Ain't nuthin like ridin' a fine horse in a new country - Augustus McCrae – Lonesome Dove

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Bite the Bullet~

Farah's check-up
The title of this post is apt in more ways than one.  A old idiom that describes how I felt about today's visit to Pilchuck Veterinary Clinic.  It was time for Farah's follow-up visit after her routine float in August.  During that procedure two small pockets of periodontal disease were found between the back molars on each side of her jaw.   Now - it was time to see how they had responded over the last few months.  Both were still there, but smaller than before.  Dr. Holohan did a slight adjustment to see if she could help those teeth to move into a smoother, straighter alignment - therefore reducing the size of the pockets.  I'm back to squirting the peppermint solution into Farah's mouth twice a week over the next month to help with the healing.

 In February, we'll be going in again.  Dr. Holohan said that over the next 12 to 18 months she hopes to solve the problem & prevent what could have resulted in the loss of teeth later on.  I like that plan - I'd rather stay on top of it now, than have it crop up later & have Farah endure a more complicated procedure to remove rotten teeth.  I think if Farah had a bullet placed between her teeth today - she would have certainly bit down on it!  :-)
Looking for a good old movie?
Since we were going there anyway - I scheduled a saddle fit & lameness evaluation with Dr. James Bryant - an all-round great guy, who's experienced with endurance & performance horses.  There are times when it's worth spending the money to get that expert outside opinion.  (No, ride vets are Not there to give you one-on-one evaluations of your horse!)

Farah had started getting "waves" on her withers & I'd had the issue with loin scuffing off & on since I'd had her.  I'd bought the new saddle pad with pockets for shims & had shimmed up the front of the saddle, which alleviated the scuffing.  My worry was that changing the pitch of the saddle might create other issues.  When Farah walked in with her tack on, I quickly explained to Dr. Bryant what was going on.  He looked at her & said;  "What? Looks great to me!"  Then I removed the saddle & he just smiled.  He didn't think it was the saddle, but more Farah's conformation that contributed to the saddle sitting too low.  He further explained that Saddlebreds can be difficult to fit because of the conformation that gives their shoulder the room to make those big moves that are so exciting to see in the show ring.   Postscript - (My fix - which was adding shoulder shims - only worked for a while.)

Next, flex test on all four legs...  Sound!  Yes!  Lucky for me & lucky for Farah too, though she travels close in the rear, her leg is straight from the hock to the ground - so there is no extra stress on her hocks.  I asked about continuing Adequan & received a resounding "YES"!  Dr. Bryant recommended it on a yearly basis for longevity, following the manufactures recommendation for dosage.

I drove home feeling relieved & oh so happy that we've traveled over 1,200 year-to-date miles & I'm still riding a sound, healthy & happy mare!  It doesn't get any better than that! 


Always Welcome~