Saturday, August 31, 2013

Always on a Friday after 5.

I got home yesterday and went to check on the ponies. Pistol was being super snugly which was kind of strange. I am glad he was snugly because I noticed his breathing was weird. He kept putting his nose right by my ears. I noticed that his nostrils were flared and he was taking rapid short breaths. First I thought he was choking. I tried giving them all dry beet pulp before and he got a little choke-y so I never did it again. I've been a freak about making sure his beet pulp is soaking wet. 
I called the vet that was obviously closed because it was after hours and they had the number of the emergency vet on call. I called up left a message and waited. Ok the meantime I was busy on my iPhone googling all types of things as I waited for my call back. Then a lightbulb went off...he sounded heave-y...quick google search and discussion with the vet when he called and we were headed to the clinic to pick up our prescription for Pistol. 
Be have banamine to administer orally and tri hist granules to mix in his feed. The fun thing...pistol gets SUPER headshy when it comes to anything going in his mouth. Yay. I have been tricking him to get it in his mouth. But seriously it hasn't been fun. I am hoping that he gets this under control and we can manage it.this horse is seriously worth his weight in gold. I hate seeing him all wheezy.
George isn't limping around anymore...but he has become an ASS! Like a serious ass. He won't let me soak his foot. The thought makes him super cranky. He has even come at me, teeth bared ears pinned. Ever since we have been treating him for ulcers he has just gotten a nasty streak in him. I am thinking he has always been like that which is why he was so famous at his previous barns. He also won't stand it if you try to call him out on his bad behavior. He is like the hulk "you won't like me when I'm angry!" I think I may be calling in some reinforcements to come help us through his attitude...I think I liked him better when he was filled with ulcers! 
And then this happened this morning. Pistol finished his breakfast and then on his own put his foot in the feed pan and continued to stand there for about 10 minutes. I hope George has been takin notes from old Pistol.
In other news doesn't look like I will have a horse ready for the schooling show in 2 weeks....

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Vet visit.

As I mentioned before, George was super lame when I came home from work. So I made an appointment at the vet for 4:30 Wednesday afternoon. My ‘vet’ appointment was at 1:00 the same day and I am happy to announce that my head is fine! There is just a little bit of pinching going on by the base of my brain. I gotta say though looking at pictures of the inside of your head…so weird. Like really weird. But we didn’t see any white spots on my brain which was excellent news.
We did see this though. So weird.

Anyways when we got home it was flippin hot out. I was so excited to load George into the trailer in this heat. Trailering is my favorite thing ever! Yeah. Right.  We got everything else ready and then I went and grabbed gimpy George. Now keep in mind I had one job this summer. Get George to load in the trailer. Well apparently I forgot that I had a job and George never got his schooling on trailer loading etiquette. But we bribed him and he got into the trailer and we were off to the clinic.

When we got to the clinic we were only about 45 minutes early.  I checked us in and they said we could bring him into the examining room and cool him off. George wasn’t sure about going into the strange building. But then again George is very cautious about a lot of things. We got him in and he was a good boy. He did want to play with the fire extinguisher though…I put the kabosh on that little idea though.  He spent the rest of his time waiting calmly.
The vet we had an appointment with is one that we have used a few times for the horse beasts. He’s got a similar sense of humor as mine. When he came up I said “you know what I was thinking? I haven’t had a big vet bill in a long time, so we brought one in for you today”.  We laughed. Then it was down to work. He did his hoof testing and found that there were some hot spots by the toe. But he wanted to run a few x-rays just to be sure. He was a little concerned with George’s ankles too.

This is when George flipped his switch and became a jerk. “X-rays? Oh no. I don’t do x-rays! Radiation poisoning my friends is not my idea of a good time!” They would put his foot down on a block and then he would snatch it up and then prance around. So after a few tries they gave him some “Be good George” drugs and then he settled down and was fine for his x-rays. I think there were 6 images taken, all different angles of his foot.

Good news is. There were no fractures anywhere. His ankles did NOT have any arthritis anywhere and his joints were nice and clean. But the bad news is that George and I’s dream of competing at Rolex have been crushed. George and I’s dream of jumping was actually pretty much crushed. By the sounds of it we will be stuck on the ground. The x-rays showed that he had some considerable damage to his suspensory. The vet said for a 10 year old ex-racehorse, that raced until he was 9 that isn’t uncommon to see. George will never be a sport horse. He is going to be my trail buddy and even that might be limited to light trail riding.

Anyways the vet was able to find the abscess and then dig it out. Bright red blood came gushing out which means that it was fresh. George is a bit of a drama queen so from now on I’ll be able to tell when he’s got an abscess. They suggested soaking it a few times a day for 1-2 weeks.

Yeah that didn’t go as smoothly as I’d imagined in my head. I’ve watched horses have their feet soaked many times. The handler just lifts their foot and sets it in the shallow feed pan with water and then wait the appropriate amount of time and then lift the foot out and done. With Pistol’s abcess last year, same thing I would put his feed out and then soak his foot and he was great. (come to think of it, he was a saint for his xrays last year too!) George, well George is not like a regular horse and I am learning that. I got his foot bath ready last night and then mixed up his supper and lifted his foot up and placed it in the dish, and he panicked. He was quite certain that I was trying to drown him in the 3 inches of water. So we tried it again. And again. And again. He spilled it about 4 times. So I made a plea for help on Facebook and got some pretty great ideas to try!

This was about the 19th time I put his foot back into the water...
I have to say though; I did get upset with him. And I ended up taking out my frustration on the feed pan. I hurled it across the barn and almost took out a cat. George stood there looking at me like “U mad?” Obviously getting mad at a horse rarely does anything good. If you get upset with George he will have a meltdown.  It’s not fun when he gets upset. I was just frustrated and that poor feed pan took a beating.

I feel like such a terrible horse person when I can’t get a horse to do something. I feel that I am doing everything wrong and have no business with horses and some days I feel as if I need to just give up. But like the lyrics I posted yesterday “If it can’t make your cry, make you mad or get you high” Which is exactly what horses do. There isn’t one true horse person out there that hasn’t gotten mad, or cried over a horse. And that high that comes from horses is just the best. It can come from an amazing ride, or just that ‘a-ha!’ moment during a lesson. It’s there and I think we are always chasing after it. And horses have absolutely broken my heart. Many times, over and over again. I love those expensive, time consuming, monsters that live in my back yard. If I wasn’t a horse person my life would be so much easier! And I could have a really nice house in town, and I would have more free time. But I honestly feel bad for people that aren’t horse people. Their lives aren’t as complete.

And one more thing. Here is a picture of George yesterday. He looks about 10 times better than he did a week ago. It has been a constant struggle this summer trying to get him to put and keep weight on. We’ve been treating him for ulcers and I bumped up his feed rations. I’ve also started giving him Cool Calories 100 and I really think that was what was missing before. I know, I know he doesn’t look fantastic, but this is an improvement for him! The vet scored him as a 4 on the body scale with 5 being ideal. He is still thin, but hopefully he will continue to put weight on!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013


Heard this lyric in a song on the way home. I think it is something we as equestrians can relate to in regards to our sport...

If it can't make you cry
Make you mad
Or get you high
It's just a waste of time
Any ol' fool can go as far
Dress it up and play the part
But it ain't love
If it can't break your heart

George had an abscess (whew!!) but there is a bit more to the story and I will fill ya'll in tomorrow.

Well crap.

So yesterday I had a great half day of work, the other half of the work day was spent at the golf course delivering adult beverages to golfers. It was a customer appreciation golf outing for one of the companies I work for. Love when I get to spend time outside for work! I had a wonderful steak dinner and then headed home only to find a big gray horse that lives in my pasture was incredibly, incredibly lame. Like super lame. He was gimping around on 3 legs and I appears his right front left was the culprit. I didn't notice any swelling or heat in his legs. But once I started feeling around his shoulder area he got pretty fussy. But obviously I have no clue how to pin point anything so a vet visit is in order.
Am I being overly cautious by bringing him to the vet? More than likely. Would many of you dear readers bring your horse to the vet when this happened? Probably not, because you probably know what to do. I haven't had an insanely huge vet bill in a long time so I am due for one.
My hubby said that when he got home and went to spray the horses with fly spray, all 3 came galloping across the pasture. I don't know if he pulled something there or if he's been stomping flies for so long that he strained/pulled something. Maybe it's an abscess that I can't see. Whatever it is, it is making him look miserable. I am lucky that our vet is only 16 miles away and they are awesome. I would just have them come out and look at him, but last time we had a super lame horse (Pistol) I had the vet come out, only to have them say "bring him in for xrays" so we paid for not only a farm call, but a vet office visit as well...
This morning when I went to feed him his breakfast he was all alone at the round bale feeder and I brought his feed pan half way out to him to see if he would walk to it. He walked a short distance and then stood there head tossing and flipping his face up and wouldn't walk any more. He is usually a drama queen...but not normally this bad. Soooo we are going to try and trailer him up to the vet this afternoon. He isn't a fan of the trailer, and will be even less of a fan of it since he is hurt.
So buy all of that tack that I put up for sale even though you don't need it. I am no doubt going to have a nice vet bill to deal with!!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Tack for sale...Tack for sale!

Time to move some stuff out of my barn and make room for stuff I can use. George looks like a hillbilly in his mismatched tack. It's embarrassing. When we ride past the corn fields I feel like the corn is judging us. So that's why it's time to move some stuff out of the barn to make room for some stuff that actually works on ol Georgie Boy. If any of this catches your fancy...which I'm sure it probably wont... Feel free to make me and offer I can't refuse!!

Here is just some of the stuff I am selling. I will have more. I promise. I am open to trades! I just want to get this stuff moved so I can focus on finding George and the gang some nice tack that fits.

First item for your consideration. A super nice HDR black padded bridle. This bridle is nice. The leather is so soft and supple. I LOVE this bridlee, unfortunately, it's probably a cob size as it doesn't fit George's normal horse sized head. It fit Piney's adorable cob head...but I only have big monsterous horses now, with big monsterous horsey faces.
I'm terrible at pricing things. But I am thinking $60 shipped.

 Here we have a 30 inch dressage girth. Not sure what brand. It is in good shape. Has felt on the inside. Wwwaaaaaaaaayyyyyyy to small for my behemoths! $5?

 Ahhhh yes...saddle pads...My strange addiction. This is hard for me. Like really hard I love saddle pads. I love matching my outfits to my saddle pads...but the truth is. I love my sheepskin pad and my equine couture pads so I must part with these ones to make room for more sheepskin pads and equine couture pads...

I can't remember the brand on this one. It's very similar to the ones from dover. It's and AP and maroon with a plaid trim. The barn dust is free...but I can wash it too. Maroon hasn't ever really been my color but maybe it's yours? $10 and in excellent shape!
 Okay, this type of pad is awesome. I love these waffle weave pads and I used them at my old barn all the time. But I then was introduced to sheepskin and I love them more. So this little lady must leave. The straps have been cut off, not by me, I would never do such a thing. And she has a few stains, but I can wash it and try to remove some of the stains. It's white with black piping. like I said I LOVED these pads. This it's an AP and the stains wouldn't even really show when you had a saddle on it. $5.

This little pad is adorable and I SHOULD keep it because it has a little jockey on a gray horse...but the jockey is wearing red and yellow...George's color is bright blue. So this must leave home as well. It's a thin AP pad. really clean and in great shape. $5 

These SMB's are no name. I compared them to my Professional's choice and they are really similar and I'd put them at a size large? They have some dirt on the inside, and I can clean that out prior to shipping. The Velcro is super, super sticky these bad boys are in great shape! $30

I need to get pictures but other things I have up for sale are...

1 - Professional's Choice (dirty) white SMB 100
1- Professional's Choice (dirty)  white SMB 200 They aren't a matched pair...they were sent to me that way. Maybe you need just one replacement? Make me an offer
size 7 rubber riding boots $25
Size 6 Dafna riding boots $10 need some cleaning as they've been living in the barn...
Size 7.5 or 8 vintage riding dress boots. Found these bad boys hidden in the back of my closet. They are in amazing shape, and come with boot pulls. I'm guessing 80's or 90's? They just don't fit me. I bought them probably 10 years ago and they have moved around with me, but never got put on my feet because they are just too big. $50 perfect for bopping around the barn or bopping around town! Totally fashion forward for this fall!

Things I am looking for. I will take trades and if you have something for sale and want to take something as a partial trade and the price is right I would pay for the remainder!
black padded bridle horse sized
figure 8 noseband either in black or brown
a bright royal blue AP pad
Micklem bridle, horse sized. These have been recommended for George by a few people...
18 inch Wintec 2000 saddle
Open front jump boots
ankle boots

and the most sought after OTTB pad...I know, I know...who in their right mind would part with one..

That is it for now. I will have more...much more...but this is just my jumping off point. It's painful for me to get rid of tack...because I love tack....but I need to do this....:-)

Monday, August 26, 2013

The time I had my brain photographed...

So Thursday night some time, my right arm went numb. No biggie, I thought, because it’s done that before. Well by Friday it was still numb. Hmmm, that’s not normal. So I decided that maybe I should go get it checked out. The internet assured me that it was something serious and only had about 24 hours to live, and you have to believe everything you read on the internet. So I went to the walk in. I HATE the walk in. There are always screaming children on their worst behavior. The parents don’t ever do anything  and when you aren’t feeling great…the last thing you want to deal with is screaming unruly children. They really ought to give you those light up flashy coaster things like they do at restaurants. That way I could have been outside waiting and not listening to screaming children.

They called me up, and butchered my name. I honestly don’t even care when people pronounce my name wrong, especially when it’s someone I’ll never see again. The nurse took my temps, and weighed me, and all that jazz. She wasn’t really laughing at my attempts at humor or interested in making small talk. She asked me if I had done any strenuous activities lately that may have triggered something in my body. I said that I hadn’t, other than messing with the horses Thursday night, but that wasn’t anything out of the ordinary. I had caught her interest. “Oh…what kind of riding do you do? English? Western?” she asked. I said “I love English, but my husband would prefer me to ride in a ‘normal’ western saddle”. She laughed. And then she asked me some more questions about my health . And then she asked “so do you do any jumping?” I said “no, but I just got a new Thoroughbred and I’d LOVE to jump him!”. To which she replied “NICE!” She went on to tell me that she used to train and show but then she had kids and no longer does any of it. I really hope that doesn’t happen to me…


The Doctor came in and was puzzled as to why my arm was numb. He asked me a million questions and had no answers for me. He wanted to schedule me for an MRI and an appointment with a neurologist. He left the room and that’s when I broke down crying. The words “MRI” and “Neurologist” just absolutely scared me. but I pulled it together when he popped back into the room.

They had me scheduled for an MRI the next day at 7 AM. Freakin 7AM! My brain is barely awake at that time on a normal day, let alone a Saturday. But I hauled myself out of bed at 5 and was at the hospital by 6:20…way early for my appointment, and nothing in the hospital was open yet…oh well. When it was time for my appointment the nurse was impressed that I was so prepared for my MRI. I had left all my jewelry at home and wore comfy, metal free clothing. They put me on the table, made me as comfortable as possible and covered me up with a blanket.

Getting an MRI was one of the weirdest experiences ever. Basically you are in this tiny little tube with the top being less than 6 inches from your face. There are all kinds of banging sounds like you are in a construction zone…and weirdly enough a bird chirping sound. They gave me ear plugs which helped quiet the noises, but they were still pretty loud. I laid there for what felt like a year, with my eyes closed because it’s very uncomfortable to look up and see the machine like RIGHT THERE in front of your face. I’m glad I’m not entirely claustrophobic. When they pulled me out I was the most nervous because I knew what was coming. They had to inject a contrasting agent into my blood to do a few more pictures. I. HATE. NEEDLES! HATE. HATE. HATE! I could never have been a junkie because I couldn’t deal with injecting myself all the time. Anyways they injected me and back I went. This time I was only in there for like 5 minutes. They pulled me out, and sent me on my way. I helped a friend photograph a wedding all day Saturday in unbearable heat. To say I was exhausted by the time I got home is the understatement of the year.

I am still waiting to hear my results. I have a meeting with a Neurologist on Wednesday. I am hoping that it is just a pinched nerve. But to be honest…I wouldn’t be surprised if it was something more serious. OBVIOUSLY I am hoping it is something simple that is an easy fix. But I am also prepping myself for the worst possible outcome…whatever that may be.

So that’s my story. The horses have been dealing with the heat and flies. It’s been so hot that it would be cruel to go ride those beasts. Yesterday the flies were so bad that when I was spraying Pistol down, George came stomping through like a freight train and pushed Pistol out of the way so he could be sprayed down. Poor George has just been attacked like crazy. I’ve also been treating him for ulcers and he has been feeling better…which means his personality is REALLY shining through. He is stubborn as a mule and when he doesn’t want to do something…damnit  he isn’t going to do it. It’s a good thing I love that horse. I’ve also bumped up his feed and added Cool Calories 100. I’m actually quite impressed with the results…even after one week.

Hopefully, this weather will cool down, and the DR will give me the okay to ride. I have wanted nothing more than to ride but nothing is cooperating with me! It's Monday and my arm is still numb...this sucks.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

horse show

A friend of mine teaches riding lessons and had a group of girls going to the local hunter/jumper show last Sunday. She had asked me if I could come along and take pictures of her girls so I thought “Heck Yes!” The English riding community here is small. There weren’t very many people showing. MAYBE 15 different people all day. They usually have dressage the first day and hunter/jumper the next day. But apparently they only had 3 people sign up for western dressage and regular dressage. I totally should have brought my ponies. Even though they have never done a dressage test…We totally would have walked away with ribbons.

The horse show was held out at the horse park which is where they have thoroughbred and quarter horse racing. They used to have racing every weekend in the summer, but due to mismanaged dwindled down to one weekend this year. Which is better than the years when they didn't have any racing at all. This is the track I worked at for a few seasons. They have a cross country course set up on the infield, as well as a big outdoor arena, but they made the footing too deep so no one uses it. The set up the dressage ring and stadium jumps right on the race track. It was obviously the sand and they had planted grass on it to keep the sand from blowing away. Almost all of the horses were OTTB's so it was great to see them doing something on the track other than running. They were all calm as could be.

Back on the track again!
I’m actually planning on bringing a horse to the final show of the year. It’s in the middle of September and I am excited. I’ll probably bring Pistol and he will totally bomb. But you know what? I don’t care! It will be fun! I’ll probably enter classes and be competing against children…but…I. don’ Who knows I may enter him into a baby jumpers class…I mean surely the old man can walk over some ground poles right? If we totally blow it…I’m not really going to cry about it. Its going to be fun!
Onwards to pictures. And speaking of pictures When you order show pictures what kind of pricing structure has the photographer used? I am going to sell images to my friends show team, but I just wasn’t sure what type of pricing to slap on there. Any insight would be wonderful!

We ride well up in this part of the country...

This girl had only jumped THREE TIMES before this show! She was entered in the 3' classes...and did amazing!

This girl. This horse.

I mean...

We were puzzled all day to what breed this guy was...He's a Hanoverian!


These two were fantastic!

A little bit of an overjump...