On The Mend
Three good days in a row! I'm so pleased that Dino is responding so well to his treatment, and we're not even halfway through his course of medication yet.
Yesterday after letting him graze for 20 minutes and giving him his daily dose of Ulcer Gard, I hopped on Dino bareback for a quiet spin around the farm. Like a vet once told me, "motion is lotion," and horses ought to be eating and walking for most of the day to stay healthy. I don't want to put my pony back to real work just yet, but a little low-impact exercise is good for him.
In typical fashion, Dino said "no, thank you" to going in the arena, as well as going into the back fields where we do hill work. Clearly he is very aware that he still has some time off on his clock. Dino was, however, perfectly happy to cruise around in everyone else's turnout paddock, through the parking area, and across my barn owner's front yard. Punk.
I still have a minor panic attack every time Dino turns to look behind him, or paws to break up a clump of hay, but he is definitely doing MUCH better than he was over the weekend.
After doing some research, I also have a maintenance plan for him post-treatment. I'm going to start by getting him a small-hole haynet, and feeding all of his hay that way. This will simulate a more natural grazing-paced intake, and allow him to have something in his stomach at all times over the course of the day. I'm also going to add soaked alfalfa cubes to his diet. I chose alfalfa over a gastric health supplement because I was able to find MULTIPLE clinical trials and scientific studies proving the benefits of alfalfa for horses with ulcers. I couldn't find anything based on actual science on the efficacy of the many supplements that are on the market. Science FTW.
Dino will have all of next week off to continue his recovery while I am away on vacation, and by the time I get back he will be done with his treatment and hopefully ready to get back to work. We have horse trials to prepare for!