Well, it was a first. Moon'ers first vet visit, which I would like to say, was a success.
I showed up early to the barn, got everything prepped and then sat down to wait. It was disgustingly hot and humid, so I sat on a small rock in the shade of some big spruce trees. Much to my surprise, Mr. Moon came over to whuph in my hair for awhile, nuzzling me in the most gentle way, which was just weird to me. It seriously felt like pony affection, something that felt so much deeper then what I've ever had with a horse in the past. Hmmm...is our relationship growing?
I wandered off later to look at the other horses, and when I returned to the front paddock where I had left Moon...he was gone! I had a quick heart attack, running out to the road, which runs along a 4-lane highway. A very busy highway. Looking both ways, no Moon. When I didn't see him there, my head reminded me that he cares more about chowing down on grass then sprinting for freedom. Returning to the property, I found he had managed to step under some rope fencing in the front and get himself with the other herd of horses. And then wander off to check out their pasture. : P Silly Moon.
The clinic called to say the vet would be late, so I waited an extra 30 minutes for them to show up. Dr. S and her summer student both greeted me and went right to work. She gave Moon an examination, checking his heart, lungs and other vitals. The first question she asked me? "Does your horse have heaves?" Um, NO. ???! Concern??!!! What's wrong???!
She doesn't answer. So I ask again, if she hears or sees anything that would make her ask. "Oh no. He sounds perfectly healthy. Good strong lungs and heart."
??! Then why ask ??!
I still don't have an answer, and just have to accept her word on that one. Made me a little cautionary of her, though he's never shown any signs that are indicative of heaves, so I don't know what that was all about.
She drew up her first syringe of sedative and struggled to find his neck vein. After a couple of pokes, there it was and we tried to get him a little sleepy. He wasn't.
There it was. He was FINALLY starting to head droop, thanks to the flies acting as stimulation. They put his head in a special halter and tied it up in the roundpen so she could start the float. After a couple of flushes to clean all of the grass out of his cheeks (chipmunk!), she got out the power float.
We had a good look in his mouth, and it wasn't nearly as bad as I expected. He had some large hooks in the front, and a few along the left side of his mouth. While they were 'bad', they weren't awful, and he was free of any lesions or ulcerations on both sides. PHEW!
She filed them down, cleaned them up (just a little bit of blood, since he was a bit of pain to get his big ol'tongue out of the way) and he was ALREADY pretty much out of the sedation. Not even 40 minutes since the first shot. That's my Moon!
And that was it. Untied him, and let him go. No longer having his tongue pulled or his teeth filed his head lulled back down, so I thought I'd start gathering up the extension cords...and he started to follow me around, head droopy, swaying slightly. He just wouldn't leave my side. It was adorable. He didn't follow the vet, didn't follow the student, but followed me around like a puppy dog, touching his head to my arm like he was using it to help guide and steady himself. Soooo cute that my heart melted.
The vet for some reason was starting at his nether regions at this point, and decided it was the perfect opportunity to 'bean' search. I love horses, I love caring for animals, but I have to admit, the whole thing makes me squirm. Hence, no discussion here, other then to say that she pulled on her gloves and cleaned out 3 beans for me. Don't care if I wind up paying for that service, completely worth it. The look on Moon'ers face said otherwise, but she assured me he'd appreciate it when it goes to pee. Awesome. Not looking forward to that bit of ownership...
She also offered me a test run of an off-label usage of a cattle fly repellent. "Cylence". So far I think it's actually doing a great job, and I'll blog more about that later.
That concluded our visit, and while I've only stopped by to hand him two treats once this week, I'm really happy with our vet visit. He's healthy, happy and important to me. And tomorrow, we'll know if he's any better on the bit...