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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Wednesday, April 24, 2013

More limping ...!

I knew that when I decided to live with more donkeys, I was also increasing my opportunities to deal with health issues by 50%!

Yesterday, poor little Siog was lame in her left front foot.  It started slowly - I couldn't even tell which front foot was bothering her but then progressed quickly - she was barely weight bearing and holding her hoof in the air.  Oh - oh! Get out the first aid kit!

I  made some external healing oil:  I used 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 1/4 teaspoon each of tea tree oil and golden seal powder.   Put all that into a dark bottle with a dropper.

I have no idea if those proportions are correct but I wanted to use equal parts tea tree + golden seal and I think a little goes a long way.  I also gave her a homeopathic spray (in her mouth) for infections.

I soaked her hoof twice yesterday in very warm water + a lot of Epsom Salts (trying for 20 minutes per soak!) then applied a poultice.  I used Animalintex (which is a pad impregnated in something to help draw out the infection,)  dunked just for a second in warm water, then cotton batting, then a few pieces of hockey tape and many pieces of  duct tape.

Hoof soaking provides a great opportunity to clicker train stationary things, like hand targeting, standing quietly, etc.  and Siog was wonderful about it all.  I think her hoof must have really be painful as she preferred to hold it up and was very happy to let me dress it.

This morning I was worried, as everybody else came out of the barn but Siog hung back waiting for her hay bag to be delivered (very uncharacteristic!)  Normally I like to get them moving around in the morning, so in nice weather, I put the bags on the ground where they have to walk out to get them.  This morning Siog had hers delivered (donkeys know best!) and I noticed that the poultice was partially off her hoof so maybe that's why she was reluctant to walk!

She seems much improved this morning, still limping but weight bearing.  I took the poultice off but will still continue to treat.  The heat in her hoof is noticeably lessened too.


  1. You are my hero donkey healer/clicker trainer. Give Siog a big hug for me. CF

  2. Hope Siog feels better soon! The joys of donkey feet!