Welcome to my blog - a diary about living with donkeys, notes about care, my training sessions and the absolute pleasure of donkey companionship.

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Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Siog's teeth and my finger

Siog's dental work went very well.  She was amazing for her IV sedation - just stood there and then nodded off!  The whole procedure was only about 15 minutes, manual float, no power tools and afterwards, she went back to happily munching her hay without those sharp points to bother her.

Yesterday though, two very stupid things happened - both my fault.  When I get up in the morning, usually at first light, which is now about 6:30 AM, I glance out the window and if it's not raining, the donkeys are  by the fence staring at the house.  It's absolutely amazing how they can sense (or hear) the tiniest little movement from inside!

Anyway, yesterday there was no sign of them and when I entered the barn, to my dismay I saw that the gate to the stall where I keep 1 bale of straw had not been properly latched. There was Ms. Dorica standing knee deep in straw, the other three milling about, straw strewn everywhere!

I wasn't too worried (well, just a little) as this bale is fairly coarse and not their favorite.  But given Dorica's impaction colic last December, I have to admit to having a nervous stomach.  Everyone ate their breakfast though, so perhaps they hadn't been in the straw for too long?

The second thing that happened was that I broke my own rule, which is "Do not clicker train four donkeys together!"  This is partly due to the trainer's need to set the environment for success and avoid frustration.
But I had to be away all day and had a bit of time before catching the ferry.  I went outside and there was Siog all alone, while the others had wandered in the barn.

So I thought  "great - an opportunity to do some agility work with Siog!"  My big mistake was not shutting the gate to the paddock where the jumps are and once again, those large ears heard the very first "click" and out of the barn they came to join us!  Surrounded by four eager donkeys, I usually end the session and depart but it's good to have an "end-of session" cue so the donkeys don't think you've just walked away.

What I do is say "all done!" and put a small pile of Timothy hay pellets on the ground for each donkey and leave.  But yesterday I thought I'd just ask each donkey to do one thing, like back up or put their head down.  I never treat when they are crowding me!

However, Siog was miffed at no longer having me to herself and jealous of the sudden arrival of the others.  My little finger got in the way of her teeth.  It was VERY dumb of me!  And very sore and swollen and somewhat bloody!  Perhaps she was trying out her new chompers - in any case I know she didn't deliberately bite me, she was anxious and I was stupidly handing out treats to four donkeys!  Seems I must learn everything the hard way!

1 comment:

  1. Ouch, poor you! Glad to hear the dental went well :-) Look after that poorly finger!