From Endurance to Dressage
The Last Bandage
Well, not the last bandage ever. Anyone who has followed my equine story knows that I am quickly becoming an expert in all aspects of bandaging. What I mean to say is that I finally applied the last bandage that Dr. Tolley prescribed before our next, and hopefully, last ultrasound.
To catch you up, six or seven weeks ago, Speedy got a little bit wild during turn out. A day or so later I noticed a very slight swelling on the back of his tendon, and he was decidedly lame. Dr. Tolley diagnosed it as tendonitis (too small to be called a "bow").
Dr. Tolley created a treatment plan that involved several months of rest and bandaging. For the first month, Speedy was confined to his stall only, no paddock access, and I changed out a pressure bandage every other day. At month's end, a follow up ultrasound showed that the slight damage to the tendon had healed, but it was still slightly thicker than the healthy one.
Dr. Tolley recommended a cast for two weeks followed by a second cast for the following two weeks. I applied cast number two over the weekend.
Bowed tendons are certainly not anything that an owner wants to deal with, but they can heal well and permanently with proper care. Speedy's injury was very slight, but Dr. Tolley is treating it as conservatively as possible to ensure a full recovery. After the first pressure bandage was removed, all swelling at the injury site disappeared, never to return.
While the "divot" at the base of the tendon looks dramatic, it was actually really hard to see (and even feel) until the hair was shaved away. That thickened area has also disappeared.
Seeing how Dr. Tolley's cast needed a bit of shoring up, I preempted Speedy's desire to chew away the knot by doing a top layer of vet wrap (not pictured). This cast will stay on for another two weeks. Following that, Speedy will again visit Dr. Tolley for a third ultrasound. Since getting the first Gelocast, he's had access to his paddock and is allowed to go on walks.
A few times over the past week he's tried to let loose in his paddock. He looked fantastic with zero lame steps. I don't encourage any play, but it's hard to keep such a large animal confined. A grazing hand walk at least every other day has been enough to keep him pretty happy.
I know he misses being worked and played with, but the time is passing quickly. Before he knows it, he'll be grouching and grumbling at me as we return to schooling the walk to canter to walk transitions.
Just take it easy, Speedy G; we're not done yet.
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%: