Today I rode Red for the first time since his surgery 24 days ago - it was more than a month since we'd ridden. Our vet authorized ride walking once he was up to 30 minutes of hand walking in the afternoon, since even if he does have some soft tissue injury (which we hope he does not), the walk work would be good for that. I did give him some - not very much - ace by mouth - our clicker work is going extremely well, and although he doesn't like the medicine at all, he's willing to cooperate loose in the stall. He'd had a nice 4 1/2 hours outside this morning in the pen. I put a polo wrap on his leg so that when he rolled (which he of course did), the wet sand wouldn't get on the incision - it rained a lot yesterday and although there was no standing water or mud in the pen it was still plenty damp and the incision isn't supposed to get wet.
He couldn't have been better, and it was clear he was very happy to be back in work. He's a horse who clearly cares about working and doing a good job - he's very conscientious. I think the only difference the ace made was that when he would notice something, his reaction wasn't abrupt - he was more sedate about things. We did a little leading work before I got on, and then I mounted up. He stood perfectly on a loose lead and then we did a half hour of work using cones and poles - lots of figures and turns. When I halted, all I had to do to get a soft back was think about it - he was soft and very responsive and not at all dulled by the ace. Every bit of his training was still consistently in there, and he's such a delight to ride - super responsive and moving very well.
He seemed delighted, and I certainly was. We'll see how the leg responds to the work - he was carrying about an extra 200 lbs. with me and the saddle. I'm hoping that we can repeat this every afternoon until the vet comes to reevaluate his leg on Thursday.
So happy, and I think Red is too.