Tuesday, October 28, 2008

It's been a busy 24 hours...

So we self-diagnosed Sass's illness as bloat and began treating it as such. I had already put in for a half day yesterday because we reserved an apple cider mill/press for the second half of the day. I left at noon, went to pick it up on the other side of Portland, stopped to get bloat medication at the farm store on my way home and get home around 2:30. Sass is still no better but she is walking around and severe bloat will leave the animal unable to walk. We administer the new meds and it doesn't help. I get out my phone and start calling around until I find a vet that treats goats. The vet is 30 min from us and is closing in 30 min. The doc agrees to stick around and we get Sass into the truck and my H takes her down there.

Meanwhile, I lug the apple press onto the back deck and set about washing the 300 lbs of apples we had picked over the weekend. Then I find out that the mill part of the press isn't working. I call the store and they are of no help. They offer to fix it when I bring it back and not charge me, but the next day that it's available is after I'm already in China (and our apples would never make it that long). I'm PISSED. I call my mom to bitch and I can barely hear her because Buddy (the other goat) is crying at the top of his lungs. He's been doing this constantly since we took Sass away. He hates to be alone! Anyway, while I'm bitching to my mom that all our apple-picking work this weekend was going to go to waste, my H calls from the vet. Sass doesn't have bloat, she's got a rumen imbalance (I forget the technical name) and is severely dehydrated - 70% chance she'll live. They are giving her all kinds of treatments (well, making Rick do a lot of it so he'll learn) and she's being a trooper.

He gets home with her around 6 pm. We put Sass back in with Buddy and look over the huge BAG of medication we have to administer over the next few days. $178 later - she *might* survive. And hell, we only paid $100 for her! Not that it matters - she is our responsiblity now, and we will do what we can to both ease her suffering and to save her. Oh, and the vet said that it's highly likely that she is pregnant, too.

So now my H takes a look at the cider mill, tightens one screw, and it's good to go! (can you read the frustration in my words at the time I've now wasted?) We start processing apples (I'll explain in a separate post) and about 2 hours later, take a break for dinner. We have a quick dinner of leftovers and then get back to work. By 9:30, we've done all the apples and we are both frozen solid. The mill spits apple guts EVERYWHERE, and I'm covered with it. My H is frozen from washing the batches of apples in ice cold hose water. We are both soaking wet, too (him with water, me with apple juice). We washed everything off, and put the cider inside. Now I'm standing in the laundry room, covered with apple, so I strip off my clothes and throw them in the washer so as not to trapse apples through the house.

I take a quick shower and crawl into bed.

This morning, my alarm doesn't go off. I awake to my H's alarm set for 7 am (a full hour and 15 min later than my alarm was set for!). I get up and immediately start calculating what things I can do and what I have to skip because the plan was to leave the house by 7:30 am to get into Portland by 8:30 to return the mill/press and get back to work by 9:30. Anyway, I'm getting things set for milking in the kitchen when I decide to throw the items in the washer into the dryer. Oh look...there's my cell phone! It had been in my back pocket because of the goat situation and it went into the washer when I was covered with apples. Great.

I go out to milk Sass and she appears to be a little better. She's munching on some hay and she greeted me. She didn't want to get on the milking stand, but I'm sure that was because we'd used it to administer therabloat yesterday and she was not a fan of that. I got her up there and while she didn't want any of the goat chow, she did stand still so that I could milk her. We got very little milk and it was kind of yellow in color. I dumped it (we had planned on that) but we wanted to keep milking her so that she was comfortable.

We load the apple mill/press into the car, I get dressed and I head to Portland only a half hour behind schedule. I actually ended up making it to work by 10 am and luckily I didn't miss anything. I couldn't even call my boss to tell him I'd be late because I have no phone! I'll have to run by the shop on my lunch break to see if they offer any warranties for idiots like me.

Anyway, Sass is doing a little better. My H is home with her again today, so he'll give her today's medications. Tomorrow, I'll have to do it because he'll be traveling for work, but we are hopeful that she'll be ok. Phew.


Anonymous said...

I can't believe what is going on in your life! Take a deep breath and don't worry about apple stuff! Take care of Sassy and yourself and H everything else will work itself out.....Mom

JES said...

Don't forget to breathe, even if it feels like you can't take the time. Best wishes for Sass (and you!) I can't believe you are doing all this AND working full-time! Amazing, really. Take care of yourself; don't forget that part.