Of Efforts and Horses

Pre-rain loading time, early view from the barn

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Good morning Central Oregon, after a rare rainy day. Hope that on this damp morning-after everybody feels as good as the early Robins chirping beyond my kitchen window.

Yesterday, I hauled the horses about 20 miles to our sport-horse veterinarian. We left the east side of Bend in a thin rain that got heavier approaching Tumalo, and finally, turning onto the Old Bend-Redmond Highway, became downpour. I hauled slowly on that two-lane and relatively busy roadway, and looking through the rear-view mirror felt sorry for vehicles lined behind my rig. Too bad, because with a load of horses, I’m a slow-goer.

The vet watching Rosie trot in circles saw how exercising has improved her trotting strength and footwork. In walking, however, she still tends to lift her left rear leg high, and in moving forward brings that left hoof too close and nearly in front of her right rear hoof. He performed a second full chiropractic workup, and suggested that her tendency to lift and cross that rear leg stems from an uneven pelvis, which has affected her hips. He focused on adjusting her hips and pelvis, says the conditions are old, difficult to adjust, and so, Rosie will receive a monthly chiropractic work-over. As hoped, he gave the go-ahead to hitch, and slowly re-strengthen her to the drive.

Chiropractic on Rosie

Afterwards, he watched Sunni move and assessed her leg strengths, again this time diagnosing slight hock pain, especially in her right rear. He suggested continuing to drive her, and watching for problems. Alternatively, he felt it okay to medicate and avoid potential signs of overwork pain. During the past months, I myself experienced a first-bout of arthritic knee pain and felt powerful relief from an injection. So yesterday, I opted for hock meds. The vet, on injecting her right hock, showed that it was releasing fluid, which confirmed an inflammation. Later on arriving home, Sunni happily bounced around and faux-kicked more than usual. I surmised she felt real good.

Assessing Sunni

Moving forward, I’ll continue driving Sunni 4-5 times weekly. I’ll start hitching Rosie for strengthening work in the dry lot. These horses will keep me highly focused on improving my driving-handling techniques.

I had been planning, in a few weeks, to take Sunni to Washington State, for a multi-day training event and driving competition. But now, it seems more sensible to continue working routinely with the horses, and delay competing until we’re physically stronger and more capable of meeting higher demands and pressures.

Dear Friends, hoping you enjoy horses enough to continue riding with me. Diana

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