Saturday, July 17, 2010

Health Update and Lessons

My guys are quickly getting better. Toby's knee is making big improvements. Nothing like a little betadine wash to get things going in the right direction. He's not favoring it at all and it seems to be a very superficial wound that has a slight infection. It's draining, the swelling is going down and Toby is acting perfectly fine and sassy.

Ollie's tummy is now receiving Gastroguard and breaking this owners bank... but I had to do it. I've noticed an immediate change to his demeanor in the first 24 hours. He just seems more relaxed and comfortable. No more of the "I gotta move" type actions. He's acting like a normal horse. He's even put on a bunch of weight since I got home a week ago. I think he's the heaviest I've ever seen him! Which isn't too heavy at all.

So we had our lessons on Tuesday. Ollie didn't perform quite the way I had hoped. After some discussion with Betsy and my vet, we believe his back is a little out of whack and making him uncomfortable. My vet said that is very common with horses who have digestive issues. When I get back from my next business trip, I'll be sure to have the chiropractor out. But here he is for all of you to see, in action with Betsy on board:

He's so darn cute. I'm still hopeful we will conquer and I will finally get the key to keeping him healthy and comfortable.


Then there was me and Toby...


I swear I see "sassiness" in his eyes. But I think he's a BLAST to ride. He keeps me on my toes, makes me work and he adores me all at the same time.


And since I made one video, I had to do another. For those music aficionados, you'll notice the husband and wife team I picked for each video (Elvis Costello-Diana Krall). :)

You can tell we haven't been working too hard lately but I sure had fun...

Now I'm off again to the left coast to work the U.S. Senior Open. I'll be happy when this stretch of business trips is done!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

They Had Other Ideas

I had planned on blogging tomorrow AFTER I had a lesson with both my guys. They had other ideas.

Toby came down with a cut on his right front knee and it's swollen up (no heat and he's not favoring it at all). He has arthritis in that knee so maybe he banged himself and it irritated his arthritis? I have no clue. All I know is that he enjoyed getting a cool bath today and I cleaned out the small cut and doctored it up. Toby loved the attention and I don't want to push the issue and make it worse.

Ollie seems to be a bit fussy about things. He's eating like there's no tomorrow but his poops are as loose as they've ever been. I'm afraid that the antibiotics I had him on last week paid a price to his stomach. He has the most sensitive tummy... I say this because when I put the new beautiful luxurious saddle on his back and tightened the girth he was not happy. Then when I got on him, he was very anxious and sensitive. Overly sensitive. So sensitive that he broke into a trot and then into a canter. He has a LOVELY canter it's just that I didn't ask for it... Once I got him to calm down a bit and got him to halt, I walked him a bit (pushing my luck) and halted him again and got off. Then I thought if he had so much energy that I'd try longeing him. Well he was a freak then too! So all I could figure is that he's in pain. Having a girth around your belly when it's sore is making him act silly. So I canceled the lesson with Betsy. I gave him a good dose of Cosequin's probiotics (which he loves), and I'm hoping his tummy heals up soon. He's still on Kalm N EZ which is a good feed for horses with ulcers and other tummy problems. He just needs some time for his stomach to heal. I gave him a cool bath too and he was very happy again. He's was following me around like a puppy dog so I know I'm doing something right!

Then there is Jag. Yep! Jag made an appearance today. Well not really but sorta. And I'm not 100% sure what he's up to but from what I can tell he has a little SOMETHING to do with the Disney movie which is about to be shot called "War Horse." So this is all I know, the artist that did the pastel of Jag, posted the following on Facebook:

Quite a day! Met in the morning by the Art Director from the Harry Potter films. One-on-one meeting with the guy who won an Oscar for his work on Avatar. Straight into a production meeting with some of the biggest names in the industry, with the work I've done so far being shown to Mr Steven Spielberg on Saturday! I'd say more but I had to sign a confidentiality agreement -ooh err missus! :0)

So of course I comment on her "status" with the profound words of "Way cool!" This is what Ali wrote in reply;

Wendy, cooler still is that the picture that the Avatar-Oscar-winning guy picked out to talk about first was the picture of Jag hanging on your wall :0)

Now that's WAY COOL!! Jag could be meeting Steven Spielberg on Saturday! Ok, I don't really know if he will or not because Ali can't tell me any more details but I'd like to think that he is. Jag is a rock star!

This is the pastel which Ali created of him for me and it hangs in my living room:

jaguar hope portrait

I'm glad he's still a part of my life...

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Lots of News

I have news! Good and not so good and then some good and more good!

First is the not so good... right when I was about to leave for my business trip to the U.S. Women's Open Championship, Ollie comes down with "something." I'm not 100% sure what but it was definitely something. He kinda went off his feed, his back left leg had a cut and was stocked up. So the day before I left I got him antibiotics and "Surpass" to help with his sore leg. Surpass is a topical lotion that acts like bute. It's not cheap but it's a relief since his overly sensitive stomach can't handle much of anything out of the ordinary. I had a friend at the barn take care of Ollie for me and when I came back home he was on his feed again and actually put some weight back on! I was thrilled! His leg was much better and he's moving around well but it was still slightly stocked up. We'll get there...

Good News! The new saddle has arrived!! Ollie was fitted for it today. Well, fine tune fitting since he was actually fitted a few months ago. I haven't ridden Ollie in a long time because my other saddle hurt him. When we tacked him up, he was clearly anxious but then he relaxed when he realized the saddle didn't hurt him. Finally we can get him back to work!!

More Good News! Toby and Ollie will be moving to my friend Heather's place. She has her 3 horses in training with Betsy and it will be much easier for me to get Ollie into more rigorous training. Betsy will be able to work him even when I'm not in town. Heather has a nice airy barn:

and a nice outdoor arena:

and the coolest indoor arena ever!

I'm very excited about the move. We will move there in early August.

And speaking of Heather and her horses, they had a fantastic horse show at Horse Shows By The Bay!!

Lily, in her very first horse show, came home with a 6th place in USEF First Level Test 1 O,AA,J/Y last Thursday, then a 4th place in the same division the next day and another 4th on Saturday! Her highest score was a 64.333%!! I'm so proud of Lily!


Thunder and Julia did very well too! He had scores in the low 60's which is great because he can be a real pistol to ride.


And then Betsy had a great show too! On Thursday, she got a 4th in FEI Intermediaire I O,AA,J/Y GAIG/USDF Qualify class on her horse Tanner (Cantana). On Friday, they got another 4th in FEI Intermediaire I Freestyle Open GAIG/USDF and the best was yet to come on Saturday... They WON the FEI Freestyle Test of Choice Open GAIG/USDF with a (are you sitting?) score of 74.75%!!!!!!!!!! I'm SO PROUD OF THEM!!


Another one of Betsy's rider won big on Saturday as well! Marva and her horse Elvis won USEF Second Level Test 4 AA,J/Y GAIG/USDF. Marva and The King rocked!

medium trot

So much good news for my good friends!