by Laura Crum
Well, after my last post about how the horses were doing well, but I was too lazy to ride, I decided to, you know, actually ride my horse. So we hauled over to the roping arena on Thursday and saddled up, and Sunny felt great. Trotted out freely and eager to go, loped a few laps in the big, freshly groomed arena feeling solid and strong, stopped in a nice, balanced frame. And then, after maybe ten minutes light riding, in which he was 100% sound, he stumbled, trotting down the long side of the arena. And was immediately dead lame in the left front.
Well, OK then. Suddenly my horse is head bobbing lame at the walk. I tie him up, pick his feet—nothing. I look for damage—nothing other than a tiny, tiny spot where he “might” have stepped on himself. No blood. But he’s really lame. By the time we load up to go home three hours later, he’s still lame. But there is no swelling and no sign of trauma. Weird.
I unload him at home and he’s still lame, but happy to eat some grass hay that I feed him, along with the other horses. Two hours later he’s still lame—and he’s colicked.
I’m not kidding. Pawing the ground, won’t graze, looking at his side. I have no idea if the lameness and the colic are related, but I give him a dose of Banamine and call the vet. Twenty minutes later the vet has not called me back, but the Banamine has kicked in and Sunny seems normal. I put him back in his corral and feed him about 1/4 of what he normally gets.
The vet finally calls back and says to call him again later if the pain comes back. I check Sunny at bedtime and midnight (when the drug is out of his system) and he seems fine. He is fine the next morning—and not noticeably lame, either.
So…what was that all about? The horse has never colicked before that I know of. He’s not really a big baby, either. Three days later, he still seems absolutely normal, enjoying life like nothing ever happened. I just can’t figure the whole thing out, though I’m grateful he seems fine now. Jeez…