Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Success Story

This post is dedicated to a horse that is already so special to me and captured my heart.

When I first saw him in May he was sick. A bag of bones with a big swollen wormy belly. He was the skinniest horse I had ever seen, looking at him made my stomach ache. There was something in his eyes, in the way he lowered his head and pressed it into my belly that made me made me instantly fall in love. I made it my mission to fix this horse. I thought he might die, seriously. He was so skinny that even the Japanese weren't riding him (they tend to not see a problem with seeing ribs where as in the states we prefer a much plumper pony). You could hang clothes on his hip bones, see every rib and the top his rib cage, the ridge of his spine, the point of his sternum. His back end and back legs were covered in rainrot. So he had just been slowly wasting away for some time. The first time I got him out of his stall and gave him a bath he was quivering with happiness. (I've since then learned he absolutely loves baths.) He was dewormed, slowly had his feed increased and was given an extra meal a day, had his feet done, and was put out on the grass as much as possible. Every day at the barn I groomed him, gave him baths, treated the rainrot, and made sure he got lots of attention and treats. He started to come back to life.

Theses picture were taken in July, 2 months and about 100 lbs since I first saw him. So, imagine how bad it was. Poor thing. I knew all he needed was time and attention.

As I mentioned here, he was finally in the process of being lunged a few times a week. That was until he hurt himself. He somehow managed to catch his eye on something in his stall and ripped his eye lid. It was AWFUL. I was devastated. After finally getting him healthy and happy, this happened.

Disclaimer... picture is graphic and if you are squeamish scroll past and don't look.

Day of:

2 weeks after:

3 weeks after:


Isn't it a miracle?! With very limited veterinary intervention (no stitches, no surgery, nada), antibiotics and just daily first aid he managed to heal himself. Amazing.

So, he is finally back to being healthy and he his healed. After lunging again for a week I felt like it was time to finally get on.

It was pretty emotional for me, to finally ride this beautiful horse I love so much. I have worked so hard to get him feeling better and it is very rewarding to see direct results in him.

Here are some pictures from the first ride. I only rode for about 10 minutes. We're starting down a new long road of training and building him back up. I know I'll enjoy it every step of the way with this sweet, lovely boy.


Kate said...

I teared up a little bit just then. Those horses are so lucky to have you. Thanks for sharing the bits - it's amazing to see how much he's grown and healed during your time there. I like the first picture best (you're making the Evie face at him!). So in awe of all you are doing at that barn. Keep us posted. :)

Julie said...

I love Woods. What a magnificent creature. I think your love had a lot to do with him healing. He must feel so comforted, loved and adored. I feel it right through this page! You really have a special gift, and what is so wonderful is that you aren't wasting it. You are sharing your heart, healing those horses and giving so much of yourself to the barn. They are very blessed to have you as their leader. Yay!