Saturday, 23 January 2016

June 2015 - January 2016 - Things didn't seem to ever get better!

Firstly - I am rubbish at writing on my blog now.
Secondly - Adam is still with us!

Since starting out rehab, we went on some lovely rides, took him out quite a bit with the odd bad day with his DJD. He was starting to fitten up slightly but he was then starting to show behavioural problems all over again. He was getting grumpier with rugging, tacking up, brushing etc.
He was booked into physio (his ultimate favourite!) and we went for a ride in the morning. We met some alpacas, also well known as dinosaurs, and Adam totally flipped his lid. He got into a right old pickle with everything and continued to empty his bowels all the way home. Charming!
Popped him back out into the field and went home for a few hours. Came back for the physio at 2pm and found him very uncomfortable in the field. His stomach was banging very loudly, he was stretching his tummy out as though he was going to have a wee and wouldn't lead in from the field.
Vet was called, physio was canceled and we hoped for the best.
Vet came to see Adam for 4 days nearly every morning and evening to inject him with buscopan. He was suffering with spasmodic colic that just wouldn't shift! Possible that he actually had impaction colic and the alpacas got it moving... weird.
He stayed out in the field, to encourage grazing and movement, I checked on him every 2 hours for 4 days. Never ever have I felt quite so tired and terrified.

Kissing Spine was a walk in the park compared to this.

He eventually stopped the spazaming and the vet suggested we scoped him. He coliced on the Monday and was scoped on the Thursday. Starvation is not a fun thing!
We found glandular and squamous ulcers, which where between grade 3 and 4, poor chap was in agony.

Sent home with a massive goody bag and instructions and we started a course of Omeprazole. Annoyingly, he had both types of ulcers so it is harder to treat. So we planned on treating the squamous first and then the glandular.

This all happened in September, he was rescoped 5-6 weeks after first starting treatment and his squamous has started to heal, but the glandular had gotten worse due to the omeprazole. Near christmas time, I stressed to the vet that I wasn't seeing much improvement in his weight and himself. He scanned his colon and did a succeed faeces test to see if we had any problems with the hind gut. Surprise Surprise, he has colonic ulcers too. It literally never seems to end!

He has now finished the omeprazole and is on a gut balancer, sand supplement (smells like beef crisps) and something else that smells like paint stripper.
In the past few weeks I have started to really see an improvement. He is piling on the weight again, his mood is probably the best I have ever seen him. So fingers crossed, we are heading in the right direction.

My very poorly pony. Photos taken to send to my vet. 

Here he is now, Very hairy, little bit chubby but alot happier! 

Finally meeting Anna from 'horses with kissing spines' Facebook page. 

My gorgeous boy enjoying a windy and wet christmas day. 

During all this time, Adam threw a spanner in the works and decided to give himself a weeks box rest with the fattest legs! Photos don't actually look that bad, but vet suspected he had done his two suspensorys behind and his check ligament infront. I really did have to prepare myself for the worst that week. A weeks box rest sorted him out, and he didn't need a scan after all. turned out to be a bruised splint bone. Well done Adam. This horse needs a padded room and his legs tied together. 
Ah and you have probably noticed, he is now barefoot! 4 months ago he had his shoes off, and seems to be coping very well! 

Vet checkup on Friday. Lets see how that goes! 

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

July 2015 -positive steps and medication.

Finally! The belly has started to dissappear and he is looking much sounder. 

We have had joint visits with the farrier and vet which involved sorting his break over and lots of trotting up! Much to Adams disgust. He is in work full time now, which is either hacking, very lightly schooling and ride and lead.  We are aloud to trot to help strengthen his hind quarters now which he finds very exciting. But he has gradually improved, working more 'through' in his transitions and working from behind.

The biggest news is that has had finally had his coffin joint medicated. He had it done 2 weeks ago now, and so far I'm pleased with how he is moving. He is stiff to begin with, but once he gets going there is definitely some improvement.

Adams main thought content currently -

"Why have they cut the hedges? Mother is already starving me"

"Where's all the food gone?"

"Why is Cornwall so hilly?"

"I don't like my disabled paddock, no one to groom"

You get the jist...

So now we are just strengthening (including strapping) and then we will be looking at medicating his SI.

He's very much enjoying his hacking! Super boy as usual!

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

June 2015 - Rehab starts.

When I start to think about what I was doing with Adam this time last year, and the year before, it saddens me. He was out competing this time last year, winning championships and going the best he ever has. And the year before, I had just started having 30 minute lessons on him following his kissing spine surgery in Jan 2013. Everything was positive and exciting, where as the past 9-10 months haven't been brilliant. 

Above and on the right - Adam June 2013 - 6 months post traditional op.

Adam June 2014 - competing at a local Riding Club show. The start of last years brilliant season. 

He has now had 4 sets of x-rays which are showing a positive outcome on his feet. He has degenerative joint disease in his coffin joint, and now believed to have secondary sacro - iliac pain. 
We believed that he may be having problems walking down hills because of his hocks. These where nerve blocked and no there was no difference. Lee (vet) joined me on a hack and experienced him walking down hills for the first time... He felt the worst he has ever felt that day! 

Both taken on the same day. 

So we have a plan. finally!
After all the waiting and all the remedial farriery, he is having his coffin joint injected with sodium hyaluronate in 6 weeks time. He no longer has his remedial shoes on, and at the moment (touch wood) he feels a little more comfortable.
He is on a strict fitness plan (chubber!!) that my vet has provided me with up until he has the joint injected and then the pressure will be put on him slightly to do a bit more.
We will be doing alot of walking, alot of strapping and plenty of stretches! 

Here he is! Looking disheartened because I stopped him eating from the hedge. Mero and Lee on the left. 

One thing I really would like to mention, is the difference the Equilibrium massage pad is making. He will have the full half an hour setting on high before being ridden, and he seems much more comfortable down hills. He also thoroughly enjoys having it on! 

Although there is quite alot wrong with Adam, he really is the happiest I have ever known him. He tries his heart out for me and genuinely loves his work. If this wasn't the case, then I wouldn't be putting him through all this. I can't give up on a horse that enjoys life! He is just a darling, and if he only wants to hack for the next 8-10 years (optimistic!) then that is 100% fine with me. 

Whats so funny?

I think horses who have had any sort of back pain or surgery are little soldiers for allowing us to get back on. I feel privileged every single time I ride him now and I certainly wouldn't of said that a few years ago! 

Thursday, 14 May 2015

Fat fighters fitness club!

Only a quick update!
Adam has been on a strict fat fighters programme for around two weeks now. He is coming out every day with Mero for an hours hack in hand. I am very lucky to have such well behaved horses! I Have led them both through open fields, bridle paths and past combines recently and they are just perfect!

Although Adam doesn't seem to be able to resist eating the whole contents of the hedge which slightly defeats the point! He has also had new shoes, and hopefully this will be his last pair of remedial shoes! He will be xrayed at the end of the month and we should then be able to make some more decisions on whether I can either take him barefoot or go back to a more simple shoe with some heel support. We shall see how he goes,  but he needs to see the physio before anything else happens!

Thanks for reading :)

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

May 2015 - Loosing the tummy, and an amazing difference with the vet.

Firstly, I'd like to mention how happy Adam is. he is almost a different horse. Still out all the time, very happy to be groomed, girthed, scratched, made a fuss of. I am very very relieved, as he was a very unhappy chappy at his old yard.

AND! you may remember me mentioning how much he hates my vet?

"Adam hates my vet. Well and truly makes him feel very unloved! I cannot blame the monster, but he has met him quite a few times now! Enough to chill the hell out! Fool!
So the vet continued to wrap his arms around his neck, awaiting a less scowley face. 80% Successful!"

He was good as gold! What a difference a happy, relaxed horse makes! 
Vet sent me a selfie photo....


So the reason I had the vet out was partly check on his progress and also show my concerns for a bump which has appeared in his lumber region on his back.
He has SI pain, so I am no longer able to ride him until the physio visits on the 19th May. This seems so so far away! but I am sure it will come around quickly. This would explain why he has been so unsettled down hills. So good to have an answer. So I now have to build up his muscle, without lunging and without riding. So I taking him out with Mero, ride and lead, as well as strapping him everyday. I'm going to be super toned! and hopefully so will he! 

So the diet has started!

Thanks for reading!