Wednesday, November 21, 2012

vacation: DONE

I've been hand walking Lucy for the better part of a week. She went from perfect angel to downright terror on the ground. She is extremely pushy and cannot walk around the outdoor without having explosions every ten feet or so. Spooking at a leaf, or nothing at all, wasn't just a small affair; it involved a giant overreaction complete with rushing around, butt tucked under, and showing the whites of her eyes.

I have approximately ZERO tolerance for this nonsense but at the same time, I didn't want to get all down and dirty with her because I didn't want her irritating her tendon. Then she got turned out on grass for a few hours one day. She was happily eating grass until some horses returned from a trail ride. She got excited and was a nutcase, leaping through the air and bucking, running in circles, sliding stops…my poor barn owner was not impressed and I had to spend a lot of time fixing the divots in the grass out there. However, her legs looked just as cold and tight after all that excitement as they did before, and I started to realize that putting her back in some light work wasn't going to break her.

Another thing I noticed is that she seemed to be very depressed. Her appetite has gone way down - before the accident, she was eating a bale of hay per day. Now I'm lucky if I can get half a bale into her. She has dropped a bit of weight and Maddy reported that she spent a good chunk of time standing in the middle of her paddock with her head down, looking dull and sad the other day. Fearing she wasn't feeling well, I gave her a dose of Banamine and checked in on her later that night, but all systems seemed to be working fine. I hope that getting her job back will bring her spirits up.

Last night I lunged her for the first time. I debated drugging her and trying to ride, but I am still missing one of my stirrup leathers/irons from the initial incident. Word on the street is that a neighbor picked it up the morning that she got loose, but I haven't been able to track that neighbor down to see if he has it. I'm sorry but there's no way in hell that I am getting on that horse without two stirrups. Though I am really not a fan of lunging, I am also not a fan of dying so this is the lesser of the two evils.

She started out exceedingly naughty on the lunge line, and each time she acted out, the radius of her circle decreased so I would have more control over her and she would have less opportunity to be bad. When she was being good, I gradually let the line out so that she could have more room (and there would be less stress on her legs). Within about ten minutes she was doing a lovely floaty SOUND trot with her nose on the ground. Her breathing steadied and she started actually listening to me.

When we were done, I unclipped the lunge line and she happily pranced off to find the perfect spot to roll. She rolled on both sides and had a look of bliss on her little horsey face. I cooled her out, cleaned out her stifle wound really well, cold hosed her legs, and treated them with poultice. I left them unwrapped overnight but this morning everything looked peachy. There was no heat, no swelling, and to the naked eye they looked completely normal. I ran my fingers down the right front and there was just the tiniest bump, almost undetectable. So that is really great news!

a happier Lu getting some ice wrap therapy
 I don't know when I will finally get back on her, obviously once the stirrup leather is recovered, maybe over the weekend, or next week? But I am glad I let her get some kicks out before attempting anything under saddle. She is one athletic beast, let me tell you.

She is about a week overdue for shoes - I had to cancel her farrier appointment because the vet did not think she could tolerate standing on three legs for the farrier to do his work. However, I think the tendon is more than strong enough to handle that now, and her stifle injury is healing well, so I called and made an appointment. I warned the farrier that he may have to do those two legs in stages if she has a hard time keeping them up, especially that hind leg, but he is a super guy and assured me that he would take his time and be patient with her.

Kenny and I were able to take our family photo for this year's Christmas card and she thankfully cooperated for that! Good thing because I was wearing heels and it is a little bit difficult to manage a fresh horse with heels on.

Also, Cairo got her photo taken at a local dog specialty store, because the proceeds were going to benefit the local animal rescue league. She was a really good girl! The photographer said she had been waiting all day for a dog to come in who would tolerate wearing the Santa hat.

"I had better get a million cookies for this!!"


  1. Wow, you all look great in the family portrait! Lucy is so shiny. And the shot of Cairo in the Santa hat is great.
    Glad to hear that Lucy is doing so well, and really glad to hear she's getting the bucks out before you get on her.

  2. I LOVE Cairo's portrait!!! So cute!

  3. Way too cute!!! Love the pictures. Glad that Lucy is on the mend!

  4. Great photos!! Is Lu clipped?? Is that her winter coat-Laz is such a yak right now already, I'm jealous of Lucy's sleek look!

    1. nope not clipped, just not well-endowed in the winter coat dept! plus she is blanketed pretty heavily, which pats her coat down flat.

  5. Beautiful family photo! Cairo is such a good pup!


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