Tuesday 30 November 2010

Good News...I think

Just back at work from the barn, I'll have to stay late to make up the time i've missed.
X-rays are clear for kissing spine and vet says there is nothing obstructing her spine in any case. *dance*

Good news in one way, downside is that it means Kika was being very bold/naughty for absolutely no reason in my absence! She's heading for some tough love when i get back in the saddle! Thats for sure! *nod*
Not sure what I'm going to do with her, i do not want her to be a one rider horse, what would happen if i ever had to sell her for whatever reason. She'd be impossible to move if no one else can ride her! Which in itself is ridiculous as i am not that great of a jockey!

I once leased a 12year old horse that had been so spoiled, that he knocked my confidence something awful. I DO NOT want the same thing to happen my horse! :( Going to have to hope that i might be able to find people at the barn willing to help me get her used to other riders as well as myself!
Just going to have to roll up my sleeves and see if people will help me by riding her with me so that she gets used to different styles etc etc.

Reckon I'll have to find some way to step up her work load aswell, as she may just have too much energy for her own good and be looking for ways to amuse herself when being ridden. Downside to more work would be fitter horse ... vicious cycle. But will find a way to work with it!

I'll probably give her the rest of the week off as am heading to Ireland at the weekend so won't get a good run at her before i go and no point in half doing it. As she needs to learn a lesson i need to have the time to teach her.
I've monday coming off work, so may roll up the sleeves then and attack her when the barn will be quite during the day!
Will update then, hopefully we won't part ways and i will be in a fit state to update. She will be getting a good lungeing session before i hop up, just incase she'd get any notions!

I am not one bit sorry I got her back x-rayed (although admittedly I am yet to receive the bill), but to have the peace of mind that she is not suffering the equine version of a slipped disc or the like, is worth the expense in my opnion.
Better safe than sorry - I think!

Monday 29 November 2010

Not great news... but not exactly bad news either...

Will hopefully keep this brief as don't really have a lot to report!

Kika's teeth and back were checked last week. I had her down for an equine dentist visit that was to do a few horses on the yard for last thursday morning, but after talking witha  few people discovered that equine dentists out here are not legally permitted to subdue a horse by injection. As K hadn't seen a dentist for over a year, I was fearing the worst going on in her mouth so called a vet that had been recomended to me who also does teeth. I was also slightly apprehensive of the fact that the osteo was coming friday morning and if K didn't handle the dentist without anaesthetic... Well I didn't want her any more stressed and tense before seeing the osteo the next day.
Now this vet has received glowing recomendations from three different sources, so I was only too happy for the opportunity to get on her books. So we arranged for her to come out on Wednesday afternoon and i took the afternoon off work (which fell nicely to allow me study for my German test the next day).
She showed me exactly what was going on in Kika's mouth and I'm glad to report that there was no extra problems to report than the general wear and tear teeth get from the way a horse's jaw works. It was fascinating, she could attach a little torch to the inside of the mouth piece (for lack of a better term for the metal thing that holds open the horses's jaw) and she could show me the teeth before and after. K was good as gold before and (certainly) after the little dose of anaesthtic, bless her.

So that answered one question, the back issues were not stemming from her mouth as I had thought.
The osteo came on friday morning, although it was afternoon before K got seen as i ended up last on the list that i had posted - go figure, yet live and learn ;-). 
After checking everything over, she said that there was something small out in her rump which she would replace but that that was not causing the all around stiffness she felt in her body, nor would that minor displacement cause her to behave as badly as she had in my absence. The instructor had spoken to the osteo before we went in explaining exactly what had happened when she was riding her.
The osteo - who is also a classically trained vet - suggested as i feared would be the end result that it would be best to get Kika's back x-rayed to find out exactly what is going on in there. She mentioned that she thinks it may be kissing spine which i googled and found the aforementioned information. Unfortunately the sympstoms listed sound like a roll call for Kika's recent behaviour, but I will know nothing for sure until the x-rays are done.... so i am trying to keep a handle on my imagination.

She has had two and half weeks off from ridden work now, and was in much better form this weekend when being handled. I have now brought a large bag of carrots to the barn and have resumed doing neck stretches with her and she is still allowed to go in the walker every morning and i give her either a loose lunging session or actual lungeing every other day to blow out the cobwebs and allow her stretch her legs a bit. Which more often than not results in some form of skullduggery or other, but that is also good to see in my books as it means she *hopefully* isn't feeling too sorry for herself or in too much pain. Although i'm now worrying that the messing (mostly bucking) may be as a result of her back being at her in which case i don't know if it is mean of me to make her move - but at the same time i know she needs movement! It would be unhealthy to only allow her walk and stand in her stable. She does seem to be enjoying herself when she gets to fart and buck around the arenas when lungeing, so hopefully it's skullduggery and not pain.

This as usual is going on longer than i had intended (I swear i meant to keep this short!), but just a quick extra note to say that the barn "Christmas" party was on yesterday. There was a jumping quadrille, a dressage quadrille (both to music) and the Riding School kids put on a flatwork performance to music. School ponies are gas! It was lovely and the owners laid out Gluweien, hot chocolate and cakes galore to entertain the liveries. St Nicholas also made an appearance with Black Peter, brought in by the old owner (his sons now run the yard) and his carriage horses. It really was a nice way to spend a sunday afternoon!

Wednesday 17 November 2010

Purplification of Ponio and new problems :(

I have shown these pictures to some of you before, but not everyone who may or may not read this will have seen them, so just so we are all on the same page!

Not as matchy matchy as as could be but something to aim for at least, ;)
And hey, it's a start, :p

A birthday gift from a very good friend!

Cranky puss not wanting to pose....

But she changed her tune when she realised she was the focus of the photo shoot, teehee!

PS: Sorry if these distort things, I have resized them to the photobucket large option (640x480pixels), hope that is correct, :/

Now for our issues:
We were doing well (for us - I think), I left her in bootcamp with my instructors while I was in NYC last week, to return and be told that she has big issues with her back and was completely resisting work in so far as she was rearing and/or bucking to avoid it. Saddle fitter was also out to do follow up on new saddle which he said fits fine (cynic in me goes - well why wouldn't he say that after selling me the saddle) and agreed that underlying back issues there are not pertaining to the new saddle. I've been trying to get in contact with the osteo to get her checked out, but had no luck getting through yesterday and haven't had a chance to ring yet today, will try now on my lunch break.
I'm also on the list for a dentist visit for her at the end of this month/start of next month, I've been wanting to get her checked for over a month now but last dentist cancelled so hopefully this one will be able to make it! I think her teeth could one of the main issues and causing her problems, sore mouth resulting in her tensing her back and knock on effect etc etc... But maybe I'm way off base!
Will keep anyone reading posted...

Thursday 4 November 2010

Fiesty Red-Head!

Following on from our lessons last week, she was a good girl in our flat lesson on thursday even though i couldn't make myself relax for fear that she'd act the maggot like she had the previous day. So of course she had to prove me wrong and didn't put a foot out of place! Friday and Sunday she worked beautifully for me (sat was her day off), best we've managed since arriving. We worked on what we'd been working on in the flat lesson, which was circling and striking off in canter when asked without rushing or running on. I even managed to relax and i felt really positive about those two days. :)
Monday and Tuesday she started doing a funny thing when we were circling in that she'd bend her neck correctly in the direction we were circling, but then cock her head in the other direction! *rollseyes*
It made me really uncofortable as i doubt it was comfortable for her, I've been meaning to get her teeth checked and had her down for the dentist but he cancelled, :(, so i must find another one, sooner rather than later!
So i tried to work on that on Tuesday by slipping her the reins and encouraging her to stretch out, it worked a bit but then i could feel her thinking about it again and start the head cocking, she's too clever for her own good i reckon!
I felt ill yesterday (Wednesday) so asked the jumping instructor if he would mind riding her last night (part of the service apparently, costs the same as my lesson which was too late to cancel and i would've had to pay for in any case so worked out alright). She had him off shortly after they staretd trotting she tried one of her spins, she sometimes gets confused and thinks she's a quarter horse/ballerina. I wasn't watching what she did, but out of teh corner of my eye i saw her spin and he landed on his feet. After the lesson, i apologised to him and he smilled wryly and said she didn't have him off that he elected to leave the saddle. I'll leave that one there seeing as i didn't actually see what she did.
The rest of the lesson was entertaining to watch from the sidelines! She is a very opinionated young lady,  she determendly fights the fiesty red-head's corner! She did what she was asked, but fought every step of the way, including a cheeky duck out between fences the first time she was asked to go through the double. It was 20mins into their 30minute session that she finally settled for him, although she hadn't been jumping badly for him... they were having a bit of a power struggle (which believe me i recognise, ;-) ) in that she wanted to attack the fences faster than was good for her and her jockey.
When he finished he said she was a good horse, she has a good canter and a nice big flowing stride, and a very capable jumper, but he knew this from the three lessons we'd had previously - he has always said the fences weren't her problem jumping was easy for her it's getting her to concentrate and listen to you is where the pwoer struggle comes in. He has said with more lessons we can continue her education and that in 6 months time she'll be a different horse. I have said all along that i'm more than happy to take all the time necessary to get it right as I don't want to mess her up.
Afterwards  did overhear him telling another livery that she is a "Gutt Paerd", meaning good horse so that made my heart swell a little. Now if only i can work on my issues and help her out we might one day make a good team!

There will be no flat lesson this evening as i am still feeling a little under the weather (although a lot better than yesterday so yay!) I won't be riding this evening as it's not fair on her if i cannot give her 100%. I am hopeful to ride her tomorrow before i head off to NYC for the week. Poor Kika won't know what's hit her while I'm away, she's going into Pony-Bootcamp with the flat instructor for the week and will be ridden by the jumping teacher again on wednesday. I'll then be playing catch up when i get back, but methinks thi sis a good option as it's not going to do either of us any good to try and learn certain things together. It'll be better if someone more experienced can teach her and then i can learn from her and with the teacher teaching em also. Plus after more time in her saddle the teachers will get a better feel for her and will be better equipped to teach us as a team...Or that is teh plan in any case!