Thursday, May 19, 2016

Taking a moment to interrupt the show updates...

I feel like I am in a bit of a weird place right now with my riding...on one hand, I am feeling really confident in the progress Tillie is making, but on the other hand, I am feeling like *I* need to get my butt in gear.

It is becoming really apparent when I dont ride the way I should. Tillie is a super star and covers my butt half the time but that will become less and less ok with trying to stay at novice and with training level as our new goal in the distant future.

I need to be this solid ALL the time

I had another lesson with Dom Schramm last night and it was nice to hear him encourage us and said that the tough exercises he was setting up were certainly looking smoother and he could see improvement. BUT it was a bit rocky at times mostly due to me just not knowing how to ride through it. It was a bit hairy too because Tillie was a lot less forgiving and rightly so...Ill explain more on that in a minute.

Im using this again because basically this is what it was like in the lesson

Another concern is Tillie's health at the moment on two counts. 1)I always pull a lymes titer on her every year because of the area we live in. Shes been astoundingly negative since I have had her....that is until today.

Just after submitting my entry for Loch Moy on the 29th and our FIRST recognized entry for Plantation on 6-11, I got the call that she wasnt terribly positive, but it definitely is and positive enough to warrant a month of doxy. I expressed my concern to my vet and he reassured me that shes most likely had this for some time and keep an eye on her, but the extreme irritation she had with me in my lesson was most likely due to health issue #2.

2) Hives and allergies. Tillie last year got a bit hivey during the summer and I took her off the depo thinking that that was the culprit. It was right when I started her on it the first time and my vet agreed to try taking her off for a period.

Old media....but basically Tillies reaction to me if I sat on her too hard in our lesson

She did clear up so I thought I figured out the culprit...when I complained of her shenanigans to my vet once again the winter, he suggested to try it again and it hasnt given us any issues since.

Well yesterday Tillie was covered all over in tiny hives and also what looked like possible rain rot in some areas. Neither would be surprising with how bad allergies are for everyone this year in addition to all this extreme rain we have had.

Shockingly enough, she hasnt gotten any scratches or fungus like last year...but trying to curry her yesterday was awful.

The mare glare....

Poor thing was so skin sensitive she would buckle and was clearly not comfortable. I almost didnt ride her in the lesson, but I decided to see how uncomfortable she was once on since she always tends to be sensitive about brushing in general even without the skin issue.

She was fine warming up and even starting off...she was however NOT as fine when I messed up and did pull a few instances of the horse I had early winter with some miner dolphining and mini sass episodes.

(last year) but you get the idea...So sassy
Regardless, Dom reassured me that he thought we looked like we were improving and one of the three items he gave me to work on (being softer when landing and not sitting on her too soon) was improved.

Luckily her hives seem to be better today after talking with this morning's feeder but she will still be getting a mild soap bath which im sure she will hate. She wasnt THAT sore Monday after our event when I rode, so I was a bit alarmed at the sudden change. I was also anxious to find out if her lymes numbers were contributing at all as well...which now I know what they are could very well also be.

Monday after the event conditioning ride (mostly walking)

So after much discussion with my vet today, we will continue as planned since she hasnt been showing me discomfort other than yesterday and proceed with caution. He doesnt see any reason this will affect us at all and shell start the doxy tomorrow.

He also suggested for her hives a fly sheet since this happened last year as well so I bought one this morning with some fly boots (no more losing shoes this year tillie!) which should be here in a few days.

Hey, remember when you always hurt yourself!? Lets not start that again.
Oh you know, because I have money growing on trees! It definitely hurt after dropping some dough for my two entries...especially the recognized one (holy cow $260!!!) which I know for us in this area is fairly cheap compared to other but still!! Im used to paying around $100. 
Its ok Tillie, its not like youre high maintenance or anything.
Im still optimistic of our schedule and hope we can stay on course. I am a bit sad I wont have any buddies with me at Loch Moy and even considered doing Olde Hope (because showing with people is WAY MORE fun). But my trainer suggested I try to do a venue that held recognized events so that we navigated an event a bit more true to what we will find when we do our recognized in July.

Ill be posting about my goals and my decision to do recognized sometime this week :)

So anyone else have horses that get hives in spring and summer? Any tips?


  1. Ramone had what I thought were tiny hives at the beginning of the month and I too bought him an all inclusive flysheet because he was acting soooo irritated by flies and what not. Sure enough it was gnat bites and he was fine with the sheet and mask. Hope its the same for your mare.

    1. I hope so!! Thanks for the feedback. She luckily seemed better today

  2. I have no advice for the hives. Fingers crossed that the fly sheet works.

  3. Riley got hies really badly when I first owned him and the flysheet was a bit of a tricky thing for him. If it was too hot, he'd sweat underneath and the hives would get worse. Is Tillie out all day? I try to keep Riley out and night and in during the day to help with his oh-so-sensitive redhead skin issues. I did put him on Platinum Performances skin/allergy supplement one summer when they were the worst and it worked really well (but it's a bit pricey). Hope she's feeling back to normal soon.

    1. thanks for the input! I did a ton of research on fly sheets because she does live out all day and I knew sweating under it wouldnt help things. I am hopeful the one I got does as it says and does moisture wick out any moisture/sweat.