2013 Memories

2013 Memories

Thursday, June 8, 2017

The Reason I Own 3 Horses

One would think that by having 3 horses that I slave over that in any given circumstance I would have at least one to ride, right? Wrong... I am currently that person that has 3 horses and they are all broken 😩 Our vet showed up at the barn on Monday while I was there so I snagged them and have them check out Bentleys popped splints. My paranoia level for horse injuries is at an all time high and there is currently another horse in our barn with a fractured splint bone. So we radiographed. There didn't appear to be a fracture on either but because it was still early on he said it could be hiding. So all week I have been getting up early and doing two a days at the barn to deal with my broken ponies. 
Do they care about my declining mental state? No...!

I have been really good about icing, surpassing (thank god it's back on the market!), buting, and wrapping him twice a day. So fingers crossed it has done the job. The bumps seem smaller and in fact the smaller one is almost all the way gone. I get to call the vet tomorrow and evaluate if we can go back to work. Fingers crossed we get the green light! We are supposed to have a dressage lesson next Sunday and our first recognized event the last weekend of the month. More importantly though we are on day 4 of stall rest (with no hand walking allowed) and the hamsters are beginning to come off their wheels! This is a different situation also because he has been sound the whole time. So it's not as cut and dry about when to return to work, etc.
 
He wants to do more of this!!

Not to mention the fact that I had to send in our entry for Rebecca Farms with my currently potentially broken horse because if I didn't send it in on opening day my chances of getting in are slim. Here's to hoping for returning back to work so we can get a BN recognized under our belts before we head to Montana to go novice! 

 
The free loader enjoying his new pasture digs for the summer. Already found a friend!

 

Sunday, June 4, 2017

When the tables turn

Anyone who events knows that most eventer ideas about dressage fall somewhere along the line of  "we just need to survive dressage so we can go xc". I consider myself a dressage person that loves to event and take pride in my Wonder Pony leading events from start to finish. This weekend was our one day event and I got a little taste of the feeling of just wanting to survive dressage so I could go run and jump!

Hand walking Bentley around the dressage arenas the night before I was basically walking along with him standing on his hind legs. Not a promising start! Thankfully he is more manageable under saddle and tried no acrobatics come Saturday morning. Unfortunately he was basically a bug ball of tension ready to burst. I spent the test containing him and praying for it to be over! Thankfully it was BN test A which is the saddest dressage test next to riding an intro test so it was basically over before it started.
 
He did rock this manly sleezy over night though

I was disappointed after dressage but realize that it was his first one day and his first time riding a dressage test in an open field. Plus it helps when you get to jump next. He lived up to his reputation and jumped around stadium great. He was green to some of the combinations and I got him in bad to one fence, where he hung a back leg and pulled a rail, but overall he was rideable and couldn't have cared less about any of the full under the jumps.


 
Bentley not wanting to be very photogenic after dressage day 1 but still looking mighty handsome

By XC he was a little tired which in turn made him even stronger. But that boy had zero stop in him and he attacked every single fence, sometimes a little too much! He was having a blast! I have no worries about taking him to his first recognized event at the end of the month. He eats jumps for breakfast! Now we are off to work on opening up his gallop and bringing it back. He gets quite strong and doesn't allow me to rebalance him for the jumps very easily which will definitely need to change as we move up. I felt like I needed an oxygen mask after our 4 minutes BN course 😂 He ended up finishing in 2nd place! I guess I can buy that getting a dressage score of a 37 doesn't take you out of it now!
 

Unfortunately when I went to go ice and wrap him later that afternoon he had what look like two splints pop 😩. He was sound, happy, and didn't palpate sore to them at all but it still made me nervous. So this morning I came with the intention to show but not sure what would happen. They appeared smaller this morning and he was still sound so I tacked him up and went to dressage. After our hot mess of yesterday I really wanted a re do. He came out much more relaxed, rideable, and more mentally there. With lots of room for improvement the baby horse still scored a 32! I was super pleased with him and although that is not where I want to be in the long run I am very proud he stepped up and improved that much in one weekend. 
 

I decided to save him for another day, where I wouldn't worry about breaking him more, and withdrew after dressage. It was an unfortunate ending to an otherwise very successful weekend but his health and future are far more important then a little one day event. Plus, we all agreed he didn't really need to jump again today after seeing how super he jumped yesterday.

 
 

His entry is in for his first recognized show in 3 weeks and his entry for Rebecca Farms goes in on Tuesday! So excited for this boys future. He really is a special one!

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Round 2: XC

For last weeks lesson our barns XC field had just been cut and a few jumps had been put out. When trainer asked if I wanted to do stadium or XC it was a no brainer! So out to the fields we went!

 

He started out pretty amped up out there but as we warmed up and started jumping he found his groove. We started small with some intro logs that he just ate right up. We then moved on to the intro roll top and coop to some angled logs. He had no issue with any of it!




He was feeling very confident and bold so we upped the expectations a little and popped him over the BN roll top. This was his first attempt!



Next up was introducing something new... banks. I had taken up up/down the bank once in hand a few days before and he didn't have any issues. He did it great a few times before we approached it again and I softened my hands to much and he basically picked up all legs 1/2 of what he needed to and about face planted it. After that he was overly enthusiastic about picking his hooves up and was clearing it by about 2 feet. Thankfully it never backed him off of the bank and he was always willing to go!



We talked about tackling the ditch but we both agreed to wait for another day. It was at the end of our ride, he was tired, and we really want his next experience to be a positive one. So instead we agreed that I would bring him out in hand later in the week just to solidify that he didn't care about it any more. As a side note: we did go out later in the week and he went calmly over both the BN and N ditches very well. Now on to riding them!

Instead we finished by jumping the BN barn. Once again he didn't bat an eye and jumped right over. He is so much fun!



I'm very much looking forward to getting him back out there in my next lesson this week. Hopefully we have just as much success! Trainer and I talked about a potential big step up for him end of  July (at a certain amazingly awesome show 😃 ) and if all continues to go this well it just may happen! But for now... we are focusing on surviving the one days and horse trials in June at BN!

Monday, May 15, 2017

H/J Show

 

This past weekend there was a H/J schooling show at our barn that Bentley got to participate in. I kind of thought about not doing because that would mean I could sleep in on a Saturday for the first time since I can remember. But we had an amazing jump lesson on Thursday and our trainer thought we should do it. So we did. Not only did we do it but Bentley absolutely killed it. The course wasn't the best and had some sketchy turns/approaches and he never questioned me once. He is feeling so confident and willing! Not only that but he genuinely feels like he loves it. 

 

This is what two double clear rounds gets you... two red ribbons!

We did the 2' - 2'3" class first and because it went so well went ahead and did the 2'3" - 2'6". We haven't ever jumped a course of 2'6" jumps but I know that height isn't a problems it's the in between fences. There were green moments for sure but overall if you showed me his video I would never have guessed that 5 months ago he was still racing!

 




Very, very proud of my little man! As a follow up... we also conquered the ditch in hand! Will be testing it in the saddle next week once course officially opens. But after he got over one he went over all of them with no issues. There is hope!

 

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Mystery Lameness

Since his appointment in April Mystic has just been hanging out. He wasn't on stall rest but was on limited activity. So he went into the pasture everyday but was not worked at all. Apparently that was enough to make whatever was bugging him at the April appt much better because when he went in for the lameness course at OSU the only way they could get him to show any lameness was ina  circle on hard ground. Where was he lame? On 3 of his 4 legs he was graded a 1/5 lameness. They threw the lameness locator on him (super cool tool!!) and it agreed with the students findings. When they flexed him he tested positive on his left hind and right front but when they took radiographs they were surprisingly very clean for his breed, age, and work load. Like they wouldn't even recommend maintenance hock injections yet! For a turning 10 year old heavy breed doing 3rd level and having jumped in the past I thought that was pretty remarkable. He does have a chip and a lesion on his right hock but they couldn't get him to test positive to flexions so they don't think it is bothering him at this point. 

Because he wasn't lame enough for them they couldn't block him to isolate the area/s causing issues. They did however block his side bone on the right (because it is massive) and said they do not believe it is fractured or causing him any pain. One piece of good news!! So basically we are down to soft tissue injury. Because they couldn't isolate an area they don't even know where to begin with ultra sounding anything. They basically did a full set of radiographs of him. Hoof/fetlock/Pastern on front and hind, knees, hocks and all angles of each. And nothing pointed to what was causing his lameness. So, because he tested positive to the hoof testers and his soles are thin we are starting with putting a front set of shoes on him with rim pads. I'm not convinced it is going to solve our problems as he has never needed shoes in his life. I think it will help given his sensitive soles right now but I do not think it is all that is going on.

So the plan is to put shoes/pads on (happening on Thursday), put him back to work, and see what comes up. They also suggested him being on Adequan which he already has gotten this year so we will just be sure to stay on top of it every 6 months. Potentially also adding in Ledgend. If he comes up more lame when in work he will go back in to get blocked and most likely unltrasounded. Low on the list is potentially getting a bone scan down the road but that is only if all the other plans don't pan out. 

So we don't really have answers but we have a plan in place. No fractured side bone which gives me hope! Now it's just going to be a hurry up and wait game where everyday I am over analyzing his soundness. Let the games begin! Fingers crossed for maybe salvaging the second half of show season?! His lesson kids miss riding him! But not more then I do 😊
 

Monday, May 8, 2017

(Backup) First big adventure

Rolex was incredible just as everyone else has stated. We lucked out on the weather and talk about a seriously inspiring week! It fueled my fire to come back and get on my boy! Here are some fun pictures:
 
    

Bentley unfortunately had an unplanned vet visit the day that we were flying to Kentucky. Yet another round of cellulitis. Will this ever end?! So instead of training rides he had the week off on stall rest. Thankfully he bounced back quick and was ready to go when I got back. 
 

Yesterday we had a dressage show. We did training test 1 and 2. I was extremely happy with how he handled everything and that our second test was even better then our first. I'm sad that our scores didn't really reflect that but the judge was very consistently low for everyone. We finished with a 61.?% and a 64.6% to win his training level test 2 in some solid competition! Best of all he felt very rideable like he knew the job at hand. All of the low marks were just due to lack of knowledge on his part (stretchy anything!).
 






 
Today we hauled out to another barn to go XC schooling for the first time ever. Not only his first time going XC but his first time being ridden in an open field. He was a great traveler and only got jacked up once the other horses started galloping around. I put him to work and he quickly settled into it and joined in on the jumping/galloping fun. He is jumping better and better with each lesson and really started to figure out the game today. We just did basic logs, coops, and tables but he was game and fun! Very strong, but fun! Another bonus is that he was great into the water also. He was once again exceeding my expectations ten fold when he decided at the end he was done. We tried introducing him to a little baby ditch and the gerbils all fell of their wheels at one moment. The time he made it over was when our trainer gave us a lead over. He ended up launching straight up into the air, taking her out, and landing on top of her. Thankfully she is okay (definitely sore!). It was pretty traumatizing to be that helpless on top of your horse while someone is under neath them 😳 Once my barns XC course opens I foresee many days of ditch practice. I'm sure once he figures it out he will be fine. He is just so dramatic sometimes!
 

Next weekend is a h/j show at the barn then two weeks till the one day events. Lots of work to do but he is going to be a blast to event once he figures it all out!!

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Update

 
We will get the bad news out of the way first... 3 surgeons looked at Mystics radiographs and all agreed that his side bone is fractured. They also agreed that with the nerve blocks that were done he should have blocked significantly better, if not sound, which was not the case. So the potential of there being a bigger problem is still at play. The vet school is having a lameness course and they asked to use him. Thankfully that means I will get all the diagnostics done at no charge to me. So he will get re nerve blocked (and they will go up higher) and radiographed again. Also any other diagnostics that may need to be done if something else is found. So everything is up in the air until he goes in the first week of May. Either way, we know there is a long term rehab involved with the fractured side bone (and potential for surgery still).

Bentleys update is much better though! Here is a comparison picture of him when I got him versus last week. I wish his ears were up and he wasn't standing quite as funny but keeping him still with his head off the ground was quite the chore!
 

I think he is finally starting to look better to me. It's hard when you see them every day to see the long term progress but the ribs are starting to be covered! My vet even commented on how much better he looks and compared him to a swim suit model. His jumping is coming along and I can start to feel how his jump is going to be as he continues to develop. I think as the fences get bigger he will just keep getting better and better. 
 

He has a busy next couple of weeks. While I am gone in Kentucky (less then a week!!) he is going to get a week of training rides. This will be the first time anyone else has ridden him. The weekend after I get back he is doing the dressage show in barn on Saturday and then going back up to DevonWood on Sunday to do the derby again. Then the following weekend we are doing the jumper show that is also held at our barn. Can't wait for all the fun to begin! And very thankful that I have him to keep me going through this summer without the Wonder Pony 😃