Friday, June 28, 2013

My horse is so perfect.

I haven't ridden River in like a month... he was off with his abscess, now I'm sick and just don't feel up to riding.  My friend was in town from out of state, so naturally she had to come ride him.

He was perfect.  I won't walk you through every step he took, but he was so so good.  I've never had a horse with so much try.  He doesn't say "no", he says "I'm not sure, can you clarify?"  Not that he's blindly perfect, but he doesn't get snotty.  You can tell he's doing the best he can.

He cantered a crossrail!

And trotted 2':

Still frame of 2':

Oh, and this is probably the most exciting thing....
BUTT FOAM!  He's finally fat enough to get butt foam!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013


I'm sick.  Nothing major, but I'm a wimp about being sick.  I deal better with broken bones than I do with a cold.

Sunday, I hit the electric fence with my face.

Monday, a crosstied horse broke her halter, which whipped back and hit me in the face.  I have a little cut on the side of my nose.  By some miracle, my glasses weren't damaged.  Or, as the nurse at work pointed out, my eye.  That never occurred to me...

Tuesday afternoon/evening, I felt like crap.. ended up going to bed at about 8 and woke up repeatedly feeling terrible.  Boo.  Not feeling as bad now, but definitely not good.. headache, feeling like I'm in a fog, etc.

Monday he went back to turnout.  Yay!  Yesterday I picked his feet after I brought him in.  Poking around the abscess area, I found the frog kind of peeling.  So I went to my car to get a hoof knife.. about 3/4" of his frog needed to be taken off.  (It was flapping and not attached underneath and would have trapped crap.)  The new, immature frog is pretty cool.  It kind of feels like a cross between foam and a mushroom.  (No, that's not the sickness talking, it really does feel kind of like a mushroom.)

He should be fine to ride whenever I feel up to it.  If he hadn't been off for like a month, I'd suck it up and ride now, but I'm not getting on him for the first time in a month if I'm not feeling 100%... or at least 90%.  Logically, I know I'd be fine.  He's a good boy and we can pretty much pick up where we left off, and he's not prone to fireworks under saddle (knock on wood!!!!!).. regardless, he can sit around and not earn his keep for a couple more days.

Oh, I should have taken a picture of him yesterday... this is how I know I'm not feeling well, when I don't take a picture of something funny... he managed to get his ear through the forelock hole of his fly mask.  So he had his ear sticking out randomly while the ear thing was flopping around.  It was pretty silly.

Friday, June 14, 2013

There's something wrong with The Mare.

Wednesday evening I decided to ride The Mare.  You have to understand, The Mare is a bitch.  She's just... a bitch.  I used to have a bumper sticker in honor of her--"Hell hath no fury like a chestnut Thoroughbred mare!"

So I put her on crossties and brush her... no attitude.

I put on the saddle and tighten the girth... no attitude.  This is the horse who normally spends the entire time you're grooming/tacking up snapping and threatening to bite (she never actually bites, nor does she intend to, she just threatens).

Went to get her bridle and stood in front of her putting the reins on it.  She nudged me with her muzzle.  Repeatedly.  She does not show affection unless there's food.

I'm like WTF?  My mare is being friend and affectionate and not a royal bitch?  Is this the apocalypse?

She was pretty good for our ride.  It wasn't long because my new paddock boots were hurting my ankle.

Afterward, I put her on crossties to pull her mane.  This mare is the queen of the guilt trip.  After every single pull, she turned her head and gently rested her muzzle against my arm.  You could hear her thinking "why are you doing this to me?  Don't you love me?"

It's okay, I made it up to her.
Food makes everything ok.

Sometimes I forget how much I love my beautiful red mare....

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

In the home stretch!

At least, I hope we're in the home stretch!

Sunday evening I started using sugardine (sugar and betadine) on Princess' foot.  Maybe he was getting better anyway, but it seems to have improved a lot in the past couple of days!  Last night I took his diaper off and was using a hoof pick to poke around.  It didn't go nearly as far in the hole, and River didn't object to it.  Yay!!! 

I'm really really really hoping it finishes healing quick.  Partly because I want to ride, but mostly because the poor guy is so sick of being stalled!  Normally, when I put him in his stall it's a lesson in what not to do.  I walk him to the stall with the throatlatch unsnapped.  As he's walking in, I pull the halter off while I'm standing in the doorway.  He continues to walk in, and I don't have to turn him around or go in the stall with him to take the halter off.  It saves about 3 seconds.  Which, yeah, isn't really worth it.  But whatever.  Anyway.  Monday night, I put him away this way.  Only when I took the halter off and turned to close the door, I realized he wasn't in the stall.  He took advantage of being let go of to back up and stand in the aisle.  He was eying* his escape when I pounced on him and got the halter back on.  So now we walk alllllll the way into the stall before the halter comes off.

But yeah.  Poor guy is now viewing his stall as a prison cell.  Sorry, buddy, but it's not my fault you decided to get an abscess!  I'm probably being way overprotective, but I just can't bring myself to let him go outside until he's healed.  Doesn't help that the last week has been miserable and cold and rainy with only one or two decent days.. so turnout is gross and muddy.  Only the front of Riv and The Mare's turnout is muddy, but it's not like he can avoid that entirely because of the gate.  I don't trust him to stay in the back where it's dry.

On the bright side, The Mare has totally adjusted to being without him.  Yesterday I put her out first.  She hollered once, then wandered around until I threw her hay.  It only took her almost a week to wean her from her boyfriend!  In contrast, it took about 12 hours to wean her from her daughter.  I guess she's one of those women who cares more about her man than her children.  Tut-tut.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Getting better!

Friday evening, Riv was being pretty annoying when I changed his diaper.  Pawing, fidgeting, lipping me, etc.  So Saturday I turned him out in the indoor...

Yep, he's feeling better.  The funny thing was, when I put him out, he just walked around like no big deal.  I was expecting him to take off like an idiot.  He wandered for a minute, rolled, got up, and took off.  Apparently he needs to roll before he can run around?

I made the mistake of taking his standing wraps off... by the time I came back Sunday afternoon, his hind legs were horribly stocked up.  Hopefully he's on the upswing and can go back to regular turnout soon.  Dumb horse.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Spoiled Princess.

Princess is on stall rest because of his abscess.  He's getting a pretty good deal on this.  Yesterday rained all day, so he got to stay nice and dry.  Today is foggy/misty and gross.  The Mare is out in the rain.  Princess is tucked into a cozy stall with lots of hay.

The stall rest has got his hind legs stocking up, so now he gets Sore-No-More liniment and wraps.

Poor baby!  He has such a difficult life.  I don't take such good care of myself when I'm sick or injured. 

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Happy birthday to me.

It's my birthday.

River is lame.

Thanks a lot.  Jerk.

Rode him last night, asked him to trot, oh crap you're lame.

It appears to be an abscess on his left hind...

I picked out his feet and the hoof pick went into his foot.  He pulled away, I said "well, that's got to be it", but finished picking his feet just in case.  Look at the left hind again, and gee, it's dripping blood!  Great!

He looks so cute and innocent...
Until you notice the foot soaking.  It took several tries to get it soaked.  I finally remembered I had a soaking boot in my car, and that did it.  Of course, I had no vetrap or duct tape.  So I slapped on some epsom salt poultice on a pad and used painter's tape to hold it on while I ran home for supplies.

This morning, I went out to the barn to rewrap it.
He wears a size 3 diaper, in case you were wondering.

Poor guy is pretty uncomfortable.  When he moves, he just steps on his toe :(.  I sent Super Awesome Farrier a long, rambling, paranoid email.  SAF super-fast reply was essentially "it's fine, stop worrying."  The barn farrier is coming out next week, so I might have him take a look, just to be safe.  (SAF recommends barn farrier, so he's good.)


Horses.  Princess is on stall rest.  Amazingly, The Mare was not having a heart attack this morning when she got turned out alone.  (Yesterday, she was one of the first out and I put Riv out last, so she was alone for about 30 minutes.  She spent the entire time standing and pacing at the gate calling to him.  She wouldn't even look at her hay.)  BO said it was like she knew he wasn't coming, so there was no point getting upset.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

A Cautionary Tale

If you're on COTH, you've probably already seen this, but I'm talking about it here (with permission).

A wonderful woman I know online and IRL decided to lease out her mare.  Wonderful Woman had a lot going on in her life, mare was having soundness issues, and WW decided to seek a retirement/light riding home for her.  She did her homework, got references, had a contract, etc.  She did absolutely everything you should do when you're leasing out a horse, and frankly more than a lot of people probably would do.

She found a good lease situation about 1.5 hours away and talked with the lessee at length about the mare and what care she would need.  Lessee was on board with everything.

The mare left WW's possession looking like this.

WW kept in touch with the lessee and received regular reports that everything was going well.

Then, after about 7 weeks, lessee commented that the mare was looking skinny.  WW started to worry.  Things weren't sounding right.  She eventually got the lessee to send her photos of the mare, 8 weeks after the lease started.  WW immediately got things going to retrieve the mare.

When the mare got home (again, 8 weeks after leaving), this is the condition she was in:

How do you let a horse get in such poor condition in so little time??  Apparently, you don't feed hay, only bits of grass and weeds, and grain about 3 times a week.

Thankfully, the mare is doing well.  She's been back for less than a week, but is eating and is bright and happy.

If you're leasing out a horse, do your homework, but don't trust it.  Listen to your gut.  If something doesn't seem to be quite right, it's probably not.  And if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

If you're interested, the full story is here.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Sad day.

My baby has been gone for two years today.  Not going to go into it because I've talked about him before and I'm at work and don't want to start sobbing.

Wilson's video
(Blogger/Youtube are not playing well together, so no embedding.)

I miss you, Wilson.  Every single day.