As I posted last week, my Arabian buddy Kadeen has been suffering from a seriously inflamed eye. I have been extremely diligent about treating him. At his ophthalmology recheck appointment last week, his eye showed significant improvement. When I heard that news, I had a bit of an emotional meltdown. Apparently, I was very tightly wound and worried about getting a bad report. Kadeen is the horse. He’s my “heart horse.” I have hundreds of trail miles on him. He had a bad experience with one trainer before me, and we had some trust issues to address. He’s my buddy through and through, and his pain was my pain. Not to mention the fact that I was acutely aware of how bad things could get if we hadn’t made a lot of progress.
The feature photo shows Kadeen’s eye on his first appointment. This is a photo of his eye at his second appointment. To be sure, there is still significant evidence of inflammation. Blood vessels are still visible in the second photo. However, the ulcer has healed. In the last few days, it is obvious he is experiencing much less discomfort.
Just a few days ago, I removed his fly mask. He is finally comfortable enough that I am less concerned about him rubbing his painful eye and creating further damage. I have started taking a handful of carrots out with me for our multiple-times-a-day treatments! Of course, Sadie gets a few carrots too, and all she has to do is look cute (and roly-poly.) I have taught Kadeen to kiss me for a treat. Immediately, he touches his muzzle to my face. He gets a carrot. I encourage him to drop his head and hold still so I can apply ointment to his eye. We’re still working on that hold still part… I apply the first of several ointments, and he gets a carrot. Usually, I get a kiss from him between ointment applications, just in case I need encouragement to produce another carrot.
As I mentioned, I was wound pretty tight at Kadeen’s eye recheck. It was a frigid day for his appointment. We’d had snow the day before, and below-freezing temps made roads and driveways challenging. I returned home and began to maneuver the trailer to back it into the barn. It is uphill to the barn, going backward. Even with a powerful truck in 4-wheel drive, the trailer was not cooperating. The icy driveway provided little traction. I unloaded Kadeen and settled him in his stall.
For three years I have managed to back trailers (including my 3-horse LQ) in and out of this barn without rearranging anything… but my streak ended last week. I was having to “gun” the trailer to get it up the hill. I was snowblind. When I heard a crunch I knew I was in trouble. The upper right side of my trailer communed with my gutters and top of my porch. Sigh… My barn guy says it will cost me less than $500 to repair. But who wants to “waste” $500? My barn guy also says that over half of the barn sliders he repairs are due to farmers going through them instead of waiting until they are totally open! I managed to forgive myself, but I wasn’t happy.
I mentioned in a previous blog that I am now engaged. Alan and I are in high gear planning a very exciting and fun future. We will spend summers riding the Rocky Mountains and living in Colorado. We will spend winters in a 5th wheel trailer, riding the horses somewhere in Arizona. And we will hit the road in the fall in our LQ trailer and watch the leaves turn colors in the Midwest. It is a good thing that there is lots of horseback riding in our future, as Alan’s tubby little mare Sadie needs to burn a few calories!