Riding the Rollercoaster

Mystery undsoundness is the worst. 

Despite how excited I was that Dino felt so fantastic after his chiropractic adjustment, the day after that first ride back he felt pretty terrible again. Crooked, difficult to connect, hollow, and overall just out of whack. Both his Dr. Auntie and I were disappointed and frustrated, and she advised me to "ride the rollercoaster" just a few days longer to see if we were looking at some kind of pattern. 

So, that's what I did, getting on Dino every other day to do 30 minutes of walk work with just a little bit of trot at the end. Encouragingly, after that terrble-feeling ride he continued to improve day by day. He got MUCH easier to connect and straighten, more willing to move forward, kept his back up and legs under him more and more consistently, and overall felt much more comfortable through his body as the days went on. 

Thankfully he's kept most of his muscle!

Even though Dino was definitely showing improvements, he was still more tentative to engage going to the right, especially on smaller turns. So, we decided to go ahead and inject the right stifle, which had been bothering him in addition to all of the full-body crookedness. My thinking was that if we could eliminate discomfort in any part of his body, it would go a long way to getting his body back to a healthy state of pain-free balance! 

The procedure itself went absolutely, gloriously uneventfully. Dino was an absolute champ, and the cheapest date on the planet. We gave him a very small amount of sedative before injecting, and he was drunk off his chestnut ass for a solid hour afterwards. 

Literally could not hold his own head up without resting his chin in the feeder.

He weathered his two days of stall rest like the gentleman he is, and was back out in the wild for two days of turnout over the weekend. The original plan was for me to get back on him today to see what we had, but considering the current blizzard raging outside my window, I'm not sure I'll be able to make it to the barn! More time off certainly won't hurt, so I'll put Dino back to work whenever we're able to dig out again. My barn manager also had a pretty interesting idea when she mentioned that all of our problems seemed to coincide with Dino getting his snow pads on for the winter. While he's had snow pads every year for the last ten years of his life and been fine, he's also coming 23, and it's been muddier than usual, so perhaps the slight change in the shape of his front feet plus the less-than-ideal footing are contributing. So, we'll pull the pads the next time the farrier is out and see what that does for us! In addition to tweaking his shoes, we'll also re-evaluate him with another chiropractic adjustment in a couple weeks and see if he's made an improvement there.

While I do hope beyond hope that Dino will come sound again and we'll be able to make him comfortable enough to keep doing dressage, I'm really feeling pretty okay about having some down time this winter. He's done so much for me, and I'm willing to do what it takes to get my old man comfortable! 


  1. I hope Dino is feeling as close to 100% soon. Honestly? After a pretty mild winter in our parts, we've had some really ugly cold these past few weeks and now snow so it's probably been a nice time to enjoy some down time if you're going to have to have down time! Interesting about the snow pads... My farrier uses them, but isn't a big fan. Years ago I asked about them when my guys were still in shoes and we decided to pull shoes for the winter instead after he said he's had a few react like that. I completely forgot until reading this. He did have a few that were fine forever until one year they weren't. But, he's also a very old school farrier and just is biased against them so take all that with a grain of salt.

  2. Hope you figure it out. I forgot about snow pads. HA Remus hasnt needed them since moving south. What a relief. Dino looks fantastic for his age. I am hoping you have a lot more adventures in store for you two. ALso ick on the blizzard stay warm!

  3. Hope the injection does the trick! I like that your barn manager is so on top of things to notice the timing with the pads! It would be great if that was the actual issue, easy to fix!
    I've been dealing with similar issues with Eros lately. We injected hocks and stifles for him, and I was kind of disappointed when he wasn't magically all better right after. Fortunately, we're about two weeks in now, and he's feeling pretty fantastic. Hopefully you get a similar result! (Though a quicker reaction would be lovely too!)

  4. Godspeed to dear Dino <3 Sounds like y'all are having a dreadful winter out there !


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