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Monday, September 3, 2012


Well, as some of you know from the FB post, I lost my beloved mare Fatima (AKA the SRF) August the 24. She died of a massive reaction to a progesterone injection. She began to seize the evening before, as soon as I began to give the injection, it scared me to death. I stopped and did not give her the whole thing. I called the vet (two vets actually) and they told me it sounded like I had accidentally gotten some of the medication in an artery when she started to squirm around and she would be fine in a bit. She seemed to come out of it and recover and was up and walking around when we left the barn. At nine o'clock at night the barn owner texted me and said she was still doing fine, wandering around and grazing.

At 4:30 Friday morning I got a call telling me that she had crashed through the fence and then onto the barn owner's back porch, breaking a window. Apparently she went through another fence into the back pasture, which is where she was when we got there. She was completely neurologic, she would go into a seizure, fall, thrash, smash her head on the ground and then go still for a bit, resting, then she would attempt to get up and start all over. We got two halters on her and managed to keep her from smashing her head into the ground as much. The closest vet would not answer the calls, and my usual vet was an hour and a half away. She got up and headed our way, but in the interim we had to deal with the repeated seizures. The interval between them got longer, but they were still happening. When the vet got there, she sedated her and began IV fluids laced with Dex and DMSO to try to reduce the swelling that had developed in her brain. She finally lay quietly and was resting after the fluids were administered.

The vet left another bag of fluids and a sedative for me to administer a bit later. I am a vet tech and have had the training to do these things and my vet knows my abilities and had it not been me she would not have trusted me with this sort of thing. She had inserted a jugular catheter, and sutured it in. She told me that she was not going to lie to me, and that she could still not make it. I understood, I know that a horse surviving something like what she had gone through was iffy at best.

My best friend and I stayed out in the pasture with her, watching her for any signs of coming out of it. After about an hour or so, she seemed to begin to seize again. Her breathing became very labored, her nostrils collapsing, and she was gasping. I called the vet back and she said to re-sedate her. I did and she continued to take what turned out to be her final breaths. She had no response to stimulus. I was holding her nostrils open and trying to get her to breathe again, my friend was also calling to her and trying to get her to respond, but she was gone.

We let my friend's gelding, who loved my mare, say goodbye before we loaded her on the trailer and took her home. It was the longest drive I have ever made. On our way we say a beautiful, full rainbow, I like to think that was her, crossing over, saying goodbye. When we arrived back at the farm I grew up on and she was born on, we drove her to the back pasture and laid her to rest beside her mother. They are together now.

This has been the hardest thing I have ever had to do. I miss her so much. I had such hopes and dreams for us. Part of me still can't grasp the fact that she is gone.

Love your horses folks, love them with all you have, you never know when your time with them will be gone.