From Endurance to Dressage
Someone Else's Abscess
In yesterday's post, I mentioned that someone else besides Izzy had an abscess. In case you were unable to guess who the someone else is, it is none other than the gray pony, Speedy G. Little stinker. Every single winter he manages to come up with some kind of injury that gets him out of work for several weeks (or months).
Speedy's abscess was a lot more interesting than was Izzy's. When Dr. Gonzalez put the hoof testers on Speedy, he nearly fell over. And that was just in the middle of the hoof. As Dr. G gently probed Speedy's sole, it was a lot like the game where you hide an object and then shout out temperature settings as the searcher gets closer to the object. In Speedy's case it was hot, hotter, you're burning up, you're on fire! Speedy's abscess wasn't well hidden; Dr. G found it right away.
As Dr. G dug out layers of Speedy's sole, he kept glancing at me to see how I was handling Speedy's pain level. You see, Dr. G is not my regular vet; we always see Dr. Tolley. Dr. Tolley frequently calls Dr. Gonzalez over to see what's going on though as Dr. G. is a relatively new vet, and it's good for all of the doctors to know all of the patients. I know Dr. G. from many previous visits, but he's never actually treated one of my horses.
As it happened, Dr. Tolley wasn't in on Tuesday, so Dr. G stepped in for his maiden voyage on the good ship Team Speedy. While we've met many times, he's never been with me from the start of a visit all the way through to the end. I sort of felt sorry for the guy. While I am not that client, I bring my own special brand of crazy to each visit.
What's that? Can I touch it? Why does it look like that? Where does that go? Is it supposed to be that color? Ew. Cool! Okay, that's just gross. What do I do after that? What's my other other option? For HOW long? Wait, I didn't get the picture - do it again! You get the idea. Dr. Tolley totally digs it that I ask questions and want to be involved in every step of the treatment. They are my horses after all, and I am the epitome of a hands-on owner.
So when I leaned over Dr. G's shoulder and gave an ooh, ahh at the gunk coming out of the hole he had just opened up, I think he was a bit surprised. When I told him to squeeze it harder, I think I scared him. Not that I want Speedy in any pain, but I have no problem causing some quick discomfort if it's going to get the job done more effectively. He squeezed harder.
Fortunately, Speedy's abscess is shaping up to be a pretty typical pimple in the foot. You give it a good squeeze, out comes the gunk, and then you wait for things to heal over. Dr. G's remedy was for me to wrap it every other day over the course of the next 7 to 10 days.
He gave me a neat little syringe with a flexible tip that fits into the hole he dug out. Last night, I unwrapped his bandaging job to clean out the wound and rewrap it. The little syringe made it easy to flush out the hole. I was able to irrigate it well enough that the Betadine solution actually oozed out of a fresh drainage hole in Speedy's heel. I saw that as a good thing as the abscess has finally cleared his hoof.
I soaked a small stack of those mini gauze pads in straight Betadine and packed them into his hoof. I wrapped that with a waffle-like cotton roll, and topped it all with vet wrap. The obligatory duct tape finished off the bandages.
While it was still quite tender and puffy, Speedy was definitely more comfortable. I imagine that by the end of the weekend Speedy will be almost back to normal.
I guess that's one way to get out of doing flying changes!
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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
2023 Completed …
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%: