It has struck again. I should have been more careful. Before we went to Donegal, Rosie’s hooves looked ok, she was moving well on soft ground and gave my daughter a lesson in Sandra’s arena, on a surface of sand mixed with pea gravel. She was happy to step over poles at that time.
Last week, home with us again, my daughter wanted to ride her again. Rosie saw us coming with the tack and came towards us, seeming quite happy to give another lesson. But this time, after stepping over a pole, she refused to do it again and then stumbled on the grass.
I took a closer look at her hooves and was horrified. Her heels had done a spurt of growth and her pedal bone seemed to be bulging far more than before in her right hoof.
My daughter (aged 5) was in tears as she wanted to ride Rosie. So I gave her the task of scratching Rosie to distract her as I tried to trim her hooves. It was a struggle as poor Rosie did not want to take the weight on one front hoof. But I felt I had to lower the heels at the very least. Rasp, pull back, put down hoof. Lift it up (not willingly), rasp, pull back, put it down. And again. And again. To the accompaniment of my daughter’s chatter, and whines it has to be said. “My arm is getting tired.” “Use your other one.” “But that’s my clumsy arm.” But she kept at it, kept scratching Rosie and it genuinely helped. Rosie seemed to walk easier when I had finished.
Sandra came out yesterday to help me further. Rosie has quite bad thrush in those two hooves as well. Ben doesn’t and he was standing in the same wet field as Rosie.
As I say, I should have been more careful. I am aware of the dangers of the flush of growth in Autumn. This just came earlier than I expected.
An SOS to Dermot and he and John are coming down, fitting us in, which is very good of them.