Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Remi Feb 2014 profile pictures

Remi is looking well - just needs a bit more muscle.
For a non foody horse I am really pleased with his weight :-)

We have enjoyed some glorious sunny hacks, and some sunny schooling sessions recently. Remi is full of the joys of spring. Riding in the dry, and sunshine is so lovely. :-) :-)

Monday, 24 February 2014

Remi 14th bodywork session post Rockley

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Remi notes 14th February ‘14

We were unable to lunge due to foul weather . Trot up revealed a little stiffness but nothing obvious to see.

Palpation and massage: (see diagram)

Remi palpated stiff and sensitive both shoulders. He was very reactive over left wither between scapula and spinous processes, left base of neck, pectorals/abs region and right shoulder, lumbar/gluteals. Suspected that he has slipped in the field, as it has been very wet.


He freed off well during massage in spite of some grumpy faces among the many happy faces.

I finished the session with the Physiopod followed by Photonic Torch, which he very clearly enjoyed!


Remi was having the following day off and then back to usual routine.

Monday, 17 February 2014

Pedalling hard to stand still

Pedalling hard to stand still

Remi wasn't right last tuesday for his sharer – offering right canter on both reins. I did think he was underpowered on left rein last week, but he was very chirpy to hack at the weekend.

I had a lesson on Remi on last wednesday morning. He wasn't right. His legs had really filled over night. He seems to have done something to his left shoulder. Think probably a slip in the field. Been reluctant on left rein in school a few days. I was hoping he'd work through it as he was so bright hacking at weekend. However I also struggled to get left canter, and had some wrong strike offs. He did loosen up, but there was a strong difference between his movement on left and right rein. He is good behind though, think hind legs and SI and weight all okay.

Friday  lunchtime - E to do rescue treatment for Remi. In torrential rain! He was very sore over withers and base neck. Think slipped in field (wet, and on a steep hill – and they gallop down it :-(.
Was too wet to assess his movement on lunge before / after as normally do. Responded well to lots of treatment. Remi was hilarious getting really into his treatment.

We looked at saddle and not quite right - think needs more padding in middle. The hair rub on his back suddenly much worse – was growing out, and is now bigger. Mac's saddle is a better fit (same model same width, slightly different balance). So will use that short term. Saddler booked 15th March.

Mac was sore too (right back of saddle), and I had bodywork too and was also sore and tight. So none of us are fairing too well with slogging through the mud and water!

Saturday, 5 of us divided Mac and Remi's field in half with electric fencing and built a corral at bottom. As 4 horses need to move into a drier field. It was sunny for fencing! The sun makes everything feel so much more optomistic. Also I hear about horse's that have had no turnout since Christmas, and realise we are lucky in the grand scheme of things (then there are those whose houses and farms are seriously flooded).

Nice hack with K, late Sunday afternoon. Quick spin in school afterwards, and he felt okay on both reins. And was still light to turn them back out at 6pm!! And dry! :-))

Hope new horses don't charge up and down hill too much when turned out for first time this morning. All horses know field, and each other and used to electric so hopefully not too bad. Fingers crossed as hill is fairly wet.

Sunday, 9 February 2014

Full of the joys . . .

Think the sunshine we had today has gone to Remi's head. He was seen playing, spinning, leaping and cavorting in the field today. All by himself, when there was no wind. Leap, jump, spin etc. etc.

He is full of himself and determined to express his opinions and grow old disgracefully. He is also verging on fat! This has never happened before - fat Remi in February! :hail: Today he tried to drag me into someone else's stable, and he is expressing his views determinedly on whether he wants to be in field or stable. I seem to be creating an opinionated monster!! :wub::wub:

He was cheerful on his hack today. Enjoying the sunshine. Keen to canter, and making his own entertainment by manufacturing spooking.

"Remi - it is a car, we are on a road, you might expect to see a car . . ."

"Remi - those roadworks were there last weekend . . ."

"Remi - that stream is always there . . ."

"Remi - that person with a shovel is harmless . . ."

"Remi - that lady dog walker isnt scary  . . ."

"Remi - that drain cover has been there the last four years . . ."

All done with very mischievous sparkling bright eyes and no malice.

I'd like to say he needs more work, but he has worked 7 of the last 8 days. :biglaughA:

Hmmmm I might need to stop feeding him so much?!? I have been feeding him nearly three time as much feed soaked feed in the last month. I have long worked on a feed Remi what he will eat principle. And he is now eating and demanding more. He looked more working hunter than TB this morning. This is Remi though, he can drop nearly 100kg in a few days, so he may be back to TB looking next week.

He has also been on tumeric, and ground pepper for a fortnight, so maybe that is making a difference? Or maybe he is just so pleased it has stopped raining. :biglaughA:

He wasn't at all pleased to be turned back out again tonight, he has decided he is an indoor horse at the moment. The field is relatively dry, and he has a large feed and adlib haylage in the field. Mac on the other hand still doesn't like his stable, and wants to be an outdoor horse :biglaughA:

Thursday, 6 February 2014

Remi musings

I had Remi's shoes put back on in late October. He hadn't been right since early September. And his feet went v soft and sore in October. He wasn't comfortable in field and his SI area kept getting v sore as was holding himself. He wouldn't settle or eat / drink in the stable to come in. He dropped weight and muscle and was sore in his SI.

Initial plan was shoes whilst we ran updated forage analysis (thought haylage sugars??) and a range of blood tests looking for a metabolic issue. And treated his SI problems.

However no forage or metabolic explanation was found. And he was so happy in his shoes. Mac’s sharer kept joking that someone had been feeding Remi happy pills?! His eyes gleamed and he became more playful in field. I am under no illusions that there must be something not quite right in his lifestyle or underlying health to make his feet sensitive, and happier shod.

His next bodywork treatment on his SI held. My vet (also a physio) came and pronounced him sound and SI fine but needing to build up and strengthen.

Remi has rubber plastic EPONAs in front. These provide frog stimulation and will allow foot to flex and deform and reform as move. And normal shoes behind. We love the EPONAs! My farrier loves them too, and ironically dislikes metal shoes (though a lot of his business is using them).

Remi is better through his body since being re-shod. Interestingly now he is less tight through his shoulders he is much happier to be stabled. Which ironically now gives me more management options. He has gone from refusing to settle in stable to demanding to be in when weather is terrible. We think that sore front feet meant he was holding his shoulders, which meant they were tight, which meant he struggled with being stabled without being sore.

He is also now eating and eating. Which is rare and great. Remi has long been a finicky eater when in discomfort.

It hasn't been a winter without various hiccups and I have struggled with him living out a on hill in rain. Never going to be easy with a big, long horse with a weak SI over winter. Now he will eat in stable, I am able to bring him in a lot more, but he is best out, in all but heavy rain, as moving is better for his joints. He has become a bit of a DIVA – he likes to be out, except when it is v wet, then he wants to be IN!  

I am watching his feet and taking each week as it comes. I think being barefoot has massively helped his feet condition and shape. And being shod when was sore, has massively helped his body. Currently his feet look quite good. His landings and his plaiting behind is as good shod as they have been in 19 months he was barefoot.

It may well be his feet / movement deteriorates longer term in shoes and I have to rethink. Or it maybe that different issue catches up with him. At the moment, I cannot look my horse in the eye, and justify taking his shoes off. Nor can I improve his management beyond what it is (and I am already pretty damned OCD about his lifestyle!!!). Nor can I find what his footiness triggers are. Nor can I risk him being sore and re-injuring his SI from holding himself.

I am very interested in barefoot, as feet health, foot balance etc remain critical to Remi, and I want to stay as educated as possible, and to keep an open mind for the future.

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