Dolly's soundness diary.

Cortrasna

Grumpy old nag
Aug 5, 2009
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Decided to keep a little track of how things are going with pinning down exactly where the problem is with Dolly.....I am hoping within a week or two it will no longer be an issue and any intermittent lameness is completely resolved. If it does turn out to be something that is more long term, hopefully this will help jog my memory with what exactly is happening when.

So today was Day 1 of giving her a good hack out on the Bute trial. Took her on one of the more demanding up hill and down dale rides with lots of trotting as ordered by Tom. She was very forward going, didn't appear to have any problems in trot at all. Which I was delighted about, until I reminded myself well of course she will be, as possibly this is just indicating inflammation somewhere that is helped by the bute.:frown:

Lovely and forward going, actually more so than usual. Didn't need much leg on at all on the way out, even had to remind her to stay in trot rather than leap into canter a good few times...she really wanted to canter up those big old hills!:biggrin:

I took the cameraman with me, in case she was lame and we could catch it on film for the vet. No sign of dragging that front hoof through either in walk or trot...hmmmmm could Tom be right about the fetlock.....or the muscle higher up? Fetlock stone cold today, perhaps he was right and there was some heat there yesterday?:unsure:

Day 2 tomorrow, but forecast is very windy, not sure I am up to that if she is feeling too good with herself!:redcarded: We shall see. I am also going to chase up her new saddle tomorrow, Tom doesn't think the old one I am using is a problem on her, but I would like to get her in the new one ASAP 'just in case' that it is somehow connected to what is going on.

 

Trewsers

Well-Known Member
Oct 13, 2004
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Looked like you had a nice day weather wise - and she looked good too. Will be following this with interest. Hope the next few days worth of weather doesn't spoil your riding.
 

TBminx

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Mar 22, 2013
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I hope you get to the bottom of it soon and she keeps doing well and feeling as comfy as today. She does look lovely :inlove:
 

Cortrasna

Grumpy old nag
Aug 5, 2009
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Well we didn't go out yesterday, as predicted it was really just dreadful weather. Far too windy for we two old girls to risk it. I did make a point of feeling that fetlock, felt nice and cool as did the other one for comparison.

Day 3 of the bute today and knew I had to take her out again to see how she was doing but not a happy day, so really had to force myself. Both front fetlocks felt slightly warm when I brought her in - Not sure if that is weather related or what, no really throbbing heat though.

It was already getting dusky so had to get on with it, I dread being caught out on the lanes when it is dark. I fancy she had a very slight little lumpy pace or two on our first trot, after that she went beautifully though. Same on the last trot home, just one or two iffy paces, barely enough to notice. In fact I suspect, if I wasn't taking such careful note of every damn footfall I wouldn't have noticed either little blip.:unsure: Probably nothing more than a bit of older horse slight stiffness and a bit of uneven ground. She hasn't slipped once on her back end since the bute....I wonder if that is coincidence or if she is just moving a little easier on an anti inflammatory?

Fetlocks stone cold by the time we were home. I am not sure how much bute would still be in her system after the third day. We will see how she goes tomorrow.

Glad I went out though, having a good old trot without anything happening to worry me was just what I needed. A ride out on Dolly never fails to cheer me up.:smile:
 

Cortrasna

Grumpy old nag
Aug 5, 2009
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Managed to get out today, she was very on her toes, in season and very windy here - not a great combination.:redcarded: Seemed a bit off in the first trot but think perhaps that was more to do with me reminding her to contain her enthusiasm and arguing over what sort of speed we should be doing, after that seemed just grand.:giggle: Even had a rather fast and unexpected short burst of canter that she sort of slid into, but I think that was just the very deep and muddy track we were on, nothing more sinister (I hope!).

Fetlocks cool before and after ride. I am guessing the bute must be pretty much out of her system by now. Very wet and windy for the next two days, so hopefully might get out again Thursday and will assume then that she will be virtually bute free and will see how she copes then.
 

TBminx

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Mar 22, 2013
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Its hard after what you've been through not to scrutinize every bloody footfall which me and my OH do constantly and its our first reaction at times when no one else even blinks an eyelid we are like "is he/she sore, standing funny, tripping, short striding etc etc" :banghead:

Sounds like the bute would be pretty much gone from her system but as you say you will know more for sure by thursday :smile:

She sounds happy enough to be on her toes and cantering :wink:
 

Cortrasna

Grumpy old nag
Aug 5, 2009
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Well I rode her yesterday for probably the last time this side of Christmas, looking at the forecast. I am certain that there isn't any 'bute in her system now.

Before I had to abandon the ride and call for my rescue party, we had a few short trots. She was sound on two of them, and very slightly bobbing on one, not a long enough trot for me to have time to work out exactly where the problem was coming from unfortunately.:unsure:

So have spoken to Tom (the vet) this morning and we have decided both her and I shall have a short 'health' break over Christmas and the New Year and hopefully by then her new saddle will have arrived too. I am still not entirely certain that this might be a saddle issue rather than a mechanical lameness thing, still no heat in any legs at anytime, so that is good.

After I have ridden her a couple of times in her new saddle we will re-assess and if no improvement then he will come out again and see where we go from here.

Fingers crossed that January isn't too harsh and cold, I really have to stop doing anything energetic outside on the very cold days. It was foolish and selfish of me to not take into account how OH and the boys worry about the things I do that I am not really supposed to. I was chastised soundly for letting myself get into such a pickle and taking the wrong flipping inhaler out with me - I did point out that at least I DID take one, even if it was the useless one!:giggle:

So...no further forward but at least nothing serious or worse seems to be showing up with time. We shall behave ourselves for the next couple of weeks and then see if we can venture out for a bit more diagnostic ridng.:smile:
 

Cortrasna

Grumpy old nag
Aug 5, 2009
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Well still no riding for Dolly and I but had the farrier out today to re shoe her. Again, he could find nothing to account for the dumping off the side of one front shoe, but she was notably not a happy girleen when he lifted that leg to re shoe it. Ears back and quite tense...very unusual and out of character.

He also thinks there might be something going on higher up shoulder/neck whatever. But she has now had a good time off work and if it was purely muscular I would have thought it would be more settled and comfortable by now? However, there were huge shoe skid marks and long trails of poo from out of the field shelter the day the roof flew of the barn, so quite possible any healing was set back when this happened? Farrier suggests we give her a week or two in her new saddle (Friday hopefully) and if she is still intermittently 'off' get Tom back and see where we go from here.

I have to say with all the high wind and the barn roof drama, we have a huge amount of flying around the field, spooking and generally practicing their barrel racing skills almost on a daily bssis. Not really conducive to resting any possible muscle damage is it?:unsure: The hunt were out today, well within hearing distance, the only place to tie her is to the ruined barn wall......such fun! She now HATES being anywhere near that building, Friday trying her saddle and riding her should be interesting?:unsure: She does look one hundred per cent sound when she is doing her tricks in the field, so perhaps, no rider, no saddle? Softer ground? Who knows?
 

ladywiththebaby

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Mar 6, 2007
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Ah Mrs C. So sorry that things aren't much clearer for you. There is nothing worse than not knowing what is going on, IMO. Really feel for you and Dolly.

Was going to suggest getting a physio out, but thinking about it I think you have said before that they are thin on the ground where you are? I have a really recommended horse massage DVD that I bought when everyone on Pheonix Horse was going mad for it, with the intention of learning to do Tango myself, but never got round to it. You are welcome to borrow that??
 

diplomaticandtactful

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Apr 25, 2003
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hope you get to the bottom of it, Bud seems to be coming out in sympathy with his soulmate Dolly, as he looked at bit pottery this morning....
 

Cortrasna

Grumpy old nag
Aug 5, 2009
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LWTB that is a very kind offer.....if we can't get any further forward in the next couple of weeks I may well take you up on that offer. Although vet has said he is happy for her to have physio but he wants to pin down exactly where the problem is first, if it hasn't resolved itself.

Tina it definitely isnt weather related, we had a glorious and mild late summer early autumn and she was flying until this became a bit of an issue - so not related to cold or very wet weather.
 

Trewsers

Well-Known Member
Oct 13, 2004
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Nothing useful to add, just that with the rotten windy weather and all that you've had going on at your place, it probably isn't conducive to resting anything that might have just been slightly "off" - and maybe just see how she goes when this rubbish weather patch goes. I di suspect that with my Storm and her ongoing stiffness it is almost certainly made worse some days after the bad weather patch and the amount of sillyness that can occur in the field - guess what I'm trying to say is something that isn't that big a problem can be emphasised more.
 

Cortrasna

Grumpy old nag
Aug 5, 2009
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Ireland
Time for an update. I got her new saddle last week and I am very pleased with it. She was totally sound when I tried it whilst the saddler was here and seemed quite happy in it. Saddler coming back April time'ish when we have had a chance to get some regular riding in.

I took her out last week on the one and only dry day. Very stupidly I also put her in her new Myler bit for the first time, Lovely ride until I actually took up contact and asked for anything more than a loose rein walk. An utter disaster, lunging, pinging and tap dancing and gurning and rein snatching. Twice I had to get off to try to refit the wretched bit....and to my amazement I could get back on both times without a mounting block. Not a pretty sight but I did manage none the less!:redface:Firstly I am now 2 stone lighter and secondly the saddle is the first one I have ever had on her that doesn't slip!

So today off I went again, this time in her regular bit that I know she is happy in, very little brakes but at least she is happy!:redcarded: The saddle was brilliant, I really like it, keeps me nice and deep and my legs are much more stable with the lovely big knee blocks.

And best of all, she was absolutely sound even when she insisted on thundering along at a rare old pace, every footfall was lovely and fluid and even....well by Dolly standards anyway, dressage diva she aint!:wink:

So - hopefully if I can get her out again tomorrow she will still be sound, I really do need a good few days riding to fairly judge if the soundness blip has now gone.

Feeling very happy and positive about it all.....apart from now searching for yet another bit, but ho hum - at least she seems to be sound now, that is more important to me.:smile:
 
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