This pic was taken the weekend I picked her up. At this point I was conviced she was sick and dying on me. The vet convinced me to observe her for a few days since she wasn't in obvious distress and start weighing her feed.
This pic was taken after one week. Some improvements but not as much as I would like. At this point since illness wasn't as big of a concern I used a power pack wormer, and a round of Sand Clear. Also switched from hay to a complete senior pellet feed, and the beet pulp supplement I mentioned before.
This was taken this Friday. She's still very thin but so much better than before. I'll get some better ones this week. This is about what she looked like when I first got her back in 2008. I'm excited that hopefully we can rule out any serious illness. It looks like a case of poor management.
Of course now I'm beating myself up for letting this happen to her. I just fail to understand what happened. Her feet are excellent, her vaccinations up to date, every time I stopped by she had good quality hay in her stall, and the other horses at this barn are all well cared for and they have a good reputation. They are really involved with Pony Club which I've always heard good things about too. They paid a small fortune on the vet when they thought she was collicking. Why would you do all of that for a horse and then just not make sure it had enough food for the work it was doing? Or contine to work it when it was obviously too thin and the saddle didn't fit? Was it ignorance or did they just not care as long as they were able to make money off giving lessons on her? Is it possible that the work load was just too stressful for her? These are questions I will probably never know the answer to.
The good thing is that she's back in my care, she's happy and getting healthy. I shared her progress with my co-worker and she asked me what I was going to do with her. The truth is that I don't know. I've been thinking about that dream I had. I was so determined to get her well and get rid of her two weeks ago. Now...I'm just not sure. With the bigger property we have plenty of room in the pasture and she seems to really love it out there. My sister isn't sure it's the best idea. Her point was I might find someone else who actually enjoys riding her who would take even better care of her than me. I'm just worried and feel responsible for her....she's had a hard enough life and I don't want her to end up in poor circumstances again. It does feel good though to know she's going to be okay and that there are lots of options. The future doesn't seem so bleak as it did just two weeks ago.
Yesterday I hand walked her to the other barn and groomed her. Tax was so excited to see his old girlfriend! She got her mane trimmed and her face clipped. I brushed her out and put some Cowboy Magic in her little stubby tail (It got chewed off bad last spring) which is actually growing back super thick. I lunged her for just a minute to see how she's moving and she looks great. Then I walked her home again. She rolled in front of me for the first time since she got here. I think she feels better too!