Picaro Leaves Ross Haven Farm

Picaro Leaves Ross Haven Farm
Picaro pictured with Dr. Carl Kirker-Head, Pete Daigneault, Farm Manager and Mona Kirker-Head with their daughters

Picaro's Progress is a Miracle!

Please join others in donating to Tufts Large Animal Hospital in honor of Picaro. If you are able to donate, please copy & paste w/ Picaro as subject: http://www.tufts.edu/vet/giving . Many thanks to those who have donated and are considering a donation. These donations make it possible for us to have this state of the art facility with top Veterinarians to care for our animals.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

On To Rehab!

Yesterday was a big day for Picaro. After a little bit of a struggle getting loaded into the trailer, Picaro was on his way to Ross Haven Farm in Sturbridge (www.rosshavenfarm.com). Owned by Dr. Carl Kirker-Head and his wife, Mona. This facility will be a perfect place for Picaro to continue on his healing ways.

Bringing him to a farm setting was something that Dr. Kirker-Head thought was needed for his continued care. I agree...it couldn't be a better spot!

Many thanks to the Kirker-Head family for their continued support of this dear horse who has managed to be a pretty strong fighter...his name does mean adventurer and what an adventure this has been.

We are still looking for a permanent home for Picaro, if you are interested or know of someone who is, please contact me at allsmall7@gmail.com

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Picaro continues to get stronger each day. His colitis has completely cleared and he is still eating and eating. Our worries continue to be the swallowing. If you look at the CT scan you can see how one of the bullets caused damage to areas that will continue to be slow healing.

Pictured here are two of Picaro's vet students, Meagan Meador and Jared Ravich. These two students have been with Picaro since January 14th, the day he arrived to Tufts. Although Meagan and Jared are on a new rotation, their constant, professional and heart felt care of Picaro has been instrumental in his fight for life. Thank you Meagan and Jared...good luck to you both as you look forward to graduation!

Coming up next will be x-rays to see how much the fracture in his jaw has healed and then he is off to Ross Haven Farm for rehabilitation as we look for a new home for Picaro.

Please contact me at allsmall7@gmail.com if you or anyone you know would be interested in adopting this wonderful horse!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

A Mind of His Own!

Still on the mend, Picaro has developed a stubborn streak and does not seem to want visitors around him anymore...unless of course you have some food for him!

There is no doubt that being outside is where he wants to be and the staff at Tufts get him out as much as possible. Apparently there was an attempt to get him on the scale and he wanted nothing to do with it!

At this time, I am beginning to take applications for adoption. Although he is not ready to go to be moved to a new barn today - we think he will be ready in a few weeks. If you are interested or know of someone that is..please send a note to me at: allsmall7@gmail.com.

Thank you for your continued support of this wonderful cause.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Article from the Boston Examiner

Here's a nice article about Pic with new pictures that was posted in the Boston Animal Advocacy Examiner


Friday, February 12, 2010


Sorry for those of you who tuned in and may have missed the show, it apparently wasn't on the 10 o'clock news as expected.

Here is the link to what was aired: http://www.necn.com/02/12/10/Horse-shot-multiple-times-by-owner-is-on/landing_newengland.html?blockID=179812&feedID=4206


Watch NECN

Watch NECN tonight (Friday) at 6:00, 10:00 & 11:00 pm for Picaro on TV!

Thursday, February 11, 2010


Today marked the beginning of week number four. It has been that long since Picaro was brought into Tufts with two gun shot wounds to his head. It has been that long since he has received two operations, countless amounts of drugs and the kind of care that is almost impossible to write about.

It is the kind of care that anyone would wish for someone they loved. The medical team at Tufts, guided by Dr. Carl Kirker-Head, have been outstanding. There has never been a time when I arrived that Picaro has not had someone in his stall or around his stall answering to his needs...and there have been many needs.

Right now however, I am asking you, our faithful readers for some help. Because there is no funding for Picaro, we are relying on donations to Tufts for the expert care that he has received. If you could give a donation of $5.00 or more toward this cause, it would be a huge help. There has been an outpouring of love and attention...for this we are very grateful. You can help too by giving on line: (copy and paste this url): https://secure.www.alumniconnections.com/olc/pub/TUF/onlinegiving/showGivingForm.jsp?form_id=532
Please type in that the gift is for the Cummings Veterinary School for the Large Animal Hospital. In the general comment section, please put, "In Honor of Picaro." Gifts can also be mailed directly with the same information as above. Many, many thanks to all who have donated!

And, NOW for the really good news....
Today, Picaro was taken off of ALL medications (including pain meds). He is chewing all the time (still tough to swallow, but he is doing it) and there is food in front of him all day for him to "graze" on. He loves Senior pellets and it is still fun to watch him grab them out of your hand when you bring them into his stall. We will watch to see how he reacts to the the "medication free" state that he is in, but, so far, so good.

New photos were taken earlier and will be posted soon....thank you all again for your support!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

How Cute Is Picaro?

We are definitely in a pattern of good news! According to Dr. Diego Quinteros he is "chewing like he is chewing gum!" It is like he is making up for lost time.
He still needs to keep what he is chewing in is mouth and swallow it, but the progress seems so good each day.

Picaro is having his bandages changed by Meagan, a Veterinary Student at Cummings School. He doesn't like posing for pictures!

Monday, February 8, 2010

A New Horse!

This afternoon I saw a new Picaro! He was feisty and fun! Apparently he has really been enjoying his walks in the afternoon, trying to find green grass...(and he has)... picking up a little gait and stretching his neck to say, "this is nice out here!"

After his bandages were changed today he wanted to eat! Watching him fill is mouth with pellets and dropping half of them was puzzling to me. After a while I decided to hand feed him. This way I could control how much he got and wait until it was swallowed before he had more.

The session turned into a game! I would hold the small bag of feed behind my leg and he would eat out of my right hand. When he wanted more he went looking for the bag! "Sorry, Picaro, you have to swallow what is in your mouth first!" This went on until all of his grain was gone. Not only did it show some spunk, but also, I was able to get more food into him.

Although I came home covered in drool and grain mush, it was worth it all! I really believe he is going to make it!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Sunday, February 7

Since I have been unable to get into Tufts for the last couple of days, the staff was good enough to give me the following update for the weekend:

Picaro is still showing very small signs of improvement. Eating a regular diet and moving away from tube feeding is the goal now. He is definitely interested in eating on his own and continues to chew and swallow small amounts of some pellets, but hay is very difficult to swallow.

He loves being outside for his walks and goes out at least once per day. The face wounds continue to heal nicely and he seems to be a little more comfortable showing fewer signs of colic.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Friday, February 5

Today was the day for the second ultra sound on Picaro's colon. Our fingers were crossed and the results showed that the swelling reduced from 2cm to .9cm....what a relief! Although he is still uncomfortable and continues to show us how much, we now have hope that his pain in that area will continue to lessen.

Now on a regular schedule of walks outside the hospital, Picaro loves the interaction with the mares that he sees and has made friends with a cow! It is great to see his ears perk up and show us signs that he wants to live!

On another note...we need your help! Picaro's medical bills are mounting daily and donations are needed! No matter the size, please help us by logging on to the Tufts site (copy and paste this url): https://secure.www.alumniconnections.com/olc/pub/TUF/onlinegiving/showGivingForm.jsp?form_id=532
Please type in that the gift is for the Cummings Veterinary School and the area would be for the Large Animal Hospital. In the general comment section, please put, "In Honor of Picaro." Gifts can also me mailed directly with the same information as above. Many, many thanks to all who have donated!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Thursday, February 4

"No better, no worse." That was the view on Picaro today. We can be encouraged by the fact that food continues to be very "yummy" and his interest in it increases with each feeding. The colitis is still very bothersome. During my visit today, it was obvious that it was getting close to his time for pain medication as he was very uncomfortable.

His medications and routines are the same. We are on a "let's wait and see" watch with him. He is still very strong and amazes everyone with his sweet face and wonderful temperament.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Wednesday, February 3

Picaro is such a great horse! I arrived at Tufts to find 3 students working on him, cleaning the wounds from surgery and gunshots. They are gentle and so good at what they do. Picaro holds his head down and never moves...he is amazing.

When the bandaging was replaced he was able to come over, say hello and see what is being offered in his "buffet" as it is called at Tufts. He was quite interested in the senior feed pellets - not as interested in the hay stretcher! A salt lick has been added to one of his dishes and he seems to enjoy that also. After spending a good amount of time chewing (it is still difficult, but he works at it regularly) he moves to the back of the stall, lies down and immediately goes to sleep. It seems to be a routine.

A new pain medication, butorphanol (similar to fentunyl and morphine) is now being administered as well as sucralfate as an anti-ulcer medication. He seems to be in better spirits and not as agitated with the colitis.

He will begin to go outside and have longer walks - he still has a wonderful spirit.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Monday, February 1

We were feeling so very optimistic about Picaro. Dr. Kirker-Head took him on a nice walk yesterday and he loved it. Trotted a little, took some stabs at what he thinks was grass and he seemed to have turned a corner.

Today, discomfort was still visible and an ultrasound showed Right Dorsal Colitis. The drug most commonly associated with right dorsal colitis is phenylbutazone, which has been administered to help with pain in Picaro's jaw.

Picaro is no longer receiving "bute" and has been switched to the anti-inflammatory drug, lidocaine.

He is still perky, and loves the hay that he was getting in small bites today.

Many thanks to the team at Tufts for all the loving care being demonstrated.
Sunday, January 31

Today Picaro could just not get comfortable. He was up and down, kicking at his belly and really not interested in food. He has been moved back to the main barn at Tufts where there is plenty of activity to keep him company.

He is currently receiving plenty of Malox for his upset stomach - we hope that will do the trick. The perky little horse that we had last week has definitely taken a little turn.

gold parties