Xato has been in a separate paddock since he arrived nearly four weeks ago. Obviously, I don’t feel good about this; he can see others at all times and shares a fence line, but it’s not ideal. I’ve been trying to put the herd together but we have hit a few complications:
- Marty and Xato have not formed the BFF relationship I was hoping for. Mules play rough, mule boys play really rough, and Marty and Xato are borderline murderous as far as I can tell. So I’m not keen on leaving them unsupervised.
- We had two weeks of heavy, incessant rain which made the ground very slippery. I was reluctant to let the mules hoon around on such slick terrain – apart from the fact that i didn’t want anyone hurt for their sake, how ironic would it be to finally get a riding mule only for him to pull a tendon!
- Xato had conjunctivitis, and I didn’t particularly want him to pass it on to anyone. The thought of trying to administer eye drops to Marty twice a day was particularly horrifying.
- Little Mare is still on boxrest and so one of our horses has to be with her at all times. Otherwise, I would have put one horse out with Xato and another out with Marty; it would still have been slow progress bringing the whole herd together, but at least everyone would have had a buddy.
Last Tuesday I finally found myself with a couple of free hours, so I put Cash in Xato’s paddock and let Xato out with Marty. My initial introduction had involved all three, but Marty and Cash had ganged up on Xato so I thought it would be fairer to do a one-on-one.
Initially, things went well. The mules didn’t seem that interested in each other.