So far, this month reminds me that I am oh so thankful for pharmaceuticals. And knowledge and friends and veterinary medicine and, wow, Archie's fine. That sentence was getting a little scary, right?
Thursday is a surgery day for my hubs, which means he's up hours before the sun and his spot on the bed has long since grown cold before I even drag my lazy ass out of it. The cats are his responsibility to feed, so they got fed at four that morning. When I got going at seven, I noticed that one of the shittens had barfed. I didn't think much of it, because cats barf if you look at them wrong.
D got home before me and did some things around the house, like cleaning up three more spots of barf. Okay, concerning. When I got home, he asked me to look at his little shit, Achilles, because he was lethargic. Our problem cat. I essentially glanced at the cat and ran to get a carrier, while telling D that we were going to the emergency clinic right now.
|About the time he growled.|
For the uninitiated (you lucky bastards): male cats have the capacity to lose the ability to urinate when their urethra gets clogged by crystals. This is a poor design of plumbing and modern cat diet. A red tube catheter gets slid up there, stitched in place, and they generally gently massage the bladder while also flushing the urethra until the urine comes out. And blood. Because, holy shit, all of that is a mess. The catheter stays in place for a couple days, then removed, then they monitor to make sure he's still tinkling like he should. If this reoccurs several times over a short period of time, the vet may opt to perform a surgery that, jokingly, turns him into shim.
Achilles was transferred to our regular vet on Friday and has been there all weekend. We've never needed her in an emergency, but I'm so thankful that we found her. She's definitely gone above and beyond all my expectations. He had his catheter out Saturday night and has peed like a champ, so I'll be picking him up on my lunch break today. They said that he's turned into a mountain lion and they can barely touch him, even with the cat gloves.
I spent a lot of times with the ponies this weekend, which isn't at all atypical, but refreshing to get my mind off of sick kitties. On Saturday, I had my normal rides on both Ox and Archie. For whatever reason, I couldn't get any of the distances right. I couldn't get enough oompf to the fence. That horse was a fucking saint for not stopping, because I did absolutely nothing to help him go. I messaged his owner, my trail buddy, and asked her if we could do a jump school.
|Ox came with a Weathabeeta almost as old as he is.|
Yesterday, we met about half an hour before the trail ride group was supposed to meet and I had the big orange booty all tacked up. She ran me through some exercises, focusing mostly on compressing and elongating his stride in all three gaits, before incorporating some fences. The biggest take away for me is that I absolutely have to have more energy going into the fence, but I can't let him get strung out. He doesn't have a big stride and when he takes a long distance, it can get ugly quick. I need him coming up to me in the canter before the fence. Also, you know, the normal. Wait for the jump. Get my goddamn eyes up. Look where we're headed. Support him in the turns. Basics.
|The little wall up to the gate, around to the two stride, rolling back to the brush box.|
After our little twenty-minute jump school, we loosened his girth and let him graze while we tacked up the other horses. Before I knew it, we were at the hunt club and heading out.
The first hour or so was a little slower than normal, as we had a rider with a brand new horse, but they bowed out when we got near her trailer and we quickly made up for the lost time. Trail buddy had us go on a different path, which took us by some irrigation sprinklers for the tree farm. Archie, as is normal, was leading. He takes this very, very seriously. He balked, I added leg, and he marched on towards the scary, clicking water machines. Fucking love this horse.
We trotted a lot, some of which was an extended trot so the beginner rider would be able to pick up a canter on her smaller/slower horse. After the second hour, we saw the trailers in the distance. Like the last trail ride, I asked the beginner rider if she wouldn't mind dismounting. She did and the trail buddy and I turned away from the trailer and asked Archie and Ox to go.
Gallop. Just get on your horse and fucking gallop.
We got a little ways and stopped, then let the horses breathe before we turned back towards the trailer. I didn't even have to ask. Archie launched forward, rocking me back in the saddle, and took off. He immediately reached another gear and half-way through, I felt him switch leads and stretch out. I fucking love this horse.
And that's how I rode ten miles in one day (1+ on Ox, 9+ on Archie).