Thursday, October 20, 2016

Staying Busy

Regardless of what the actual, specific problem inside Bobby's delicate little footy is, one thing that has remained imperative in his treatment plan is that he absolutely cannot just sit.

I mean, I guess if his navicular bone just one day explodes and he can't ever walk again it would be moot. HAHAHA NO THAT HASN'T PLAYED OUT IN MY CRAZY FUCKING HEAD WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT.

Yeah, but anyway.

oh bobby. y u so awkward?

Because of Bobby's lifelong issues with his stifles, keeping his hind end as strong as I can get it has always been the highest priority in his training. I've learned through trial and error that while he can have a light week--and sometimes even two weeks if he's super fit--he can't cope with any extended time off. His hind end falls apart at the drop of a hat, and he ends up very weak and very crippled.

Fortunately, while Vet A was dropping diagnoses at the drop of a hat, she did also clear him for walking. Since Vet A doesn't really hold a lot of sway at this point (ughhhhhh), I won't say that counts for much, but Farrier also said go forth and conquer. Just do it on hard ground.

"can't i just be retired already?"
That might seem counterproductive since more than likely the reason his foot went AWOL in the first place was from the fucking cement our ground was all summer, but our indoor footing is very deep and soft. If we're dealing with soft tissue, deep footing isn't conducive to good rehab. Also apparently it's not good for navicular either, but I don't remember Farrier's explanation for that. It involved hand motions and science, and really I think at that point I was still deep in the "What in the actual shit is wrong with my horse, you assholes?" phase.

That all means we've been relegated to the outdoor which is far more exciting anyway because there are always elaborate jump courses set up out there. Not that we can jump them, but hot damn we can walk ground poles for days!

sorry your horse isn't as good at posing as mine is.

So Bobby is staying busy. We do fifteen to twenty minutes of walk every day, providing the footing isn't under water because after four months without a drop of rain, fall is making up for it in a serious way. (Like, we're supposed to get three inches today alone.) 

This is my second time rehabbing Bobby, and my third rehab overall. While occasionally I miss doing serious work, I know how to make walk work absolutely riveting. At least for me. I don't know that Bobby really feels me on that one. 

The good news is that Bobby continues to feel strong, comfortable, and sound after getting his magic shoes on. I do a lap of trot in each direction for a soundness check, and he steps right off into a great big forward trot without any discomfort. Yesterday was his last day on Bute, but he'll be getting today and tomorrow off because of the weather so I'll have to wait until the weekend to see if he still feels sound. 

In the meantime, he's clearly feeling well enough to terrorize the afternoon barn workers. He's a big, fit horse that's used to being in consistent, heavy work, and our short walks aren't exactly taking the edge off. Apparently he's come in on hind legs and has been seen working on reining maneuvers in the paddock.

Bobby. You are the absolute worst. Just STAHP.

his bath lasted an entire day!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Well that escalated quickly

This latest round of #lamehorsechronicles has turned into a complete cluster fuck, my friends. I'd probably be more concerned about the well being of my horse if I wasn't too busy pulling my hair out and sobbing in frustration as everyone tells me something different but no one will actually tell me anything that helps.

Dear medical professionals,

Please talk to me like I'm a five year old and explain how to make my horse's boo-boo better.


that cow collar really completes your look, bessie.

Let's recap before we get into the down and dirty.

Bobby's vet--let's call her Vet A--that's done all his diagnostic work since we moved up here, including the injury to the RF last year, reviewed the x-rays and pronounced Bobby a navicular horse with "significant changes". Put a three degree wedge on him and we'll go from there.

Farrier--if we were getting picky, which we're not, we'd call her something like Baby Jesus--also reviewed the x-rays and said, "No, those are not significant changes to the navicular bone. Certainly there is some degeneration there, but I feel confident that with shoeing we can get him feeling pretty much normal." She also said she'd be curious to see what Vet B had to say.

still incredibly large and incredibly awkward

Vet B is technically retired but still holds his license. He's BM's old vet and is still close friends with her, so we sent the x-rays off to him for a second (third?) opinion. All the sudden we go from navicular horse, to not so much of a problem navicular horse, to "This horse is never going to be completely sound for anything. He's going to be a money pit and you'd be doing yourself a favor to not pursue treatment."

Um, whut.

The x-rays were shoddily done, the horse has a bone chip in his foot, probably his coffin joint is ready to fall apart, and there's most definitely bursitis. I could inject this, that, and the other thing, but nothing would last. He might be sound for a short time, but nothing would ever be fixed.

"but will there be cookies?"

Obviously with that being about as far apart from what Vet A had told me as you could get, and being a REALLY SHITTY diagnosis and prognosis, I wasn't satisfied with that. I contacted JenJ who had told me she had a vet that could take a look at the images. She put me in contact with her vet, Vet C, who I sent all the reports and pictures over to, as well as what Vet A, B, and Farrier had told me. My plea was to just give me a clear picture of what the actual fuck I was looking at, and, without seeing the horse, how she'd recommend proceeding.

Vet C agreed that the navicular changes are currently a nonevent. Of all the things that could be going on, navicular is not at the top of the list for the guilty party. She was concerned with the angle of the coffin bone, and felt that a three degree wedge would angle the bone too severely and cause him more discomfort than he was already in. This also aligns with what Farrier discussed. She'd already planned on putting him in a two degree because of the angle instead, so that was good.

She saw no bone chip, instead saying there might be a cyst, but it was probably just bad x-rays. (So I glad I dropped $350 on shit x-rays. SO GLAD.)

too lame for walking last wednesday, so instead
we grazed out back.

Her line of thought was more possible soft tissue injury somewhere in the foot. She gave me lots of treatment options mostly revolving around injections, but her main message was that the best diagnostic tool for this case would be an MRI. Sadly I don't have $1k sitting around waiting to be shelled out for my horse's foot, nor am I currently interested in chasing down maybes with a needle that may or may not do my horse any good, and probably won't do any lasting help in the long run anyway.

So on Friday I took all this information to Farrier, and we agreed that the most likely scenario we're facing here is an acute injury inside the foot. Navicular doesn't just pop up overnight and make your horse 3/5 lame at the walk. Bobby competed barefoot heavily for three years on every footing known to man without ever having an issue in his feet. Too much jumping on too hard ground last month with changing angles in his feet probably did him in, but it's not necessarily the end of the world for him (that last bit varies dramatically depending on how morose I'm feeling at any given moment).

he takes getting new feet very seriously

We went ahead and put on aluminum shoes with a two degree wedge and a rocker toe to lift his foot up and alleviate heel pain. Initially she wanted to do a leather pad as well packed with Magic Cushion, but I've been packing them myself with Hawthorne's Sole Pack, and once she had his old shoe off, she felt his sole was feeling so much improved from the last time that she did without. He was also significantly less tender when she put the nails in this time around. Small wins!

those toes need to come back

fancy feets complete with sole pack

He's currently on bute to help him adjust, but he's slowly getting weaned off this week so we'll see how he feels without the aid of drugs. In the meantime though? When I walked him yesterday, he immediately felt looser and more comfortable all through his body. After our fifteen minutes were up (scintillating stuff I tell you), I cautiously asked him for a trot to check how he felt.

To the right? Sound as a dime.

To the left? Sound as a dime and trying to drag me over ground poles like a feisty sassy pants.

feel good, must eat pretty things to celebrate.

I'm in no rush to proclaim him magically fixed, and I'm resolutely sticking to a slow rehab schedule in the event this is a soft tissue injury, but that made me breathe a massive sigh of relief. We don't ever have to jump again if that's what this turns into, but I do need him to be sound enough to hold up to real dressage work.

Long term, he'll get the winter "off" to figure out shoeing needs and slowly seeing what sort of work we can bring him back into. If he still feels lame, or like we're still questioning what we're dealing with, in the spring I'll do the MRI and get a concrete answer.

Short term, my farrier is a magician. She should charge a surcharge for that shit. Only please don't because holy shit this horse is expensive.

"there is a fly, i cannot work in these conditions."

Monday, October 17, 2016

But first the good

I have ALL the updates on Bobby's soundness issues, from conspiracy theories to multiple independent consults and everything in between. I've fluctuated between full on meltdown mode (Sorry, JenJ) and "Everything is fine! EVERYTHING IS GOING TO BE FINE." which honestly is pretty close to the same thing.

But I'll save that post for tomorrow because on Friday Riding Bestie journeyed up for a visit because she's a better visitor than I am (Also I'm not entirely confident my LF wheel on my car isn't just going to fall off because I make everything I touch lame in the LF. Also it might just need a new wheel bearing which is nbd. BUT STILL.), and that was a day filled with fun adventures.

Epic recap of good things which is mostly just pictures instead of a vet telling me to cut my losses and put my horse down? Sign me up!

sarah led with this cake purchased just for my horse!
this is why we're friends.

bobby thought the icing was delicious

and he got it everywhere

"moar plz."

We rushed over to the barn as soon as Sarah got here to meet my farrier so Bobby could get his magic shoes put on. More on that tomorrow. While Farrier was doing hard work, we butchered the poor baby horse's mane in an attempt to make her look grown up. Instead she just looks....well, like someone got a little overzealous with the scissors. Hair grows back, nobody panic!

When Bobby was all done and tossed back outside, we saddled up Ralph and Rafiki for a low key meandering trail ride. Of course we ended up with the two biggest slugs in the barn, but we were able to get a little bit of sort of productive work done at the trot in the ring afterwords.

someone has to love ralphie, the fat lard.

Taco Bell, a trip to the tack store to get some new bell boots, and then back home to grab the doggies for a trip to PetSmart for Halloween costume shopping!

pig dog is a triceratops! not an iguana like hubby said.

kitten is a shark
and mags was pumped to rock her superman costume

Ponies, puppies, and copious amounts of junk food made for an awesome day, but then Bobby had to go and spoil it. I got a text from the barn around 6:30 that evening saying that Bobby was laying down and not wanting to eat. I thought it might be because he was sore on his new feet, but then A added that he was stretched out flat, and when she got him up he was kicking at his stomach and pawing. For real, Bobby?!

A dosed him while I was on my way and started walking him. When I got there he was most definitely colicking. He was breathing heavily, his stomach was tucked up and clenched, he didn't want so much as a peppermint, and he was definitely feeling very sorry for himself. I opted to wait it out a bit and wait for the meds to kick in because it looked more like a gas colic than anything more serious. Also, fuck you, Bobby. Stop spending my money!

just needed late night grass

After about twenty minutes he started to come around, and an hour in he'd drank an entire bucket of water and was munching on some soft hay. We toured around outside trying to get some poop moving, and A and I had a little hysterical funny not funny laugh that I should longe him but I couldn't because his foot is fucked up HAHA U SO FUN BOBBY. I finally left around 10:30 satisfied that he was feeling completely back to normal.

Bobby's on a bute regiment this week as he adjusts to his new feet so I gave him the weekend off. Instead I did other really super exciting things.

i made salsa. it's delish.
pimped out some pumpkins
put bobby's new XL booties on to cover his
high heeled sneakers
bobby says, "but wait! you forgot to bring me in for snacks!"
and i played dress up with the kitten (who is taking her shark outfit very seriously)
while long distance watching our football team be complete fucking losers with emma.

I capped off the weekend by discovering salted caramel frosting so cupcakes are on the docket for today. Very important business, yo.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Moving On

Thank you guys all so much for your comments, sympathy, and shared experiences on my last post. I don't drink, but I assure you I've been diligently eating my feelings away. Honestly I still don't feel particularly upset about the diagnosis, but I'm not one to pass up the chance to use a sad situation as an excuse to sit down and eat an entire package of Oreos by myself.

just the starting point, i promise.

I've been doing a lot of reading about treatments (shoeing and OsPhos mainly), but from the moment the word "navicular" left the vet's mouth, I'd already moved right along to planning what I wanted to work on with my dressage this winter. I'm not one to dwell on negativity, and nothing helps feeling positive like a good plan of action. Bobby needs to be more supple and for fuck's sake does he need to work on bending more. Is it wrong to be excited to get back to serpentines?

ten minutes of walk, here we come!!

The vet gave me permission to walk away, so yesterday I threw a bridle on Bobby and jumped on bareback. He hadn't been ridden in about a month, but it never even crossed my mind that he'd be naughty. He waited patiently while I climbed up, and then with happy ears trudged around the ring slightly gimpy but light and on the bit without any fuss. I'm so glad we've progressed at least this far as I'm more concerned about what an extended riding break would do to his hind end than anything that could go on with his feet.

don't you lose a single muscle back there, bessie.

Lest you think I'm completely irresponsible and have dropped the ball on actually doing anything productive to combat his lameness....

Well, actually you're mostly right. Turns out Farrier is pretty much the shit with navicular horses and has attacked Bobby's case full force, so I've basically relinquished control of my checkbook and stand there nodding politely as she expounds upon treatment plans.

bobby literally fell asleep yesterday as she
discussed what she'd like to do.

Farrier hadn't seen the x-rays yet yesterday when she was out, but she'd talked with the vet and had already come up with a couple things she wanted to try. The initial plan was to do the three degree wedges possibly with a bar. Nailing into the RF wasn't going to be a problem, but she was concerned with how hard it was to nail his flat shoe on the LF last week. Gluing a shoe onto that foot was thrown around, but she wanted to talk to a colleague before ordering anything.

waiting for farrier to finish shoeing ralph before
measuring bobby's feeties.

This morning she surprised me by swinging in on her way by to check on Bobby. We were just finishing up our ten minutes of super exciting suppling exercises and he was already feeling a lot more comfortable at the walk. I'd also packed his foot yesterday so maybe that helped a titch.

I hopped off and took him out to the aisle so she could elevate his foot to see what degree wedge he might like, but true to Bobby form he just stood there stoically, drooling copiously and trying to play with the cat.

so. much. drool.

She showed me a couple options for shoes she'd brought along. One was an aluminum wedge that she was favoring except then she'd have to try to nail it on. We're still probably leaning towards doing a cycle of glue-ons to get him enough foot to comfortably nail on the aluminum, but we're going to send the x-rays to another vet to get a second opinion.

Why? Because Farrier looked at them last night and didn't agree with the vet.

Farrier doesn't think the LF is as bad as Vet made it out to sound at all, and while still undoubtedly navicular, she's feeling optimistic that shoeing alone is going to get him to a really good spot. However, she didn't like the look of the RF which the vet was happy with. I'm inclined to trust a farrier more in hoof health than a vet, especially a farrier with navicular experience, but I am interested to see what this other, highly recommend vet has to say.

So we shall see how this all plays out. It's going to be a dressage filled winter regardless, but who knows what next spring will hold.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

What's the word on Bobby?


The good news is that the month long mystery lameness finally has a proper, solid diagnosis.

The bad news is that it's basically worst case scenario on our list of possible fuckery.

loves rehab.

When all this first started, I'd planned on doing a detailed post on all that's gone down so I could look back and celebrate how far we'd come. But then we started crossing things off the list from least fucked up to What The Fuck fucked up, and now I just don't have it in me. I have my timeline I wrote up for the vet's first visit, and I have her pages of notes she's compiled for me.

But I will give a slightly abbreviated summation of how we went from suspected soft tissue injury in the right front to x-raying the left front foot.

The vet came out on 9/23 with the plan to ultrasound the swollen RF. On the longe he was showing lameness on that side, and with the previous injury to the DDFT, all parties concerned had settled on that leg as our problem child before we even began. Vet palpated the leg (which had, of course, completely lost all swelling by the time she got there in the evening) extensively, but wasn't able to feel anything besides possible thickening in the suspensory branches. The second vet who was there for a ride-along also palpated the leg and didn't even feel comfortable confirming that much.

Before ultrasounding, we took him to the ring to see how he looked on the line, and he was dead. fucking. lame. on his left front. We did flexions on the fronts, all of which turned up negative. We put the ultrasound on hold and decided to block the LF foot. Once blocked, he was close to completely sound--including no lameness on the RF.

With the sudden onset on lameness in that foot, of course we immediately jumped to abscess with a stone bruise being close on its heels. I'd already discussed with Farrier putting shoes on his fronts for several reasons (hold on a second), so Vet agreed to put the shoes on, have Farrier dig for an abscess, and if he wasn't sound in a week, call her back out.

massive overnight swelling was a sure sign
of an abscess! or not.

Farrier was out last Tuesday to put front shoes on. Before the lameness was concentrated to that foot/leg, we'd already agreed it was time to try something different. Bobby has flat, wide feet with a low heel. They're pretty typical shitty Thoroughbred feet, and it's only been through a lot of hard work and careful management on my part over the last three years that he's handled being barefoot so well. But on top of shitty feet, he's also got shitty conformation, and his ultra long pasterns leave him predisposed to soft tissue injury with the hard work that he does. Adding shoes will not only help with making him more comfortable on the cement-like ground this summer's drought has produced, but it will also give him greater heel support which will in turn support his long, weak pasterns.

Farrier was unable to find any sign of an abscess, and she was reluctant to dig into his sole to search for bruising since they're already so thin. He was tricky to shoe on the LF, and she was only able to get four nails in. The next day she checked him again to make sure she hadn't put any of them in to the point of making him uncomfortable, but he didn't react to any testing.

I'd been soaking and wrapping all this time hoping to draw an abscess out, but with nary a sign on Wednesday, Farrier called it and said to give it til the weekend to see if he showed any improvement in hopes of a stone bruise. Still just as lame as he was on day one yesterday, I called the vet and was able to get her to come out first thing this morning to x-ray.

no turnout was missed in the making of this diagnosis.
wet mule says better wet than on stall rest.

True to Bobby form, he looked about eighty percent better on the line before the vet came. She had me jog him quick, and we agreed it was still time for x-rays. Vet loves Bobby, and we did about ten minutes of loads of images on both feet with zero sedation before we broke into his bag of carrots. He may be lame, but he still wins at best ground manners.

So. What we were originally thinking we'd see on the x-rays was a fracture of the coffin bone--not an uncommon jumping horse injury, and one with an excellent prognosis for full recovery with some help from shoes. Only Vet started taking more and more angles, and then switched to the RF for comparison shots, and finally the N word was dropped.

vet: bobby, why are you standing like an idiot?
me and bm: no, that's just how bobby chills.

Final diagnosis is significant navicular in the LF with a flat palmar angle and mild pastern arthritis. The good news is that for now, the RF looks pretty damn good in comparison. Vet works closely with Farrier and put in a call to her shortly after they left to come up with a shoeing plan. Farrier will be out tomorrow morning to measure for special order bar shoes with a three degree wedge for both fronts. We'll give those a few weeks to see if they work any magic, and if not we'll move on to injecting the coffin joint.

I know navicular is one of those things that people feel strongly on one way or the other. Either it's an instant career killer, or with proper maintenance it won't affect the horse at all. The right-now diagnosis for Bobby's particular case is that he will not be able to event anymore. Maybe down the line that will change, but I have to take into consideration how much I want to risk my horse's already compromised feet.

Obviously I'd love to hear if any of you have any personal accounts of managing navicular, but please be respectful of the fact that I'm working very closely with both my vet and farrier, and we're the only ones that have seen the x-rays and watched the horse go. Please no couch vettings is what I'm trying to say.

still get to play with this guy, although he's been
a bit of an excessive pill lately as well. 

I'm not too upset over any of this yet. BM kept telling me she was amazed with how well I was handling everything, but I think I'm still planted pretty firmly in denial land. I was more upset with having to put shoes back on him last week and ending my barefoot journey than I am hearing that the inside of my horse's foot is a deteriorating grey blob, and we probably won't ever be able to do cross country again.

Probably I'll be really fucking distraught later. Probably need to take BM's advice and go and eat an entire chocolate cake.

All. By. Myself.

Monday, September 26, 2016

September TNEC Hunter Pace

Another month, another pace at the barn! Of course I didn't have my own horse to ride on this one because he's not sound at the moment.

(ahahahahaha, cue nervous laughter and facial twitch Bobby's mystery lameness instantly provokes whenever anyone brings it up)

lovely barn mom: so what's going on with bobby?
barn friend b: calm the fuck down.

Yeah, anyway, more on that ongoing fucking saga later in the week as MOAR EXPERTS take my monies and try to come up with an answer.

Fortunately, the perks of being in a big boarding barn are that there are lots of horses to go around. BM put me on good old Dumb Dumb Momo to take a couple of kids out on their first pace to make sure they didn't make bad decisions or die. You know, the usual.

momo bravely takes the lead touring the front field. these kids were awesome riders!

Poor Momo is still trying to find his way around here. BM has put a ton of work into him both in training and working with the barn's horde of body workers, but he's just kind of a dope. A good natured dope, but a great big dummy nonetheless. I took him over a few of the smaller logs, and he was so busy being amazed by the great outdoors (that he's ridden in many times) that he'd basically just trot into them, kind of stumble over them, and then continue on inspecting the wonders around him without a care in the world. A brilliant event horse he will never make.

He does, however, have an incredible jump in there and by the time we were almost done I was able to do a couple jumps with him where he was like, "Oh, right! Pick up my feeties and jump the jump! I know how to do that."

probably the third attempt at getting him to focus on this.

I had a quick break where I could eat my lunch, and then Shooter's mom showed up so we could go out together. I took Oz out with her and B on Rafiki. Despite being terrified of the ribbons marking the trail, Shooter was so cute jumping all the things with much enthusiasm.

Ozzie also had much enthusiasm. His version of hunter pacing is to be in the lead and go really fast and do whatever Oz wants the end. My version of hunter pacing is: listen to me, bro. We had a few abrupt canter to halt transitions because we were supposed to be trotting, and he started off super pissed at me for making him jump the jump next to the jump he wanted to go over. The nerve, I know.

gigantic creature doesn't actually have to jump over these things.
angry because i'm asking him to land on the correct lead. nobody tells oz what to do!

He's got such uncomfortable gaits--especially his canter--that I felt like a complete beginner being bounced out of the saddle half the time, and it doesn't help that he expects you to sit the fuck down and leave him the fuck alone when he comes up to a jump. Any other approach leads him to giving you the finger and casually cantering to the side. Lesson horses have their own rules, yo.

Despite our disagreements about obedience and team work, I still had a lot of fun and our team ending up coming in fourth. Add that ribbon to the five thousand other fourth places I feel Bobby and I have won this year. It basically looks like we're waving the white flag of surrender on my ribbon rack at this point. #mediocrityrules

victory gallop

When we were done, I went back into the ring and made him do a few minutes of dressage work. His lessor went to college so he's back to lesson riders only--none of whom get after him to actually engage that post-legged back end. BM told me to get on him whenever I want so he gets forced to use the right muscles occasionally.

perfectly capable of being fancy

I'm grateful to still have horses to get on, though I'd like nothing more than to ride my own horse. Or at least have that "3/5 lame, possible dx: EVERYTHING UNDER THE SUN" scratched off his vet report. 

although bobby says mugging people for their
lunches instead of work is just fine with him.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016


Let's start this off by saying no Bobby news is not good Bobby news. Bro is lame as fuck, and I'm anxiously waiting for the vet to come out Friday and steal all my monies to get to the bottom of what is no doubt a re-injury to the DDFT he mildly fucked up last summer. That shit it not mildly anything this time around. Shit is like, RAWR IMMA EAT YOUR HORSE'S WHOLE LEG.

But I mean maybe he just tweaked something and he's just a little sore, right?


"don't care, just want cookies and nothing faster than a stumbling walk, thx."

In the meantime, I have full access to good ole Shooter who I absolutely adore riding.

worried about all the things. he's a sensitive dude.

Now that I've gotten a few more rides in with him and spent some more time with him on the ground with the thought of "This is my riding horse" instead of him just being another boarder in the barn (Seriously so lucky his mom is so nice and is sharing him!), I've got a lot better understanding of what his quirks and past training are.

Let me preface this by saying this is a nice horse. He's very light in the bridle, he moves off your leg without drama (except when he's so tired oh god what is two rides in two days so fat and out of shape), and I can put him pretty much anywhere I want him.

However, like any horse, he's got some holes that with BM's help both his owner and I are going back and helping him out with. I think a trainer somewhere in his past focused more on how the overall picture looked and not so much on the mechanics. He frames right up, but without a whole lot of egging there's not much power coming from behind. He also likes to curl and plow onto the forehand, and I can't imagine either of those things does his neck arthritis any good.

adorbs. he regularly flats in an elevator, but i
couldn't find his bridle this day so he went in boby's
french link. he was fine in it, so with his mom's permission
i think we'll just switch him over to a snaffle. 

Right now I'm working on throwing the reins at him in the canter so he can learn that it's okay to come up and out. Once he gets it he's so much looser in his entire body, and you can feel his whole demeanor soften like, "Ahhh, that feels pretty good!"

His lack of hind end strength--and overall strength as I think he was sitting for a bit before J was able to bring him up here--really shows in his jumping. He doesn't get rude or rush or play or anything like that, but even over the little X we were jumping the other day, I saw a distance and put my leg on to tell him to take it, and he almost had to stop and sit to get the oomph to get us over.

He also dives onto the forehand so bad the last two strides before the fence it's like his entire front end just disappears. Fortunately he's such a good boy about taking direction that lots and lots of leg lifts him up, but there's going to be lots of dressage and lots of tiny jumps in his future to rebuild that booty.

We did a little trail ride with W after our last ride, and despite some warnings from his mom that he might be a spaz, he was a star. He had one spook coming around the corner of the gazebo thing by the pond that was basically one quick step sideways, and then another stop and start coming back around the corner of the barn. He also gets a little squirrelly coming inside in the morning when he has to clear the back barn. I think he just preventative spooks because he's such an insecure dude.

not insecure. just broken.

This weekend is a hunter pace at my barn, so I'm hoping I'll be able to take him if he's available. If not I'll just steal someone else because MY HORSE WON'T BE SOUND FOR IT.