I’d noticed a bit ago a new soreness/swelling in the muscle behind his right stifle (of course, he also let Solo bite him there) & had been applying Dr. Bob’s Majykal Butacort Creme (no, seriously, it IS majykal!). However, since our dear vet was coming to pull Solo’s blood (red blood cell check due) & collect bags of poo for a worm update, I asked him to apply his wizard hands to Encore as well.
Resisting temptation, I won’t rhapsodize on repeat about why I love my Dr. Bob (but I’ll link it!), but after watching Encore take 3 steps & approximately 5 joint pokes, I had my answers. Not the muscle knot I’d guessed. A shot of Winstrol to help boost the oncoming soft tissue rehab/strengthening, an Rx of basically what my current work is anyway: focusing on rebuilding that hind end after our time off.
|Approximate SE distribution in US soils; horseuniversity.com|
We’ll reassess in 3-4 weeks. If progress is not “satisfactory,” (don’t ask me for a specification on that, I’m not sure), poor Encore will get internal stifle blisters. I say “poor” because as Dr. Bob described how it works, my own buggered-up knee began to holler in sympathy pain!
So What’s An Internal Stifle Blister?
Stifle blisters are an old-school treatment that were traditionally externally applied (never did like the look of that), but we science’d & all that, so now we have a better option. In essence, the stifle joint is injected with an irritating agent, such as a B12 mixture, so it creates scar tissue around the muscle/tendons on the outside of the stifle (same as our patella).
Immediately, I had to know why creating scar tissue was a good thing. It’s all about tightening up those strained tissues, which have resulted in laxity around the stifle. Solo had extremely loose, poppy stifles when I bought him due to complete lack of condition, so the concept was a familiar one. His resolved quickly in regular work, but Encore’s motto is generally “go big or go home.”
|Ze Stifle. Thanks to Project Gutenberg.|
This Is Good News?
Indeed – because I finally had the courage to ask the question I’d been afraid to ask. I’d had a long-nagging background worry about the possibility of neurological issues due to Encore’s “what, I don’t have hind legs!” attitude. And no one wants that confirmed.
At the same time, he’s done a Training HT with no issues (other than needing more fitness). But I still needed a proclamation.
|He just prefers to be airborne... Pic by High Time Photos.|
Dr. Bob agreed that he saw no neurological indicators whatsoever. *pause for relief*
Why is the beast so addicted to his vet then? It is as simple as “it is who he is.” As a TB, centuries’-worth of moving, running, energy, is in his blood. As any horse who has energy to burn & is a forward-thinking creature, if you don’t use that energy, he’ll come up with his own methods. Which in his case, are Pasture X-Games.
Where this backfires: Encore also has the mindset of human X-Games participants, despite being not nearly as fit due to our horrific winter & my own limitations. The fact that practicing airs above the ground & racing oneself in one’s paddock when it has rained for a zillion months (approximately) will probably result in multiple wipeouts? Not a deterrent; just hop back up & try again! Playing is MOST IMPORTANT THING! *facepalm*
Solo, on the other hand, has always been very careful about his footing & general balance. You could ask him to gallop through a mud bog & he would pointedly ignore you & proceed at the pace he felt was safe. Wipeouts are in his “unacceptable” column.
|It's what they do.|
Absolutely. Doing dumb things in the pasture…well, they’re all horses. One way or another, they just will. And his professional work ethic under saddle means he is attentive to the job at hand; his X-Games penchant does not extend beyond the pasture fence. This is definitely a good thing, as if it did, well, that is NOT a ride you’d want under you! 0.0
So it means my horse…is a normal horse. While it would be nice if he would follow Solo’s more cautious approach, that might just make him perfect & we all know there is no such thing as a perfect horse!! And I don’t have a saddle that fits “imaginary.”