Poor Mojo had a very sticky runny nose – very smelly too. The vet attended after a couple of days as Mojo was not a happy coblet.
The vet examined teeth etc and said Mojo had an acute sinusitis, so the options were antibiotics and hope it didn’t reoccur – but that is not always the case. Or to go to the veterinary hospital for a wash out, I opted for the wash out.
Mojo was booked in for a few days later and loaded well but as he doesn’t travel too well we took it slowly. He arrived and grew a few inches looking at everything. He was put in a nice cosy stable but looked very anxious – after booking him in I left him eating hay.
He was sedated for the procedure – to insert a tube in his sinus and wash it out. I explained to the staff and the vet how frightened he can get but I thnk because he does really show his fear they may have not understood him. It is surprising how many people only recognise fear when the horse is trying to flee or shaking or showing other obvious signs.
Anyway poor Mojo was not – in the words of the staff – a good patient. Even sedated he tried to escape, so he must have been way over threshold. All I was told was “when he learns some manners he will be OK”. so many people equate a suppressed horse with one with “manners”. Mojo had an opinion and made it known but no-one listened.
How most people instill “manners” is to use aversives to such an extent that the horse learns not to object for fear of the consequences.
The plan was to leave the tube in so we could wash him out at home but the vet deemed him too dangerous for us to do this. So he came home after 3 days with no drain.
We picked him up and he walked into the lorry but panicked once shut in – so he kicked the lorry sides a bit on the way home. I have a ot of systematic desensitisation and counter conditioning to do with travelling. Once the fields are dry I may be able to park it in a field and do this at liberty.
Mojo came out of the lorry and called to the other horses – only the 3rd time I have heard him vocalise.
We turned him out with his friends and he cantered round the field and rolled and rolled. Then cantered some more – he is normally very sedate in the field, so it was obvious that he was very high on adrenaline.
Later in the day he woudn’t came any where near any person that tried to catch him, not even for a bucket of food – stressed horse often don’t eat so this is another sign of how upset he was.
The next day he was fed in the field and seemed to have calmed down a bit. Over the next few days he settled and came over to say hello and I groomed him in the field and got him to target the brushes so he could get some reinforcement.
Now he is back to normal and is due for the suture being removed. He allows me to touch his face and ears and hopefully the vet will have no problems with him as he will be at home in familiar surroundings.
We owe it to our horses to prepare them for veterinary care but sometimes things happen that we cannot foresee. I know that now I have to get him used to having a lot of people around him.