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In Loving Memory...
~ Gogo Fatale ~

6/2/01 - 10/11/11
~ Forever the Marest of Them All ~

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Fat Camp Fail

Want to know how to induce lameness in your previously healing wubba-chubba mare? Say these four words to her: "You need Fat Camp."
She will then realize that she is about to go back to some sort of level of work, and she will understandably decide that she must take whatever precautionary measures that she must to ensure that this does not happen. Voila! Lameness.

I've had growing concerns over the past couple of months about the state of Gogo's enormity, as I've talked quite a lot about. The vet had told me in June after our checkup that I should get on and w/t/c her, but that plan failed pretty spectacularly. She seemed to bounce back well from that episode, but I wasn't really that convinced that she was going to be fine to do anything faster than a walk. I decided that I would start carefully, on August 1st, with a walk-only rehab program that would take me through two months, and at the end of it we would reevaluate and see if she was ready to trot.

Well. On Monday, I got to the barn early, and Gogo's RH looks kind of ugly. I opted to get on anyway, and do my scheduled 10 minutes of walk work. She felt fine at the walk, like she always does, but at the end of 10 minutes I just had to know how she felt at the trot.... whether or not the ugly leg meant anything.

Yep. Super lame. I should have known.

When I got off I cold-hosed her for 10 minutes, but it made no difference. Back in the barn, the leg looked worse than ever. Feeling defeated, I turned her back out again, only to watch her execute a beautiful prancing trot and decent looking canter on her way back out to her friends. It was hard to tell from my angle how lame she was, but she propped pretty hard with both hinds when she was slowing down, which is what she has historically done when lame behind.

At this point, I think riding is just a bad idea in general.

There's not really much I can do at this point. Being out in turnout might cripple her for life. But being in a stall at this point would kill her. I have more to write about this later. As for right now, well..... I dunno, really.

(Four inches of mohawk really does not help the Fatty Fat look on her.... I promise that she is not quite as morbidly obese as she appears in that picture. Even though she is terrifyingly gigantic.)


Grace said...

Stupid Question Time:

Would cutting back her food help in anyway?

:( about this dumb lameness....

Andrea said...

There's not really any food left to cut back anymore.... she truthfully is eating pretty much nothing! I've battled with keeping grazing muzzle on her before but she hangs herself on the fence in a very suicidal-esque fashion when she has them on.

Veronica Lodge said...

dirt paddock?

SprinklerBandit said...

Good to know about the mohawk. I knew she was big, but that shot makes her look alarmingly large.

:-( Tough days. Best wishes for you both.

DressageIsToDance said...

There need to be a "Fat Mare Bloggers" group on google. I would join.

Amber is getting a 10%, a sprinkle. Maybe a 1/4 of one of those 3qt scoops. Literately, my instructions were just for her to have something to make her feel like she was eating grain with the other horses.

And she gets 12 hours of turnout, one flake of hay in the morning when she comes in after her grain.

And she is pretty bulky. I've got friends who have said "Oh, she's a QH, she's supposed to be bulky like that!"...Uh, no, that would be muscle bulk when she gets FIT, not fat. QHs are not supposed to be bulky in fat, that's the stupidest thing I've ever heard...

So here goes my $0.02 about the weight issue though...lack of exercise is what really gets you. That's what's been getting Amber because she's been lame for 2 weeks. She burns more calories turned out, but she eats 2x as many as she burns which = fail.

You don't want to stall her, which would help you there a dry-lot you could use? Or perhaps you could turn her out on the round pen at night? I'm sure your barn owner wouldn't mind since she wouldn't be in any other boarders' way in there at night.

What supplements do you still have her on? Personally, I'd cut all supplements unless it would have a detrimental effect on her health. And I'd put her in a round pen or dirt lot for 12 hrs.

If she's sound enough for it, you could do some free lunging to add at least some laughable form of exercise...

Barbara said...

Walk or jog with her. Just like walking the fat off your favorite Labrador. I had a friend who broke her leg and was jogging to get fit - she took the horse with her.
You could send it to Nina, stomping at flies is working more weight off of her than the winter cold.

Andrea said...

I should do charitable liposuction.... and send it to all my friends with skinny horses!

Andrea said...

Remember also that I am limited by my boarding situation... it is what it is and until I leave it it will remain the way it is. It's hard boarding when you've been taking care of your horse yourself for years.

Kate said...

Oh Gogo. (I seem to have written that a couple of times recently...) Get well soon mare, and lay off the lameness for your mom's sake.

Sparkling said...

Well, you know, the camera adds 5 pounds!

Val said...

Ground driving!

achieve1dream said...

That sucks! I agree that a dry lot is probably your only choice at this point but I understand if boarding doesn't allow for it. I hope you can figure something out. Do you have a friend with a small dry lot that would let her stay there while she loses weight?

DressageIsToDance said...

What is your boarding situation, anyway? Is it pasture only?

Sounds to me like it'll be either get her sound and make her work, which who could force a horse to do that?

Or find a way to put her off the grass for a while each day. Is she fed in the field, or is she brought in? Still, if you have a weight issue with your horse, and you're paying to board, I would expect you'd be able to work out something with the barn owners so that she at least can go into the round pen at night.

I don't know what you're paying for or anything, but even pasture board...I mean, I'd be pretty pissed if my BO said "You paid for that pasture, the horse has to stay there whether it's obese without help or not!"

Andrea said...

The pasture where she is isn't really pasture even though it looks a bit deceiving in the pictures. Its just a bunch of sharp, prickly weeds with what looks like used to be grass growing beneath it, before it got trampled/burned up by the hot hot miserable sun. Most everything in the pasture is prickly and inedible apparently - I've seen a few of them nibbling at the green weeds in the picture and they promptly all spit them out. I have seen Gogo chewing on a few sticks though. Basically, she's not getting pasture because there is no pasture to be had. This is a HUGE HUGE HUGE change from the rich, beautiful, lush pasture she was on before moving. This new place is full of weeds and rocks and hills.
I could probably get them to put her in the roundpen overnight, or maybe in the arena overnight. I will have to ask about that!

Bif said...

Feed her some large strongyles? At least til she drops some weight ? ;-)

When my monster was on stall rest (12x24 foot stall, at least) he got crappy 1st cutting boredom hay and and maybe 8 pounds of decent 15% alfalfa/orchard mix... that's the only time he's been a 4.5 or 5 in 3+ years. Lame easy keepers suck.