[RC] Confirmed multiple horse death due to a Large Round Bale - Libby & Quentin Llop
> Dear Horse Owners:
> As a veterinarian and seller of large round bales, that we make from our
> home fields, I was most perturbed to receive a telephone call from the
> nephew of a horse owner, where a large round bale had just been delivered.
> "Your hay has not been here two hours, and two horses from the group are
> dead!" The obvious implication was that a gross error existed somewhere
> our hay operation.
> In 1979, we saw that the wave of the future was making hay in large
> bundles, to be handled by machine, rather than small to be handled by
> As we did not have enough acreage to justify the purchase of a new
> we anticipated paying off the loan to cover the $4700 machine by doing
> custom work. Naturally we were concerned with the health of our horses.
> Initially we stored hay outside; after a period of years, however, we
> discovered a high incidence of heaves in our teenage horses. Currently
> horses and horse customers get only early cut, not rained on hay that was
> either stored under
> cover or inside a plastic sleeve. We feed only in feeders to minimize
> and currently are on our third and fourth baler.
> So with that much haymaking experience, we couldn't imagine the
> of the horse mortality. As I suggested that I come & do a post mortem
> examination of the horses, I was doubtful of finding any grossly visible
> signs. I recalled, however, Dr. King in Fri. afternoon Show & Tell
> up an unchewed and undigested sprig of yew (Taxus) and announcing, that it
> came from the rumen of goat which had succumbed within hours to its
> poisonous factors.
> Equipped with my sharpened knife and gardener's limb loppers, to cut
> ribs, I drove into the farm. I envied the way the horses had eaten
> underneath the high tensile electric fence along the drive. Yes, there
> the horses, lying on their sides on the close cropped sod near the freshly
> eaten from round bale. In ten minutes I was deep into the gruesome task.
> Much blood was found in the abdomen. Paired four to five inch bruises
> on the inside of the abdominal muscle. The inescapable conclusion was
> the presence of the round bale induced such a fight among the hungry
> that the dominant one killed two of the others.
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