Saturday, July 12, 2014

The dangers of wire...

Old picture.

I went out this morning to feed and saw the boys standing over by the pond.  I thought it was kind of odd that they were just standing there and hadn't met me at the gate when they heard me shut the front door.  As I approached them I walked around the hay feeder and the dirt pile and immediately saw the wire....  feeling sick to my stomach I ran the rest of the way.  Chrome was standing there, motionless, staring at me.  The wire was wrapped around his right hind leg midway up the cannon bone.

I knelt beside him and saw that the wire was around his leg and wrapped back around itself.... how does he manage to do crap like that????  I just don't even know how it's possible because it's not like he was tangled in the middle of it.  The very end was wrapped around his leg and twisted back on itself as if someone had done it to him!  I unwrapped it easily and checked his leg.  The hair was missing in a ring around his leg and the back of his leg was a little wet, but no blood came off on my hand.

Still feeling sick I started rolling up the wire, trying to figure out where it had come from!  Then I realized it was the electric wire we had up around the pasture!  The deer had evidently got hung up in it and broke it, then he got tangled in it and dragged it across the pasture.  I had been meaning to take the wire down and replace it with electric tape that we got for a really good deal at a yard sale, but I hadn't had time.  :(

I rolled up probably 100 yards of wire and carried it out of the pasture.  Chrome followed right behind me and I let him out in the yard while I put the wire up and got his halter.  I had my dad and husband both check him because I was paranoid I was missing something serious, but they both said he was fine.  I jogged him out and hubby said he was completely sound.  There was no swelling either.

I am so relieved and so, so happy Chrome is such a calm horse.  He had dragged the wire across the pasture, but as soon as it got hung up on something he stopped and just stood there.  I have no idea how long he was there, but he never moved until I had unwrapped it and told him he could move.  Just thinking about what could have happened brings tears to my eyes.  If you use electric wire please check it every day!!  It could have been BAD!

So while Chrome and Zep grazed in the front yard hubby and I drove the whole five acres and took down all of the wire.  I would prefer they lean on and destroy the fence than to get tangled up again.  Now that it's summer there is so much grass that they aren't leaning on it anyway.  I'll move the insulators down (I have NO IDEA why I originally put it at the top where the deer could get hung up in it instead of as chest height) lower and put the tape up.  I will NEVER use the wire kind again....

So I didn't ride.  I want to wait until tomorrow and make sure no swelling appears or his hoof doesn't fall off or something.... I know, it's melodramatic....  I'm sure he will be fine.  :)

P.S.  While we were taking down the fence I got eating alive by mosquitoes.... EIGHTEEN bites!!!!!  I officially hate summer now LOL!

19 comments:

  1. Wow! Scary. And over the years so many people have commented that I needed to put up hot wire. I'm glad I ignored them. I do think horses can get themselves hung up on just about anything though. My horses have a history of rolling next to fences and getting their legs stuck between the railings. They usually kick themselves free and put dents in the metal or pop the wooden panels off. I got the smallest weave for my Nibble Nets because I knew they'd start pawing at them, and sure enough they do. I'm glad Chrome is okay.

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  2. Thank you NuzMuz! The crazy thing is that the wire has been up for a year now! I guess a deer brought it down recently though and he got into it. I wish I'd already taken it down since I was planning to move it lower anyway, but no harm done. I went out to put his neem oil on and I can barely see where the wire was. It looks totally normal minus a bit of missing fur. :) I got lucky that he's so laid back and knows not to panic when he's hung up (he's proven that before today too-I don't know if you remember the time he got hung up on the lease land at our old place). When we restring the electric I'm going to use the tape kind because it doesn't tangle around their legs like the normal wire does. I'm glad your guys know how to untangle themselves from the panels. I have no idea if Chrome has ever done that on my round pen... I hope not lol. :D

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  3. Oh my gosh that is so scary! Good boy Chrome! I'm glad he's okay.

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  4. I'm so glad he had sense enough not to freak out and hurt himself fighting it!

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  5. Scary! Glad that he is okay and such a good boy. You have done a great job with him and he knows that :)

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  6. I would have been freaking out. This proves what an awesome horse you have. He knew he had to wait and you would sort him.

    I'm sure that he'll be fine. And yes get rid of the wire. A friend of mine has wire and she found a fawn's leg in it one morning. :(

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  7. OMG Teresa!!!!! That's awful!!! I took the wire out of the pasture as soon as it happened and I will never put that kind back up again. :(

    Chrome is such a good boy. When crap like this happens he reminds me all over again what an amazing horse he is. Some of you might be too new to the blog to remember this, but several years ago when he was on the thirty or forty acres of lease land he got hung up, only it was with his hoof between two t-posts and a bunch of barbed wire!!! I had no idea it was out in the middle of those trees. I went out calling for him and he wouldn't come to me so I started to panic. When I found him he was calmly standing there with his front leg hung up waiting on me to rescue him. My husband got him untangled and he was completely unharmed. The amazing part is there were two or three poop piles so he had been there a WHILE (all night probably)! He never got scared or impatient. He just stood there. He's awesome!

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  8. There is no doubt that tape is a much better option than wire. Even though they are not supposed to, some farmers around here still use barbed wire in fields with horses, and will leave bits of it lying around. When Violette was in the field next to my house, before I bought her, I had to cut her free of bared wire twice. Fortunately, she also had the good sense to stay still and wait for someone to help her.

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  9. Glad Chrome is okay. It easily could have gone the other way. What a good boy he was to stand and wait for help! Fencing is a deal breaker for me. When our horses lived at the home farm we replaced what was left of the smooth wire, with tape. We kept finding long pieces of old barb wire they used from years ago. It would work it's way out of the ground. Harder to find with bigger acreage.

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  10. I'm so glad he's okay and not prone to panic.

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  11. Oh scary! It's a good thing Chrome has a great mind - I have nightmares about those things happening.

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  12. At my last barn, the stallion kept breaking the electric, and then it wouldn't be fixed for a while. And in the meantime, horses would figure out the electric wasn't on & start scratching on the wooden fence and break the wire in both their individual paddocks and the pasture. I was constantly taking down wire because I was terrified that Salem would break a leg. My friend's horse got caught in it not once but twice (!!!) and once we actually thought the wire was IN his leg. Thank goodness his hair was just very long, which was hiding the wire wrapped around his leg. The other time, the wire was still attached to the fence and the poor horse had been dragging it around with him. I only noticed because his water was out and he took his buckets down and was banging them around; when I went in his stall, I saw the wire attached to his leg and trailing out the stall door into his paddock.

    Luckily, my new barn has awesome Centaur fencing with one strip of thick coated electric that is actually meant for, like, guinea pigs and stuff. It is very thick and flexible and will not wrap around a leg.

    Wire is scary stuff!

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  13. Don't be so hard on yourself! Life happens as it will and we can't control all of it. You never had an issue with the wire before, it's unlikely you'll have an issue like that again! Probability being what it is.

    It's very fortunate Chrome is the kind of horse to stand and wait until help arrives. If you want to provide him more training in the realm of Things On My Legs Stop And Wait For Mom, then teach him to hobble tie. It'll help him to know that when his legs are tied up it is best to just stand still.

    Horses will be horses, and if you fret about that often you'll drive yourself mad! So try to just manage things that you can and release worries over things that you can't control. =) The more you fret, the less clear thinking you'll be because it is when worrying and fear and anxiety take over that accidents happen! (A fact I have to remind myself of very often!!!)

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  14. I was actually afraid to read your post--I am so happy that there was a happy ending!

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  15. Oh yikes! What a terrifying experience! Glad he was a calm boy and waited till you could unwrap it.

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  16. Thanks guys. He's doing great. I can't even tell where the wire was wrapped now. Yay! I gave him another day off to be sure and he told me he feels just fine by galloping around and bucking when I went to put him up from grazing in the yard. He's such a dork.

    Frizzle that must have been terrifying! I would have freaked out (more than I already did) if it had looked like the wire was inside his leg!!!!

    Liz you are so right! I will let myself off the hook... The wire is gone now and he's fine so no reason to beat myself up about it. Live and learn. Thanks!

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  17. How scary! I've seen too many bad accidents with wire fencing (and there are endless miles of it in this state). I'm so glad to hear Chrome is ok! You're so lucky to have such a sweet and patient horse.

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  18. Yikes, how scary! I'm glad he kept his cool and was alright!

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