Just an update on 'Gene (now with further updates at the end of this post): The doc called a few minutes ago with results of the labwork, and it's not good. What he found indicates a lethal intestinal necrosis, what we call in horses a "twisted gut." It's not something they come back from, unless it happens to occur on an operating table...which, obviously, is never the case. I used to think that was funny, the thing about a twist colic being too late "unless it happens on the operating table." Not funny any more.
So, where we're at now is that we have enough painkilling drugs to keep him comfortable through the night, if he lives that long, which is doubtful. If he DOES live that long, the vet will come out first thing in the morning and euthanize him. A year ago, I had never had a horse of mine die in all the years I'd had horses. Now, this will be the third.
I just want to throw up. And then find a dark room somewhere and not come out for a long time.
If it matters, which it really doesn't, this was the only horse I had that represented 3 generations of my own "family" of horses. He is also the nicest product ever to come of my own breeding. Had he lived out a natural lifespan, he might have been with me for the rest of my horsekeeping days.
He is, and was, a fine colt. A very fine colt. May his end, if it must come now (and barring a miracle of unprecedented proportions, it must) be easy, and quick.
UPDATE: He's gone, and by the end, it was not a "good death." I am trying not to even think about it. Suffice it to say that it did not go as peacefully and quietly as this did. Different vet, different drugs used, way different exit. I am very upset. (There's a little more, as much as I could stand to write down, here.)