being a boy. This year,we have had a bit of a glut of these young lads on the yard. They get neglected because nobody wants to get them gelded and feed them until they are three. So sometimes they end up struggling and starving. Once they are healthy, it’s no problem getting them fat – you rarely have to teach a hungry pony how to eat! But if a young boy is to find a good, settled home, he needs to be a gelding.
We have a great vet whose name starts with V. She sorts us all out and helps us when we are sick. We have a ‘hospital wing’ at the yard where she does the gelding operations. It’s just a clean corner of a well-lit shed, with rubber matting and a thick bed, where she can work in fairly clean and controlled conditions. We organised a day and booked for the Hobbits to be done – I make myself scarce to be honest. I was done years ago but the thought still makes me wince!
Bilbo was up first, catheter in neck, drugs all injected in; Bilbo still awake. Bit more drugs, Bilbo still awake! Tiny bit more drugs (uh oh, can’t have any more) and Bilbo lay down. All is settled, everything washed and ready for the unkindest cut, when surprise! Bilbo gets up again! Back to the drawing board for him then.
We booked for V to come another day. She sedated Bilbo with some different stuff and he was was done while he stood up. Although he looked awake, he didn’t seem to know a thing about it – amazing!
Next up is Frodo, who goes to sleep as planned, All is done and dusted and he’s back on his feet before we know it. He’s a bit sleepy, but V has given him lovely pain relief so he is not distressed. After the rest of the day, he is able to go out into a lovely clean field with Bilbo – to sleep it off.
Merry was a different story altogether. He got examined (which he rather enjoyed) and V said he would have to go to hospital. That turned out to be quite an adventure!