Consolation looks good. She feels good. And Fandango is this weekend. I’m actually considering going for a slow 50. Considering, debating, wrestling, wrangling… What to do? Is she ready? Better to wait?
Reasons to go:
- A month ago, just before she went NQR, I’d have said she was ready. We’d enjoyed a couple 30-35 mile weekends and one 28-mile ride. Horses don’t lose much conditioning in a month, and Consolation’s rest has been active (turnout plus 30-60 min. of light exercise most days, ranging from handwalks to ring work to hacks). Also, I know my own tendency to worry overmuch about conditioning.
- Her body condition is excellent.
- Her hooves look good, her boots fit, she’s landing decidedly heel-first, and I got her some comfort pads just in case.
- Her attitude is normal. She plays and bucks at liberty, and is relaxed and forward (not fast, but that’s standard for her) under saddle.
- Nothing was ever really, definitely WRONG…just Not Quite Right…
Reasons to wait:
- NQR is still NQR. It matters. Consolation seems back to normal, but I haven’t tested her on a real conditioning ride. I wish I had one more week to experiment, but I don’t.
- We’ve done a total of 20 miles of “conditioning” in the last month — two 6-mile rides and one 8-miler. Everything else has been very light activity. Also, I’d like to have climbed more hills with her before her first ride of the season.
- She’s still acting hypersensitive when saddled. This is not uncommon for her and doesn’t disturb me terribly in and of itself; nevertheless, it’s worth considering. I can’t locate any back pain, but it could still be there, or it could be be ulcers, or it could be just “her.”
- EHV-1? It seems quite unlikely that an exposed horse would be at an endurance ride and that any given horse would perish, even if there was an exposed horse present. On the other hand, all the ponies all share water troughs, have the same vets’ fingers in their mouths, etc. All things considered, I don’t think this is a good reason not to go.
So. What to do? I’d like to do the ride for the fun of it, and for its conditioning effect on Consolation. There’s no reason to miss it if taking it on won’t do any harm. But I’m perfectly willing to wait until the next ride (June 25) if that’s safer and wiser. Wish I knew…
Just for fun, here she is modeling her new rump rug.