I had a long and very stressful day, but at least things finally ended well. I got to the vet hospital at about 12:45 - 15 minutes before my scheduled discharge appointment at 1:00, in order to get hitched up - I'd left my trailer at the clinic. And . . . there was an SUV and trailer parked directly in front of my trailer. Not only that, but the owner of said SUV and trailer had gone out to lunch . . . a long lunch . . . An hour later, the trailer owner pulled in with a friend in her car, and jumped out, very apologetic. In fact, she'd been told it was OK to park there by a clinic worker (who had already confessed same to me). They were very nice and even helped me hitch up and we discussed our various horse ailments.
Then I sat around and waited some more . . . perhaps another hour. Meds and vet supplies showed up, with printed discharge instructions - I had a bunch of questions and was pretty anxious about everything. I'd popped in to visit Red a couple of times, and he got very excited when he saw and smelled the trailer - I think he was having visions of Pie and called a bunch of times.
Red will be on complete stall rest for 10 days, then stall rest plus hand walking for another 10 days, and then 10 days in a pen for turnout. SMZs 2x a day, bute once for a few days and Previcox once a day starting tomorrow. The clinic will send someone out to rebandage his leg on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
Finally the surgery tech came out to talk to me. They do not want the farrier handling his leg for 2-3 weeks - and he's scheduled for a trim next Friday. My farrier is a bit of a prima donna, although very good, and comes every 6 weeks on his schedule, not mine - he does 3 other horses at our barn besides my 3 - I'm going to have to beg him to make a special visit 3 weeks from now for Red - hope he'll cooperate. Also, they want me to have him on Previcox for 14 days - I'm very anti-Previcox (it's in the same family as the previous human wonder drugs Vioxx and Celebrex) and think it's way overused by vets today and should be only used for short periods to avoid potential side effects. They say there's no good alternative, so I'll be keeping my fingers crossed.
Red was lightly sedated and the surgical tech rewrapped his leg with a bandage. The incision is looking good so far and the swelling is modest.
Then I tried to load him in the trailer - you'd have thought he'd want to get out of there. No way . . . 45 minutes later he was still refusing to get on the trailer. I wasn't willing to resort to force, because all of the work we'd done on building trust would have been in vain. I should have been thinking - if something isn't working, don't just keep repeating what doesn't work but instead try something else . . .
I was completely at my wits' end - the fact he was slightly sedated made him not care too much about our usual go-forward cue. Finally I put him back in his stall and sat down on a rock wall and burst into tears - I bawled for a while until some of the tension was released. I didn't know what to do, but didn't want to resort to force and wanted to load him myself. I was also very worried that all the churning around would hurt his leg - he was doing a lot of kicking out to say that his leg hurt, although the bandage seemed to be staying in place.
I'm sure the vet clinic personnel have seen as bad or worse in terms of horse and human behavior, but I was terribly embarrassed. Finally I managed to collect my wits and asked if there was a dressage whip around - my tapping with the end of the lead was getting us no where, but tapping with the whip might be enough more of a cue to get his attention, and it was - a few minutes later he was on the trailer.
The surgeon and surgical tech came out and inspected his bandage and said it looked OK, so off we went home. Red was very glad to see Pie, and Pie even seemed glad to see him, and he seemed to be comfortable with being home.
Don't know if it was the day I was supposed to have, but I'd sure prefer not to repeat it.