Thank you so very much for your concern and suggestions regarding
dear Chloe and Daphne's fence chewing.
I must allay your fears...they are definitely not cribbing.
Chewing is sometimes confused with cribbing, however they are two different things.
When a horse cribs, they lock their teeth onto a fence or stall wall and draw air
into the back of their pharynx.
Rarely do they eat the wood, but rather use it as a means to hold fast
while they arch their necks and suck air.
They have found through fluoroscopic studies,
that the equine does not actually fill their belly with air, as was once thought...
but rather just fills the back of their pharynx and then exhales it again.
Apparently this causes an endorphin release.
So, in essence, it is a bad habit that is actually a way that horses self-soothe...
and one that is very hard to stop...as there is so much positive reinforcement from the endorphins.
What these girls are doing...
is just plain old eating my fence.
Donkeys eat wood to get more fiber into their diets.
It's important to remember that donkeys come from arid parts of the world with poor vegetation...
so, tough, woody growth is natural to them.
So, while I don't appreciate having to replace fence boards on a somewhat regular basis...
I am at least relieved to know that they are not doing something far worse.
Boredom should not be a problem for these two party animals.
They are good company for each other and have plenty to keep them amused.
They also get to spend a good deal of time out in the pasture
(albeit with their grazing muzzles on... no worries....they have become quite adept at eating
with their muzzles on!)
The slow-feeders have been a Godsend.
Yesterday I had to move them into the donkeys' shelter.
By late afternoon, the sky turned tumultuous and the winds picked up.
A cold front had moved in... bringing icy winds with it...
not a favorite amongst the donkeys.
And so, they are safely tucked in their house...
with their heat lamp...
and room service!
(a meal that will take them hours to consume...thanks to the slow feeders!)
While the cold winds blow outside,
Chester continues his training inside.
He is a quick study.
Here he is demonstrating how well he can sit and stay....
patiently waiting for his treat.
Chester the wonder dog... with the biggest ears ever!
Hubbs says he looks like what a fifth grader would draw, if if asked to draw a dog.
Oh Chester.... we love you!
PS....we sent off his DNA test kit.
Soon we will see what type of traveling salesman was his father.
His mother was apparently a cattle dog.