Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Astro has been a little ill.

Poor Astro has had a rough time the last few days. He had a playmate come up to visit for the weekend and as he is very food possessive, he decided he would inhale, rather than chew his daily rabbit. end result was a bone lodged in his food pipe. Symptoms started a few hours after eating it when I noticed him eatinga lot of grass. They all eat grass quite often, so at first I thought nothing of it. However, as the day progressed, his grass eating increased in frequency. Then he started choking and gagging which also over a few hours increased in frequency. By 9 pm he was also salivating massively. The poor boy had saliva pouring from his mouth. The choking and gagging got worse and he was throwing up as well. So soon after we had to ring the vet and drive down to see her. Rebecca our local Vet was great and interrupted her Sunday evenings activities to see him.

Astro came to me when he was a little over 6 months of age and with that came a couple of issues. One being, he doesn't like the Vets. We took our time trying to get him settled so Rebecca could examine him, but in the end, he was just becoming more distressed. So it was decided to sedate him so Rebecca could have a look and see what was going on. The first sedative didn't take, as he would not allow her to even touch him, let alone get a needle near him. He was howling just from her touching him with her hands. We had another go and this time managed to sneak the needle into his rump and get some sedative into his system. It still took a good half hour before he eventually gave in to the sedative and fell asleep in my arms.

Rebecca had a look into his mouth and food pipe and although there was a couple of irritations, could not see any obstructions. So we then had to X-ray him. So both Rebecca and I donned the X-ray gowns and we took some pics to see what was in there. It showed some bone stuck in the food pipe. Rebecca then slid a tube down his food pipe which we think cleared the obstruction. We then took some more X-rays to make sure it had moved and thankfully, these pics showed no more signs of any foreign bodies in there. While he was asleep under sedation, we also took the opportunity to give him his annual vaccinations. We figured there was no point putting him through the stress of two more injections while fully awake and killed two birds with the one stone.

We are now two days down the track and with the aid of some antibiotics, some anti inflammatories, as well as some Lactose free milk and some Yoghurt to sooth the irritations, he has progressed well and is now almost back to his normal self. A little stressful for me, but in the end he is now OK which is all that matters.

As for the hunting side of things, he and his sister Zsa Zsa are just loving life on the farm. They get to hunt rabbits every day and Deer at least once of twice a month. We have converted from using the bow to using firearms now, as my poor body can't manage to draw the bow anymore. But, that's OK, as the guns are a more effective tool and we rarely come home without some sort of food reward for Astro and Zsa Zsa. We have a Sauer Side by side 12 gauge and a Voere .22 for the rabbits and a Ruger .270win for the Deer. All three are very effective tools and should serve us well in our food gathering endeavours for years to come.

Sedated at the veterinary surgery.

The reward for a good hunt.


  1. Poor Astro. Glad to hear you found the bone and he is on the road to recovery. Good hearing from you! RBD

  2. Glad to hear everything turned out okay! Nice to see you're still hunting. I was ready to get my pups back into the field and then work got crazy. I miss our walks in the wilderness. :(

    1. Hopefully you can get back into it soon. I know how much mine would miss it if we were not able to have our twice daily hunts. They are developing into very, very, very effective little hunters. Rock solid they are. Little Zsa Zsa prefers the smaller prey such as Rabbits and birds, but Astro is an absolute Sambar Deer hunting guru! Of the 9 or 10 Deer we have taken since they started Deer hunting, Astro has been the one who has pointed all bar one of them! He also is a maintenance free hunter. We head off and he just does his job without the need for any guidance or control from me. Little Zsa Zsa still needs to be guided. She is a little too driven and tends to get ahead of herself if I am not reigning her in the whole time when out on deer.