Friday, February 20, 2015

So Far, So Good

Trax seems to be doing really well on the new meds (Baytril).  His appetite came back with voracity, and he is back to his normal weight.  I was giving him free choice grass hay all day, a little bit of pasture time by himself, and then some alfalfa/oat hay cubes which he really seems to like.  Now he is back to a  normal feeding routine, which is the cubes, a little pasture time, and one flake of hay for a snack in the after noon.

He's a little miffed that he doesn't get hay all day now, but he will get over it.

In my opinion today is the day that will show me if he is actually getting better.  It seems that every 7 days was when he was relapsing. So if we can get through the next 2 days with no fever, I will breathe a little easier.

The vet is coming out today to change the catheter in his neck and to just do a check up.  The blood tests came back and did not show anything significant, nor did they show us anything that we did not already know.

While in some ways that is kind of frustrating because we still don't have a reason behind the infection, it is also good news because it means that it supports the vets theory that perhaps the cause for the relapse was simply that we weren't using the correct antibiotics and that the stronger and different type will do the trick.

The only thing we are waiting to get back still is the Valley Fever test.  Valley Fever is not super common in horses, but they can get it.  It could explain the abnormalities in his lungs and if he does have VF then it could cause swollen lymph nodes directly behind the liver, which would constrict the GI tract and cause the slower motility.  Hopefully I will have that answer today.

Not the best picture of him but at least his ribs aren't showing anymore.

I can has more hay please?

I have to flush this 3x a day plus give meds through it.  

In other news, Melody and I are getting ready for our first show this weekend.  It is just a small show, just for fun, but I am excited.  Our riding relationship is really coming along, and although we still are getting very far with trail obstacles, the last 2 weeks of really learning how to work together has been great for both of us.

I rode Killian the night before last in the arena.  He hates arena work usually but on this night he was so darn good.  He picked up the correct leads and only fought me to go to the gate a couple of times.  While loping our circles I asked him to collect and carry himself and he did and for the first time EVER since owning him I was able to enjoy the lope, and really feel the horse underneath me.  My friend Heidi was watching from the other end and even she commented how smooth he looked.

He was smooth, smooth and powerful.  As most of you know Killian is a big guy.  I've always considered him to big and nonathletic, but last night I felt a different horse under me. This horse was more graceful and an athlete.

One time towards the end he decided it was past his dinner time and wanted to go to the gate.  I spanked him with the reins and he gave just a little jump.  That was the point when I realized that if he ever decided to take to bucking, he could seriously hurt a person.  Luckily he is not that guy.

I've been contemplating for a couple of days the reasons for the changes in him.  I think it is a combination of things.  Since my work with Dana I have become a more confident rider.  While Killian is a great babysitter on the trails, when asking him to work in the arena you need to be confident or he does what ever he wants.

 Secondly he went on a badly needed diet and has lost probably 100lbs.  He no longer has the huge hay belly, or the cellulite on his neck.  He is not underweight by any means, I think he looks pretty good.  I will take some pictures of him soon and share them.

The third thing that has changed, is since he lost the fat, and he is almost 21, I decided to go ahead and start him on some senior feed.  I have never given it to him before because he was so over weight I didn't feel he needed it.  So he gets a scoop of nutrena Senior and a scoop of nutrena safe choice, so perhaps those extra vitamins are giving him the energy he was lacking before.

I think he feels better.  I know he sure looks better and acts better.  With all that in mind, we are going to keep on with this, and he is going to spend more time in the arena getting a tune up.  Not so much because I want to compete with him (although I might someday) but just because he needs to be reminded that even if he doesn't love it, he still has to mind.

Sassy is still hanging in there, she hurt herself playing in the pasture the other day. At first I thought it was her foot, but it isn't. It is her shoulder.  I could feel the heat coming up from under her scar.  I gave her a light dose of bute and now she is fine.  She has just a little over another month here before she moves on to her new home. But that is a different story for a different time.

Now its time to get to work.


  1. Hang in there Trax, we're pulling for you! Interesting about the Valley Fever, one of my dog Tess's daughters belongs to a couple who vacation in Arizona in the winter and she got Valley Fever. They think they have it conquered though, so if that is the complication with Trax I hope it's easy to treat.Can't wait for Sassy's story, I do have an inkling on what that's all about.

  2. I really hope Trax continues to improve!