Thursday, August 25, 2016

Riesling's Radiographs

**I guess I wasn't very clear in my post a few days back about Riesling's blood results, but basically the vet has no idea what happened and doesn't expect it to happen again. I talked with a neurologist at Idaho Equine Hospital and she said horses sometimes have an Epileptic disorder where they only have an episode once every few years and most of the time no one is even there to witness it. So no further testing on that front, unless someone witnesses another episode**

I think these are fun to look at so I thought I would share with y'all. I'm sure I'll be taking updated ones in due time, so it will be interesting to compare them.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

They come in threes

And not just bad things. At Riesling's lameness exam, it was discovered my horse has three bad legs. Three. I should have just turned him out and let him kill the fourth leg because naturally that would happen (kidding). 

My vet was convinced it was in his right front hoof that he was off. So he proceeded to block it. After trotting out, it appeared he was now off in his left front. This was a major concern because my vet said this is a sign of navicular. 

We then blocked the left front, and he trotted out off on his left hind. At this point I wanted to shoot myself because I knew it would be a hefty vet bill and because I felt like a terrible horse mom. My vet suspected his hocks because he had a very positive flexion test back in 2014. Luckily, after flexions, both hocks were negative. 

My vet looked at me and wanted to know where I wanted to go from there. Since I figured I already had plenty of money sunken in, I wanted to get to the bottom of it. Which meant x-rays.

Both coffin bones in his front feet were angled slightly interior. However, his feet looked strong, and there were no signs of navicular. My vet thought with some different trimming/shoeing procedures, his coffin bones would be back to balanced in no time.

But unfortunately it didn't end there. You may remember I spoke about Riesling's left hind fetlock being swollen and lame this past spring. I had the vet out and he put him on previcox for 5 days. It never got to 100% and the swelling never went down but Riesling still seemed happy to work so I didn't worry about it. Well, x-rays of that shows he did something gnarly to it back in spring. He had bone chips floating around and advanced arthritis. 

My vet believes the injury triggered the arthritis. The major bummer is I have Ries on some pretty heavy joint supps, and while they are leaving the rest of his body feeling good, they couldn't compete in this area. 

So, what are the next steps?

Riesling's feet will be better balanced and that should solve the NQR in his front feet. The hind leg is the real issue. My vet wants to inject HA into the joint, and some steroids into the swelling. Because the arthritis is so bad he wants Riesling to be put on monthly Adequan injections. The prognosis depends on how he responds to the Adequan. He will be lightly worked until winter (and immediately put on Adequan) where he will have the winter off and we will see how he comes out in spring. My vet believes there are a few more years of competition left with Riesling, but without the Adequan he will be a trail horse. 

I've thought long and hard, and I'll share my personal plans in my next post. But don't worry, Ries is my heart horse and he is always my main priority. 

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Riesling Update

I waited until Wednesday to have the vet out. He was certain on Tuesday night that Riesling would be fine but I couldn't shake the feeling that something was wrong, as well as the NQRness he has been facing lately. 

The vet pulled blood and determined his NQR was definitely a lameness in his right front that was uncorrelated to the seizure. He had me wait on blood results before addressing the lameness. 

Blood results came back saying he had a low platelet count. My vet was unsure if this was a cause for concern or not so he consulted some other vets to pick their brains on the situation.

I just heard back from my vet last night and after consulting other vets (including the neurologist at the state hospital) they determined the blood work was normal and the platelet count wasn't a cause for concern. 

I only have a small sigh of relief though, because that memory of watching him seize is branded in my brain. Tomorrow afternoon we will have a lameness exam. Crossing my fingers its an easy fix.

I have decided at this point to bring my man home. I don't know why I would pay full board for a hurt horse and I can't use the facilities. I'm extremely nervous. 

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Goodbye Baby Winston!

Baby Winston has officially left the nest! He is in his new home up in Northern Idaho. I said goodbye to him last Friday. He was a stinker and trying to eat my shoulder. I am excited to see how his future turns out and I can't wait for my next baby horse to babysit! 

Monday, August 15, 2016

Tides are Turning


So the radio silence over the past week has a reason, unfortunately. Tuesday night I had Riesling out in the round pen ready to lunge. He went down to roll, and stayed laying down. I thought it was strange because he mostly "sits up" (as the photo above) when he doesn't want to get up. But he was flat against the ground. His head was cocked up slightly and I approached him carefully. Next thing I know his head fell the side, eyes rolled back into his head, mouth open with tongue hanging out, and legs stiff and jerking around. 

I always have these fear driven dreams where I am kidnapped or attacked. And without a doubt I always freeze up. I can't scream, I can't move. Its a completely helpless feeling. I had that same reaction in the round pen that evening. 

My thoughts ranged from, What the hell is going on?? to Oh my god. Is he dying? Am I watching my horse die? Is this a heart attack or a seizure. It is definitely a seizure. What if he doesn't come out of it? Am I going to have to watch my horse die? WHY CAN'T I MOVE OR SPEAK (or breathe).

Luckily that evening the accupressurist and other barn mates were out. They saw me standing, statue still, frozen on my horse. And Riesling, laying on the ground. 

It took them a few moments to figure out what was going on, and then without fail they jumped into the arena. Someone put their hands on my shoulders and pulled be back. Another lady fell to Riesling's side and started to comfort him. A few agonizing moments later he came to. He let out a loud snort, scurried up, and ran around the arena, confused. 

I wiped away tears as I dialed the vets number. I was basically still frozen. I couldn't really react. At that time, my vet just wanted him to be monitored. I spent a few hours hand grazing him and watching him in his stall. He seemed completely normal. 

Finally at home I collapsed on the couch and let out all my screams and tears.


At this time, Riesling is still doing good. I'll go through the still ongoing after effects throughout the week. But, the tides have definitely turned. 

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Throwback Thursday: Hunter Jumper Dreams

The single jumping picture of a baby cross rail is so vomit inducing I couldn't share it. But hey we looked pretty cute on the flat! There is a jump chute in my indoor currently and because Ries loves jumping I thought he'd have fun going through it. Instead he was terrified by the poles and could barely walk over the teeny cross rail. It was really pathetic. But he followed me like a puppy dog walking through the poles in the chute afterwords and I let him have snacks for being a brave pony. 

Hopefully someday soon we will be flying over fences..

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Black Market

Barnmate showed me her recent purchase yesterday and it left me a little confused. It was supposedly a second run model of a Prestige. It She only paid $450 for it but it didn't fit her horse. For kicks and giggles I tried it on Ries as someone suggested a Prestige might work well for him. I even sat in it on a saddle stand.

But I couldn't get over the feeling that something wasn't quite right about it. I inspected it and remembered my training from the tack shop I worked at to determine the quality. The stitching seemed decent, but there were little cuts of quality. There were areas where the leather wasn't trimmed and just some small half-asses mistakes. 

And the leather. It was described as "calf skin". The top side felt soft-ish but the underside felt like plastic and it didn't take to oiling. Barnmate also said when she cleaned it some of the dye came off on her sponge. Seemed fishy. I consulted with my tack extraordinaires L from Viva Carlos and Carey from Me Jump Pretty One Day and got their opinions. Carey is double checking with the tack buyer at her store but I think it's a fair assumption to say its a knockoff.

It was semi comfortable to sit in, but the panels seemed foam and not wool. the stitching details of the fluer de lis is just not quite as articulate as the stock photo, and lets be real, it looks kinda cheap and ugly. Not to mention the black cantle instead of cream? 

Have you come across any questionable knock-offs?  I saw some knock-off PS of Sweden bridles..wonder how they fare...

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Like a Sponge

I've never really liked school, but now that I've found my passion, I can eat up every bit of information about horses that I can. While lessons are a little side tracked right now, I want to spend my time reading as much as I can get my hands on. So tell me, what books have really gave you great insight in your riding or training? What book will always stay on your library shelf and what book do you always find yourself reaching for?

Monday, August 1, 2016

Weekend Warrior

I had a lot work to get done this weekend. My garden was a jungle and Winston is getting looked at next week so he needed new pictures and his tootsies done. 

I started on Saturday with tackling my garden. The edges are all weedy and needed whacking down. Disappointingly, I'm still sore from weed whacking. Wow I need to workout more. I forgot to take an after picture but you can see just how bad it is here. I was able to harvest an eggplant, carrots, peas, and a zucchini. It was only 11 AM and already almost 100 degrees. No thanks. I met up with a friend for lunch and came home to the wonderful A/C. 

Sunday the farrier came out to trim the boys. I don't have much experience with baby horses so I had very low expectations of their behavior. Baby Z is still afraid of the halter so I got up early to have extra time to work with him before the farrier arrived. Surprisingly, I slowly got him haltered pretty easily in just a few minutes! I spent the extra time walking him around and then let him enjoy his breakfast. 

This was his second time getting a trim and he was a little squirrely but mostly behaved. I'm glad the boys think so fondly of me; they rested their distraught little heads on my chest almost the entire time. 

Winston was a frantic little baby for just getting his hoofies picked and was a spinning dragon. For whatever reason though, as soon as she began the trim he seemed to remember what was going on and was suddenly on his best baby horse behavior. I keep telling Win that he needs to stop being a good baby horse because I love him and want to buy him and will be sad if he leaves me. 

Also kitten picture because THOSE FACES.