Thursday, May 10, 2012


Wow! Do you ever wonder what it is about horses that keeps us coming back for more even when everything seems to go wrong?

For most of us our hearts were stolen at a very young age!
Yesterday the plan was to go to the Kentucky Horse Park for some schooling. I was excited but a little worried since I'd be riding Frankie who is still pretty green and still tends to deal with his anxiety by running... really fast at times. But I'd already survived gone cross country schooling with him once so I figured it could only get better, right?

I got a call the night before saying we'd have to leave a lot earlier than planned as my trainer's horse, Rio (a.k.a. The Devil) had somehow managed an incredible feat of acrobatics and pulled his left front shoe off (with bell boots on no less).  So, okay, I got the babysitters rearranged and made plans to be out there earlier.

Unfortunately early is not always something I do well so I was running a tad bit behind and by the time I got there we were scrambling to get everything loaded up so we could run to a designated spot to meet Lori's farrier who had so kindly agreed to reattach The Devil's shoe. I quickly threw my tack in the trailer and grabbed Frankie out of his stall. I gave him a quick look over and he looked clean so I grabbed some shipping boots and we loaded up.

We met the farrier and got the shoe reattached and were finally on our way. We even got to the horse park early. After we parked and signed up and paid for schooling we went to get the horse's out of the trailer. Normally Rio jumps right off the trailer so when he and Lori didn't appear right away my sister and I asked her what they were doing in the trailer so long. When I heard her say "there's something wrong with my horse" I think my heart dropped to my feet.

Lori was fairly sure that he had choked so I quickly ran back up to the sign in tent and asked if their was a vet on a call. They called for a vet who was about 25 minutes away but said he'd be there as soon as he could. I went back to the trailer to wait.

And then we got a little surprise. Mindee and I unloaded our horses and were walking them around when Lori suddenly says to me, "why do you have Monte?" "Uh, I don't have Monte, I got Frankie out of his stall this morning." That's when I really looked at my horse and realized. OMG! I have the WRONG horse!! This has never happened to me before. How did this happen? Well, it turns out that Monte and Frankie had gotten switched to the wrong stalls that morning and since I had been in such a hurry to get going I didn't even notice!

Guess Who!
It's not that Monte and Frankie really look THAT much alike but they are both about the same size and both just plain bays so if you aren't really paying attention it is easy to mix them up... as I discovered.

Meanwhile the vet came and told Lori that he felt Rio would need more medical care than he could provide so The Devil was loaded up and took a trip to Rood & Riddle. Mindee and I stayed behind with our horses. I did attempt to ride Monte but he was just way too fresh for me especially without Lori there to give me advice/confidence. I rode him for about 2 minutes before I gave up. Luckily Mindee was able to take her pony out over a few of the smaller jumps so the whole day wasn't a complete loss. I got to be the crazy girl leading the way too big for her TB around the XC course. Wow, people either say hello or stop staring. Geez!!

Lori came back and picked us up. Rio has to stay at Rood & Riddle for at least 3 days or more. It turns out he did choke and had aspirated fluid and hay into his lungs and has the beginnings of pneumonia. I feel so bad for Lori. She loves that horse just as much as any of us love our horses. It's so hard to see them hurting.

When I told my husband this whole story his response to me was, "are you sure you still want to do this?" I wish there was a way to make non-horsey people understand just how much horses mean to us. But unfortunately you either get it or you don't.

Here's hoping/praying/wishing that Rio gets better quickly and that there is no permanent damage to his lungs. His story is also on HJU.
Feel better soon Rio!


  1. praying he gets better quickly!

    Sounds like a crazy- world win of a day!