A week on the ranch (September 21 - 27, 2009)
by, 09-28-2009 at 01:41 AM (1578 Views)
After a teasing little hint of autumn, summer slammed back down, and the heat has been in the high 90's or above every day this week. The weatherman promises cooler temps starting tomorrow, which is about twelve hours too far away for me right now!!
On the animal front, still lots of activity. I woke up Thursday morning to find Daisy the budgie bloody and battered, and Dawn the budgie with blood all over her chin. It turns out that Dawn suddenly attacked Daisy, probably Wednesday. I took Daisy to the vet, and she (the vet) said that it is not uncommon for budgies to suddenly become aggressive to their cage mates. So Daisy is in quarantine, on Baytril, and healing. I am not sure what I'm going to do when she is better. The vet says you can never put them together again, as they will probably fight again. Poor Daisy is missing CHUNKS of skin from her head, and her beak is scratched and battered. Happily, her eyes are unscathed, and she seems to be on the mend.
I called the wildlife rehabber about the wild finch, and unfortunately the little hen has taken a turn for the worse. So it is just a waiting game now, to see if the barrage of medications kill the virus before they kill the bird.
On a happier note, Squeak the baby zebra finch is beginning to wean. She barely ate any formula today, and I saw evidence that she has been experimenting with her millet. When I let her out of her cage to give her a meal, she has to fly around and visit the other finches first, after which she comes back to "Mom," and would be very happy just sitting on my head the rest of the day.
Ever since I moved out to the ranch, I haven't been good about working with the dogs, obedience-wise. But after a visit to the vet, wherein I was reminded that they aren't getting any younger (both are now on joint supplements) I decided that Riley and Chewy both need a refresher course on the basics. Every day, when I feed them, we now practice certain simple commands. When I feel they have re-mastered those, we'll move on to something new. Both dogs are getting older, they are slowing down. But I don't see why they can't learn simple commands and maybe a few tricks. No fly ball or agility courses in their future, but I am excited about seeing how far we can go. It is amazing how quickly you feel that bond forming with your dogs when you start to communicate with them and realize they understand what you want and are eager to please.
My project for September was to get the bird room fully equipped with a little birdy gym. I have the items necessary, but my back has not been cooperating, so it doesn't appear that I'll meet that goal this month. I am hoping to have it done by next week. I just have to find the studs in the ceiling and install a bunch of eye bolts. I did get a misting system set up, but not much more this month.
I had my first "epidural steroid injection" on Thursday. It seems to be helping a bit, although the pain has not gone away entirely. This morning, I would have said that the pain is 60% gone, but by tonight, I had to revise that number to 40-50%. Still, I have been able to do a bit more than before, which is liberating!! The doctor says with patience and exercise, I should be on the mend within a few months.
The up side to my being somewhat disabled is that I am spending more time inside, so I'm slowly taming the clutter beast! The down side is that I would have been in New York right now, had I not hurt my back. I've never been, and I was looking forward to it.
My homesteading skill of the month was to make salt dough ornaments, which I accomplished, sort of. I made some ornaments, but they still need to be painted. I doubt those will be done by the end of the month, but since my skill was just to make them, technically, I'm covered!
Other than that, it has just been another week of trying to be as self-sufficient as possible for a wage slave and trying to survive the heat!!