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We had a big adventure when we went outside and everything was covered in white, really cold stuff—Meredith said it was snow. I was pretty worried and not sure how to walk in it—this SNOW stuff came all the way up to our bellies! It was pretty fun once we got used to it. And the best thing about snow is you never have to look for your crimped oats!
We are proud to announce that the brand new, updated versions of Meredith’s popular Training Without Resistance manuals are now available—in FOUR languages!
These gorgeous editions have full-color photographs, sturdy perfect binding, and have been entirely revised with Meredith’s consistent, reliable, and easy-to-read information on training and caring for mules, donkeys or horses. As before, these books serve as companions to Parts 1 – 7 of Meredith’s popular DVD training series, Training Mules and Donkeys: A Logical Approach to Longears, and provide in-depth explanations for all stages of training—and all stages of trainers. And all foreign versions were lovingly translated and proofed by native speakers!
Jasper: A Turkey Tale is now available on DVD!
Join Jasper the Mule and all his friends for a Thanksgiving dinner not to be forgotten! When a mishap with a truckload of turkeys turns into a real live mystery, Jasper and his pal Moxie the Dog are hot on the trail of adventure. Sure to be a hit with mule and animal lovers of all ages, this heartwarming story features new, original music by the Grammy-winning Riders in the Sky, and features all the fun and hijinks we’ve come to expect from Jasper and his crew!
Check out A Turkey Tale, and all of Jasper’s other adventures–in both books and DVDs–in his online store!
Rock and Roll did relatively well for the better part of the summer, but as they got to feeling better, they became more rambunctious and began sparring with each other. One evening several weeks ago, Rock came in a little sore in front, but we thought nothing of it as this had been the case before. The next morning however, we went out and found Rock standing hunched over and shaking on all four legs! We immediately called the chiropractor because it was clear that he had done something to his left hind leg, which was the only sound leg left on his body. The chiropractor couldn’t make it until later that evening, but Rock did get a massage that day. It didn’t seem to help much. When the chiropractor finally arrived, he did manage to get the stifle area on the left hind somewhat straightened out, but it didn’t really fix it. The next morning he came back and suggested that we call a pow-wow with the equine chiropractor/D.V.M. from Colorado State University. We called everyone involved with Rock as well: his vet, his equine masseuse, her husband (also a D.V.M.), our ranch manager and me.
I suspect that Rock’s injury occurred because he and Roll were probably playing and got too rough with each other. Rock probably tripped himself on the temporary boots he was wearing that were fitted for a draft horse foot (round and not oblong like a mule foot). The prognosis was agreed upon that Rock’s laminitis was causing most of his discomfort and he was trying to carry all the weight on an inflamed area between and hip joint and the stifle joint. Rock wore huge sores on his fetlocks, knees and hocks that needed to be wrapped to prevent further damage. Since Rock had spent much of his time prior to coming here on rest and Bute, I did not feel this to be the best course of action for him since motion seemed to improve his condition when he first arrived.
The Bute he had been on prior to coming here had caused problems in his digestive tract. I felt it was risky to have him on Bute again so soon after the 9-day dosage we had just done. Bute can also mask any other problems that he might have. As long as he wasn’t severely painful, I decided to modify his regimen to include integrating his workout with the walk to and from the “ice ditch” my ranch manager created for him. He walked through the sandy dressage arena over his four 1” PVC poles and then we opened two gates with a circle to the right at each gate. Then his gear was loosened and he proceeded into the ice ditch for twenty minutes on his front feet and 10 minutes on his rear and fronts. He was antsy about leaving the back feet in for very long. Why? Probably because he has shoes behind and they got pretty darn cold pretty quickly and I imagine the nails holding them on weren’t at all comfortable either! Then he returned to turnout via the same course, only this time going the through the gates with turns to the left.
The moderate exercise and icing has really helped and Rock is once more on the road to recovery. When he gets sore and doesn’t want to weight the front feet, we ice him to cool the laminitis down and it is working very well. He has ceased lying down a lot and is acting much more normal. The sores both under the wraps and on his body in areas we could not wrap are finally beginning to heal. I will need to continue wrapping these areas until we can be sure that he is strong again on 3 of his legs and moderately strong on the right hind leg with the old fracture at the pelvis. Rock and Roll had to be separated to keep Rock safe, but they still enjoy each other’s company in adjoining stalls and runs and in adjoining turnout pens. When you are tending to rescue animals it is always one step forward and several steps back, but with faith, hope and a little help from knowledgeable friends and professionals, miracles can happen! You just have to BELIEVE!
An excerpt of an amazing story from a friend of Lucky Three Ranch, Luzma Osorio, on the birth of a new mule in Colombia–and her mule mother!
They say mules cannot give birth and are hostile to foals, but the mule Chucurena has proved completely the opposite. On 25 September 2011, she gave birth to a beautiful baby mule in Colombia, South America, and she is proving to be a great mother!
Chucurena is a 3 ½ year old black mule from Hacienda El Cerro in Bucaramanga. She is very affectionate, produces lots of milk and she is always looking after her baby.
This miracle was achieved thanks to the Embryo transplant technique. An eight day old embryo was extracted from a mare and implanted in the mule’s womb to develop it. Embryo transplants are a complicated process that requires synchronizing the ovulating time in both females, in this instance it was carried out by the specialized Colombian veterinarian Hector Mendez.
The embryo was from a Paso Fino Mare called La Querencia and the Paso Fino Donkey Cosaco XVI de Villa Luz. The pregnancy was 11 months and the delivery was normal with no complications. The mule knew exactly what to do and behaved as an expert mother even if it was her first time! The baby is a female and it was called “La bien querida” (The much loved).
For more information on the Criadero Villa Luz, visit their website here.
Today we had a crazy adventure when we got to go the hay field with Meredith. It was a pretty nice day, but then we came across a raging river. Augie was a little scared to cross it but Meredith was patient. I went first and after Augie got himself together and made it across, we got to do something really neat! We got to get in the tour cart! Meredith said we had a lesson in trust, but all I know is Augie and I had fun! Holy Guacamole–what a day!
Rock and Roll, a 17 and 16-year-old draft mule team came to us on December 5, 2010. They had been rescued from an auction in Kiowa, Colorado, roughly a year before that by some friends of mine. They offered the mules to me as a last resort when their efforts to rehabilitate them failed.Rock had an old fracture on the face of his pelvis opposite the ball joint in the right hip and had severe founder and rotation in his hind feet. Getting those shod was a real challenge since he could not stand on the bad leg. Roll had side bones in his right hind foot and it is a constant challenge to keep that foot balanced. Both mules had been seriously foundered and had muscle atrophy throughout their bodies. As therapy progressed, even more problems surfaced so we were making progress with one step forward and two steps backwards, but nevertheless, we have been gaining ground with their health.
Both mules began to develop better eating habits and better hair coats almost immediately with their change in diet. Atrophied muscles and calcified joints began to move again. Rock went through several superficial issues that were problematic. The founder began to grow out and he became three-legged lame just about the time a horsefly bit him in the sheath and caused intense swelling. Because he couldn’t move, it wouldn’t go down. We got boots for his front feet since we could not nail shoes to his foundered front feet that enabled the swelling to move from the sheath to his abdomen. We hot packed his abdomen for two weeks and it went down, but he developed a sebaceous cyst that we thought was a sarcoid on front of the withers and a wart on his chin. We got the cyst removed and treated the cyst as a sarcoid which caused the wart to drop off. Rock is now able to resume his exercises and is doing much better.
We are happy to say that both mules are doing well after 10 months of physical therapy with the core muscle leading training exercises that we do here. Roll was able to graduate to moderate round pen work in the elbow pull after about four months of leading exercises. It will be another year of groundwork before the founder is completely grown out. Their respective uses will be determined as their health improves.
As there are few available homes for wild donkeys in Hawaii, upwards of 100 of the donkeys are being brought to the mainland by the Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue (PVDR) , our nation’s largest donkey rescue with facilities all across the country.
Find out more about how you can help, donate to, or adopt these jetsetters on our Equine Rescue News page!
We’ve updated the look and created a more interactive community for longears lovers. Some of the new features include the search function so you can find what you want easier and the entire library of Mule Crossing articles are available for download. We would love your feedback, so take a look around and let us know if there’s anything missing or things you’d like to see.
On December 5, 2010 we welcomed Rock and Roll, two draft mules to Lucky Three Ranch. Rock is 17 years old, 18 hands and Roll is 16 years old and 17 1/2 hands. Both of our new residents have various physical issues and have begun an intensive rehabilitation program including massage, chiropractics, proper nutrition exercise. Check back and follow the progress of these two beautiful gentle giants!
Meredith has just completed a brand new, revised and updated version of the popular Equine Management & Donkey Training manual. This new edition has full color photographs and a sturdy perfect binding, and will be available in English, French, Spanish and German starting August 15!
Jasper A Precious Valentine is available on DVD!
When Jasper and his human family head up to Bald Mountain for a picnic to celebrate Valentine’s Day, Jasper gets a crash course in love. Jasper’s latest adventure features music by Grammy-winning group Riders In The Sky and is appropriate for all ages. Click here to find out more and don’t forget all the other neat books and videos in Jasper’s store!