"And, when you want something, the entire Universe conspires in helping you to achieve it." -The Alchemist, by Paulo Coehlo

Tuesday, June 18, 2013


Dr. R came out today for Lily's recheck. At our second ultrasound, the vet had originally said that I could start trotting at my own discretion if I felt that Lily looked good at the 3 week mark, but I'm always second-guessing myself, so I told her I preferred if she looked at Lily herself.

I'm glad I had gone that route because Lily was indeed slightly off, and it was in the left front. It was on & off when Dr. R's tech was trotting her, much like what I was feeling yesterday at the walk.

Dr. R flexed Lily's left hind, just to make 100% sure that it wasn't the injured leg acting up, then had her tech trot her off. Lily trotted off, moving beautifully even in the hind end on the barn's concrete driveway. The gimp was definitely in her front end.

We then moved her to the indoor, which had been watered and dragged, and the footing was nice and compact. Lily's movement was better here, but still slightly off. (She didn't care; she was SO excited to be trotting!) We decided to block her foot, just to make sure it was her foot.

It was. She was so sound after being blocked that Dr. R decided to call it a stone bruise, and told me to start trotting anyway. I was instructed to give her bute twice a day for the next 3 days, and hopefully she'll be better by then.

We had acepromazine compounded into an oral gel and the vet brought it with her for me today. The concentration of the oral form is 25 mg/ml, vs the injectable version that's 10 mg/ml. I was instructed to give Lily only 2 mls of the gel...which, if you do the math, is 50 mg total...which is the equivalent of five mls of the injectable form of ace...So I figured well, what the hell. We're supposed to trot for the first time in 2 months today and she was spunky, so might as well.

So after we were done with the exam, I gave her the 2 mls of ace by mouth. And waited.

And waited.

And waited.

45 minutes later, she still looked awake. So I sat in the tiki hut playing with the new phone (OMG...how on earth did we exist without smartphones??) and when it had been an hour since I gave Lily her sedative, I went back in to check on her.

Her face was like, "Oh hai! Where were you??" I should've taken a photo then. She was WIDE AWAKE STILL.

I didn't want to wait anymore. I tacked her up, put my helmet on, walked her to the indoor, said a little prayer to sweet baby Jesus and hopped on.

We started out with walking with contact, but in a lengthened hunter frame, then I picked her up and asked her to use her body correctly. We did this for 10 minutes, then we did 2 minutes of counted walk, in which she was AWESOME: I became very still in the saddle, lifted my hands, and she immediately slowed and her walk became deliberate and cadenced. We did a 20 meter circle at a counted walk, changed direction, stretching, and then I gathered her up again and cued the trot.

And we trotted. I sat the trot to keep her at something closer to a Western jog, and we went once in each direction around the arena for our first 2 minutes total. As we finished the second lap around the arena, I pushed her into a normal working trot and posted. She was fantastic, and she didn't feel off at all (I'm guessing the local block was still working.)

We then repeated the walk sequence as above, and called it a day at the 30 minute mark.

I was so happy with her! She did spook one time while we were walking at the end, but she only bounced 2 strides to the side then stopped when I quietly said, "Eeaaasyy..."

Soooo sleepy...NOT!


She was finally falling asleep by the time I had untacked her in the cross ties. So yeah...50 mg of ace, but it takes 2.5 hours to hit. I may not be using it as often as I would have liked...

To summarize, I was thrilled that I basically rode my 95% awake mare and we still had a great ride! Maybe we can just stop using ace altogether sometime in the near future?


  1. Yay!! Fingers crossed she stays sound!

  2. SQUEEEEEEEEEEEE. And Super super super squee about the counted walk!!!!!!! So awesome.

    1. I know, right? Now I just need video to make sure it really looks as correct as it feels...

  3. oh yay Lily, please stay sound!

  4. Excellent! Sound is good and sound trotting is better :)

  5. Congrats! I'm so happy for you!

    Many years ago I was a vet tech in small animal practice, and I remember being told that Ace only works if it's administered well in advance to the event. It does take time to take effect, especially if the animal is worked up!

    1. Thank you!

      On the Ace: Oh yes! It takes 30 minutes to have effect when given IM; Lily will often start to look sleepy at the 15 minute mark, and is definitely feeling it at 30 minutes, which is why I've preferred to give it by injection vs just squirting it in her mouth-it is SO much faster, and I know she got it for sure, even if she has to be a drama queen about it. :)
      My vet just insisted that it would take effect within 40 minutes after giving it by mouth, which is obviously not true with Lily. Lol I was afraid to give more because of the higher concentration of the oral formula.