by Angela Breidenbach
The sound of the ocean is so peaceful—unless that means via stethoscope on a miniature horse’s belly. The care and feeding of the animals God has given us stewardship over takes a lot more than just petting sweet little creatures. The sound of the ocean meant our class B miniature, Spanky, had ingested so much sand that it had become life threatening. He has the habit of tossing hay out of the manger and onto the ground, then nosing around for the seeds in the dirt before eating the grassy part.
He’d been losing weight, a little too much compared to his stout stable buddy, Cora, eating the same amount. I called the vet to take a look at them both and triggered a major effort to save this little horse. We would have lost Spanky if not for our veterinarian’s experience and knowledge. He had us purchase special stall mats (see the photo for Spanky’s swanky flooring and click here for a video) and psyllium pellets with strict instructions for six weeks of treatments to remove the sand swishing in his belly.
Ironic that my latest historical romance, Mail-Order Standoff, explores the early origins of veterinary medicine in the Victorian U.S. when the new profession of horse doctoring was not well-respected. People laughed at the idea of a horse or cow doctor back then. I had no idea I’d be so grateful the profession weathered the lack of respect for a new idea so that I can rely on sound advice for my little horses today.
Angela Breidenbach is a screenwriter, genealogist, bestselling author, and the Christian Authors Network president. She has two loveable class B miniature horses, but her funny fe-lion, Muse, is the only one that gets to live indoors though Spanky has visited on occasion. @AngBreidenbach on social media. http://AngelaBreidenbach.com