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

Friday, December 6, 2013


The predicted high temperature for today was going to be 59, and raining.

It never got above 48 degrees. But the weatherman got the raining part right!

I went on a small mission across town in the rain to buy Lily's grain (right now I'm feeding 1 lb of Buckeye Gro N' Win once daily as her main "grain". Gro N' Win is a ration balancer) at the Highland Feed and Seed store, and her fat supplement (she has the TB metabolism and I hate feeding tons of grain to keep her weight on, but she has decided she hates Buckeye Ultimate Finish 25, so I purchased a bag of Legends Rice Bran, which she has eaten fine before...hopefully she hasn't changed her mind about that, too! She'll get worked up to 1 lb a day of the rice bran) at Southern States. I found a different Southern States only 10 minutes from the Highland Feed store, so now I can really buy grain at two different locations and not feel like it's a huge pain in the ass.

I arrived at the barn, and only the field boarder horses were out. It had not stopped raining all day. Lily was standing with the other 3 mares in the run-in. Her legs were stocked up again, again only her fetlocks and pasterns, but they seemed better than the day before, especially the fronts, and her mentation seemed brighter.

After saying hello and looking her over, I set up her feed in baggies for the weekend, then took her out of the field to bring her up to the barn to get pampered. The temperature was supposed to drop drastically overnight and I wanted to get her dried up before she was blanketed.

I put her in the wash stall, cold-hosed her legs to remove the poultice, and toweled her dry. She actually wasn't too wet from the rain; just along her back and rump. Her temperature today was 99.8; heart rate was 36; respiratory rate was 12; gums a normal light pink. I put her cooler on to speed up her drying off, and fed her her dinner, which I had added hot water to to create the mash.

The slight fill in her hinds. The left hind always looks worse simply because it's white.
Front legs are normal after cold hosing. Note that the left hind doesn't look that bad from this angle.
I puttered around doing other stuff while she ate.

Holding her rubber feeder at an angle for her so she can get the last little bits of feed...
She still wasn't quite dry after all of that, so I gave her hay and decided to set up to re-do her mini trace clip from a month ago.

I folded the cooler up over her croup (the one part of her that was still wet) and got to work with the clippers. I failed to take photos because I'm going to have to re-visit it with the clippers later on a day when I have time to wash her belly hair and wait for it to dry, but this is what I'm going for:

A sort of modified low trace clip.
Photo by firegurl979 at  Horse Grooming Supply Forum.
I threw her midweight blanket on afterwards and turned her out with her herd again. The guys had thrown out square bales near the run-in, so she joined the other mares for a second dinner.

I will be going out tomorrow again to check her vital signs. If she has a virus of some sort, her temperature will spike at some point, and that's what I'm watching for. Here's to hoping all of her vital signs remain the same over the weekend and whatever this is resolves on its own.


  1. Sending positive energy and lots of love to your baby. I sure hope it's just the change in weather that's got to her.

    I would take 49 and rain any day. Today's high was 7. Too cold to do anything. We are supposed to top out at 14 tomorrow, so I might try to get him into the indoor or maybe do a bit of hand walking outside.

    1. Thank you Karen!!

      Oh God, 7 degrees?! Yeah, not complaining about our 49, just pointing out the ineptitude of the weathermen in giving an accurate forecast in this area. Lol I pretty much keep winter gloves, a rain coat, a heavy jacket and a fleece layer in the car 24/7 from October to April up here because it can be so unpredictable. I hope you got to ride today!

  2. Hope she's ok! We had a glorious day yesterday - it got all the way up to 75! But today is cold and dreary. I am curious about her clip. Do you have to keep her blanketed all the time? I am considering doing a very minimal clip on my old guy but I am afraid he will be cold lol

    1. You can do a very minimal clip like any of the first 3 in this link, and he should still be fine without a blanket:


      Most of the older horses that grew yak-like coats at my previous barn would get neck-and-belly clips or bib clips. I guess what I did with Lily is what they call an Irish clip. lol

      With this clip Lily should technically still be able to go without a blanket, especially with her current weight and 1"-long coat. lol My version of the Irish clip is probably 3" lower along her body than the example in the photo above. The problem I have is that our BO will blanket the horses no matter what if it's under 42 degrees (if I don't provide a blanket, she will. Which is great, don't get me wrong, but a couple of people have run into trouble when they've specifically asked that their horses not be blanketed at all. It's just easier to go with the flow), so I'd rather her have a little less hair and be comfortable under the blanket. Plus it means she'll cool out faster when we ride. :)