Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Home Again

I spent the better part of Saturday afternoon cleaning out my tack trunk, soaking my brushes, cleaning my tack, measuring out feed, packing my car, and bathing Finn. I wanted to be ready to go first thing in the morning since Mr. Man's ride was scheduled to arrive at 7:30. I had no clue how Finn would load so I was ready for anything. Much to my surprise, Finn stood on the ramp, stared into the trailer for a few minutes, and walked right in. Stinker :-)

Everyone was so happy to see him and remarked over and over about how good he looks. I was so proud! We got him settled into his new (huge!!!) stall and had a nice long chat about our plan for him. A is planning to ride him on Friday, and Dr. Bob is slated to come take a looksie next Wednesday. After all this was said and done, A asked if I wanted to ride. Um, HECK YEAH! She put me up on one of the kids (H's name for all of the OTTB adoption hopefuls) named Kwik. I'll be honest- my fall off Finn the other day really shook my confidence so I was a bit nervous hopping on another BIG OTTB. Kwik was an absolute SAINT! He has a sweet face, was a perfect gentleman on the ground, and was super fun to ride. He got a little forward when I asked for the canter, but all I had to do was sit back and ask him to settle in. See! I'm not crazy- there are sane, uncomplicated, fun OTTBs out there!

The crew asked me if I wanted to come along for lunch, and I hung around a bit afterwards to help with evening feeding and turnout. I'm so happy at this barn already! Finn just fits in here, and I feel like everyone is truly invested in our cause and wants us to succeed. This barn also reminds me of my barn growing up. People would just come and hang out for the day, everyone helped out with the chores, and people just enjoyed being with their horses. This barn is much farther and I may not be able to go out as much during the week, but I think I will enjoy my horse and my sport to the max here. I'm headed out there this afternoon to play with Finn- hopefully I'll get to ride one of the kids too!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Back to the Drawing Board

Sometimes you need to stand back, take a deep breath, and consider a problem from a new angle.

Finn definitely seems physically better. He hasn't locked up since the blistering procedure, but his attitude still, frankly, sucks. He's still balky in the arena and has turned into an absolute nightmare on the trails. Our last trailventure ended in him throwing a massive temper tantrum which ended in him rearing straight up, tripping over himself, and falling onto his side. Thank goodness I was able to abandon ship off the other side or I would probably not be sitting here writing this. I was too shaken up to get back on, but we walked back to the farm, and I longed the snot out of him.

I have never had a horse who thought rearing was a possible/accepable way of protestation. That particular behavior is extremely dangerous, and it's just not something I'm willing (or experienced enough)to "work" through. I had a long talk with JK the next evening, and we decided Finn man just might not be a good match for me. I left the barn that night frustrated, slighly hopeful, and sad. I love my guy. I do. But this is not fun at all.

The next day I plucked up the courage to call Finn's adoption agency. Honestly, I was scared she would think I completely screwed up this horse and would think I have no business owning another OTTB, but our chat went in the completely opposite direction. She listened to my update, gave me a few suggestions/things to check, and then offered to take him on as a boarding/training project at the adoption agency. She also told me that sometimes these things just don't work out, and if I am at the point of no return, the organization can help me rehome him and find a new boy/girl. She emphasized that this does not make me a bad person (which I REALLY needed to hear) and assured me there is an OTTB out there that is my perfect match.

I can't tell you how much better I felt after this conversation. I finally have a plan in place that will lead to a happy ending, one way or another. I will be sad if we don't work out, but I know he will go to a great home with this organization. Plus, I will be in an excellent position to try as many new guys/gals as I want, and I am sure to find my new partner in crime. So, Finn man will (tenatively) make the move on Sunday. I'm so excited (and relieved!) to get this ball rolling!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Cooking With Crisco!

It's been quite some time since my last post, and a lot has happened since then! Dr. B came out to assess Finn's locking stifle situation. After taking some X-rays (which didn't show anything concerning!), it was determined that he is probably suffering from luxation of the patella. From what I can gather and now understand from tons of online research, that basically means his knee cap doesn't work correctly. Dr. B decided to perform a procedure called blistering. She injected a solution of 2% iodine in an almond oil base within and around the middle patellar ligament to create an inflammatory reaction. Normally we horse owners never EVER want inflammation, but in this case, the inflammation creates scarring of the ligaments which in turn shortens them and helps pull the patella back into its normal position. Which mostly means his knee cap will hopefully work properly and his stifles won't lock. I wasn't too excited to have this procedure done because I didn't love the idea of creating scar tissue in his stifle and causing soreness/pain, but I was running low on options at this point. So Dr. B drugged up the Finn man (which was horrific and hilarious at the same time) and the procedure took all of 10 minutes.

I gave him the rest of the day off, and as per Dr. B's instructions, started him back in work the next day. Finn's been in training with JK 5 days/week, and I ride on Saturday and Sunday, and let me tell you, HE IS DOING SO MUCH BETTER! We are cookin with Crisco now, baby!