Sweet Norman - although he is pictured here laying down, he has spent a fair amount of time on his feet, at his feed bag, today!
Norman seems to be progressing! I actually caught him standing at his feed bag, all fours square under him - at least for a moment. For a horse that could not stand up to eat just days ago, this is an enormous breakthrough! He doesn't seem to be quite as weak today - of course, having had nearly five flakes of hay since this morning (also a breakthrough), is without doubt helping him in that arena, too. As always, he remains sweet and grateful for our compassion. Although we are usually strongly against feeding "hay stretcher", we may try adding it to his diet, as the vet recommended. We will see. In any case, we are feeling hopeful. Our farrier says that although it is a bad case, he has seen worse, and with luck and patience, we hope Norman can recover.
One more thing to note regarding Norman: a kindred spirit and fellow blogger, Sue Steiner, has generously offered to donate an original oil painting as a means for a fundraiser to help offset the costs we will incur with Norman! We are so grateful for her very generous (and unexpected!) offer, and we are developing some ideas on how to make this work. Please visit her blog and support her efforts as an artist/horsewoman. We want to thank everyone for all your time helping us here at the barn, and all the well wishes, in caring for Norman! Sue's blog is: http://www.amulti-coloredlife.blogspot.com/
Here is where we wish Norman could be - in the back pasture, with the other Percherons. Hopefully someday...
Meanwhile, our farm continues on in "normal" fashion. The herd is being introduced to the back pasture, slowly but surely. It is our plan to add extra fencing, to create not only a larger area for the eight drafts, but to link the top paddock to the back, to make it easier for watering and feeding. This will also let us finally let go of the paddock behind the barn and build our ring, as originally planned. Fencing has always been a time-consuming chore for us!
Tomorrow I do carriage rides, and Saturday we have two carriages going on a wedding, right here at the vineyard. That is four horses to bathe and prepare! Someone is coming to look at a Belgian we have for sale that morning, too, so our weekend will be very hectic. I look forward to a quieter Sunday, maybe just a winery tour. The harness shop will be open as well. Stop by and see us if you get the chance!