With all the press my new horse, Ripple Effect has gotten on the past week or so, I had almost forgotten that it is Reno’s second anniversary with me. He definately deserves some press too….
Reno came to me in January 2009 with a life-threatening injury. A mystery hock injury, several months old.
It was a struggle to win the battle with this injury and I thought we would have to put him down more than once that winter. I don’t think an injury in a horse has taught me more about patience, persistence and hope. It was indeed a miracle, and by the spring he was in harness and working lightly…
One day in late April, however, I arrived home to find Reno had had a fight with the fence and to my horror had severed the extensor tendon (and nearly the flexor) in the same previously injured leg. That was the low point for me. I’m not sure I would have had the fortitude to go on with his rehab, had it not been for Reno’s magical personality. He was always happy and engaged, even when in pain. We were back to daily dressing changes and stall rest for a month, then limited turnout for a month more.
By the middle of summer, however, I had Reno back in harness and pulling a cart. We once again were on the rehab path. Lots of miles pulling the cart on pavement, strengthened the healing tendon and improved his confidence. By the fall I was riding Reno and we attended the MOFGA low impact forestry course in Maine, skidding wood. By the spring of 2010, he was sound enough to pull a walking plow and cultivator.
Doesn’t get better than this, folks!
The last 5% always takes the longest. We are happily working on the finer points of his rehab. He still has trouble with picking up the left hind for trimming and he backs up with alittle hitch in his gait. These issues may never fully resolve, but as far as I am concerned they are cosmetic and only serve to remind me of how far he has come. He is sound and he will have a home with me forever.