It appears that there is some rather interesting “chatter” in the wild horse world today. I’ll start with this one and post again in a bit…
Maureen Harmonay wrote in an article for the Examiner about the Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association reports posted on the BLM webpage about previously undisclosed deaths of Calico horses.
I wont comment to the specifics she addresses, but urge you to read the article. Instead I want to point out a bit more “food for thought” in the reports.
In the report dated Feb. 13, Dr. Davis (ASVMA), writes: “We did not see any indication of infectious disease.” He then goes on to note a horse in quarantine with an abscess that was suspected to have strangles.
comment: A horse with an abscess was in quarantine on Feb 13. A single horse with “no other signs of infectious disease” in the population. I thought we were being told horses had signs of pigeon fever and abscesses since they came in off the range?
He comments about the foals with sloughed hooves. He notes that only “verbal” information was available. He then notes that the foal was “emaciated,” and the metabolic issues associated with re-feeding may contribute to the condition causing eventual hoof slough.
comment: I will send Dr. Davis pictures of the “emaciated” foal with hoof slough.Then he will have visual confirmation that the colt was not emaciated. Perhaps he will delete the justification spin he hands the BLM in this report?
He also notes the average body score is 5 or above with a few at 3 or less. 12 horses in the hospital pen were of a 2 or less (mares).
comment: I was there at the end of January and saw a handful of 2′s, not in the hospital pens. The hospital pens held horses suffering from some form of lameness or another. I have photographs, no “2′s.”
However I agree the vast majority of horses were a 5 or better. The high percentage of older horses also refutes a claim of an unhealthy range.
I have too many comments about the reasons horses can drop weight quickly and if you read his report you will see the significant number of issues he left out.
He also notes that Dr. Sanford mentioned pregnant mares, gathered in winter, are usually in the poorest condition.
comment: So why did you do such a large gather during winter against the advice of a federal judge?