Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Danny the Wonderhorse- managing stringhalt

Danny modeling his winter jacket
Me on Danny shortly after he came to live with me

His Handsome pose
Danny is a special horse, he was someone great once, I can tell in how easy he is to work with.  My mom bought him for 100 dollars to save his life. He must have lost 50 pounds or more. Danny has stringhalt. It is very bad for him. Not painful but certainly slows him down a lot.  She had him in Oregon for a couple of years before she lost her house and had to move.  I paid 600 dollars to have him shipped to me in Wyoming.  It was quite that culture shock for him for sure.  He left so much lush green to come to bitter cold and lots of dry scrub. It was November when I got him.  I felt bad because he was all alone, although there was an old horse next door to visit with over the fence.  The trip was hard on him.    I told the transport guy that he had to have a slant load trailer because Danny cannot back out of a trailer.  But sure enough when he dropped him off there he was, backing him out of the trailer.  I was so angry!!!!

At first Danny and I sort of bumped heads.  He was a little stubborn, and not very respectful of me.  Not mean, just pushy like a spoiled child.  With the help of a good friend and trainer we explained to him that disrespect would not be tolerated, and since then he has been fine. As you can see by the top picture it only takes 2 wires to keep him in and they aren't even hot or barbed.

His first winter was wicked cold.  I went to the tack store and bought a special blanket for him.  It has a 2 foot wide band of cloth that is attached on one side and then wraps tightly around him.  It has three hooks on the opposite side which adjust. The whole thing fits like it was tailor made just for him.  It was expensive but worth the money because he has never gotten tangled up in it.  I can't tell you how many nights I would be out there in the snow and the wind (always windy here) crawling around under him and he would never move while I blanketed him, and I didn't even have him haltered!

In the summer he turns a beautiful Grulla color, with a stripe down his back.  When he was in Oregon he had dapples, but he seems to have lost those, could be age I guess.

Danny does not do well in slick mud or hard ground.  When his foot comes down it hits hard, his hoof is even a little mis-shaped from it.  Hard ground seems to bother him, he will always go for soft dirt.  I only let one person trim his feet.  Sometimes, he needs help with his balance and lots of rest while being trimmed.  It takes a person with patience to give him the time he needs.  He doesn't fight but he will fall over if you don't stabilize him.

I had a vet attempt accupuncture for a while.  It didn't help. Most vets say he looks great for his age. He is about 24 we think.
There is more to tell about Danny, but I will stop here today.


  1. Okay so as I read back over that I can see that my copy paste did not work so well. The line about him losing 50 pounds was supposed to be in the part about his trip to Wyoming. Not in the part where my mom bought him for 100 dollars. In fact when she had him he was fat and sassy for sure.

  2. I love that you and your mom gave a great life to a horse that would have been sent to slaughter or put down, simply because he isn't sound for a lot of riding! I really appreciate people like you!