Break out the bubble wrap

Freedom trotting
Freedom has finished his rehab, but I just can’t trust that he’s better. Every time I’m at the barn I check that leg over and over again.

Freedom has officially completed his four months of rehab. Actually, his injury occurred 18 weeks ago. His leg looks great and my vet has confirmed that it feels just as good. I have yet to have the confirming ultrasound, but right now, all systems are go. He can now canter under saddle and we’re able to go out for longer rides that are limited more by the heat than by his leg.

However, I’m having a hard time trusting the recovery. I scrutinize his leg. Does it look slightly puffy today? Should I poultice it? Cold hose it?

One day this week I had him tacked up and ready to go but didn’t like the way he was standing. I thought he was resting it funny or pointing his hoof slightly. I decided not to take the chance and turned him out instead.

I think it’s officially time to break out the bubble wrap so he’s protected from further injury. I know it’s ridiculous — horses find ways to hurt themselves that you can’t even dream up — but it doesn’t stop me from worrying.

How long after your horse was injured (and rehabbed) did it take before you stopped worrying? Do you ever?!



4 thoughts on “Break out the bubble wrap

  1. It actually takes close to 18 months for tendon injuries to completely heal. The challenge is that the connective tissue needs to be used while the fibers are realigning, other wise you end up with a wad of inflexible scar tissue which is prone to re-injury. Trusting your intuition to keep you on the fine line between just enough and too much work is a daily dance…Hope your guy has many years of sound riding ahead.

    1. I am being very, very particular about the footing and his level of activity. We’re up to some cantering now but before we do much more of anything, I’m having another ultrasound done. My vet recommended checking him in 2-3 more weeks. I have also had a situation or two where someone asked to ride him . . . and I’m surprised how protective I feel of him. I guess my thought is that if he re-injures himself it better darn well be my fault and not because someone else doesn’t know what feels slightly off (for him).

      1. I guess James Rooney’s book on lameness really affected me as he talks a lot about compensatory lameness. His idea is that the specific symptom is often the result of the horse trying to compensate for some kind of pain, unevenness, or imbalance in his body so I tend not to take the horse’s soundness for granted until I understand why the original injury happened. Then I can come up with a strategy to prevent it from happening again. That’s really hard to do with other people riding the horse. I am glad you are taking such good care of yours!

  2. I agree completely with you. I think there are many things you can do to prevent injuries and much of that involves listening to your horse and paying attention to the small things. Repetitive movements (when they are unbalanced) can cause long term issues. I’ve suffered that myself. I have issues with my rotator cuff that I know were caused by driving long distances and keeping my hands at the 10/2 position. After PT I started driving with my hands lower on the wheel and it helped a lot.

    My vet thinks that Freedom’s injury was caused by a blow and that he hit himself galloping in the paddock. Now I just need to make sure he doesn’t hurt himself again because he’s favoring that leg!

Leave a Reply