Mission: Connecting people to Nature
Kingston, Arkansas. Where I paint with Ozark pigments … and talk to rocks, creeks, and trees.
Madison Woods for art, Roxann Riedel for real estate (soon!) Two names, same person. Just call me “Mad Rox”.

Contact info: madison@wildozark.com or text/call (479) 409-3429

Too Busy to Blog




Being too busy is probably the number 1 excuse for why people aren’t consistent with making blog posts. It’s the excuse I’m using right now, too, ha.

I’ve been attending real estate school on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. On Saturdays I go to the studio or to another event to hawk my artistic wares. So, on Sundays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays I try to catch up on tasks that were left undone while I’ve been away. And I help Rob with whatever he’s working on. Both lists are unending.

This morning, my elderly horse, Shasta, showed signs of being off. She wasn’t interested in her food. During the too busy last two weeks, I’ve noticed her off-ness but didn’t have time to address it. I did buy wormer because I know she probably needs that. Her coat is dull and she’s having trouble keeping on weight. But she’s also at least 32 years old.

So sooner or later, she will get ill or just reach a point of being unable to thrive any longer. I know this, but until the day comes, I’m going to do whatever I can to keep her healthy and happy. This morning I gave her the wormer and put her in the stall to give her space to eat food without the other horse, Comanche, taking it from her.

When one of them get sick, the stronger one takes the food of the sick one. So over the years, when this happens, I feed the other one separately until they’re back on their feet and strong enough to defend their bowl of food or pile of hay. Even if I’m too busy, in a situation like this, I have to make the time to address it.

But Shasta wouldn’t eat and just wanted to lie down. I walked her around then came back to the food, and she ate a nibble if I hand-fed her. But that was all. It was a start, though. So Rob came out to help, so I walked her around and he kept the other horse out of the food while I gave her a handful at a time.

What did I feed her? I suspected she was weak from not eating enough and being wormy didn’t help, but I also wondered if she’d gotten sand in her gut. The grass in their pasture is almost gone and any they find is going to be close to the ground. So, I prepared a cup of chia seeds by soaking them in boiled water. The gelatinous seeds help to sweep any sand in there out. It also acts like psyllium seeds that people use to help with constipation. I added some magnesium in case she is constipated or has sluggish bowels since she hasn’t been eating enough. Then to the same bowl, I added a cup of feed in there to get mushy, with a little corn syrup to encourage her to eat it.

Too busy or not, I spent the morning hours walking her around until she had a little appetite. One handful at a time, after several rounds up and down the driveway, she ate all of her food. I put her back in the stall to let her rest. She did lie down right away and I worried that would be the end. But after she rested, she did get up and start eating her hay, then she took a long drink of water. That is a very good sign. Now I’m just waiting on her to poop. If she does that soon, I’ll be able to rest a lot easier because I’ll know she’s on the mend.

In the meantime, she’s out walking about and eating grass like she normally would. So I’m feeling hopeful. It’s going to be below freezing in a few days, so it’s critical to get her strength back up before then.

Too busy isn't an excuse when a horse is sick. You have to address it sooner, rather than later.
An old photo of Shasta and Comanche at the shed.

First and foremost, apart from being an artist and author, Madison is a nature enthusiast. She enjoys using local resources in every aspect of her life and considers the land she and her husband live on as partners in life. They care for the land and the land cares for them. She’s an herbalist, gardener, and wildcrafter of medicinal plants.



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