Went to check the cut on his front right ankle last night...he nicked himself over reaching...and it was fine: No swelling, no tenderness, no anything, I cleaned it, protected it and gave him a quick brush. Aaron was along and he is getting very good about being the horse holder...although he wore his berks...I said he'd be changing his tune pretty quick when Chester stomps on his toes. Anyways....
What am I hesitant about...? His back... :-( There was a litttllleee bit of flinching when I was running my hands along his spine (as I have been doing every day for the past month). It was right where the end of the dressage saddle would sit. So, my guess is this:
With my dressage saddle, I use a back riser. Because he is so uphill, I need it to make his saddle sit flat. I noticed on Monday (go figure that was the day he became cranky when I asked for 'more'), that with the riser in place, that the back end of the saddle wasn't flush to the riser as I was doing up his girth. Weird. But, I figured he wasn't standing evenly so that is what was making it not lie properly on his back. In retrospect, now that I go back and think about how the saddle was lying and where he was flinching...I think we don't need to use the riser anymore (this friggin horse of mine's top line changes every effing day, I swear to God) and will revert back to the half pad that I have for his jumping saddle...We will try that out tonight.
Speaking of pads - because as soon as I got into work this morning, rather then spending 30 minutes checking email/vmail etc - I research sore back remedies...and came across something call Thinline Saddle pads. http://www.thinlineglobal.com/
Long story short, they are GUARANTEED to protect horses' backs, improve rider equitation and saddle fit....well then, the question becomes why wouldn't I buy one? So -I did some research, called them up and told them my scenario. They recommend the: Trifecta Cotton Ultra HalfPad by Thinline with Fleecework Rolls. Even better - Greenhawk just started carrying the product. Even better still - Kim (one of my gfriends who has a couple wicked horses and who is a "loyal follower of your blog" - Rock on Kim - ) works for Ghawk and is going to personally order the pad for me - soooo I should have it when I am back from my vacay. Woot! It'll be pushing $200 by the time it gets here, but, IMO, THAT is a small price to pay for something that will make Chester 100% happier and get rid of the intermittent soreness he gets through his back (hopefully) and if I can pay better attention to how his saddle is sitting on his back...you would think I would know better given how sensitive Chester is to EVERYTHING...totally my fault...sorry buddy... :-(
He has 10 or 12 fly bites on his lower left flanks and you would think a deer fly the size of a small cat took a chunk out of him...poor dude. If I remember I will try to take some pictures of them tonight...DVM Extraordinaire said to put some Listerine onto them as the alcohol will draw the infection out...God, she is awesome.
Tonight - we are supposed to push our conditioning...however, it is also supposed to be 38 degrees with the humidity (no joke) and I am not going to push him if it is like that outside. We will see how his back is and regardless, all trot work will be done in 2-point so I can stay off his back (wicked) and he will get a hot towel soaked with Epsom salt on his back once we are done our ride...
Come on Pickle!!
Supposed to be severe weather tonight (bad thunder storms/rain/hail etc) so I think I might leave him inside...I will let you know how it goes...!!