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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

HORSES AND HILLS!

Now that the weather is bearable again. I have been able to play with the boys some more. Yeahhh! We still could use some more rain for the grass pastures though! Anyway, Enzo has stifle problems, since he was 2 yrs old. He used to trip and it would be noticeable on both rear legs. But lately, Enzo mainly has stifle problems in his rear right leg pretty bad and the left rear is pretty normal now. His rear right stifle can lock up at every step! And some times Enzo drags his right rear hoof, because he cannot get his leg to pick up all the time. Backing can even be worse. It will just lock and Enzo cannot back up. Enzo has even gotten apprehensive about moving forward, or trotting. I would too, when your leg keeps failing on you and makes you trip! Poor boy! I have talked to 2 of my vets multiple times about this stifle problem for a while now. There is nothing medically that I can do. Both vets really think Enzo will grow out of this by the time his is 5 yrs old. Enzo is currently 3 yrs old. I sure hope they are correct!!! It kills me to see Enzo like this. Medically they can basically burn his ligament to make it stronger. But it is very painful to the horse and still lots of times this medical procedure won't help. I would never put Enzo through this pain and down time. The last resort medically is cutting the ligament all together so the ligament cannot get stuck. But again, major down time, pain, and your horse could still never be the same!! And of course, there could be other risks. Again, most vets don't recommend this! And I would again never put Enzo through something like this. Sooooooo, the only option is HILL work and and Cavaletti work!! To build up the muscles in that area. I can do that!!!  And I am sure Enzo can do it as well. Lucky for us where I board there are 2 pastures behind the arena that are hilly! There are hills around the property, but this way my horses will be confined if they want to leave me, LOL. Sometimes my 22 foot rope gets under the tummies and I cannot get them to stop. So it's just easier for me to let them go and then re-coop and start again. So being confined in a pasture with hills is awesome!!! Anyway, I have taken Enzo out to the hilly pasture a few times now and Enzo loves it! I loved it also! It was fun and something different! Even if your horse has no stifle issue. I would recommend hill work anyway. It really helps the horse with figuring out their own balance! I can already see a balance change in Enzo in the 4 times I have been out there. Totally awesome! Since I noticed the balance help! I decided to take Kaspin on the hills! Wow, was Kaspin unbalanced also!! I figured! I have only taken Kaspin out on the hills 2 times and he so far hasn't figure his balance out as of yet. But he will get it soon! What fun and great work! I also took Enzo to the arena one day and set up a few cavalettis to keep the work plan always different and fun! I guess, I never really noticed how high horses have to pick up their back legs to clear a cavaletti! Again very good work out for Enzo's knees! Love it! In the past 7 days that I started this. I have noticed Enzo getting around better! He isn't locking almost every step. He isn't dragging his right rear hoof, and he is back to moving around without looking scared now. I still see him trip once and while and I don't expect over night this will disappear! But I can see how hill therapy and cavalettis will help his knee joint as he still matures over the next 4 more years! And at least I know this is safe for Enzo and won't cause him any medical pain:) 

Have you gotten a break from the weather and been able to play with your horses??? 

Keep it natural! Janine, Enzo, and Kaspin!!!

5 comments:

  1. We finally got a break and Shy was able to have a lesson yesterday. Between her trainer breaking her foot and the heat, it has been 3 weeks since she was ridden.

    I wish we had hills on the property, or even near by. You are so lucky to have them! Shy would greatly from them. And I would, too, once we start canter work.

    Good for you for working on Enzo's stifle and not resorting to surgery.

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  2. Yup, Camryn and I have been playing with the tarp. Looking around the house to see what else I can come up with for her to play around with.

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  3. Enzo is really lucky that you crossed his way :))!

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  4. I think I am the luckier one even though Enzo always keeps me busy, LOL. I love the boys!

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  5. Nope, no break in the weather, but I'm happy you have.

    I didn't know about Enzo's stifles. Poor guy! I'm glad the hill work and cavaletti are helping. Like you mentioned both are good for every horse. :D I wish I had access to hills like you do. All I have are two pretty steep ones on the road so it's walking directly up and down on asphalt and I don't think that's very good for their joints. There is one small slope on a gravel road nearby that has wide grassy ditches that I could walk him on though. :) I still haven't made my cavaletti. I think I will as soon as the heat breaks. Keep up the great work with your boys!

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