Saturday, December 29, 2012

Update on Ben, and then some

Friday morning I found Ben looking much better; still preferring to point the right hind, but able to move just about normally on it when I asked him to walk across the aisle so I could clean his swamp. I checked in with Derek, and the plan is for a week’s stall confinement, daily Surpass application, bute, and, if I can, cold hosings.

Cold hosings. In January, what’s forecast to be a bitterly frigid to start with January. Yeh, right.

I put Commander out for a few hours yesterday, and put Ben in his stall so the TB could gaze out the window at his buddies below, a plan which seemed to keep everyone content after the first half hour of intermittent pathetic bellows of grief at their separation. But I’m planning to keep Commander in for the next few days, other than perhaps brief sessions outside while I clean his stall.

It’s not just to keep Ben company; it’s also because Commander has seemed less bright lately, and isn’t moving as well. Occasionally, in fact, he’ll point his left front foot. He used to stride right up to the fence when I’d come to fetch them in for the night, but recently he’s been hanging back, staying on the edge of the mat inside the run-in. I’m worried that having him stand around for hours in the raw cold on frozen stone dust and concrete, even mat-covered as it is in the run-in, isn’t doing him any good. And it’s not like he gets much exercise when he’s out, since he appears to spend all his time parked inside the run-in rather than puttering around.

Commander’s not done yet, not nearly done; he’s still got plenty of attitude; but he isn’t doing as well as he was in the fall. So I’ll try a short course of being inside for him and see if that helps. Certainly, given the frigid forecast for the next week, it’s as good a time as any for the experiment.

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