Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Plastic Surgery

***Today is the last day to enter a guess for the foal pool***
I got one of those surprises no one likes to get. Monday was my "work late" day, so I arrived closer to 6pm than my normal 5-515. It was raining and the horses were all tucked in sheds. After I put on my barn clothes the rain had stopped and my pony did his super sad " I got wet" neigh. He trotted up to me and I saw red.

And I don't mean his chestnut coat. Just behind his chin was a flap of skin and a fair amount of blood. It definitely looked like it was big enough to need a vet.

I put in a call to have Mom call me. She was having the worst thoughts by time she called me back. Thankfully I could tell  her it was not life or death. She agreed I should call a vet. I sent the vet pictures and they said they would be out to suture.
The vet said stallions are cheap dates when it comes to sedation. Roscoe was not interested in the needle and required a chain to cooperate. The vet was nice and kept the needle in while he switched syringes of medicine. He got banamine, antibiotics, and his happy juice cocktail. Once he was snoring he got one more poke of tetanus. Then the wound got cleaned, a close shave and some local numbing. All the injectables and cleaning solutions cost about $200.


Then came the stitches. He used a stronger thread since the area has some movement. Amazingly it took seven stitches and after looking at it again he added one more. I was impressed he was able to line up the different skin colors. Roscoe will still have his good looks. I guess the plastic surgery was worth $150.

Oh and since it was after hours the farm call was $155. Which was $45 cheaper than they told me via text. Small favors.

Tomorrow we will see how Roscoe likes PEMF. Hopefully it will help him heal faster. More than likely he was eating grass on the other side of the fence and pulled back to quickly and caught himself on a rough edge. The vet said it was not very deep despite how it looks.

My pony will live, always a good thing. And the new vet was awesome. I may be in pain from the bill and exhausted from the late night, but I will keep those in mind. Come on foals! I need a baby fix to take my mind off money pain.

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Adult Camp Day Two

Day two brought us riding bright and early. I actually love when I have the first ride. I get the whole arena to myself and it is so quiet and peaceful. Roscoe is not as distracted and we seem to work really well.
Lauren started us with some leg yields and then we moved on to going between shoulder fore and shoulder in. Moving Roscoe's shoulders has always been difficult for me. And in the beginning he was moving his hind end. By the time Peggy started the video, he was actually moving his shoulders. All that chrome looks pretty cool in the lateral work.

From there we started the tough stuff of making him shoulder in on the circle. We have tried this before with no results. This time I could feel him attempt the exercise. The hope was to get him to bring his neck down and his back up. Neck falling down was a term we heard a bunch. We did start to figure it out on a circle. He was more active and true when he put it together. We had a harder time maintaining it through changes of bend. I am amazed at the change of quality he has achieved in just the last year.

We moved on to walk to canter transitions. She had us activate his walk and do some walk trot quick transitions. I have only played with these a couple times before. He gave me one awesome one. This time he was a bit tired, so they were not as clean. Once we were in canter, we had to work again at getting his neck to fall down. Plus add in some half halts to get him to sit. I ran out of oopmf to hold us both together. But the times we did manage to keep the canter going, it felt really good.

Unfortunately the phone ran out of video room before we got to the right lead. I had to tickle him with the whip to convince him he could keep going forward when I half halted. This was similar to the lesson with Lisa last year. Roscoe is better since then. We just might be able to handle 1st level.

Lauren kind of redeemed herself with this lesson. I came away feeling like I accomplished something and with hope for the future. Mom had a good lesson too. Lauren even made her canter. We are hoping to do two semi private lessons a month, which will cost the same as if we each did one private a month.

Lauren also provided all the campers with a goodie bag. Everyone except DaVinci likes the cherry flavored cookies.
Make sure to get your foal pool guess in!

Sunday, March 31, 2019

Adult Camp 2019 Day One

This year Mom and I each attended camp. This made the situation a little tougher since they scheduled us back to back. My ulcerative colitis have been super bad, so I was worried about having to run to the bathroom mid tacking. Luckily Peggy was able to attend and help me. The horses stay overnight and we leave the truck and trailer at Sprieser. I drove my car loaded with all our stuff and was able to find their stalls before the horses arrived. Good thing too since I only found Rosemary's. I walked the aisle twice, but there was no sign with his name. A staff member was just as puzzled as I was. She remembered his name. Eventually she found his name paper behind another horse's. She found a stall down the aisle from Rosemary and right next to the bathroom. Perfect for me.
Someday his name will be spelled correctly

The horses settled in just fine, chowing down on the hay provided. Mom and I had to work on chipping them out of the mud they gathered from the rain the night before. I could tell Roscoe had to pee, but he is not a fan of pelleted sawdust. God forbid he get splashed. When I got him tacked up, I asked Peggy to walk him in the grass. He had to pee before going into the indoor. NO PEE allowed! He cooperated after scoping out the area.
My mom rode right before me and Rosemary seemed to handle the work okay. We worried a bit about her heaves. I made sure to trace clip her so she would not get too hot.

Roscoe and I headed in for our lesson with Skye Finn, a new trainer to Sprieser.  "This must be the Roscoe I have heard so much about," was the first thing she said. Uh boy, wonder what she has heard. Fair warning, the loud voice is Lauren teaching the other lesson.

Roscoe was full of it and distracted. He spooked at mom walking in, shadows and some mystery stuff. So Skye had us doing baby leg yields and shoulder fore.

 Roscoe started to settle as we worked. He was still a bit tight in his poll. She had us do a  clock exercises of moving his head to points on the clock to loosen him up. I was really wishing I had remembered my spurs. From there we moved to adjusting his trot open and close. Roscoe was deciding all this was a lot of work.

But there was no rest. Onto canter or maybe try to canter. He seemed to forget how his feet work. The tail monster was working overtime. When we finally got a canter, Skye said "he actually has a good canter." I guess he can still surprise people. She wanted to work his transitions. We tried to do a canter figure eight one direction, but my riding could not coordinate, so we changed it around and it worked better. He was still a little dramatic on his left transition. We ended with some nice trot work. Overall though he was distracted, he still did some nice work. I really have to lock down my outside rein so I can support him more.

We had a couple of hours before our cavaletti lesson. Mom and I were in it together. It started with going over poles on a circle and adjusting the number of strides between poles.

 From there we serpentined over poles down the center of the ring. The cobs handled the turns well.

The next part is where it got dicey. Our cobs are pony sized, but they are not pony strided. Both have done cavaletti with horses and not had any issues. Skye ended up closing the distance on the three pole and the two pole to an insanely small stride. We always thought two poles, especially close together, were a no-no. Roscoe decided to just ignore the suggestion and go over both poles in one stride.

We were told to close up our stride. Considering the bad weather this winter, the horses are out of shape. So something happened to Rosemary going over the three poles. We could not see any injury, but she hurt for a little while. Mom eventually was able to get her going again, but the focus changed to Roscoe.
We moved onto some canter work. I can honestly say I let him down. A side effect of the colitis is malnutrition and it drains me. My pony takes care of me and does not hold it against me.

Day one was complete and we survived despite all of us being out of shape. We left the ponies eating their dinner and figuring out that they were staying. Tomorrow we had one more lesson. I was already feeling today. No pain, no gain.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Foal Pool 2019

This year we are expecting Roscoe's first partbred foal. It will be interesting to see how this foal will look.
So let's introduce the dam, Jewel. Sorry I only have screen shots from a video.

She is a black paint who actually has less white than Roscoe. I know she has had at least one foal.

Remember everyone, Roscoe could actually be registered pinto. I am wondering if the baby will have more chrome than both parents.

She was bred 5/22/18.

My guess is:
Blaze, 4 stockings, belly spot, Some body white too

Put your guess in the comments until April 10th.

Basic Guess

Bonus points for
Chrome (legs, face, belly, etc)

$25 RW Gift Card
A framed cross stitch

Oh and if anyone is interested, Roscoe will become a grandfather this year too. So expect lots of foal pictures. The first two will be a combination of two super breeding programs, while the third continues Castleberrys known quality.

Castleberrys Ffrewyn x Quillane Audacious 

Castleberrys Debonair x Quillane Atarah

And Castleberrys Reno x Hawkshill Castleberrys Rosina

Friday, March 8, 2019

Retention, A Blessing

Once my parents came home, the relief of having support again awakened the need to ride. I needed pony therapy and Roscoe definitely needed the work. I have two dead blankets thanks to the Cob boys deciding play time during blanket change was a good idea.
So I convinced Mom to ride with me over the weekend. I worried about what we lost during the two month break. I did feel somewhat better when an article mentioned that over in Europe horses tend to get long breaks.
Energy was not a problem. We seemed to have hit on the right feeding routine for him finally. He has maintained his weight so well this winter.

With the energy I was surprised that he also brought the right moves. It turns out our "10" canter from last year was not a fluke. I still felt solid when we canter to the right. Retention is such a blessing. And the fact that Roscoe is at the point of retention is an achievement. To me that says his training is on the right track. Now I just need to get his left lead up to the right's standard.

I used the feeling of the right lead to help work the left. Of course I think the biggest problem is me and my inconsistent outside rein. So I steadied the rein and focused on getting the same feeling of being around him evenly. It was hard for both of us, but I felt a difference. The next ride was not as successful since he was probably sore decided to fight the change. He still felt good though.

Sadly the weather has been so wet that I have not managed another ride recently. At least when the next ride does happen I will not feel like we have lost so much time and have to make up ground. This year I plan to do very little showing and try to focus on moving up to 1st level with more lessons. That plan starts in a couple weeks with Adult Camp. This move up will be hard because it will be a move up for both of us. I only have one 1st level test under my belt and that was on a made horse, so I can't help Roscoe. I think he is going to help me.

In other news, breeding season is coming up next month. Roscoe will attempt to breed one of the mares from last year who has a new owner. I let the breeding transfer. He possibly has another breeding as a result of the Westfalen Stallion auction. I will know more later this month. During one of the auctions, my ethics lost him a bid. Roscoe's contract is good for 3 breeding seasons, live foal guarantee. If a rebreed is needed, the mare owner only pays $200. One mare owner bid on a discounted breeding when she already has two contracts with two years remaining. I could not let her pay more than she needed. So I lost out on some stud fee, but hopefully kept a mare owner happy.

And of course I will be setting up the Foal Pool soon. This will be a short time one, the due date is soon.

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Dualing Professionals

Thank you everyone for your comments on my last post. I still can't believe she is gone, but seeing her half finished cross stitch project certainly makes it real. And yes Kristen we can talk about a project of your own. Pm me on Facebook or email me at

While Mom was gone Comrade was having issues with his mouth. The dentist had found he has a gap that will hold food. He told us to use a hose and rinse his mouth. Comrade was not totally thrilled at the prospect considering the weather was below freezing. At one point he even drooled down the gate. He seemed to resolve the issue.

All during that episode, Comrade kept eating. He is a Cob so food is priority. So when we started seeing issues this month the differences were noticeable. This time the drool was almost nonstop and he was not eating hay. Peggy got the dentist on the schedule to come. But Comrade's condition deteriorated to the point of shaking and minor colic. So we called the vet.
Comrade showing off his new sheet

The vet found he had a temperature of 101.8. He was obviously fighting something. So the vet took blood. She also looked at his mouth and did not see a huge amount of stuff in his gap. He got banamine for both the temp and the colic. Soon after he dug into his wet hay pellets and some soft grass hay. That evening his temp was down to 101.5 and in the morning it was down to 101.

During a blanket change Mom and I were appalled to see him so tucked up in his tummy and haunches. He looked horrible. No temp, but he was uncomfortable. Peggy gave him an oral dose of banamine after which he dug into food for the next three hours.

Ember snoot honing in
The next day the vet was coming to do a more thorough oral exam. She found three large ulcers on his tongue. She could not tell us how it happened or why he had an infection. Other than treating the ulcers, there was no other treatment advised. Salt water washes am and pm much to Comrade's delight.
When the dentist came, he did not believe the minor sharp edges were enough to cause the massive ulcers. He took pictures and video to send to three vets he knows around the country. All three individually came back and said that at some point Comrade's tongue was swollen and he chewed on it. That would explain the constant drool too.
 I was really glad not to be present. This vet practice refuses to sedate for our dentist and they feel they are superior. Except that when we used them, the horses were over sedated and sore afterward. Plus they were too expensive. We certainly won't burn the bridge, but we have been looking for another vet. So when the vet asked to do a full dental on Comrade, Peggy was quick to say that the dentist would be coming in a couple of hours. Let the dual begin. The vet lectured over and over about why the dentist  was not the right way to go. Phone conversations with the dentist of course said how the vets don't do things right. Poor Peggy was the concerned owner stuck in the middle. The determination of the dentist and his persistence to find us another vet helped Peggy make the decision. Plus he left a large syringe type thing to do the salt rinses.
In the end we are just trying to find the best care for our horses without breaking the bank.

Comrade had a recheck today from the new vet and no more ulcers. He will be so sad when he does not get anymore soft hay. So will Rosemary who has diligently been stealing it from him.