Wednesday, October 8, 2014

The Summer of Thrown Shoes


It's been a rather dismal summer for Cash and I in terms of getting to ride.  We hit a few high points when I was able to actually ride him for more than 2 weeks at a time and got a few jumping rides in which were amazing.  However, the majority of the summer went something alone these lines:

Farrier comes and shoes horse
Horse keeps shoes for a few weeks, a month maybe
Horse throws shoe
Call Farrier, Farrier comes a week later, by this time Horse is lame
New shoe on, wait a week (or more) for Horse to be not-lame
Horse is sound, ride horse for a week or two
Horse throws shoe
Rinse, repeat....

I've honestly lost track of how many shoes we've gone through this summer. We finally got him to let us hot shoe him (courtesy of a lip chain) so that we could put quarter clips on.... that still didn't work.

He tore up his bell boots like nothing else...

So got shinny new ones... and still pulled a shoe the very next day

I'm frustrated, my farrier is frustrated, we're both puzzled as we can't figure out why (or HOW) he's pulling these shoes so frequently.  Interesting thing is I realized yesterday that the rate at which he's pulling these shoes has increased significantly since getting his hocks injected earlier this summer. So it very could be that he's feeling better and stepping up more under himself, OR he's just the klutz with his feet I know he is and continually stepping on himself as I see him do on a nearly daily basis. Sigh.

SO.... as of this last missing pulling a few days ago I'm just going to throw in the towel and pull his shoes for the winter and let his feet grow out.  They are getting so riddled with nail holes at this point that it's just going to be a continual downward spiral.  Sucks because I was hoping to get to ride him in his first show next month.  Oh well, such is the life of horse ownership.  I'll probably still take him just to hang out and experience the atmosphere, but I doubt he'll be sound enough to ride.

Welp Cash, enjoy your winter break! Guess that gives me more time to study, play with the kiddos, hang out with the boyfriend, and play a sweet little GPS-based mobile game I got dragged into called Ingress.


Sunday, July 27, 2014

THIS Happened


After literally years of not jumping anything more than wee 18" cross rails... I went for it today with Cash.  I set up a little one stride in and out and after cantering over 2 x-rails I set the back one up to a vertical, and I set it right at 2'7" from the very start.  And, as I expected, Cash still made it feel like nothing.  This is the highest he's ever jumped under saddle and he rocked it.  This horse is going to be a BEAST y'all!!


Monday, July 21, 2014

Making strides... some big, some little


It's pretty safe to say that Cash's hind end problem is cleared up.  He's no longer pissy under saddle, he's content about getting a saddle put on, and he's moving much much better.  Now it's back to boot camp.  Sorry horse.  Ha!

A brief run down of what we've been up to:

We've "upgraded" the bitting department.  
After getting to chat with a thoroughbred trainer who has retrained many TBs into other careers, I took a hint from her and added some curb leverage.  Cash now rides in a Pelham any time we are outside of the arena or doing poles/mini jumps.  And lemme ya, it's NICE to have brakes!!!

Trot poles.  Lots and lots and lots of trot poles.  And canter poles--although he is quite the klutz over these, and it's rather amusing to watch him flail those big ol legs of his.  He'll figure it out soon enough....

The trot pole "ditch" of doom
Assuming he quits throwing shoes!!! Good grief it's getting ridiculous.  On the bright side, the horn growth from after adding the hoof supplement is finally hitting the ground and as long as this red monster quits tearing off giant hunks of his feet, we should have some better hoof to work with now.  Yet, alas, in the words of my farrier "if we could centrifuge his two feet together we'd have one really nice foot".  Thank you thoroughbred feet.

So, in the times when we can't ride because of lost shoes, Cash has learned how to hobble.  When I tried this a year ago he was not keen on the idea.  I tried it again on a whim about a month ago and whaddya know, he took it like a champ.  It's awesome to just let him chill and graze while I put stuff up and not have to babysit him.  Plus, hobble training does WONDERS for their mental thought process.

Can't see the hobbles, but they're there
Trail riding so far has been a bust.  Either it's weather or people's schedules... or weather.... we haven't gotten out yet.  Though I did ride him out in the back pasture for the first time ever and he was amazing!! Full of energy yes, but OH MY did it ever feel wonderful to be out of the arena riding in grass.  That got my cross country bug itching that's for sure.

So, that's that. If we can get him to keep his shoes on so that I'm not losing 2 weeks of work every other month then maybe we'll get somewhere!


Tuesday, May 20, 2014

5 Minute Catchup: A step in the right direction


Um wow, well over a month since I've last posted to this.  For that matter, I've not been reading any of the blogs I normally follow either.  Hello life!!  I've been INSANELY busy.  But a good kind of busy.  Finals are done and now I'm madly packing for a week and half vacation, so this will be a short n sweet update.

That said, I'll just jump to the heart of it:  Cash got his hocks injected yesterday.  After much poking and prodding and two vets looking at him, we narrowed it down to a FOR SURE thing being that we was extremely sore in both hocks, especially his left.  So I told the vet to just go for it.  She injected the lower two tarsal joints on each hock and we'll go from there as far as seeing how he feels and if we need to do more, we will.
Post injection, poor buddy
I don't recall what exactly she injected, it was 3 different things, I'll get an invoice soon.  He's on bute for a few days and under light exercise only.  In two weeks the injections will have attained their full affect.  I did ride him today and despite a few pissy faces, he DID trot for me under saddle which is huge.  He was not, at all, wanting to do it before.
The kiddo loves horses only a little...
The vet pointed out a few things he does with his hind legs when you pick them up, the way he pulls on it, etc. that indicate hock pain so it'll be interesting to see if those reactions diminish as well.
cookie monster
I'm feeling relieved that we are finally starting to put a dent into this and get him back on the road to being a happy, healthy, athletic thoroughbred.  Especially since he's really starting to come around mentally this spring and I can NOT wait to start doing things with him.  Like jumping.  Man I miss jumping.


Thursday, April 3, 2014

Cash does NOT have ulcers... what's next?


Well, certainly not the result I was expecting from the vet check this morning!

My vet and I got to the farm bright and early to grab Cash.  He was less than thrilled at getting on the trailer instead of eating breakfast, but we got him on within 10 minutes without a ton of drama.  Once there he was actually pretty chill, he unloaded, looked around and walked right into the building and into the stocks without fuss.

THREE shots of sedative later (yeah, I know)... we had a scope down him and the vet, Dr. Jergens, spent several minutes thoroughly looking around.  The result?  NO ulcers.  At all.  Just lots and lots of saliva!  Which is why he's ulcer free.  The vet actually really liked how his stomach looked.  Well, ok then.  That rules that out.
Mmmm... drugs!
So we started talking about how he's been acting.  My vet described to Dr. Jergens the various colic episodes he's had, and we talked about his behavior and his recent disgruntled response to leg pressure under saddle.  Dr. Jergens poked and prodded around and picked up on a few things.

He's got a weird little swelling on his belly, a very small amount of puffiness on the inside of his left stifle, and a thickened medial suspensory branch on his front right (he's had residual swelling there since I got him from what I've presumed was an old injury, and that was confirmed today).  Also, he is slightly asymmetrical in his SI joint.  It's oh so slightly higher on the left side (which is the side he reacts more to in response to leg pressure).  When palpated a normal horse should dip their lower back down.  He however, would not do that, instead he was very tense and resisting.

The verdict?

We are going to give him a PowerPac dewormer to rule out any possibility of encrusted strongyles causing intestinal discomfort (which is what could be causing that belly swelling).  Then I'll plan a time with my vet to do a full lameness/soundness workup on him and likely we'll just treat the SI by injecting the joint instead of doing a block.  Also, chiropractic body work might be in the works as well.

The long and short of it is that I'm REALLY glad I took him in, it was well worth the money and we got some good routes to pursue and was able to rule out the ulcers without wasting money trying to treat them.

So, back to work he goes, just lots of good stretchy exercises to keep his whole body limber and we'll go on from here!


Saturday, March 29, 2014

Cash has an appointment


This past week Cash has been a bit "off". Not in a lameness sense, but in a not-himself-at-all sense.

When I rode him a week ago, every time I put my leg on he would slam on the brakes, throw his head up with his ears pinned and give a little kick with his hind leg. Not like him at all. I still managed to get him to trot through use of the seat and voice because I was not about to let him get away with not obeying... You let this horse get away with anything and it's a training nightmare to try and fix.

Additionally he's been off his feed a bit lately. He's lost some weight but I think it's just his "beer belly". He's leaner for sure, but he has put on a little muscle which is good.

So, he is currently scheduled to have his stomach scoped this coming Thursday to be checked for ulcers. I will be very surprised if he doesn't.

Until then I'm just giving him a short vacation, no point in making him work if he's that uncomfortable.

Gives me time to get back into doing harness work with the ponies!

That said, this has been a test of the mobile blogging application. I hope it works alright.


Sunday, March 23, 2014

A Perfect Evening


Sometimes, the best times at the barn are when you simply walk out into the paddock in the setting sun and do nothing more than stuff cookies in your pony's face and then give each other some love.