July 30, 2014

Legs, You Suck

Why mare oh why?

Saturday I got off work super late. The horses were in because of insane thunderstorms. Lauren had rode Echo earlier in the day and said she wasn't a happy horse - which usually all is good in Echo world. When I was out cleaning stalls at 10 pm I noticed how grumpy she was. I brushed it off figuring it was because of being stuck inside and all the horses were a little edgy. Lauren had however said she felt a little off in her right hind leg - the leg with the hoof injury so she didn't do much with her. Attributed it to the fact they were due to have their hooves done. 

Sunday I just wanted to be done at the barn. It was my only day off in-between work weeks and I needed some R&R from last week at work. 

Monday however, Lauren was done early at the barn so I thought I figured I'd lunge Echo to see how her soundness was before the farrier coming out Tuesday (yesterday). I go to pull her out of her stall and notice she's not putting weight on the leg - #%*$. Put her in the wash stall and just start cold hosing all four legs. Start running my hands all over her just to make sure I'm not missing anything else before I bother looking at the right hind, nothing. So running hands down her leg I feel medium amount of heat, not hot but not great and slight swelling. I also feel a scab, can't see because the lighting sucks in wash stalls to see legs sometimes. I don't think too much of it because it felt pretty scabbed over and thought it was an older thing that we just missed. Liniment and bute I go take her out for the evening. I stood letting her eat some grass before putting her in her paddock and I see this... 
1) That's not small! 2) WTF mare?! 3) It's time for bubble wrap. 

Yesterday morning I gave her a tiny bit more bute (like 1/4 gram...) in her feed. Lauren lunged her before farrier, dead lame. More cold hose, less heat than Monday so I felt comfortable sweating the leg. Another gram of bute, and turned her out. I knew if I kept her in she'd do potentially just as many stupid things. 

Fingers crossed for less heat tonight and a better looking scab. It's completely superficial with no puncture wound so I'm fairly certain she put her leg through the fence and then pulled it through scrapping it like she did. Why it's so swollen, I have no idea, it's Echo.

July 28, 2014

Week of Plans

It's going to be a crazy week. I had yesterday off but today on what would be my 'Sunday', I'm working. This way when I leave town Friday evening I don't have to use a vacation day at work. 

I can't deny I'm nervous to be flying with all the terrible world news involving planes. Self medication will help, I hope. My plane takes off 5:50ish on Friday and I'll be back mid-day Tuesday from my trip. I hope more than anything that I get answers while I'm gone and can make some adult life decisions. 

Since I'm at work, I won't be able to be there, but the farrier is there to trim both horses this afternoon. Echo has continued to do ok barefoot (despite the hard dry ground), so we're proceeding to Kentucky Classique barefoot all around. Her hind hoof that sustained the injury continues to grow out and I now have to work to find signs of the injury. Dakota has been ok in the two times I've rode him barefoot so we're going to have a go at it for another 6 weeks. His leg he had bowed his tendon in years ago is having a few problems with swelling and tiny tiny bit of heat. He has worked through it both times I've gotten on him so who knows what the leg is doing. 
Koda Ride!
Echo has jumping homework after her lesson last week. She can do a course but when it comes to jumping basics she needs to still learn those. She doesn't seem to be a huge fan of having to use her feet, body and brain. It'd be super easy to bypass it all at this point since she can go clear and loves to jump bigger and bigger - but I'm sure it would haunt us later on.

Unhappy horses waiting inside during a storm while I cleaned stalls.

July 25, 2014

Scheffelridge Jumper Show Photos

Thanks to my friend Audrey who got up to just tag along to the show and take pictures! She was running on almost no sleep since she had switched work shifts with me the night before. Otherwise I would of had less than 4 hours of sleep. Still some other photos I'm waiting for from people but so happy to see these!

First ones there!
White Prince aka Poodle showing those cross rails who's boss!
Where did my friend go?!
Our makeshift halter fixing... 
Waiting... Lauren's face says it all. 

Home with her ribbon!

July 22, 2014

First Show Results!

It may have bee a non rated schooling KHJA jumper show but her first show is in the books! Video and photo's will be available ASAP. Waiting for everyone to get me the pictures they got of the day so I can make one post. 

We were first to arrive at the show of those trailering in - great parking! White Prince was in the first two classes of the day so Lauren got him saddle quickly while Echo stayed in the trailer until he was off for warm up. After a mini melt down from being tied to the trailer and breaking her halter - it was smooth sailing. Except the classes took longer than expected so we had a ton of time to burn between White Prince and Echo showing. 

The day also coined two new phrases to apply to Echo. "Honey Badger It" and "Echoing". Pretty self explanatory but really the mare could give two shits about anything. Announcer? No. Truck and trailers almost hitting her while parking? No. Children? No. Dogs? Intrigued but no. Standing ringside for your class forever? No thats just nap time. So now we just assume when she goes into a new environment or is asked to do something new she's going to 'honey badger it'.

Secondly we know why she's the opposite of a honey badger time to time. She goes into her own world and does as she's told but her brain isn't 'on'. She made this very clear in her first class Sunday. She entered the ring and couldn't care less about all the jumps, I'm pretty sure she was in a 'look at me I'm pretty' phase and just wanted to be told it. I saw her heading to the first jump like that and of course it was the only rail she pulled all day. Really she didn't even pull a rail, she just plowed through. Then about 3-4 jumps in Lauren said she felt her brain kick in and we could all see it from the side of arena where mid air she looks down and had a moment of 'wait... we're jumping?!'. She came out of the arena proud of herself and we were all proud of her but laughing at her mentality. The memo that she had to go in the arena and jump was just delayed in delivery to her. 

Since she was the first horse to go in the first of her two classes, we had lots of wait time for her next round. AKA time for Lauren to remember the next course and time for Echo to sleep and take in all the admiration. 

Time for second class and there was no echoing in the brain. I couldn't be more proud of her. She jumped clear on everything and took a 6th place in the class (which was 2'3"-2'6" Speed) out of at least 12 horses. We counted and Sunday was only her 9th day of jumping. Plus she trotted a little on course so speed and time wasn't something Lauren or I was worried about, just the experience. 
Showing her ribbon off back at home.
I think the plan now is to start some grid work and more schooling at home as far as jumping. Depending on farrier schedule, we may go to Masterson Station next Monday and figure out a Wednesday evening to the dressage show series. I think she's ready to rock Kentucky Classique in 5 weeks. 

July 17, 2014

Life... Why Me?

All I want is to have nothing exciting happen. It's too much to ask for though, I know.

My last post was that it was my birthday and I was going to Michigan so lets start there. My time home was great. Seeing my friends and family was the highlight but not far behind was all the time I spent swimming and enjoying the outdoors. Sadly the last two days of being home I got a stomach flu which I had to drive home with (not fun!) so my time seeing my grandparents was cut short - not happy about that.

Hanging out in South Haven with my Dad on my birthday. Lunch at my favorite restaurant. Fun fact - if anyone has read the book Time Traveler's Wife it's one of the places in the book.

Hanging out on the lake at my grandparents. 
Sunset at Lake Michigan on 4th of July aka my favorite holiday. 
Also while I was home my best friend Erin who lives in Michigan welcomed home the horse she grew up with. She's a 21 year old standardbred. The mare, Silver (yes she's bay and named Silver) was owned by Erin's aunt who passed away earlier this summer. Erin had her shipped to Michigan from Kentucky so she could stay in the family, Erin could have her childhood horse and give her a home to have rest of her life. Me being me... I had a scale to use on hay and grain in my car so I helped Erin figure out a good diet plan for her since she needs to gain a few pounds but not as much as expected. Silver also had a hoof injury right before Echo so it's been 'fun' to watch their hooves progress. Erin is 6' 2" so Silver really isn't that tiny of a standardbred - her owner is just that tall (sorry Erin).

Echo got over her withdraw problems with me fairly well while I was in Michigan. She went to a jump lesson with Lauren while I was gone and has had a flat lesson since. This past Sunday we planned to take the horses to Masterson Station again for more cross country schooling but we realized the park was full of carnival rides for the fair going. Instead Lauren jumped her outside on the grass. The ground was super hard due to lack of rain but she handled it like a pro, jumping her first oxer, barrel jump and lots of first time questions. After her jumping I gave her a much needed and deserved bath, head to toe. I rubbed her legs down in liniment and after some hand grazing to dry her off, let her take her afternoon nap in her stall. 

Off to her flat lesson.

Shiny after her Sunday bath.
Dakota's version of working hard. 
Monday Lauren texted me that her leg was swollen with lots of heat. Thankfully she was completely sound on it. So I cold hosed her, we poulticed the leg, wrapped it and turned her out for the night. Good news is the leg was tight with no heat the next day. The bad news was she had a reaction to the poultice. 
And then she had an allergic reaction to poultice. 
She's been lightly ridden with her weird rash / burn / whatever from the poultice and is sound so we are still planning on taking her to the jumping schooling show Sunday. 

In other life news, I might be moving. I will know more in 2 1/2 weeks when I meet with people and and figure out logistics. I can't say too much but hopefully it would be a good opportunity for myself and the situation would be something fitting for my four creatures.