Saturday, November 26, 2011

The Balk Is Back

Drifter's ground manners have been just fine the past several days.  Studliness must come and go . . .

We've been restarting our trot work to rebuild his fitness, adding some time every ride.  Yesterday, he started balking a bit when I asked for a walk/trot transition.  The quality of his trot is better in lengthening than when his stride is shorter.  After my ride, he was ever so slightly dragging his left hind toe as he brought the leg forward - this was very worrisome.  But this morning, his walk was normal again - I don't think it's a recurrence of EPM symptoms but rather some muscular weakness/fatigue - we worked pretty hard yesterday.  Today he was balky again in the first couple of upwards transitions, but trotted well in lengthening once he got moving, although when I'm posting the trot tracking left, it's clearly a bit more of an effort for him - on that diagonal I'm weighting the left hind.  After our ride - I kept it a bit shorter today - his walk was normal - no toe dragging, which was a relief.  Next time I ride, I may give him a 500-lb. dose of Banamine that morning - if he trots more willingly, then soreness is likely, if not then weakness may be the cause of his uncertainly.

There's always something with horses . . .

Dawn and Pie are well - Dawn has started some trot work - her first trotting under saddle barefoot - and is doing well.  Pretty soon, I'll be giving her some time in the paddock with pea gravel to help her frogs and heels develop.  Pie has been going on the trail with Charisma, and has been happily trotting and cantering on turnout.  He was very girthy yesterday - unusual for him and probably indicating some sternal soreness - and has a big sore knot on the left side of his neck that I worked on for a while yesterday.  I'm going to have our chiropractor work on him a bit when she comes next week.

Much colder weather is coming and many Christmas prepartions to make . . .


  1. I guess it's a wait and see with Drifter between soreness or weakness. Glad to hear that Dawn and Pie are doing well and you've been able to ride them.

    This is a busy season. I've got to start with the decorations and shopping soon too.

  2. Hopefully nothing serious going on. I'm sure you'll figure it out.

    I'm all for the chiropractor. Should help Pie a lot if he has some neck soreness. Lucky boy.

    Not sure how much decorating I'll do this year. All my stuff is in the basement and is going to need some work to get it upstairs and out into the yard. Hope I'm not a "knee" Grinch.

  3. Not a lot of decorating going on here. I don't mind putting it up, but I'm a terrible procrastinator when it comes to taking it down.

    Let us know what the chiropractor says.

  4. Hopefully nothing serious is going on with Drifter - weakness does make sense - after dealing with the EPM and its issues...

    Glad the other two are doing ok. It must be nice to have Dawn out of shoes!

  5. Kate, Glad you have had good sessions with all of your horses. Your plan to use Banamine to determine soreness vs weakness sounds great. Glad you were able to ride him as well.

    After reading the link to the EPM research from your post on the publication you were included in, I have to watch myself- this weekend I found myself thinking, oh, was that a stumble? a weakness? a problem with his gait? an early,early sign of EPM? Probably overly cautious but I'm glad to be much more informed about EPM.

  6. Ugh. . . looking forward to the much colder weather!

    But, glad to hear the horses are doing well with their treatments! Hopefully Drifter and Pie are feeling better soon!


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