Friday, September 26, 2014

Check-Up Time

Hay is for horses
 Just a quick update on the ulcer situation. The vet was out again this past Tuesday to recheck Abbey for her list of maladies. Her leg has the green light to no longer be wrapped, even though it still stocks up when she stands still for periods of time. Her bruised fetlock didn't get much attention or concern from the vet, so I am just DMSOing that on my own to hopefully help reduce the swelling. And her ulcer trigger point testing came out really well. She was still reactive underneath her belly until he did a "reset" adjustment to her hind leg that is supposed to clear the reactive memories that are associated with a painful area. This sounds like voodoo but I swear I am a believer after seeing the tests verify the behavioral changes I have observed in her. I am all for a combination of Eastern and Western medicine for myself and my animals and always want to address the root cause rather than just treat the symptoms.

The vet adjusted her and said that her neck was really out of whack, and some in her right lumbar region, so hopefully that made her more comfortable, too. That is the last vet bill I want to have for a while, so other than our strength and conditioning work and some stretches that we do after her workouts, she's got to put herself back together a little bit.

She is not out of the woods yet, and he said that it would be smart to treat with Omeprazole when she is going to be stressed, like at shows. The diet will help her body continue to heal, and that will probably take another 2-3 months to fully take place. I used sucralfate as a temporary band-aid at the show to help her be more comfortable while we were there, since I don' think that the ulcers are all the way healed, and I think that the more pain-free she is the faster she will get better.

I have noticed that her poop smells way less rank and fermented, and is a much drier consistency, which I think is an indication of her gut being healthier off grain. I am pretty sure the grain just went right through her and the fermentation in her fore and hindgut was causing a lot of the problems.

I made sure she had hay throughout the show day, which I know most trainers will not do, but for us it seemed to work well. It gave her something to focus on and helped to fill her stomach so there was less acid sloshing around in there.

For now, the trainer will ride her a few days a week through the month of October, and after that I will probably take November and December off from training unless I am out of town, maybe. I would like to save a little money and also want to get our to ride four or five days a week myself. During the week we can work on the basics and then on the weekend I would like to spend on day on trail and the more precise things about horsemanship.

I rode last night and she was pretty good for me. Our lope is still a pretty hot mess, but that is because we are both way out of practice, so I am trying to be kind to both of us and ease back into that conditioning. We did have some more collected circles and managed a few logs nicely. I feel like I am getting better at placing her so she doesn't split them or step on them, and she is getting better at helping me do that. Our speed was faster than ideal, but I know that is because of a lack of strength in her back end and core. The stronger we get, the slower and more collected we can move.

Overall, feeling way better about everything than I did a few weeks ago. Time to look back at my 2014 summer goals and make some new ones for the winter :)

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