Monthly Archives: May 2015

Packing On The Pounds!


Chance is now on 6 quarts of Nutria Senior Feed with 2 quarts of Hay Stretcher and 2 cups of Rice Bran TWICE A DAY! That is 12 quarts of feed a day and 4 quarts of Hay Stretcher plus his alfalfa mixed hay!

At night he also receives his SmartPak (Senior Flex, Immune Boost, and Vitamin C) & DuraLactin (for inflammation and swelling).  He is no longer skin and bones or on daily pain medication!

Lucky Lucky?

Well, I hate to say it but Lucky had to get castrated….after trying to keep him from relentlessly mounting the miniature pony, there was no other choice.

He he was a trooper through the entire ordeal. He was given the standard doses of antastesia medication and was walked outside to a soft and grassy area to lay down. He wobbled a bit and was guided down gently to avoid additional stress or injury.

Once he was laying down his face was covered and one leg was tied with a rope and someone held the rope to ensure the vet was not kicked. The castration procedure began and lasted about 20-30 minutes from start to clean up.

Once the procedure was completed the vet continued to try to keep Luck laying down and calm to aid in minimizing the bleeding. However, Lucky was ready to get up even before he was completely awake. He was hand walked until stable enough to walk around alone. The vet explained that it was better for him to walk around instead of standing in a stall.

I brought him in once to clean him up a bit more and add SWAT around the wound to keep the flies off.  This was only accomplished by me leading him in while begging for him to “just come inside for a minute” and promising he “could go right back outside.” While I was pathetically negotiating with Lucky, Chance came up behind him and kept nudging him lightly in his hind end! It was the cutest thing I have ever seen! After I got him inside and cleaned him up and applied more ointment I let him back out.

However, later around dinner time, when I tried to get Lucky to come inside again to eat he decided to get sneaky.  He decided to go into stealth mode and “hide” from me so that I wouldn’t try and bring him in. (Pictured below). He actually went into a random paddock that he isn’t familiar with and stood there quietly and barely moving. Just watching me out of the corner of his eye while I called for him.

Luck stayed out until about 10pm and when he came inside for the night SWAT was reapplied and a dose of Bute was given. He refused to eat his dinner but gladly inhaled carrots and drank some water.

This morning his feed was all gone and there was no apparent swelling or increased discharge thankfully. According to the vet it takes about a month for the testosterone to be depleted after castration. I’ll be interested to see the changes, if any, that occur as a result.

Luck following Chance in their new matching halters


Throughout this journey I have come to realize (more so than I ever have before), and appreciate, that things that are worth accomplishing do not come easy. Whether it’s graduating from school, building a life the you want, holding a relationship together, getting an animal healthy again, or whatever else one holds dear.

The things we truly want, what we are willing to fight for, in the end we appreciate them more. We know how hard we fought to get to the places we are, we remember every single day- the sweat, the tears, the long nights, the headaches and heartaches, the persistence and patience it took, and that we never gave up.

Personally speaking, my life has always required extra work; it has never been smooth sailing. Whether it was passing highschool, getting accepted into college, my masters program, or even my PhD program…I was constantly hit with road blocks…learning disabilities, ADHD, good and not so good teachers, family crises, anxiety disorders, deaths of loved ones…you name it, I had to climb over it.

This most recent obstacle with Chance’s health has been no different….the fight to make something happen, feeling alone in your quest, trying to focus on the end goal even when others are telling you to give up, spending countless hours planning, researching, and grasping at any and every lead you’re able to find that will help you to get to the finish line.

Today I’m grateful that I fought for my old guy and that a year later he is happy, healthy, and enjoying a life he deserves with me right by his side.

When It Rains, It Pours

The other day I noticed that Chance’s back fetlock a were slightly swollen and he was visably stiffer then normal. I also noticed a golf ball sized lump in the middle of the his chest. It wasn’t super sensitive and looked like a tick bite reaction, except there was no tick and a tiny barely noticeable scratch. 

I put a Poltace wrap on his back right leg (which was the leg he had previously injured and received stem cell injections in) and gave him some pain medication. I also started him on Baytril and Ulcerguard as a precaution as previously advised by the vet.

I made an appointment with our vet to come ultrasound his hind right leg and she was to come out in the next two days. I was incredibly anxious to say the least.  

The vet arrived and explained that the lump on Chance’s chest was a hematoma from another horse biting him or from him hitting something. Nothing to worry about, it was just the pooling of fluids to lowest point. 

I then trotted Chance back and forth as the vet watched. After an exam and the ultrasound, the vet explained that she felt that the swelling was due to Chance’s hip pain and the Pastern dermatitis that we have been treating and we’re finally coming off. 

The ultrasound showed a tiny DDFT lesion (vet referred to as a defect that shouldn’t be causing any symptoms). The ultrasound also showed scar tissue that we need to get “stretched out” so that he can gain increased flexibility and work as a protection for Chance’s tendons and legiments. The ultrasound also showed some fluid build up as well. Chance’s Fetlock looks good as do his legiments.

The vet wants Chance to stay on Baytril and Ulcerguard until complete. She also has added a 5 day course of Benadryl and steroids to help with edema of back hind legs. 

She also provided me with a shampoo that is milder to clean off scratches and apply swat after cleaning. The vet explained that she didn’t understand why people picked the scabs from the scratches because they’re super deep and pulling the scabs off does more harm than good.  

The Vet commented on Chance’s weight gain and how great his skin looks gooded. She wants me to continue working on the scratches and continue doing physical therapy on hills to build up his hind end then get farrier out for back feet. 

All and all I feel good about how Chance is doing and feeling. He is still full of energy, eats like he hasn’t eaten in a week, and his eyes and coat are bright. He is not on daily pain medication and is only given it when he is not feeling great. Aside from a few hiccups, Chance is loving life and being spoiled!


One of the Scariest Moments 

What do you do when your horse suddenly chokes?!
Well, unfortunately, I found out the hard way. Thankfully I had my emergency medical barn book and was able to quickly reference what to do.

Here are the steps an owner can take until the vet comes (if necessary):

1. Help keep your horse calm

2. Give injection Intramuscularly (IM) or Intravenously (IV) or orally (liquid only) of Banamine (10cc) to help relax the muscles

3. Rub the horse’s throat until the substance the horse is choking on comes out of the nose and mouth

4. Remove all other feed and hay

5. Call vet to ask if the horse should be put on antibiotics in case they have aspirated (the substance getting into their lungs)

Here is a link to more information on what you and/or your vet can do to help your horse- When a horse chokes

Beauty Shop

4:30am is clipping time! Chance has never been clipped but due to his unrelenting shedding and the allergic skin response, there’s no better time to try.

Chance was awesome! He stood quietly as I clipped him for over an hour and I decided to stop when I noticed he had fallen asleep. I guess not everyone is a night owl.