as well as skin sutures. And she was so good too. With the current heat we are experiencing, there was no ways not to stitch. We certainly don’t want fly strike in these deep wounds. Her nose was attended to by Dr Johan who brought his special bone tool to cut the sliver of bone on her nose to ensure a straight stitch line and a good healing. Wow! But, eating, poohing, making eyes at anybody that walks past in case they have a carrot or two for her. Sweet girlie!

The following day we were asked to handle a Cruelty Case in Namibia! As it is a different country with potentially different Laws, we cannot do too much. However, on forwarding the mail to Highveld Horse Care Unit Managing Director for a policy decision, they managed to find out through their many varied contacts, that in fact it was already a Court Case in that country.

And then it was Christmas Day. All the craziness of shopping, traffic problems, came to an immediate stop, making it much easier to work. I had treated all the staff to a Christmas Brunch two days prior, just to say thank you for their loyalty and support over the past year.

One of our supporters waaaay down the coast with two of our ponies, 2 of our donkeys and two horses of her own, also had a veld fire and lost all her grazing and we were able to assist her with a donated round of grass.

The Complaint tally for just December is 29, all of which have been handled. The total for the year, give or take a few, is 100 Complaints received covering 36 Thoroughbreds, 191 Crossbreeds and 53 donkeys! The Database files have grown by 76 files of People, not equines owned. 16 Thbs, 5 Crossbreeds and 13 donkeys donated to the Unit. 7 Crossbreeds and 45 donkeys admitted for Medical Treatment. 14 Thoroughbreds, 3 Crossbreeds and 17 donkeys adopted and 5 Thoroughbreds, 3 Crossbreeds and 10 donkeys have been fostered out. 4 Crossbreeds and 81 donkeys have been returned to their owners on completion of their Hospital stay.

And finally, we need to say a Thank You to the generous donors for their giving this past month:

Dorrie – 25kg Epson Salts, leavings and sweepings.

Martin – rakes

Tana – apples, sausage rolls for grooms, cokes and grooming.

Phillipa – T shirt commission

Save a Pet – 2 x massive bags of shavings

SUPAQUICK – tyres for knobwood rescue.

Wayne – donation for manure

Belinda –3 rounds of lucerne

Tony – bale lucerne.

Robyn – bag of chaff

.Michelle – 2 grass rolls.

AWS – dntd wall unit for stables

Ursula – bales lucerne

?? - donated bit.

APRON STRINGS – bales lucerne

V TECH – Garlic equine treats.

Schalk – bales grass

Gertie - tack

Rhoda – Christmas carrots, lunch, cake, Cokes and gifts for grooms

Carolyn – tack

Taryn – Christmas Carrots, Horsefeed, Lucerne, Cooldrinks and Biscuits

Cathy - tack.

Grant – bales lucerne.

Tana and mom - bales lucerne Volunteer Tiffany

ECHCU VOLUNTEERS – Celine and Crystal, Tiffany, Martin, Mariete, Rika

SamS – mowed Exercise Arena for 2 ½ hours

Jan – a truck load of sand for stabilizing the knobwoods.

… AND Meg, Colin and Rachel assisted with Breakfast and Supper feed up on Christmas Day

Well that’s it, our accounting for December 2016 to you, our supporters. We wish you a splendid 2017 and may you receive many blessings. M

Banking Details: Standard Bank Current Account Number: 080733875 Universal Branch Code: 051001

Account: Eastern Cape Horse Care Unit (all donated monies are used by us in the Metro and beyond!) Landline: 041 366 1594 Cellph: 072 357 2505 email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it Fb: East Cape Horse Care Unit

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