Thrush and winter riding

So with the rain yesterday, something I had been hoping wasn’t happening happened. Scarlet definitely has the start of thrush. I had hoped that I was being paranoid but the rain caused his feet to become soft and it definitely highlighted the problem areas. We had trouble with this when I first owned him. We had a 2 acre pasture that drained fairly well overall. There were a few spots that got boggy. Being first time horse owners, we didn’t think about it being a problem that his shelter was in one of those. Since he got fed there, that was where he ended up standing a lot.

Years ago, I used a bottle of bleach water to try and deal with the thrush, per recommendation from my trainer. It never really seemed to help much but by then it would become summer again and I would put it out of my mind. Now that I’m older and (hopefully) wiser, I’m hoping to try combating this the correct way. Now I know the first issue would be to take a look at where he is living. Unfortunately, I can’t afford to board him in a stall, which would guarantee he wasn’t standing in soaking wet, poopy ground. So I’ll deal with what I have to. As more rain comes, I’ll take a closer look at his pen to decide if I need to deal with how the pen drains. I’ve tossed around the idea of seeing if the barn owner would mind me putting in a load of sand to help it drain better. I dont believe she would be but the problem with that is a) I dont have a truck or utility trailer in order to move it and b) I have no idea how much sand costs. My husband is still recovering from how much getting Scarlet and setting him up down here has cost. I couldn’t really talk to him about trying to buy sand now without giving him a heart attack.

So I’m sticking with management of his thrush for the moment. I looked up various treatments and read good things about No Thrush. And I happened to have some that was left over from his previous owner. So I took that out to the barn. After riding today, I cleaned out his hooves really well and then tried to make sure I sprayed the powder in all the nooks and crannies I could find. Hopefully I did a good job. I believe the idea behind the No Thrush powder is that it takes away the moisture that the bacteria needs to have a perfect host environment. Here’s hoping that it works. I’m going to be keeping a close eye on his hooves whenever I go out.

With the time change, I really began to notice how dark it gets. Another factor I didn’t really consider when trying to find a place to board is having an arena with lights. Stupid I know since it was already October when I was looking for places. But I had just finished with my wedding and it was quite a surprise to even have the opportunity to buy Scarlet. I was mostly concerned with affordability and availability at the time. Now I’m a little peeved that I didn’t find a place with lights.

I should be used to not riding in the winter. I usually only got one good ride in a week and then a little bit of walk/trot on the driveway. My arena was just a dirt lot so it bogged down too much in the winter for riding. My trainer had a sand arena but I only had one lesson a week. I should be used to it. But dang it! I just got my horse back! I really really wanted to continue riding him. I missed him so much and love how well his personality fits my own. I knew that I was going to have issues with finding another horse because I would have compared them to my ideal horse, who I had already owned. Its frustrating to have just gotten him and then to be kept from my goal.

And I’m whining. The arena is decent quality and I should be able to ride at least a bit. I’ll need to think about possible light sources that I can bring to the arena so I can at least get a small ride in during the weekdays.

Random funny tidbit: Since its finally cold, I blanketed Scarlet with the lighter of the two blankets I have. Its actually the same blanket I bought for him 11 years ago. Still in good shape too. Only a couple of rips. Strange how some horse things fall apart fast and some last an eternity.


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