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ECHCU September 2013

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ECHCU SEPTEMBER 2013

Sjoe!  But it has been a ‘bumpy’ month this September 2013!  So let us get on and account to you for some of what the Team got involved in. As usual, these activities are all over the place and sometimes all at the same time.

A Complaint from a member of the public led to us finding two donkeys inside a comprehensively fenced house in Walmer and that they clearly could not escape from or for that matter how they had got there in the first place.  A trip to my Police Station led to Officers Matt and JP assisting to untangle the puzzle.  In due course, a broken lock hasp was found, the gate opened and the owner sending his son to bring the donkeys home.  The Owner had also found them and was bouncing off the walls with agitation that he could not get them out. 

A day or so later, a Stable yard was alerted in the very early morning, that his horses were out on the road and this got him running along with all the neighbours.  It helps to have all the right contact numbers at hand!

The very mangy jenny brought in last month, despite intense Veterinary Treatment had to be euthanased due to her inability to repair.  Poor Girl.   And then her one legged owner, David, died of athsma.  And then his beloved Boesman, that came in at the same time as the jenny with a similar serious skin disease, also laid down and died, although I believe we had sorted most of the problems.  Boesman was the littlest donkey in Walmer township with the heart of a lion.  Perhaps all three are now re-united in a painfree place.  We need a wing.

Followed by a Kwanobuhle owner phoning to say please come fetch this donkey, we have a problem.  Yes.  A broken hip.  Inflicted by a vehicle.  Put to merciful sleep.

Followed by my tripping over a tree stump while walking with my hands in my pockets, doing the feed up because Stanley and Tom were collecting the broken hip donkey.  Once I had sucked as much air into my lungs as I could and ascertained as I believed that nothing was broken, I ‘came around’ to find all the girl donkeys standing around and looking at me as if to say ‘What are you doing down there?’  Now I think about it, it was quite funny.  Except for the ribs that were clearly either cracked or severely bruised as I am only getting over the pain now!  We need a wing.

A Complaint from another welfare organisation had Stanley visiting a township Cartie only to find that, although he is now over his TB, he had managed to get stabbed in the leg!   Crazy stuff.  Discussions about his donkeys and physical assistance by Stanley led to his donkeys being given longer tethers to enable them to get to grazing.

Our routine Grahamstown Donkey Clinic had all the Carties complaining bitterly about another Cartie and his brother who were ‘bringing them into disrepute’ with the handling of their donkeys.  Lucky for me I had Stanley and so we all decamped to their house in our vehicles following a donkey cart down the road to where Stanley tore a strip off them, verbally of course, and where they vowed and declared that they would attend the next Clinic at the end of the month.

Then we, Stanley and I, were stunned to be informed that Phumelela Racing had given a gigantic donation to Highveld Horse Care Unit and which they had allotted us a portion, specifically for our rural Transkei work.  I must say here that over the years comments have been made to me about ‘what are you doing about the terrible state of horses in the Transkei?’   I have tried to explain that nothing can be done without finances and that our Budget would not cope with these arduous expenses without some incoming donations, besides which I firmly believed that nothing much would be accomplished without talking to people in their own language.  One has to consider that finances have to cover Diesel for some very lengthy trips as well as decent accommodation for Stanley as well as food.  Stanley’s first Assessment visit in November 2012 has borne fruit like I would never have imagined and now, with this generous sharing by HHCU, he has been given wings and can react to the buy-in by the equine owners who are now very happy with the improved condition of their horses after a simple deworming, never mind the mare with the prolapse after foaling down, or the naso lachrymal duct horse whose eyes no longer stream (thanks to Dr H for his ‘instructions’).

Our contact, Ulrika, in Kirkwood phoned to say they had found a very lame donkey on a farm that nobody appeared to own and could we collect it and see what could be done.  Off Stanley went with a groom and brought the girly to the Veterinary Surgeons who took an X Ray that revealed advanced Pedal Osteitis.  The right thing was done for her but the owner still has not identified himself.

A Transkei owner with 40 horses phoned to ask Stanley to please come and visit him and help him with his horses.  Done on the next visit.

The upcoming Raceday on 25 October planning galloping along, thanks to Dorrie.

A stallion that had taken to visiting all the neighbouring mares was brought in at the request of the owner and gelded. 

A high spot at this time was receiving another ‘clean’ audit from our Auditors.

Our beautiful Laureus was delivered safe and sound to his new home and new family and new friends.

Our Hettie was delivered to be a maiden aunty to Daisy, the orphan donkey foal. 

An electricity outage caused by an accident involving a vehicle and an electricity pole, blew up both substations and the resulting power surge, knocked out our copier/fax/printer!  Motherboard gone away.  Permanently.  As we have become accustomed to this marvellous facility, a Unit Director gave permission to purchase another.

Lunchtime came to an immediate halt on receiving a call about three horses on a country road.  Very quickly, the horses found, haltered and walked home despite some very irritated drivers.  All safe.  We need a wing.

A request for a donkey cart to take his precious aged granny’s coffin to the cemetery was not met with success, Thembi being ‘nervous’ to do the job.  One of the granny’s dreams was to ride in a donkey cart and this was what the family tried to get right.

And then Daisy foaled down with Squiggle.  I must admit to a concern right from the start as Squiggles tail was not straight, but rather had quite a serious ‘kink’ in it.  Things went from bad to worse despite veterinary instructions and help, but Dumb Foal Syndrome and I firmly believe, a genetic problem, much to my distress, Squiggle just lay down and went away.  I don’t know if I will ever ‘rise above’ this type of thing and it is painful in the extreme to find those little bodies, cold and unmoving.  We need a wing.

Our routine Humansdorp visit was just that, routine.  This allowed for an Inspection of 4 horses (where it was found that the Veterinary Surgeon had been handling the case), and a Pre Home Inspection to be done.

We were happy to receive, as a ‘spin off’ of the Port Elizabeth Urban Run, 50 bales of lucerne.  As we all know, fodder supply right now and every year at this time, is in very short supply, so this was just what the Doctor ordered.   Thank you so much, Mohair South Africa!

A horse that was believed to have been stolen from a farm was found the next morning by the resident tracker, well and truly stuck in the bush, much to the relief of the owner.

A Complaint was received about a donkey ‘sitting’ on his bottom on the verge of Heugh Road had more than one motorist phoning.  Admitted with sore hooves.  He is also blind in one eye and also the only donkey that had township residents guffawing long and loud as he took an instant intense dislike to one of the Carties and attacked him.  Not a usual occurrence!

Two of our fostered donkeys were ‘released’ by a landowner deciding to take the fence down to build a wall, leading to all sorts of problems in that area.  Collected and brought home to where it is safe.  We need a wing.

And then the lights went out.  Well, in 2/3 of PE.  Leading to all sorts of pandemonium with robots not working, motorists pushing and shoving, bank computers going off line, the ATM refusing to give me either the Debit Card back or the money I requested for Stanley who was heading North.  I had hoped by feed up time that the craziness would have ‘run out’, but I was wrong.  I managed to break my key in the lock when I got home and followed this up by completely draining my vehicle battery at the 8.30pm feed later!   I did manage to get some money for Stanley that allowed him to leave on his ‘mission’.

Delivery of two jennies to their new greener pastures.

A Complaint received about an underweight horse was attended to and it was found that the owners had tried everything they could think of to improve its condition but in the end had been responsible owners for the benefit of the animal and done the right thing.

A handsome donation was received for taking our beautiful Tex to his new home by horsebox.  Thank you, LeeAnne.

Our routine Grahamstown visit was anything but!  42 donkey carts = 84 donkeys = 4 harnesses replaced = 12 bits replaced = 32 dewormings = orders for 26 harnesses = 3 ½ hours.

Followed the next day with the Donkey Carnival through the streets of Grahamstown, including down the main street from Rhodes University to the Cathedral with the usual help of the local Traffic Department, but giving me ‘daymares’.  Concluded with a prize giving at the Sports Ground.  I have to say here that Sheriff Annerie who has worked with the Donkey Owners for many years and puts in a huge amount of work into her donkey passion which also includes the local dogs.  Bravo, Annerie!   Thank you for your help to the Unit.   It all pays off when you hear that a donkey owner had gone for immediate help from the Chemist for his jenny that had been doused with hot water.  He did the right thing.  There was also the processional ‘lead’ donkey with a sign on her forehead who, without coercion, trotted quite happily next to her owner all the way to the end – what a sight that was.

We finished, almost, the month with the Heavenly Stables Charity Spring Ride to Sardinia Bay Beach organised by Jackie, Sydney, Barbara and Brent, in aide of Unit funds.  The participating horses were so well behaved and I believe there was only one unplanned dismount.  A donation of two bags of cubes from Feed and Seed was most welcome and the amazing amount of R3000.00 was raised by these Cookers and Carriers who went to great lengths and some very steep hills to ensure that everybody had breakfast on the beach, even though the wind was blowing.  So well done to everybody and thank you!

DONATIONS RECEIVED:

Tack:  Margaret, Treloar, Flo, Melissa Morton, Helen, Tracey, Madeleine, Robyn and Tony. 

Feed and Fodder:  Mohair South Africa, Antoinette, Kragga Kamma Game Park,  and Hannah’s birthday party ‘gifts’ included a bag of cubes, grass bales and dog food for AWS.

Willing hands:  Joshua and Dylan assisting with feed up and bagging of grass, St Dominics Priory, Jessica and Nina

…and a Geocacher who found the cache but did not bring the carrots, and left a money donation.

M

Banking Details:
Bank:  Standard Bank    Universal Branch Code:  051001
Account: Eastern Cape Horse Care Unit (all donated monies are used by us in the Metro and beyond!)
Account Number: 080733875
 
Landline:  041 366 1594
Cellph: 072 357 2505
Email: 
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Website: 
www.echcu.co.za
Facebook: East Cape Horse Care Unit

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