What a week! Sunday was weird, Monday was better, and Tuesday and Wednesday were both busy and fun. It’s been another busy day of construction projects, produce shopping and delivery, routine cleaning and caregiving, and planning for the winter holiday season.
Speaking of which, we’d love if you all took a moment to consider purchasing something off of our holiday Wish List! Outreach Coordinator Kelsi curates the list and has added some special items. The additions include a new skateboard for Honey B, books for Jamie, fleece blankets for all the chimps, and hardware that will help us to furnish the new playrooms.
If the item you hope to donate is already purchased, there are always items such as dietary supplements, storage totes, cleaning products and office supplies that are equally important! I can’t speak for the other staff, but I get pretty stoked when people donate mundane items like wet erase markers and refills for the label printer. If you feel like making my day (or contributing to the welfare of the chimps), you can access the list directly by clicking here.
Additionally, we caregivers have two primary wishes that are not Prime items but are equally tangible: for all chimpanzees to reach their sanctuary homes and for all the sanctuary’s residents to stay happy and healthy.
Of course, this wish also applies to the bovines. As Katelyn mentioned on Monday, Meredith looked much better than the day before and her check-up went well, so we’re not too concerned but are still taking precautions.
To facilitate the health exam, we shifted the cattle into the Bud Box and then isolated Meredith in the narrow chute. Dr. Erin plays the role of “quarterback” during veterinary exams, managing the team and doing the specialized tasks that require her expertise. In this case, J.B. and I served as her assistants (and Chad also helped on a couple of occasions by promptly running some supplies up from the sanctuary’s vet clinic).
In summary, Dr. Erin did a full visual inspection, palpated and listened to Meredith’s gut, tested her reflexes and responses, collected blood and fecal samples for diagnostics, and used the opportunity to administer some preventative antibiotics. We then let Meredith back out with the herd and monitored her for further discomfort or difficulties.
Since then, we’ve been frequently visiting the barn to check on Meredith and give her supplements. These include minerals, probiotics, electrolytes and anti-inflammatory meds. Surprisingly, though, Merry looks fantastic. She’s eating heartily, breathing normally, moving with the herd and laying down in the straw bedding at night. As happy as we are with this improvement, it makes her Sunday troubles even more mysterious. Dr. Erin and the staff are working to rule out some possibilities, but our initial diagnosis of “ain’t doin’ right” currently still stands. This whole thing loosely feels like a low-budget episode of House, M.D. where the team wears Carrhart overalls instead of lab coats.
The best part of the exam, however, was this series of opportunistic portraits that depicts Nutmeg showing affection for his mother, Betsy…
…to the point of being mildly annoying.
P.S. I took all of these photos with the new mirrorless camera and an 85mm portrait lens. A generous supporter purchased both of these items for us via the same Wish List I mentioned above. Consider it further evidence that your contributions help us to do our jobs!