Guest Blog: Rosco Finally Gets To Canter

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 Rosco Gets To Canter Following another assessment session with our vet and physio and even more X-rays, we finally got the thumbs up to move onto the next phase of rehabilitation - the canter. Under the watchful eyes of Jenny (our vet) and Faith (our physio), we did our first canter for over 8 months following Rosco’s fractured pelvis and subsequent cannon bone fracture. He had a few excitable bucks but these were tame in comparison to the bronking sessions we had earlier in the year. 

As we'd been given the go ahead to canter, we headed to some stubble fields close to us (we have some very friendly local farmers) to have a light canter. He is very willing so am being extra careful to not let him get away. He is definitely a happier horse when hacking out but as he’s still young the slightest thing can spook him - when we’re cantering and mud flies off his hooves I am sure he thinks there is a troll below him as he often takes a big step sideways. We also took Rosco in the lorry to our local country park... 8 months since his last journey and he purposefully strode onto the lorry - it's amazing the trust they have in you.

We’ve mainly been hacking to get his brain working but we still do a couple of sessions per week in the arena. So far he’s transformed and he is now willingly working in an outline and beginning to show some promise.  An important part of our weekly routine is to do 3 x 30 mins of pole work in hand or long reining. This encourages him to carry himself and increase that all important core stability. 

I decided to buy him a new bridle as he has been using a borrowed “micklem” bridle. His previous owner used a traditional drop noseband and PS Sweden do a really nice anatomical one. Luckily, R&R Country had a demo bridle so we arranged to loan it for a week and he seems to like - also it looks really cool with the white stitching! I was in a dilemma as to whether to go black or brown as I’ve always had brown tack, but as he has a black mane and tail I decided to go for black - I think he likes it too.

ps of sweden
We had a bit of a scare with Rosco last week (yes another one), I feed him chop before we do any work just to help with his ulcer management. We gave him a handful and within a couple of minutes he went really dopey. He started pawing, then rolled, he also became very unsteady on his feet and looked as if he was drugged, perhaps colicky? After ringing the vet (Sunday evening call out), she said she would be with us in half an hour. As soon as we put the phone down he came back round - all this happened within about 20 mins. After checking with the vet, we cancelled the call out and just monitored him for a couple of hours. Apparently they can get food stuck in their throat causing “choke” and that’s the probable explanation - we’re now extra careful to make sure all his food is really damp... Rosco definitely continues to keep us on our toes!

It seems like ages ago now that I was at Frickley in the BE100 class! It was back in September with Walter, my wife’s horse.  Another very early start as I was first on!  Although my dressage was good, the score was really really mean! We had another great double clear, which was extra special as I was the pathfinder - 1st to go round the cross country course which is always more challenging as you are not aware of any tricky fences. Being first to go gets the full attention of the commentary, which is great and I could hear lots of it as we rode the course. Although he was a bit quicker than our last outing (I pushed him to cut the lines as close as I dare) we still had a few time penalties, and finished with a solid 9th place. Even though Walter has only done a handful of events this year, he has been eventing fit since March so we’re now going to take his shoes off and give his feet a rest. We think he is ready to totally chill out for a month, we will just lightly ride him in the arena a couple of times a week until Christmas.

Eventing
My “unicorn” event horse, Bowdee, who has retired now had a sarcoid “banded” about 5 weeks ago and it came off the other day, as it dropped off cleanly there’s a good chance it won’t come back.  Previously he’s had one burnt off with cream which literally destroyed the skin and causes quite a trauma to the surrounding area.  Pretty impressive result with this one! 

Sarcoids