From Endurance to Dressage
Speedy has had 4 abscesses in the past 8 months. He's 15 years old but had never had one before this past winter. There is no doubt that the abscesses are directly related to his Cushing's Disease diagnosis.
I tend to be pretty proactive in the vet care department. When I know I can't treat something, I call the vet immediately. But by keeping my med kit well stocked, I find that life is a lot easier. For one, emergencies are a lot less stressful, and two, I can pretty effectively treat most run-of-the-mill injuries, and even some not so basic issues, all without the need for a visit from the vet. Izzy's recent eye wound comes to mind. There is still a small area that needs to finish healing, but having saline solution and an irrigation syringe handy probably saved me a vet bill.
When Speedy developed a hoof abscess earlier this month, I was thankful to have had plenty of bandaging material and Numotizine in my med kit. While I didn't use all of the Numotizine, I put a pretty big dent in the tub. So much so that the next time he abscesses, I'll only have enough for one or two wraps.
I was also unbelievably lucky that my farrier showed up while I was on the phone with the vet. Within 10 seconds he was able to diagnose an abscess which saved me a long trip across town and a vet bill. He was able to make such a quick diagnosis because he had hoof testers and a hoof knife at his finger tips. I'll give you a quick guess as to what now resides in my med kit.
Yep. I bought myself hoof testers and a hoof knife. While there are many hoof testers on the market, I reasoned that I didn't need a professional grade pair. I won't be using them that often, and with any luck, never again, so I went with a modest pair. I ended up ordering the Tough 1 Pro Hoof Tester 13" from the Riding Warehouse. At $29.95, less with a 15% coupon code, they're perfect.
Not wanting to be a total chick about my new tool, I cut away the wrapper and actually made sure I knew how to use it before a crisis strikes. I poked around at both Speedy's and Izzy's hooves trying to determine just how hard I need to squeeze. I eventually realized that I can squeeze as hard as I can without getting a reaction on a healthy hoof.
You'll notice that I also bought a hoof knife. It's a fairly cheap one, but again, I don't plan on needing it very often. It's a stainless steel, double edged knife that feels good in my hand. It seems sharp, but I didn't test it out. I actually hope I never need to use it. At $3.95, it's practically disposable anyway.
And since I was prepping for future abscesses, I decided to restock my dwindling supply of Numotizine. My last tub was half this size and cost $40 (from the vet). This tub, a full 3 pounds, ran me only $33 including free shipping from Amazon. Amazon Prime is the best "club" we belong to.
Here's to hoping that neither of my horses ever abscesses again, but if they do, I am armed and ready!
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at the lower levels. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2023 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
2023 Show Schedule
*** SCEC 10/15-16/22
2022 Completed …
(*) Tehachapi 5/22/22
(*) Tehachapi 7/24/22
(***) Tehachapi 8/28/22
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%:
Score 1: 62.115%