Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Home Again, Home Again!

Disclaimer: Those of you who have missed the kind of posts that make "overanxious" look like "bat-shit crazy" may enjoy this post.....

I headed out to the barn on Monday afternoon to see how Junebug was doing. I found him sleepily hanging his head over his door and drooling from the clover he gets to eat for 12 hours each night. Other times I've left him for weeks at a time he's seemed sulky and pouty. This time he was calm and sweet, nuzzled me all over slowly. Though it would be nice if he actually noticed I was gone, I was overjoyed that his attitude has turned around and I could easily see how happy he is at the new place.

I was not as happy when I saw how beat up he's become (this is the overanxious part). It's all superficial hair loss scrapes, some may have had a little blood when they were fresh, but he looks like he was in a bar fight. I was told right away that he and another horse, Gunner, were playing rough and that they both showed big bite marks. I was NOT prepared for what I saw though. He is absolutely covered on his left side with marks! From his withers to his hips and down his barrel. He was also filthy with poo all over and his stockings were brownish yellow so I kind of went into a protective-mom panic. Luckily nobody was there so I was able to suffer needlessly in silence until I got over it. I went right to work giving him a full bath. It's nice to have a wash area with cross ties, but he moves around so much it was still a rodeo. The dirt was just pouring off of him with the first rinse. I even went so far as to use the Show Clean whitener on his socks, even though we have no plans for any more shows this year. Though he did not appreciate the bathing I felt much better being able to see all of the wounds clearly and I was mollified. Only one big one on his side does not show hair growth yet, which freaks me out a bit. The rest are all in various stages of healing and hair re-growth. After the bath I put Tri-Care on everything I could find and combed his mane back to one side. While he was quickly drying in the 91 degree heat, I took him into the trail just outside the barn. He was VERY snorty about it which amuses me greatly. He spent a lot of time just staring off down the trail. I was so worried that he was going to bolt, though, that I limited our first adventure. Plus the biggest horsefly I have EVER SEEN started trying to land on his back so I got us out of the woods quickly. The thing was the size of a small hummingbird! I knew it'd be bad news if that bit him... how would I ever convince him the woods DON'T bite!?!

Though I freaked out about the wounds he seems SOOOO happy there. I'd rather have a happy horse with scars than an unhappy one without, so I'll have to get over it. So far he's never had a wound that didn't grow back roan so I'm crossing my fingers. My least favorite part about roans is how they tend to grow back solid hair when they get hurt. Unique battle scars, but I just don't like them. I don't think I could take him to a show like this though, and I'm not convinced it's okay to saddle him like this, so I'll look at that today.

The other fun thing I discovered was THIS:

Yummy yummy mildew! I know it's a sign of "healthy" leather (though how can dead tissue be healthy?) to have mildew so I guess my reins are not as healthy as my headstall.

I took all the mildewed pieces home and cleaned and oiled them. My english bridle was fine so I'm not sure if that's unhealthy, or just didn't get mildewed because Max's girls used it while I was gone. The mildewed pieces were in less ventilated areas of the box while the bridle was exposed to more air. Ventilation is good for horses AND tack!


  1. Glad you are back! Hopefully Junior's cuts are just superficial...it isn't nice seeing them covered in kicks/bites though. I had a big problem with that at an old barn I was at.

    I think it has to be a bigger wound for it to grow back dark, doesn't it? I hope so, anyway!

  2. Hi. I read your blog faithfully, but have never commented. My mare is constantly getting chewed up. I have found that putting vitamin E cream on the 'teeth scrapes' really helps with hair growth. Hopefully Junior heals up well.

  3. Welcome back!! :)

    I'm sorry to see that Junior got chewed up. Hopefully the other horse looks just as bad so you know Junior held his own. ;)

    They look a lot like the ones Lilly had... superficial, but still concerning for us as horse owners. The worst part, like you said, is that you would hesitate to take him to a show with marks like that.

    Is he getting a new pasture buddy? If they play that rough, I would be worried they might do something worse to each other than just teeth scrapes.

    Hopefully he's healed up soon!!

  4. I know how you feel about the war wounds. And I know exactly about how your mind jumps to the show thing! My mare just took out a chunk of her mane about half way down her neck and her mane is about two feet long! All I could think was, "I can't show like this!" Of course, if a judge actually dinged me for a two inch chunk of mane, that would really say more bad things about the judge than about my horse but still. Here's hoping Junior heals up quickly and my mares mane grows fast!

  5. One word:

    Bacon grease.

    Okay, it's two words. When I had a stubborn bite spot on my horse, bacon grease was the only thing that brought the hair back to the spot.

    Of course I ended up wanting breakfast every time I went riding... but it was a small price to pay.