Saturday, 5 September 2009

Pony judo

There aren't enough hours in the day! An update, 24 hours shy of when I should have posted.

Friday's vet visit went well, albeit late! I arrived at the yard to see the vet we were being referred to treating an emergency. He said he would be running an hour late but to be honest by the time we finally got started at the vet's it was two hours later, and this was Friday afternoon.

Our loading practice has paid off, he loaded without much fuss. A few attempts getting in, and I was a bit leery about the Bum Bar but once he was in he just stood and got sweeties whilst Kate did ramps and doors. Very pleased, and he travelled beautifully, we could see him through the window in the trailer! :D

X-rays were handed over to the vet for his perusal, he agreed that the changes in the bone shown on x-ray could easily be incidental, that they might not be a problem at all, more a symptom of something else and could easily be a biological reaction to something very historic.

First things first, walk and trot ups. He was about 2/10 lame in trot on the straight. Next were flexion tests, although poor Mr Quadi was terribly unhappy about a vet being anywhere near him, as patient and quiet as the vet was! So it meant having Kate lift up the leg for inspection and then handing him over to the vet for flexion! This didn't make him any more lame, so onto the lunge where he was visibly far more lame on the right rein, and even more so lunged in trot on a hard surface. So whilst he has improved there's still something causing him a problem. Quadi didn't seem to think there was any need to be at Horsepital and took me water-skiing on no less than three occassions! I just haven't the upper body strength to deal with this repeatedly but luckily he didn't get too far before I stopped him and/or we were both rescued! He always shows me up but never mind, wouldn't be my horse if he didn't!

As planned, the first course of action was to block the coffin joint and see if this made a difference. Here's where I must admit I absolved myself of responsibility at this point and thought it best not to be present for the actual needling. I had been told it can be quite traumatic (in the end it wasn't!) and knowing what Quadi would be like, I didn't want to see it go wrong. As far as horses are concerned, nervous people are best out of seeing and smelling distance!

But first of course we had to get the dear boy into the stocks, which was safer all round. We did the same advance and retreat as we used with the trailer, and some magic feed, and he was in, no problem. Then I cleared off outside! Moments passed, then minutes, and a few bangs and clatters could be heard. After many minutes I stuck my head into the barn to see what was happening, to see vet nurses, vets and Kate all stood! The twitch had yet to be applied, which was very necessary to do much else with him. In the end another very confident vet managed, and I bogged off again. After all his stuff and bluster about the twitch, Quadi stood like a rock for the actual jab! Typical, and as predicted!

This block made no difference so we waited for it to take effect over the whole joint, and still nothing at walk and trot, and even trotting on a circle on a hard surface. I was growing weary with the trotting at this point, and I wasn't the only one having to do it.

The next block was at the heel. Nada, still nodding in trot. By this point we were basically at COP for the day so the final block was for the pastern and below. Bingo! Sound in walk and trot. He was also brilliant for these blocks, we did them in the stable and Quadi didn't require intervention from anyone other than the vet. The jabs were met with a small flinch and grunt, which is a perfectly adequate response really!

Sadly this doesn't give us much more than a widened search area than we ever thought! But at least we know it's somewhere down there, halfway through the afternoon on Friday it was beginning to look like a shoulder issue. Or hoof balance, since he places the off fore oddly but we are still trying to adjust balance with every trim.

So he's booked in for Monday afternoon, and all this being well he'll spend the night at the vet's on Sunday night so that he can be seen any point the vet isn't running off for emergencies. He'll have full radiography of the suspicious areas and ultrasound of the soft tissue.

Loading him to come home felt a little stickier, since he wasn't as keen to load for treats. The truth is, we were nothing short of pummeling treats down his neck every time the vet handled him! I managed to source more magic feed to load him and he was in after some forwards and backwards. In truth, he took no longer than loading at home, it was just my fatigue meaning I wasn't handling him as well as I should have.

I'm trying not to worry about what this might be, but sufficient to say all sorts of scenarios are careering wildly in my mind...

Quadi is under house arrest as he sees it until he goes back tomorrow night. Comments have been made about the change in his attitude being out of work. Despite giving him as much attention as I can, and the fact that he's not the buzziest workaholic to be found, he does like to work and isn't happy about the layoff. And now that he's on box rest there is much face-pulling and general mardiness.

Oh, and one of the vets asked if he was a Connie or Welsh cross...! I don't mind that at all, both breed are terrific, but said vet had just gotten back from Portugal and was up to his eyes in Portuguese ponies *lol*

Fingers crossed again for another smooth loading and journey tomorrow, and I do hope he's still speaking to me at the end of all of this! And for less wrestling with him this time, I'm not sure my muscles will take it. I do feel for him, we just haven't had a minute to practice Good Behaviour for Vets!


  1. Hoping upon hope it's nothing too serious...but did manage a small laugh about the Connie/ Welsh business...American specialist over to hold clinic on new ultrasound techniques watching Safi at Rossdales - lovely mare - Connemara? (Not as bad as someone asking if she was Arab though...the mind boggles)

    I know that knowing about Safi probably isn't helping your mental state right now but If you want to talk stuff over just shout - I'm here, and I know x

  2. I'm surprisingly optimistic at the moment. Saddened not to have an answer sooner, being such an impatient bod, but trying not to worry until I have something to worry about :) Otherwise I'd go mad.

    I thought you'd like the Connie compliment, as soon as Kate told me the vet said that it raised a giggle, I instantly thought of Safi! I get much more insulted when people think he's Spanish *lol*

    Thinking about her helps actually, I know that with everything you went through I just have to take things one day and one vet trip (!) at a time. Thank you x

    But really, no worrying is allowed until all possible tests are carried out. Until then, Quadi's just a jessie with a limp!

  3. 2/10 isn't too bad - I'm hoping for a simple soft tissue injury in the pastern area that will respond to rest and fairly simple treatment. When I got my mare Maisie, she immediately incurred a rear suspensory injury - but she was much more lame than your boy and there was much swelling. Horses are very resilient and it sounds as though you have a competent vet. It's very good that you worked on the loading ahead of time - that certainly comes in handy when you need it!

  4. Thanks Kate, sadly the practice goes out the window when the horse in question knows he's going back for more prodding and hassle! What a pain that your mare went lame when you got her. Horses!