Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Not Quite Yet

My Vet Sees Chance

Dr. Klayman came today to see Chance after his shoeing.

Good news, bad news, again.

The good news is that the shoes definitely helped. Chance was not limping during lunging. But the bad news is that he also is not striding out as he should. As he worked a bit, he did get better, but just is a bit on the "short" side with his gait.

So we are not yet 100% happy.

We did draw blood for a Lymes test, and the results could be back by the end of the week.  Meantime, things are on hold.

If the test comes back positive, of course, then we will treat him for that. If not, I will try a course of bute and some work. The idea is to get his muscles working properly again.

This does make some sense to me now, especially after my own layup for my broken hip bone.  Muscles in my body that have not worked properly for just a couple months need to be reconditioned to work at full capacity.

Chance has been off and on lame since late fall. As I noted, all winter, due to the frozen ground and miserable snow and ice, he really hasn't used his body properly for quite a while. Then, once the ground improved he developed the more obvious lameness issues we've been dealing with.

Like me, I would suspect he really does need a course of physical therapy to regain his former "way of going."  I guess as a plan of action it's about as good as any at this point.

Once again, it's a waiting game.

I'm pretty sure I am just about ready to ride again anyhow. Over the last few days the bulk of the pain is going from my hip. I'm not sure why, although I have been doing some serious barn work over the last couple days. I finally cleaned out the run in shed on Chance's side of the barn. All the manure had stacked up in there over the winter months and frozen solid. When it thawed, it was laid up with my hip, so it was neglected. Sunday and Monday, the weather was gorgeous here so I started cleaning. Eventually, I used the tractor to make shorter work of the job, but it still required a lot of hand forking to get the nooks and crannies clean.

At this rate, I'll be fit all over.  Who needs physical therapy when you have a barn and horses?

Monday, June 16, 2014

The Waiting Game Continues

On the Chance Front This Time

Scott came out to shoe on Saturday.  He had consulted with Dr. Klayman on Chance's lameness and was well prepared for the shoeing job.

This was Chance's first shoeing with me....not sure if he was ever shod before. Scott does hot shoeing, so that can be a bit scary, but after an initial flinch, Chance was fine.

Not quite so for the nailing. He was clearly uncomfortable as the hammer rapped on his feet. At one point, I thought he was going to go down.  He was only being shod in the front, but he dropped down on his hind end. It was really a disturbing reaction.

But he tried hard to be a good boy. The most upsetting moment was when Scott tried to rasp his right hind foot. He finally had to give up because Chance simply could not stand comfortably long enough for him to do it.

Now why?

The change in his front feet with the shoeing and pads was quite a bit. The left hind leg is the one that's had the chronic off and on lameness. Could be.

Or is it something else?

Scott mentioned Lymes disease and I had wondered about that before. As I recall, Dr. Klayman did not think it was likely, but at this point, I think it's worth having a blood test done.

I lunged him for about a minute today and he really didn't even want to trot. But when he did he was pretty short strided. Again, there is a substantial change in both his angle and the fact that he has shoes on, so it could take a while for things to settle down. At the moment I am still worried, but again, I have to be patient.

At least on these hotter days, the Boys don't seem to want to run around too much. Just hanging out in the stalls with the fans seems to suit.

Friday, June 06, 2014

Still Waiting

On Several Fronts

My vet called yesterday to tell me he had not heard from my farrier regarding Chance. I called my farrier who said he hadn't received any calls or emails from my vet.

Something is strange here. So last night, I sent an email to my vet, farrier, and me with all the phone numbers and email addresses so there should be no more confusion.

No rush on my account as, despite the fact that the doctor cleared me for riding, I can't quite figure out how to do it, so if Chance is still not sound, it's OK for now.

Except that he is uncomfortable. He does seem pretty happy and I did see him frolicking about out there a few times, so he can't be too miserable. But any limp is a limp and I don't want to work an unsound horse unless I'm sure it's not aggravating something.

Speaking of lame, that's me. And working while I'm lame is actually an important part of my recovery. According to my doctor, and much of what I've read about this particular bone break--hip neck fracture--can take months, not just weeks. From what I've read on some of the forums out there, many people with a similar injury are not as far along in getting better as I am.

So that's the good news. The bad news is that while I am certain I could ride if I wanted to, what I can't quite master is how to get on and off the horse. Once again, no matter which side I mount from, there will be extra strain and demands on my left leg. Either I have to stand on it and turn with my weight on it, or I have to swing it over the horse if I get on from the off side.

Until I am more limber, stronger in that muscle, and pretty pain free, riding will have to wait.

But I can swim.  And if the temperatures finally decide to settle into the warmer levels, I'll be doing a lot of that. As noted, I've been in the indoor pool a few times when I've substituted at the Academy, and so far twice in the very cool--make that cold--outdoor pool on the weekends.

Still, the day after the swim, I am a bit more sore than usual. I'm hoping it's a positive reaction to exercise with my muscles breaking down a bit with the exercise only to build up stronger.

Meantime, on the horse front and the "body front," it's a waiting game.