Thursday, 29 May 2014

Dragon Mare or, Where Did That Come From?

Looking like butter wouldn't melt in her mouth after the ride. The discharge out of her norstril is actually sand stuck to normal clear fluid.
Allie was a moron to ride this morning.

I got up at 5.45am to ride her before work - I thought, after 4 days of work (all going really well, just normal, unbalanced, no muscling issues) that she would like a walk up the back to the racetrack, maybe a little trot down the straight and then back home on the buckle in the early morning mist. The property is an old racehorse pre-training facility that had been abandoned for 6 years before someone else bought it and opened it for agistment. There are only 8 horses on the property at the moment.

Red arrow is Allie's yard, blue arrow is where I tack up and get on, and above the green arrow is the lane we ride down to get to the racetrack you can see there on the left. It takes about 5 minutes to walk from the tack up to the gate at the track.

Our ride could not have gone further from the plan.

She seemed fine until we nearly got to the track - they had put down road base down the aisle between yards we ride down (great for her feet!!) and since the last time we rode on the track they have put down more sand. But I don't think that is what bothered her. She put 3 stops in, with me ending up having to boot her like she was a Thelwell pony. She then spun and tried to go back home but when I tried to pull her up she started humping and spinning. WHAT?!

Eventually we got to the gate, through the gate and I hopped off to lead her over to a pile of white railings on the ground that I thought she was worried about. She was fine and walked over them.

I got back on and tried to walk clockwise on the track. She had that glazed-over-thoroughbred-stare going on and wanted to nick off on me. I couldn't put my leg on, I couldn't get in her mouth, she was igoring a heavy seat. I had NO horse under me. She felt like she wanted to go up, but worse, like she was prepared to go right over if I tried to stop her with the bit. I was worried that the surgery had done something to her face that was setting her off. I did not have the balls to ride it out because she was reacting negatively to my aids. She was humping, head between her legs, spinning and just loosing the plot. She wasn't even looking at anything in particular, it was like she was spooking at the fog!

I jumped off again and tried to get her attention by doing the old leading and stopping game - she knows my expectations 100% with this - when I stop, she stops before her shoulder gets to my shoulder. If she doesn't, I pop her on the chest with the whip or the tail of the reins or lead, whatever I have handy. We have done this pretty much every time I lead her since I got her. Well, today when I popped her on the chest, she went nuts - spun around, bucked, reared, tried to get away. I felt like I was flying a kite!!

WHAT THE F*(% ALLIE?!? Obviously she was just so far gone that she was dangerous. When she came back down to earth, I just stood there for about 5 minutes, waiting for her to let go of whatever devils were possessing her. Eventually the glazed eye and quivering nostrils went away and she sighed, licked and chewed, and looked towards me.

I put my big girl pants back on and got back on again. We got about 5 strides when she started jig-jogging and I had a coiled spring under me. She was on the buckle though! Heavy seat, light seat, leg on, leg off, didn't matter. She was going to explode again when I took up the reins to stop her to dismount a-fricking-gain. Then, I handwalked her back to the gate with my hands holding the reins as if I was riding her, trying to simulate contact and asking her to just go forward. It worked. Sort of.

Halfway back down the lane I got back on again and normal Allie had returned. I did school her for aboout 10 minutes in her own yard before untacking because I wanted to see if I could get in her mouth and get contact seeing as that seemed to be setting her off the most. Wak, trot, canter with "contact" (well, not proper solid dressage contact but something resembling it for a horse who has been off for so long) all good. She is stiff, not wanting to bend her ribcage around my left leg especially, but I know how to ride that. I couldn't really fault her in the last 10 minutes except she was rushing in the trot (I think this is a balance thing for her). I untacked and fed up. I have been tossing it over in my head all day long. Why? She had never ever acted that crazy whe whole time I have owned her. She can be an idiot about walking near ditches or piles (I honestly think she fell in a hole covered with a pile of junk as a foal) but I can normally ride it out and she doesn't loose her shit.

Gosh - so what do I do now? Just keep schooling for the next few weeks and then try the track again when we have more rides under our belt? Or do I get back out there and tackle the track again asap? She honestly scared me. I don't want to make it into a 'thing'. I just do not know how to ride a horse who is so explosive and ignorant like she was today.

Just to clarify, we have full vet approval to be riding and schooling and doing normal horsey things, just like a normal legging up program. I don't think this has anything to do with her surgery but it is a small possibility. We have ridden around that track about 7 times before and while she can be a bit looky, she has never been batshit crazy spooky. Except the sand was new. That's all I can pin down. There weren't any 'roos, no foxes, blah blah blah.

Friday, 23 May 2014


Hi Christine,

I thought I would shoot you an email with how Allie is doing and a couple of questions I have.
She finished her sulfa on Thursday 15th. The whole time she has had normal vitals (except today, temp was 37.1 which I thought was a little low) and has been a great eater and very happy in herself. Both nostrils had some discharge but the left one was worse and it still hasn't cleared up completely. Even this morning there was some yellow gunky discharge again.
Her scar looks amazing in my opinion. There has been no rubbing but I have noticed sweat crystals on it quite often which I assume is because that area is hotter because of the healing.

My questions are:
- should we be worried that her left nostril is still having pretty consistent discharge? It doesn't smell foul, just like she has a cold (if that makes sense) but the odour is definetly different to her other nostril.

- there are three little stitches showing in the scar, in the top under her eye and in each of the 'corners'. Are we just leaving those alone? I assume they are dissolving stitches but they aren't dissolving because they are exposed.




Hi Lisa


Thanks for update.


Don’t worry about low temp – not unusual at all, especially as gets cooler at night.

If the discharge does not get any worse let’s just watch it.  It was definitely coming from her trachea on scope last time. Even if it is coming from her sinus, we often see this post sinus surgery  for a couple of months.  Unless things change, let’s hold to the 6-8 week recheck plan.


The sweat may be because it is hotter, but may also be a regional nerve that has been disrupted or irritated!  Not much we can do about that.


The sutures in the common are not unusual – the corners are the hardest to get to heal.  The sutures are absorbable and will take care of themselves.  They are slow to dissolve, and if I can get them out next time she is here I will. They will continue to dissolve even though are exposed, just maybe at a slower rate. They are a monofilament and not irritating, so I am not fussed.


Sounds like things are still going as well as I could hope.  I think the next challenge will be to see what that tooth does.  It will take some time for it to decide to heal or become sicker (the tooth that is).


Keep me posted





I am totally tacking up tonight and having a whirl around the round yard. I'll let you know how she goes guys!!

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Is it Really Time?

Allie is doing good. We still have a slight discharge from the left nostril and there are normally crusty boogers caught in the fold at the top of her nostril, but we are feeling awesome, eating well and are very bright and perky. And a little bit naughty. Someone needs a job again.

I am thinking, this Sunday, we might just pop a saddle on and go for a wander up the back. After a little "get your bucks out" tour of the round yard, of course.

Oh gosh, I don't want to jinx it but wouldn't that just be superb? To be able to ride your horse at the walk for a half an hour? I can not wait. :)

Saturday, 17 May 2014

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Vet Bill

Got my vet bill.

So far:

$500 for hospital overnight and rads when she had the bleeding nose when she was diagnosed.
$1400 for the CT scan.
$4000 for surgery and hospital care and post-surgery rads.

So what's that so far - $5,900.

She is worth every cent.

Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Check Up - Good News!


Went for her 10 day checkup this morning. She has picked up a runny nose and a cough which they scoped her for - it's just a cold, so more paste for that poor horse.

The stitches came out. She looks good! I'll have to get a shot of the scar so I can show you guys.

The radiographs look good - her sinus is nice and clear. The tooth behind, however, looks a little messy. We don't know if that tooth will stay or not. Only time will tell.

She had the wavemouth floated down a little too.

Christine said after she comes off the antibiotics (10 day course) she can have 7-10 days rest and then she can start doing some light work. I am so happy!!

There is still a tiny part of me that is too scared to think everything will be ok, like I will curse her if I think she will be fine. I can't make it go away. I guess it will go away with time.

So happy!!!

Thursday, 1 May 2014

Ta daaa

Ta da is the opposite of how I feel however. Poor pony.

It's healing well. Hopefully she won't rub her face overnight and I'll find her in the same state tomorrow morning.

It doesn't look too bad. Not too assymetrical.