Saturday, March 27, 2010

Crazy week.

While Lucy was having herself a leisurely week putting her feet in places they don't belong and giving me several gray hairs, I ran myself ragged trying to be a million places at once. All week I was getting up at 6 to be at the barn by 7 to check on her/wrap her/cold hose her etc, to be at work by 8 to be able to leave by 3pm to go back to the barn and check on her/re-wrap her/cold hose her etc. It was a loooooong week. I was so exhausted yesterday that I got home from the barn, fell into bed at 5pm, and didn't wake up until 8am this morning. I feel much better today, though, and so does Lucy. Her legs are still pretty banged up and the RH is kind of puffy, but with diligent cold-hosing and nice long walks, the swelling goes down with no issues. I've been treating her abrasions with antiseptic ointment and then slathering her hind legs with liniment and everything seems to be healing well.

The vet was out yesterday for the first round of spring shots (I actually was at work by 6:30 yesterday so that I could leave at 1:30 to be on time for the vet. This is not a lifestyle I am cut out for!!), and she was a perfect lady for him. She actually adored him and wanted to give him kisses the whole time. He had two assistants with him (one vet tech and one vet student) and she was not interested in either of them, but she just looooooved Dr. Murdock! He's a great vet; he did the original pre purchase on her, also, so he got to see the difference that just a few months has made in her condition. He told me over and over again how wonderful she looked, and that made me feel great. I did express some concern about ulcers with him, and he agreed. About a month ago I started feeding her a scoop of soaked alfalfa cubes with dinner and within just a week or two I noticed a huge difference in her condition. She started really putting on some weight (finally!) and looked much more bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.

I did some research and alfalfa has a high level of calcium in it, which neutralizes stomach acid much like Tums does in humans. For horses with ulcers, the symptoms can decrease when they are fed alfalfa. I think that's a solid sign that it might be worth scoping her. I don't want to be stuffing her full of grain (she gets 6lbs of Triple Crown Complete and 4lbs of Hay Stretcher a day plus supplements and BOSS, so that's a LOT of grain) especially when grain can actually exacerbate ulcers.

So I'm going to check with the insurance company to make sure they won't drop the coverage if I scope her and treat her with UlcerGard. I really have the insurance for colic, but honestly I can't afford to dish out $2k for the scoping and treatment so it's the insurance or it's nothing. The vet recommended just calling the insurance company so at least the claim's not a surprise; he said they tend to appreciate that.

I also rode her today for the first time all week, since as you've all read, she spent her week getting into trouble. I lightly hacked her on a loose rein around the ring at a walk and trot, and she broke into a canter a few times. She actually felt great, all things considered. She felt a tiny bit short behind but got better as the ride progressed, so she's just sore from her activities. She was very happy to be doing something. After our ride, we went for a hack through the woods behind the barn and she walked over a couple small logs, then we went back past the barn and across the street and walked through the little development over there. I am trying to teach her that we aren't done until I say we're done, so that she doesn't walk up to the barn and expect to be finished. She was a good sport about walking past the barn to the development even though I know she wanted her dinner. :)

So that's the story!

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