These past few weeks have been super hot as well as humid. With that, we spend several hours a day checking on our residents to make sure they are safe and comfortable. That includes: placing cool towels on their backs, misting with a cooling spray, delivering icy treats, and more. Summer is hard on most of our residents as their genetics have been manipulated so they will grow very large very fast. This is extremely hard on their hearts and lungs and exasperated by heat and humidity.
A few weeks ago, we noticed Brandi breathing heavily while lying down in the shade. We did all the things to cool her, including putting her in a stall alone, placed a cool damp cloth on her, kept her out of the sun, with a fan on her. It didn’t help slow her breathing much at first. It seemed to be heat stress but also a pain issue. She started having issues in her back hips a few years ago and has been on medication to manage pain since then. Recently, we noticed her back left leg really not holding her weight. We had her vet come to evaluate her at the Sanctuary. It seems now that it is a neurological issue on her back end. We are now adding a daily steroid on top of her other pain medications. It is helping her. She visits her mud hole, nibbles a bit of grass, and then lies back down. However, we are very much at the point of evaluating her quality of life and pain levels. Which we discussed with our vet of what to keep an eye on. We are giving her all the love we can and lots of treats too.
Vegan is currently at Purdue Large Animal Hospital and will remain there for about another week and a half. About two weeks ago, we noticed Vegan was lame in his back left leg, the leg that he broke as a calf. You may remember that two years ago he was limping in that same leg, so we took him to be evaluated at Purdue. At that time, his joints were fusing, which was causing him significant pain. Once healed, he has been doing really well. Upon evaluation a few weeks ago, the inner toe on that back leg, had quite a bit of necrotic tissue. It was debrided as much as possible, with local anesthesia, and a bandage was placed on it. After a few bandage changes, and healing in a dry, flat, stall Vegan was still experiencing lameness in that leg. His medical team placed a block on his outer toe to take weight off of his healing inner toe. They are seeing good results and want to give that toe time to really heal up. He will also get a radiograph of his back leg, to see the changes in two years. We can tell you that Vegan is very comfortable. But we know that he misses his friends—Wilson and Zeke were not happy about him leaving. We look forward to bringing him back home!
Thank you all for making it possible for Vegan and Brandi to receive all the care they need and deserve to live their lives as comfortable and as possible.