Monday, September 21, 2015

A Tale of a Big, Bad Bean and Heatstroke

I have mentioned that Comrade has been not quite right for awhile now. After his adjustment by the chiropractor, he was improving, but still not normal. He did everything I asked of him and he actually did the work fairly well. There was just something about how he was moving that was off. I feared we were going backwards, because he was not picking up his right lead. We gave him rest, we worked him, but nothing seemed to fix him.



In addition to the riding issues, we also noticed he was standing parked out while he ate hay in the turn out. And not just once, I am talking every time we looked he was parked. What the heck could be wrong with him? One day Peggy said "Hmm, maybe I should clean his sheath." Comrade is a very greasy horse, who always gets ear wax and definitely build up in his sheath, so it was a sound idea. A look online showed that it could cause some of his weird actions. Peggy armed with KY jelly began the task. Soon Comrade was using his hind leg to gently push her hand away. Mom had to hold his front leg so that Peggy could tackle a big, bad bean. I guess having a bean that big would cause some issues.

With the removal of the bean, he was standing more square. Peggy wanted to see how he was under saddle, but that took me a day. When I finally rode him, he was so much better. And he found his right lead canter. Now I need to get him back in shape. Peggy did manage to get some pictures too.


Happy with the thought of Comrade feeling better, I set to work with my parents receiving a load of hay the next day. This was a bit of a challenge since half the loft was filled with the old pony candy hay. Mom and I went up there to work some hay stacking puzzles. 140 bales, some hay climbing and successful stacking later we made the best use of the space we had. As I finished, I kept seeing flashes of lights in my eyes. Weird. I drank some water and hosed off some of the hay. It was warm but nothing that worried me. Peggy had breakfast waiting, so we all headed in for the meal.

DaVinci was keeping count for us.

My head started to pound while I ate. I drank more water and back in the barn I took some medicine. I felt horrible watching Mom clean up the hay, but nausea kept me rooted. I feared I was getting sick. Both my Mom and sister had caught a nasty bug recently. Eventually I went into the tack room and rested with the ceiling fan blowing. An hour later, I knew it was most likely heatstroke. The loft had no air movement and since I did the top layers, the heat hit me hard. As I cooled, the nausea passed. I decided to go home with my Dad, knowing I had to be careful not to overheat again. Peggy laughed the next day and said that now I know what she deals with. I told her I could do without the personal demonstration.

Next time I will know to be more careful working in that loft. I can't afford to miss these great riding days. I will say I did manage a night ride on Comrade the next day.

8 comments:

  1. Henry's sheeth gets soooo dirty!! I clean it out with water at least 2 times a month and with a very mild soap once in a while.

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    1. Ah, you are a good gelding owner :) Mine are definitely due for a cleaning, though they are not as bad as Comrade.

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  2. yikes - glad you're feeling better!! i can be really susceptible to heat too and know your pain :(

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    1. Yuck, I would not wish it on anyone.

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  3. The sheath thing must be a cob thing. Gavin has a greasy one. My vet has actually suggested shaving it to allow more airflow(hahaha - we both got a good laugh out of that).

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    1. Wow, that is a new one :) I will pass that on to Peggy. Maybe it is a Cob gelding thing, Roscoe is not so bad. It could be because he fully drops on a regular basis.

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  4. I'm susceptible to heat too -- I have to be very careful to drink lots and lots of water!

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    1. Yeah, Dad made me drink about 60oz when I got home.

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