Monday, June 19, 2017

This, That, and The Other Thing

I feel like I've done a lot with Bobby in the past week, but it's been so hot all the details have melted in my brain. So instead of a couple of bulk posts, I'm going to squish everything into one. I don't think I can force myself or others through multiple disjointed ramblings of lessons, trail walks, and vet visits blowing money at an exorbitant rate.

sometimes you just need a whole lotta pink
in your life. and a great big moose who falls for
the empty wrapper trick every time. 

Money, money, moneyyyy

The vet came out Thursday to do a recheck on Bobby's leg. I was able to split this call with two other people so it was actually almost reasonable which was good because if I had to pay $150+ for her to roll in the driveway and take vitals on my horse I might not have paid that bill. Ever.

Overall her impression was really favorable--unsurprisingly as his leg is looking fantastic right now. She made fun of my KrudZapper again because the name is so ridiculous, but then she also wrote it down in her notes to recommend to other people. Cancer "curing" miracle cream, lemme tell ya. She spent a long time listening to his breathing and doing a rebreathing test where a bag is held over the horse's nose, something that would probably be more effective on a horse that wasn't intent on getting to the bottom of the bag because he was positive there were treats in there somewhere.

Lungs sounded good though, and I assured her I was watching his breathing and recovery closely during every ride to make sure there were no problems. (The concern being that if the cancer leaves its cozy spot in his leg it's going to be to spread to his lungs and/or kidneys, and that's the end of that.) Since he's in such good shape otherwise--no temp, no weight loss, no problems with his breathing--we were able to skip the ultrasound this time around. He'll go on two more weeks of the meds for the vasculitis, and then we wait and see what the leg decides to do. If the scabbing and sores come back, we'll ultrasound then and probably have to move on to steroids. Since nobody knows anything about this cancer, it's all a super fun wait and see what the fuck it's going to do game. So fun!

so majestic while waiting for the vet

Stick with the program

At the end of our lesson last Thursday, Bobby struck off into the right lead canter and did his stabby "My heel hurts" step. He'd just gotten done three weeks ago, but the amount of foot he'd grown was insane. I texted Farrier and she was able to squeeze him on Saturday.

We were aiming for six weeks, but LOL no. Now we'll aim for four and fingers crossed he can wait that long. Farrier said that if we didn't know what the inside of his feet looked like she'd just pull his shoes altogether because they look fantastic right now. The trouble with the wedges are they want to crush the heel, but Farrier said so far so good on that front. If it looks like they're starting to go that way, we'll try a flat shoe for a couple cycles.

She also said that the RF has essentially stabilized. If you'll recall, because of how long that leg was swollen, it was putting so much pressure on the foot and stemming the circulation that Farrier was deeply concerned about either founder or losing the fucking foot. It took about a week for the meds to kick in, but once they did it curbed the massive fill his leg was getting every night. He's also on a supplement to increase circulation so hopefully between the two we're past all that. She said that the new hoof coming in is going to be an entirely different foot--the angle it's growing out at is different than where he was at before, so that might also be why he came up a little sore.

bobby says 8am is too early for pedicures

Wait, what

Speaking of my lesson, we're two for two (or infinity for infinity) on weeks where I had to stop and have BM break things down to toddler speak for me. At least there were no tears this time? She had me doing SI across the diagonal each way, and for some reason when I started I could not get my brain to coordinate my body. Like, what even fucking direction should my horse be pointed in? I DON'T KNOW I KNOW NOTHING.

Fortunately BM is good in her range of teaching. She starts by talking to me like I'm on her knowledge level, which in some things I can generally at least keep up with, but we usually devolve to Hooked on Phonics by the end.

Off we went to try again with BM telling me where to put every single inch of my body. If I exaggerated my seat aids a lot, it was easier for me to mentally ride and therefor easier for poor Bobby to figure out what the fuck I was asking him. As in, yes that's a fabulous trot half pass, but BM is yelling at us now. Dammit.

We got some good work in the left lead canter where BM banished us from using the rail ever again so I could tell right away when Bobby was getting even remotely crooked. That was a great exercise and one that worked really well for us this morning, too.


Trust the training

I kind of had an existential horse crisis this morning during my ride. Bobby still has a slight dip in front of his withers from not carrying himself correctly all the way through. It's not as bad as it's been in the past, but it's still there. BM assured me that he's using his hind end great, he's always been good about engaging his abs, but he just wants to jam his shoulders and get stuck there. Fortunately he's really embracing the stretching game lately, but as soon as I pick up my reins and try to get him shorter he tenses up right at the base of his neck. Ain't nothing going to fill out if we keep playing that game, bro.

Towards the end of the ride I was getting him pretty through at the walk, but as soon as we moved to the trot he was like, ABORT BRACE YOURSELF FOR IMPACT TIGHTEN ALL THE THINGS.

I was so frustrated thinking this horse is never, ever going to have that long, beautiful uphill neck and front end, and he's just going to have this giant disgusting underneck muscle bulging out of his chest for all eternity. But I sat it out. We lapped the arena in trot with me occasionally making minor adjustments and trying to live by BM's mantra to just let him make the mistakes instead of jumping all over him.

He started to lose his shoulders coming into the corner so I put my outside leg on to push them back over while touching him with the spur on my inside leg to keep the bend and all the sudden it was like the heavens opened up. I felt him lighten way up so I softened my hands a little to give him somewhere to go and he shifted back and eased himself into an entirely different gear. A couple laps later and that long, beautiful neck was in full affect with a relaxed, happy horse moving out in a big easy trot.

The basics are the hardest, yo.

and here are puppies getting stinky in the erie canal because i'm out of horse pics.

Show me the money

I'm hauling a horse to and from Syracuse this weekend for a multi-day show the barn is attending. I'm hoping that will put just enough money in my pocket to pay for an entry fee for a show next month. It's a lot of money with no refund whatsoever for vet scratches, so it's going to be a bit of a gamble, but I think we're at a point now where we've got a good program in place for both Bobby's feet and leg. The hunter pace showed he can take a bit of abuse with the right management. I'm so broke from paying for all that management that even though I could do a couple small shows with this little bit of extra money, it would mean way more to be able to get to do this one big show.

Fingers crossed things continue on a good trajectory!


  1. Fingers crossed you get to show! And you're not the only one who needs Hooked on Phonics training.

    1. Explaining things to me like I'm three is really the only dressage language I understand.

  2. a) more pink solves everything
    b) your bm always sounds so awesome to me. love the whole 'trust the training' thing bc damn that's hard sometimes.... but.... well. you know.
    c) how did you get bobby to look so goshdarn handsome in that last pic???

    1. a) true.
      b) she's for sure the bobby whisperer...and Carly shouter.
      c) pretty sure he was seeing dead people outside.

  3. YAY cute shirt!
    From an educational standpoint, I would love to see the front foot growing in at a new angle. If you have time to send me a photo that would be amazing :).
    Stretching is so difficult but once they learn to do it correctly they looooove it and never want to go back. Art2Ride has some great stretching videos!
    Fingers crossed for the show!!!

    1. I'll have to do a full hoof post because it will be interesting to see how it changes! And yeahhh, stretching is about the only thing we're nailing right now. I'll check out the videos!

  4. Glad to hear things are proceeding in a mostly upward trajectory! Fingers crossed you get to show next month ☺

    1. I need more ribbons in a serious way!

  5. This is a great update. And I hear you on the basics being hard. Why can't we skip the multiplication tables and go right to algebra? Why?

    1. Forget the multiplication, I'm still struggling with simple addition over here. :P

  6. Loving the pink. You look totally mid tween and horse crazy! HAha. Good luck st the show! I tend to forget to comment on your posts but I always stalk lol

    1. The sad part is I think I dress more like a tween than the tweens that ride here!

  7. Ugh I hate when animals you care about end up being the case study for a shiny unknown sickness. Happened with my uncle's dog who had some rare unheard of fungal infection in his spine. I mean at least Science gets to understand a bit more but it leaves your stomach in knots.

    1. I keep waiting for Science to volunteer to pay for some of his vet work.

  8. Crossing all the things in hopes that all keeps going smoothly for you guys!


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