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April 2012


I think by this time I can safely say that no month is the same as any other!  Every day has different problems to be solved, equines in need, in addition to the ‘normal’ stuff that needs doing, like manure and refuse removal, sorting out the Petty Cash or Income and Expenditure Accounts, etc!  This month has been no different!  And we have been short staffed with Stanley away in Johannesburg!

We started off the month with our first Street Collection, adeptly handled by Dawn who is doing a good job of getting the funds in, leaving us free to concentrate on other things.  The Collection was most successful and Dawn is to be complimented on her organizational achievements!  Thank you, Dawn!  The next event will be the SOS Trail Run Series organized by Extreme Boot Camp and Triangle Sports in May, June, July.  Application forms available on request.  For the runners out there, get your entries in soon.  Please!

Two Friends who, finding two donkeys wandering down Seaview Road in the early hours of the morning, took the matter in hand and while one drove the vehicle, the other walked them home and proceeded to give the owner a proper ‘dressing down’.  Well done and thank you, Ladies!

One of our girls foaled down but this one did not have a happy ending in that the mare was detached from the foal from the start and although we tried with veterinary assistance to rectify the matter and pull the foal through, this did not happen.  An informed decision was made but the foal died before we could do anything.

In the meantime, a late night call was received from one of our friendly Policemen, Gareth, to ask for help outside Walmer Park.   For those not in touch with The Herald, the local newspaper, a lady stopped, at 10.30pm, to remonstrate with a donkey carter on Main Road, Walmer.  The cart was overloaded and had a puncture, the driver was not the owner of the cart or donkeys, and should never have been on the road at that time (NMMM ADV Bye Laws)!  We do not know whether it was a conversation or a shouting match, suffice it to say that another vehicle stopped and got involved and unfortunately, it was all downhill from there.  The new arrival was apparently struck by the lady and he retaliated, putting her in ICU for weeks.   I, on the other hand, with Gareth, collected the bakkie and horsebox, uplifted the two exhausted donkeys and got them settled in at the Unit, and then returned to tow the cart back as well.   It was a long evening indeed but I need to thank the Neighbourhood Watch’s Bernadette and the SAPS Sargeant Gareth for their outstanding assistance – they are a credit to their respective organizations!

The donkeys were exhausted and spent the next 48 hours recovering, just sleeping, lying and eating.  A Case has been opened against the owner of cart and donkeys under the APA that took an entire morning to put together and at this stage, the donkeys and cart are staying right where they are!  According to The Herald newspaper, the lady is making a recovery and her animals at home are being looked after and we wish her the best.   The downside is that other donkey owners are now having their donkeys removed from their custody without permission and so the problems persist.

I have to add here that I already have most of this particular family’s donkeys in safekeeping, so it was good to have a laugh finding some of the family pulling the donkey-less cart down the road themselves.  Only to be apprehended by the Traffic Department because ‘you know, lady, the carts must be pulled by donkeys, not by humans’ with the threat to impound the cart if found again!  Leading to the theft of other people’s donkeys.  Township donkey owners are in an uproar and very supportive of the Unit actions!

So far, the week had been stressful in the extreme and having received an invitation, I ‘stepped out of the building’ for 30 hours to ‘pull myself together’!  Thank you for giving me recovery space, Lesley and Roger!

Only to return to rain and flooded camps!  But again the channels worked really well!

A donation of excess requirements of tack was donated to, and will find its way, to the Barnyard Stables, Umtata, with thanks to Kragga Kamma Game Park.

After a wrestling match with a donkey owner whose donkey had a wound that was proud fleshing, the donkey is with us until all is healed – thanks to a generous donation of Miracle Foam by Natalie and daily applications thereof!

At the same time, we were preparing for Stanley to go to Johannesburg for his final module of farriery organized by World Horse Welfare.  Picture posters of his farriery done in PE and surrounds, a basic Income and Expenditure account and packing his tools to make the flight easier, if not lighter!  He has returned, armed with Certificates of Competency, which he gained with Merit, and bragging rights to having met Princess Anne.    SO well done, Stanley!

I on the other hand was delighted to receive my new ID book from Home Affairs, having collected my new Drivers Licence about four weeks ago!  Now we just need to get to the Court House after the assault and robbery in January!

A grateful horse owner phoned in to say that, thanks to a report from an alert motorist, his colicking horse had received treatment and was on the mend.

Mr Sitoto phoned in a panic about his horse, Thina.  There are all sorts of ins and outs in this matter, but we need to say that on bringing her into the Unit after a Vet Visit to debride and demaggot the wounds, it was found that she had in fact received a double ‘ding’ from a Puff Adder and due to the late finding of her, her front legs were double the size with abscess pus.  She really was very poorly and I had my doubts about any future at all, but with feeding of only the best fodder, best treatment and lots of TLC from Sarah, she is making a remarkable recovery.  Unfortunately, it appears that she may be a Thoroughbred and one wonders how she got into this situation!  Case ongoing.

Lady and her foal, Caramel, were returned to their grateful owner, post colic treatment for mommy and dog bite treatment for foal. 

The mid month visit to Grahamstown was spent deworming all the donkeys and also the issuing of ‘passports’.  A simple little booklet that can be presented at Clinics, showing that the animals have been inspected and/or injected was introduced to owners who will be encouraged to get their Passports signed when presented at the Clinics to show that they DO look after their donkeys.  

We received a sweet email from Murjanah and Thando, two fostered venerable old ladies,  in their new home down the coast and by all accounts they are settling in well, especially as their two horse mates have joined them.

We popped in on a Country trip to visit a couple of our Adopted Thoroughbreds who all seem to have settled down well in their new homes with new friends.  At the same time, we checked in on Kleintjie and Aunty Laurel who had produced a foal of her own, named April.   On the same trip, we were asked to give an opinion on another donkey that seemed to have a problem.  One thing led to another and it meant that the Game Park had to be brought to the animal that had somehow dislocated his hind leg and as there was no hope of fixing it, the correct thing for the animal was done.

We received a giggling phonecall from someone to say that while waiting for the Ironman cyclists to cross Heugh Road, they had watched as the Traffic Officer on duty had assisted a donkey cart to get across the road at 6th Avenue.   Of course, being the Ironman weekend I was unable to get to stables to feed in the early morning, but Sarah stepped up to the plate and did the necessary special feed for Thina for which I thank her most profusely!  Of course, we were able to replenish our stock of Bonaqua Pump bottles that prove so useful in dispensing readymade Epson Salts water to township residents for the simple application to wounds.  Thank you Treloar and Ayanda for collecting and delivering!

The Humansdorp Clinic was a deworming one and 18 horses and one mule received their muti without  too much hassle.  It is also good to see that getting the basics right means that the horses are very well.

Coming back from a busy morning there, we were alerted to a stray donkey in Walmer by AWS’s Hannes, Rhona, Carolyn, and the Neighbourhood Watch. In other words, the phone went mad!  She was shepherded in to a townhouse complex by Rhona who had followed her from Villiers Road and eventually we found our way there and uplifted a pregnant mare and brought her home to the Unit.  At least she and all the motorists were now safe!  Thank you and Well Done for staying with her all the way, Rhona!

And then Stanley spent his first day back at work trying to sort out three stray donkeys on Stanford Road!  Definitely not the place to be in the morning traffic and it certainly played havoc with the rest of the day having taken hours to resolve.

Donations received for which we sincerely thank you!The Derbyshires – delivered bags of grass and a number of bales of grassmix
Barbie and Cindy – fresh cut green grass
Methodist Church – bread

Kirsten – 11 donkey bits

Carolyn - tack donated via Treloar

Natalie – Miracle Foam

Nicky and Tara - carrots

Val – 4 Dermavet and 6 boxes Epson Salts

Michelle - computer stand

Jill & Karen – 35 bales teff

Dorrie – bags of leavings

Rob – repair of the office freezer – no charge!

AWS – delivered a horseblanket that had been dropped off with them for us

For all the above, Thank you and Bless you all.

Banking Details (all donated monies are used by us in the Metro and beyond!):

Racing Association, National Horse Trust Account Number: 080563473
Bank:  Standard Bank    Universal Branch Code:  051001


Eastern Cape Horse Care Unit, Account Number: 080733875

Standard Bank, Universal Branch Code 051001

Landline:  041 366 1594
Cellph: 072 357 2505
Email:  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Website:  www.echcu.co.za
Facebook: East Cape Horse Care Unit


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