About this Blog

Meet my very 1st horse, Lazarus.
I couldn't wait for Santa anymore or ask one more time for a pony for my bday (after age 30 it got embarrassing). I took matters in my own hands and I finally decided to pick a pony that needed a new home. Laz found me as I contemplated with this idea. He was sweet yet very sassy, fresh off the track, Thoroughbred (OTTB).
Join us for our re-training, rehabbing from laminitis and testing all parts of mixed up horsemanship and partnership, and luck...

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Sweet GoGo

 Andrea and the gorgeous Gogo

Truly loving your horse can be the most difficult act

Please give Andrea your support during this time while she and Gogo figure out what their future holds
If you can, donate by clicking here for being a part in what small way we can help ease this pain for Andrea.

Andrea, you are a brave woman
A beautiful, knowledgeable horse lover
We support your choices
We all love your GogoMare

Kristen & Laz (and many, many others)

Saturday, August 27, 2011


There are times where I can just so thankful that my horse has heart.
Any TB owner will tell you, it's BIG.
He shows me everyday that I made the right choice in not putting him down and trying to fight through this LONG battle.
There are days where I just feel horrible that he still gimps around (at the trot, sound at walk)
But I try and see that his ears are pricked forward, he tucks his head into his bridle ready to work and trots off forward with happy snorts and licking his lips.
Could he be any sweeter?
I think not...
You can see AngelFace stumble/step on a rock or something that made his RR feel ouchy on 0:05
but yet he keeps on trucking and tries his trick to sneak a treat out of me.

How I wish I could get the root of this and get that foot feeling normal again.
I am so happy that I have my new trimmer helping me through this, with her education and passion for continuous learning, I feel we are making positive progress.
I hope it's not too much to ask for; but I wish him to be sound 
Just putting it out there in the universe :)

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Random Hoof thoughts

So, I have Laz back on grazing
Yikes, I know.
BUT...I needed to try it out to see how he would take to it before moving him.
So far, so great. 
 I have my trimmer coming out Monday so I want her opinion obviously on how she thinks his feet look. 
He's been grazing for about 4 weeks now.  When his test came back as non IR, I listened to Bowker who thought I could get him grazing again. (who also felt he would not be IR as did my vet) 
It's just so good for them IF they can handle it.  The constant eating, feeding their internal instinct TO graze and move about.  I hope it works out.
So, what caused his footiness back in May?
We think it was from the false sole hiding (still hiding) old abscesses that weren't able to come out.  Seedy toe from poor wall structure due to deformed hoof from his laminitis.  Again, his laminitis was from assumed Potomac, so quite different from some other metabolic issues.
 We think it was coincidence that it was around spring time grass time.  More to do with wet grounds and trimming the toe back leaving the seedy area open and me not knowing to zap it with White Lighting.  But, I'm armed with a muzzle in case I need to control it again AND the knowledge of what a seedy toe looks like and what to do for it.
OR, the other reason could be some bone infection going on from the lamina changes that happened in his hoof from original rotation.  This is still a strong thought....so there may be some new methods to his trimming coming up.  Stay tuned...

Older Picture but shows seedy toe exposed from May-July

Note the drizzly line from seedy toe to coffin bone, that may be infection
Xray shot front view on the elfkin flare of coffin bone 

An older post by Lucy at Barefoot Horse Blog, but a GOODIE about footiness
Feet are the source of what is going on in the body..I have to constantly remember that and not dismiss little signs that turn into BIG ones.
The hooves are a barometer of what is going on internally and it's up to us to figure out what that is.

Oh and to prove that I'm TRYING to learn... my trimmer armed me with a rasp to continue to bevel and roll his walls while she was at OSNHC clinic.  I'm trying but jesus am I scared to make Laz sore. Truth be told, I do it so lightly and meekishly that I think I'm fine. 

This morning BEFORE, a little chipping on his lateral wall on his club foot (RF)

After my clean up...eeeeks! I hope I don't get an F
And the weather has been so perfect lately for riding!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Pony Daycare

Ah, the fun (insert sarcasm) of looking into moving to a new barn.
As I briefly mentioned; I decided fairly recently that with Laz's care/rehab/training, I'm more comfortable having him closer to me.  With the latest hoof flare up in May, it wore me thin driving every day 1 hour one way, when I have the choice to not have to do that.

So.........I started looking at new boarding facilities.
I think I have visited about 30, and talked to at least 20 more.
I had to create a hand written excel (b/c I found I just needed to hand write it to FEEL better) about the Pro's and Con's to each.

So many things to consider.

First was getting Laz's IR test results back, to figure if I needed to only look at facilities with a dry lot vs pasture.
He tested as Non IR so it opened up options which was great
Then came my want of pasture board. 
Wow, pasture board to ME isn't "Hey, I'm cheap and don't give an F about my horse so I want to throw him in your backyard with a rusted Chevy in it."  
I found out that the word pasture board can sometimes work with = are you kidding me?!
Why do I want pasture?
Because Laz is happiest when he can roam around 24/7.
That poor boy was stalled so much of his life, and he just fares so much better being OUT.
So many barns that offer stall board, bring them in at 3pm, or 6pm. I just know he wouldn't like that and why bothering entertaining that idea of weaving, ulcers, etc etc
24/7 turnout is not for every horse/owner but we love it.
That being said; when a storm blows in a 3am, or when the winter crap hits, I also like to know that he has a GOOD shelter/run in/open stall to go to, if wanted/needed.
Not a 3 horse shelter in a herd of 10.  Not a canvas tent.
Let's talk about 'pasture' too.
Pasture to me means either a BIG dry lot, OR a freaking pasture. Not a pen suited for a dog.
Not a one acre field with 10 horses on it either.
 It was sometimes scary what I saw when I pulled up to visit barns.
And stalls, barns, run ins- for horses people, not tiny for goats.

Also, brings the talk of feeding.
So many people do only 2 x a day feedings I've found.
I would LOVE if Laz had the choice to free nibble all day.
With his metabolism, and keeping ulcers at bay, it would work best.
Also, being flexible that NO I don't want to feed my OTTB a 12% sweet feed with corn and oats in it and oh, there's molasses too?! NO.
My list is free choice grass hay preferably in square bales, not round bales (or if they are round, hay for horses and not cows and protected from elements and lifted from ground)

I would prefer someone to LIVE on the property 
(I actually made this a MUST on my list recently)
Must be clean, mucking stalls out every day (lean to's as well)
And to a couple of CRAZEEEE barn owners that told me "Oh, yea, I check on yer horse e'ry couple o' few days when they come on bye" or "I just don't make money off that so NO"  or "We'll have to arm wrestle for that pasture" or "I can't be bothered with THAT!!" or "Whazzzz laminitis...or Potomac?"
Thanks for being honest with your craziness and BUH BYE

Ok, so after that rant, I DID in fact meet some (very few) nice, normal, kind horse loving people.

So, the places I'm considering are VERY different from each other yet only a few miles apart.

Tell me your thoughts;

**WARNING-I'm including board rates b/c that is a huge factor to me as well...I know many of your pay WAY more than this so don't vomit....**

-Barn #1-
39 minutes away
Small, private facility, with max want of 4 horses. Currently one TB there
Owner lives on site and is a dog/cat vet
Will allow Mason to come
VERY flexible on feeding and understanding, and knowledgeable
6-8 acres of pasture with nice barn with hang over lean to, and open stalls for access 24/7
Will stall for in-climate weather, or requests (medical, etc)
Will do fly masks, blanketing, etc
Feeds 2, 3 times a day but will make sure weight remains consistent.
Is able to separate pastures for horses and each will still have barn access for shelter, for feeding restrictions or sick/injured.
1+ mile away from two HUGE metro parks for horse trails
Outdoor riding area is one of the pasture fields
Fencing vinyl and electric
Board $175 (wow....the money I could spend on Laz.......and me?!)
No hot water (but I could do his beet pulp at home) but hot water in BO's house for when needed
Heated water tanks (I have to double check...but almost positive)
Tack room
No wash rack, outdoor hosing provided which is what I do 99% anyway
No indoor
No roundpen
Road riding is accessible, as trail riding is as well

-Barn #2-
35 minutes away
Two outdoors (one smaller-round pen size but square)
1 mile long trail track for training, and obstacle course
Large pastures 20+, currently boards 10 horses
Large barn with 21 stalls, wash rack, 4 grooming areas
Dry lot (with 3 wicked ponies) available
Sick/Injured pen
Works as a natural horse facility, 24/7 turnout, great terrain for horses to walk through
all have access to barn for shelter
Will stall for in-climate weather
Round bales of grass hay, free access
I would have to provide my own feed so add another $35+
3/4 mile to large metro park for horse trail
Fencing electric
Trainer lives on site with husband who helps/feeds/etc
Mason is not allowed 
Board $425 (eeeks-$100 more than I spend now)....

........which is why I'm considering NOT to do it.
I fell in love with both barns.
Barn #2 is a dream facility.
All the amenities are amazing..but the layout, care, etc for Laz are pretty darn similar to Barn #1. 
The amenities are more for me.
Yes, they would help with training BUT would cause financially stress..which could lead to turning down treatment options for Laz, which I don't want to do.
Barn #2 is pretty busy with lessons, camps, vaulting, etc ...so I'm leaning towards Barn #1 and I can get creative with training/riding (I hope!) 
If I decide it's too bare bones, well then I've saved money and I can move him down the road to Barn #2.

Currently, I pay $325 and up until recently, Laz was in his dry lot with open stall/lean to access.
Fed 4-5 days grass hay
Beautiful outdoor sand arena
Round pen
No indoor
No trails (other than road riding, and along the pasture fields)
1+ hr away

These are my thoughts so far.
If I can save $$, why not? Laz's care won't be comprised or his daily life
AND, even if it's for a couple of years, it gives me options for his care/treatments, etc
I don't want to feel strapped for cash, by paying $135+ more a month, PLUS the always coming vet/farrier/etc bills.
Any questions? I'm sure I'm missing details....

My hope is that I make the right decision and Laz is happy :)

Back to work

Coming back home after a vacation can feel so nice.
I love my home, my schedule, my BED, my puppies, my pony....so it's a welcomed job to return to it all
On my way to the barn, the fields that raise Sunflowers are BLOOMING. 
It's so cool to see how they change their direction, following the sun's rays.

My boy
After 2 weeks of no riding; when I hopped back on, he was like "Cool, let's go."
He is such a good boy and I'm learning his ways of communication a little better as well.
The other day, I started our work by free working with him in arena.
He calmly walked up to the barrels that I had set up and sniffed, rubbed on them and ...
of course, LICK LICK LICK.
He has a clear obsession of licking barrel water...just LUVS to do it and play with it.
"Are youz gunna get on?"
Back to the barrels
Working on commands
Free walk
Free trotting
Use that tummy Laz, ya!
Ugly shot of trot to walk
Walking through the water obstacle on his own accord
He always chose to trot through it which I don't have a picture of, but it was funny and awkward

Walking together
And casting away
Calling back to me
Come Lazarooooo
Good boy
After our free lunge, we rode the 'course' for 40 minutes at the trot pretending everything was a jump, even though we jumped nothing.  It helps me with my focus, steering, etc and it's fun

Friday, August 19, 2011

Back home!!

Here's my beautiful boy when I came home....still perfect. 
Of course I worry when we are away that something awful will happen, but he did great and the BO watched him like her own for me.
The BO let Laz free graze around the back property and his feet still look great, so I'm hopeful that he'll be able to continue.  I just want a more natural lifestyle for him as long as it works for him metabolically.
So far, I don't see changes in his feet and all seems to be A-ok

Laz's IR test result
Normal-non IR
I double checked numbers in Dr. Kellon's calculator as well
Still good :)
This gives me options as I plan to move Laz to a new barn, closer to me
I decided that it's too hard to drive over an hour one way and having him closer will help ease so time constraints and will make it easier for me to see him more often
I fell in love with a new small barn that is 35 minutes away that has an incredible turnout set up for Laz
(Did I mention an indoor, two outdoors, a mile long trail training course and 3/4 from a HUGE state park for trail riding) eeeeks. I hope to move him after Labor day.
I hope he adjusts well and enjoys his new barn home 
I searched high and low and after visiting over 20+ places, I had two on my list and this one was #1 choice.

For now, we work and graze and play...

More on our last ride and travels to come...