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Wizard Rides 549 – 603: Come On Feet

March 10, 2014

Chance, watch out for Wizard- he's ready to rumble!

September 22, 2013 – March 10, 2014

I broke Blogging Rule #1, which is to not neglect your blog. Let’s catch up a little.

Monmouth County Hunt Club

In late September, Wizard and I rode with the Monmouth County Hunt Club for the first time- they hosted a clinic, during which guests were invited to ride with the hounds and the hunt. Wizard handled the hounds very well. He was great when we were moving, but when we stopped, it was difficult for him to hold still for periods of time in that big group. After about two hours of riding, we retired and walked home. The hunt club members were SO nice, and very welcoming to us. I hope to ride with them again sometime.

THE ADVENTURES CONTINUE…

Wizard was a supermodel during his Model Geldings class

In October, Wizard and I competed in the Second Call “Fall for Horses” Charity Show. We did two model classes and two Intro dressage tests. Wizard did really well in the model classes against MUCH younger horses, and we came home with ribbons in both classes. In the dressage tests, we scored a 54 and a 55, if I remember correctly. I was very proud of him for handling the show environment so nicely, and by the time we got to the dressage tests, it was a long day. I think he was just ready to be done. His free walks were good, but our trots were tense, and he erupted into a few sideways crab-trots on the circles, and did some creative leaping at the beginning of the second test. We stayed in the ring without jumping any barriers, I didn’t fall off, and he didn’t lose any shoes, so I’d call that a huge success for our first-ever dressage tests. His weight was great, and he sparkled in the October sun. I was very proud to have him there.

Wizard in his model class

Thank you to Wizard's legion of aunties (and grandma) for their help and support during a successful dressage debut today!

Wizard gets a pat after our dressage test at the Second Call "Fall for Horses" Charity Show at the Horse Park of NJ

Once the dressage was done, we took a few weeks in November to work on a little jumping, and we also got in trail rides whenever we felt safe enough to venture out in the woods with the hunters.

Boy oh boy is this horse fun to jump. I only take a few gymnastic lines about twice a month with him, but we both love it.

Wizard said, "Dressage, schmessage. Let's jump."

Flying with The Wizard

Up, up, and away with Wizard

Wizard's weekly jump school. Did a little gymnastic line of a placing pole to a cross rail, then two strides to a vertical.

And we practiced our ponying skills with Brigid! I’d like to do more ponying in the future.

Ponying Brigid with Wizard. It's fun!

Somewhere between my last rides in the Assunpink in 2013 and the first robins of 2014, it got cold. It snowed. And snowed. And got colder. And snowed a little more.

Wizard in Winter

"The two are heads apart and Wizard's got a lead! Wizard put a head in front right in the middle of the stretch! It's Wizard and Chance battling back along the inside! We'll test these two to the wire!"

I disturbed His Royal Highness Wizard's sunbathing session

All bundled up for the cold

Wet weather is not kind to Wizard’s feet. Despite diligent and skilled farrier care, Wizard’s soles were thin, his palmar angles were low, his frogs were protruding, and his heels were getting crushed. With the help of my regular veterinarian, the veterinarian at our local equine clinic, a local farrier, and consultations with Dr. Ric Redden, we’re now making some progress with Wizard’s feet.

Wizard’s shoes were pulled in mid-January. In early February, he was fitted with four rocker shoes. Although he normally lives outside 24/7, he is currently stalled each night at our local equine clinic for his hoof rehabilitation process.

In these photo sequences, the photos were taken on January 8, February 1, and February 9.

Left Front…
Wizard's feet: 2014
Left front
Wizard's New Shoes
Wizard's feet: 2014
Left front
Wizard's New Shoes
Wizard's feet: 2014
Left front
Wizard's New Shoes
Wizard's feet: 2014
Left front
Wizard's New Shoes
Right Front…
 Wizard's feet: 2014
Right front
Wizard's New Shoes
Wizard's feet: 2014
Right front
Wizard's New Shoes
Wizard's feet: 2014
  Wizard's New Shoes
Wizard's feet: 2014
Right front
Wizard's New Shoes
Left Hind…
 Wizard's feet: 2014
Left hind
Wizard's New Shoes
Wizard's feet: 2014
Left hind
Wizard's New Shoes
Wizard's feet: 2014
Left hind
Wizard's New Shoes
Wizard's feet: 2014
Left hind
Wizard's New Shoes
Right Hind…
 Wizard's feet: 2014
Right hind
Wizard's New Shoes
Wizard's feet: 2014
Right hind
Wizard's New Shoes
Wizard's feet: 2014
Right hind
Wizard's New Shoes
Wizard's feet: 2014
Right hind
Wizard's New Shoes

Click here to read more about palmar angles.

Click here to read about rocker shoes.

Here’s a video of Wizard trotting on Feb 24…

My friend massaged him, and interestingly, he was tighter in the front end and more comfortable in the hind end. He’s moving well, and I’ve put about 12 rides on him since he got his new shoes. We also took a dressage lesson and worked on some “physical therapy” type work to loosen up his neck, free up his shoulders, and help him build correct muscle whole we get fit for the spring.

We’re doing walk and trot work only right now, and practicing our shoulder in, as well as bending exercises to help with body awareness.

When he got to the clinic, he weighted 1,200 pounds. The stress of the move caused him to lose 65 pounds. The vet put him on sucralfate, I changed his feed to Pennfield Energized Senior, added alfalfa hay and an extra grain feeding at night, and as of today, his weight is back up to 1,195 pounds. Hooray!

The farrier will check on Wizard’s feet next time he’s at the clinic, and Wizard is due for another shoeing in early April. I hope that he can go home soon. We’re waiting for the ground to dry up so his feet don’t get soft too soon while they’re rehabbing.

This endeavour is expensive and it took a leap of faith, but so far, so good. I’m looking forward to the rest of our adventures in 2014.

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