Ponies at home

Ben:

You’re back. I’m glad to see you. Yes you, not your pockets.

I’m sorry I was away. I’m sorry I have not had much time for you.

I don’t understand you. I only speak in positives.

Oh. That’s ok then. I will just take this moment to wait with you…..and this moment, and this and this.

I just need to yawn – lots. I can release some tension now that you are here.

How is Rosie?

I can mind Rosie. You need to mind me.

Rosie:

But I also need to mind Rosie. She had a flare up of laminitis recently. She, quite suddenly, started to walk with great caution and very slowly. I could feel no heat in her hooves and she was still eating well so I was not quite sure what the problem was. The vet said it was laminitis and pointed to her walk – flicking her legs forward with each step so that she could take the pressure off the toes. I have no idea how she got it. Was it some frozen grass? The vet did not think so. He said that she has a low level of laminitis at all times and therefore is vulnerable to flare ups.

I steeled myself to have a quite horrible conversation with him. Was Rosie all right? Did I have to consider the unthinkable? He said that I definitely would at some stage but that he did not consider that her time had yet come. He thought that, laminitis apart, she was looking well and in good condition.

She is on a course of anti-inflammatories and is getting some spark back in her eye and is moving better although not as well as I would like.

Rosie does not talk to me as Ben does. She communicates through a silence that seems as deep and as old as the limestone beneath us.

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11 Comments

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11 responses to “Ponies at home

  1. How old is she? Do you think she could have Cushings? If so, there is a wonderful email list that has many members with tons of info on helping.

    • Billie, I wondered about Cushings when she first came to us. We have had Rosie for two summers and the first year she did not shed her coat. She also had a worm issue (long-standing apparently) that we sorted. But she shed her coat last summer and looked very well and spry.

      However, thanks for bringing it to my attention again. I will ask our vet when he comes out next. I think I will need to get him again soon.

  2. June

    You could look at the website For Love of the Horse. They have a laminitis/Cushing’s formula: http://www.forloveofthehorse.com/ems.php
    Their uveitis formula sorted Rose’s uveitis flare-up within days. You’d be an overseas shipment, though.

    Also make sure her toes are super-short.

  3. June

    I think there’s something metabolic going on at this time of year – maybe with the days beginning to lengthen a wee bit – my horses have started to inhale their mineral lick, and they’re losing interest in their hay and getting restless about eating it, as if they want something more now. So maybe something like that is affecting Rosie.

    • June, thanks for the link. Yes, I am under instructions from Dermot to keep her toes very short and I do. And also her heels low.

      My own hunch about Rosie is that whatever she has is a response to the very cold weather we had. It is most unusual for temperatures here to drop to -15c which they did for about a 10 day spell. I spoke with a neighbour this morning and her elderly pony was also suffering and was treated with a vaso dilator. Her vet told her to think of her pony as an old lady who, in cold weather, might be susceptible to a touch of frost bite due to lack of circulation to the extremities. Another question for my vet.

  4. Maire, what you describe in the last comment fits with what I read on the Cushings list I mentioned – lots of folks on there are using jiagulan (sp?) to help with the blood flow/circulation with good success – they also recommend using Whinny Warmers or other wraps for the legs right down to the hooves during extreme cold.

    I keep reading the list so I can watch for signs in of Cushings in Salina – will likely get a test done next time the vet comes out just to see what the results are.

    Sending good thoughts to Rosie!!

    • Thanks Billie. Do you have a link for that Cushings list? I will definitely raise the possibility with my vet. My neighbour’s pony is on a human vaso dilator (different vet) which I would not be so keen on so I would like to explore natural alternatives if it is indicated. Wraps are a good idea too.

  5. Here’s the link:

    http://pets.groups.yahoo.com/group/EquineCushings/?yguid=240108133

    If you join, you can read the files first to get some sense of the basic info. The posts are of course all over the place but they seem very responsive to questions.

    Yes, I got the Whinny Warmers for Salina’s front legs to keep her knees warm in cold weather. She loves them. Great quality and we are still using the original pair after several winters. The couple who own the company are very very nice – after I blogged about using them on Salina, they contacted me and offered to give Whinny Warmers to the rescue of my choice – I couldn’t choose between two, so they sent to both! And not just one pair – they sent them for every horse/donkey/mule that needed them in each of the rescues.

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