Sometimes, I have to wonder how much information to divulge.  I'm not worried about someone finding me and stalking me or anything, but sometimes things get a little personal.  Huh.

I rode Archie on Thursday and he felt.. weird.  He did everything I asked him for and performed in his normal superstar fashion, but something wasn't clicking right.  There was no head-bobbing lameness, no lack of extension on the hind end, no off step.  It might have been a slight shortening of stride, which makes me think of his feet being tender.  I checked him for heat and stones and any abscess blow outs, but I couldn't find anything.

I hopped on him Friday and it was more distinct.  There was some sucking back on the stride.  I could be paranoid and he could be lazy, but I felt like there was something wrong.  I got off him pretty quick, checked his legs again (nothing) and checked his hooves again (weird).  His frog on his right front seems to be in a perpetual state of sloughing off, but now it seemed like three of his frogs were sloughing off.  I know this isn't supposed to be a big deal, but I'm super paranoid.  The only thing I could think was the recent rain coupled with our high temperatures and constant high humidity was just acting like a too-long soak for his frogs.  And maybe that was making him tender.  I gave him Saturday and Sunday off and will hopefully be able to hop on him today and determine how he's doing.  I was also able to go by a tack store! This kind of a big deal, because Savannah has absolutely no tack stores.  Not including the poor carriage horses, the city only has about ten horses. So, even though I already had hoof conditioner, I got another bottle that was reputably supposed to have anti-fungal and anti-bacterial agents.  Because I'm paranoid.

Saturday, I worked at the veterinarian's office.  I've spent almost five years in small animal veterinary medicine and feel like I can do some of this crap in my sleep.  The clinic I worked at in Augusta was phenomenal.  It was money-hungry, but blatantly so: emergencies were, without fail, $100 to come in.  And it ran like a small business; you knew the owners, you knew the staff, you knew how everything functioned.  The care came first, but we had to get paid, too.  The facilities were.. absolutely gorgeous.  It was built in the style of an old cathedral, with wooden beams and church pews.   There were only eight kennels and we focused on "quality over quantity."  Dog families could board together and they would go out no less than four times a day into the large fenced-in yard.  And each suite had a kennel camera, so the neurotic owners could watch Fido sleep.

The clinic in Savannah.. not as amazing.  I really like the coworkers, but the owners leave something to be desired.  They model themselves after a corporation: office manager, practice manager, policies, policies, policies.  They'll work with you more on payment issues than the Augusta clinic, but they've got "preventative care" packages that are virtually worthless.  I could get more done in Augusta for the same amount. The boarding creeps me out and I won't let my kids board there.  Every dog is separate and only goes out twice a day: 7:30 am and 4:00 pm.  Little dogs don't get to go outside to potty, they have to use a "run" inside.  The smaller dogs sit on plastic crates and occasionally they'll give them blankets.  I just.. hate it.  My primary experience is in emergency medicine and there is an emergency clinic here, but I don't think they do nearly the business we did in Augusta and run on a skeleton crew.

What was the point of this comparative analysis?  Oh, yeah.  So I worked at the shitty clinic.  Brought lunch home for the husband.  Met a friend for dinner.  Went back to Augusta yesterday and spent way too much money at the Academy Sports store.  That's another thing that Savannah doesn't have: a reputable sports store.  There's a tiny mom and pop place, but the hours are erratic and the selection limited.  It blows.

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  1. I hope Archie is okay. Thanks for the warning about Savannah not having tack stores. I'll need to stock up before we move lol.

    1. Ugh! Savannah is horrible for horses! There's a Tractor Supply an hour plus out and a tiny feed store outside of town. The feed store has the basics: generic, cheap halter, *maybe* a fly mask, *maybe* fly spray and some supplements. There's supposed to be a decent tack store in Jaxville (2.5+ hrs south) called Horse and Kennel, but I haven't been there. Other than that, there are a couple in Augusta and Aiken (3+ hrs) and a gorgeous, phenomenal one in Camden, SC called the Tack Room (3+ hrs). I depend pretty heavily on SmartPak. :)

    2. The program i want to do is very good at SCAD, actually probably the best. I've never been to Savannah, just taking the straight plunge based on what everyone's said. I can't join the Eq team, since its IHSA and not NCAA, so the rules won't allow for me joining another team, I'd have to compete as Alumna, and I asked about competing NRC since I never did that in undergrad, but the NRC people were adamant about only ungrads competing. Lame, I wish there were more opportunity for graduate students to compete, regardless i probably won't have time to compete anyways lol.

      Actually you could be of help! I was looking at possibly boarding at either Cypress Grove or Morning Star. I'm not really interested in taking lessons or showing, just a decent place not too far that my horse can live.

    3. I haven't been to Cypress Grove, but I also haven't heard anything negative about them (and, as far removed as I am and as small as the community is, you still hear things!). I actually went out to Morning Star before I moved Arch to where he is now. I wasn't super impressed. The owner and I had an appointment and she didn't show. I drove down to the barn, looked around, and immediately left. I've since learned that Savannah isn't to the standards that Augusta was, but that "RUN!" feeling has lingered. Depending on your price range, there is a super-awesome barn hidden in the middle of the city: Wicklow Stables. Unfortunately, you're not going to find a lot of information about them online. I got their number from someone who knew someone. They've got a reputation of being.. uh.. snobby. :) They show a lot, from what I understand. Board was about $650/month. Most of the other places around here are $400-500. The City of Savannah doesn't have a lot of places to chose from. Don't touch Norwood Stables. SCAD has a barn across the river, but the board is supposed to exorbitant. I'll ask around and see if anyone has anywhere they'd like to recommend. I take dressage lessons at a nice little facility, but it's an hour out and primarily Western.

    4. OH! And, there's a little privately owned barn in Vernonburg (it's an old suburb on the Southside). It's only four horses (I think), but it's got a couple round-pens and a riding ring with a few jumps. And some farm animals (the lady leasing the property breeds pigs, lambs, other.. things). It's about ten acres. Here's the reason I haven't moved my horse there: the entire fence surrounding the property is topped by barb-wire. My friend boards her kid there and has had no issues, but I think Archie would get out of his inner pen and kill himself. My friend actually just came from Bakersfield, CA about a year ago, so she might have some suggestions as far as the transition.

    5. Yeah I got the price sheet for the school, and there is no way I am boarding there. Most of the places seem really reasonable compared to what I pay now! I'm just really interested in something closeish (meaning 30mins or less) so I can go see him almost everday, as I will probably need horse therapy. :) I'm excited that I'm getting to know you online! Possible real life friend!

    6. You move to Sav'h and we will totally be real life friends. :) I'm the unofficial city greeter and I love showing people neat things about this place. It's freaking gorgeous.
      Closeish is kind of a relative term dependent upon where you end up living. If you're going to SCAD, it's sort of a safe bet that you'll stay downtown. So the Pooler barns would be pretty easy for you. Or Hardeeville, across the river. And, unless the barn has contacts set up, I'd be glad to share my farrier and vet info. There aren't an abundance of either of them. (My farrier is kind of a jerk but does good work and is reasonably priced. Just a warning.)
      And I have to ask: what program is it at SCAD?