On Sunday Anna determined that even on a full dose of Danilon, Quadi was showing lameness.
He turned himself inside out in the stable a few days ago, to the point where he chested the bolted door open. Got himself in such a lather despite being ok (if not happy) in the previous days. Preventatively I had upped his dose of omeprazole but this didn't stop him having a very runny backside. The box walking and the tapdancing at his door were doing him no favours so he went out with the other two in a small paddock. Room enough for everyone but just as well our guys get on without a cross word or lifted leg.
As it happens he's been pretty good with that and there's been no evidence of idiocy in the paddock, too much grass to think about!
His last painkiller was one a day for yesterday and at lunchtime today I assessed him as best I could. In this instance there was no-one to help but the vet wanted me to call him after we ran out of painkillers.
Because it was on the lunge I noticed the lameness, and because it was the easiest place to start, I gave him a spin on a flat area of the paddock. The surface was running a little damp with recent rain and mist, but good for our purposes. He was sound if unhappy at having to trot without warming up.
I took him out onto the driveway for a trot up. Not easy running backwards in yer clumpy thermal wellies! I could see no head-nodding, I tried really hard to watch his stride length and I gave him a basic flexion test. Obviously I'm not a vet and I didn't pull him hard in case I made him sore, plus I was on my own, but I figured holding his leg up passively for one minute would certainly highlight a joint issue. Still nothing as far as I can see.
After discussion with the vet, we've decided to have him continue without painkiller for the weekend until I've had help with trot-ups. If he's sound, perhaps it was just a silly strain. I may push for scans and x-rays anyway, my gut feeling is one of negligence if I don't. Very hard to know what to do!
I can work him but he said only very lightly, and if the lameness shows even vaguely then we're onto investigative work with the portable machines. I may take him for a walk down the road under saddle (straight lines, good terrain) and see how he feels. But maybe not, there's no urgency to ride or work him.
So, in short, I wouldn't want to put a wager on him being 100%. Mostly because I'm leery of being too confident in my own judgement, I just need a fresh and unbiased pair of eyes this weekend.