Today my friend and I were planning on hitting the trails. I had my reservations when we first discussed it, because of Milo's swelling. But the BO said that she could not only ride his Arabian, Middy, but I could ride his other Arab, Zaza. So the plan was to ride the two older gals and give Milo some more time off. I as eager to ride the 35 year old spritely mare. We arrived at the barn and I found a note from the BO that Zaza was colicy and would need a rain check. I was totally cool with it and made sure to ask how she was doing. Minor, he confirmed. Friend still wanted to go out and with Milo having had the last two days swelling free and looking sound, she wanted to go. I relented but only if I hand walked him; he would like to get out, Middy would like to get out, I wanted to get out, but there was no way I was going to compromise the soundness and swelling-free state that my horse was in. First though, I wanted to lunge him and see he was sound at all three gaits.
Haha, well Milo hadnt been worked since exactly a week from today, and only got out of the stall two maybe three times for grooming. He was a spitfire of energy (not to mention it was a nice but breezy day out, so the nicer weather was adding some spring fever to his step). I led him to the arena (which from last week's melting snow half was flooded, but the other half was dry and nice) and clipped the lunge line on. Friend headed up to the upper barn to get Middy ready. Milo was feeling good and looking around, and from the top of the hill behind the arena Friend appeared and starting asking me a question. Which, her sudden appearance subsequently sent Milo into a spook. He was feeling so good and showing off moves I hadnt seen before! Friend came around to the front of the arena, again both with the dogs and her sudden appearance causing Milo to spook again. This time though he leaped skyward and gave a delicate yet massive pirouette thing, totally airs above the ground. I held on as he jerked me around a bit, but couldnt help but grin at the moves my horse had never offered before.
We ended up discussing that the trail ride would just need to be planned for another day. The universe was clearly throwing a lot of signs our way that it was not meant to be. I figured I would give Milo a nice workout on the lunge-line and monitor his reaction from it tomorrow. We would ride Thursday if the weather was nice, and if my horse was still tight-legged and sound, and only on a short ride at a walk. I felt I was being a little difficult, but I couldnt help but wonder if our ride last week had perpetuated the swelling I had noticed the weekend before. There was no way I was going to let that happen again. Milo would have as much time off as needed and some gradual reintroduction to work. Fortunately, however, it seems the paddock is trying to dry out a bit so I'm crossing my fingers that that will help keep him tight.
I lunged him for a while giving him a nice workout. I couldnt help but appreciate what a pretty horse I have. Once he got the spooks, bucks, leaps, and pirouettes out of his system, he moved beautifully. Not a single off step and was actually lifting his back and really working himself nicely. Poor guy probably wants to get back into work! Hopefully here soon...