Tuesday, March 16, 2010


The vet came out and took a look at Bodhi on Monday. His left shoulder definitely is the culprit.

He has muscle degeneration along one band of muscle in his shoulder. She has two hunches for the root of the problem. One was a turn out injury where he banged that shoulder hard enough to hurt the nerve that runs along the muscle which then causes the muscle atrophy. Another is much more sinister (EPM). She drew blood and will have tests back in a week.

With either one Bodhi needs to go on a slow rehab of walking walking walking (then trot trot trotting etc) to regain the muscle back in his shoulder. She estimated that it will take around 3 months to heal.

With either diagnose she says that his case is very mild and she thinks he will recover 100%. I am trying not to cry, or despair, or anything until the tests come back. It is really difficult though. How can my jovial youthful little pony be so sick? How can life be this unfair?

Anyone have rehab advise? I know I will be re-reading Grey Horse Matters' post about it! Anyone dealt with muscle/nerve injuries or...

Mostly I am in denial. I really can't believe that this is happening.

I mean look at this face!


  1. I hate hate hate hate hearing this. WHY?! Blogging is unlucky. Stacey Kimmel and Kristen and Nicku Denali! All these amazing horses and wonderful owners having to go through horrible diseases!

    I am keeping everything corssed for you and the Bohd man!

  2. Oh, Rach, I don't think blogging is unlucky. I just think that's horses. There's always a risk that these guys are going to get sick or hurt themselves. All we can do is enjoy them while they are healthy and sound and take the best care we can to keep them that way.

    As for Bodhi, my fingers are crossed that it's not EPM, but the good news is that if you've caught it early he could still have a brilliant career ahead of him. I showed a horse in the junior hunters (3'6") who had EPM and we caught it early and treated her and she was just fine for the several years that I showed her. So, you are right not to despair yet, and if it is EPM, don't panic. It's not necessarily the end of the world. Keep us posted, and hang in there.

  3. I believe the vet is right - regardless of the reason, slow muscle building and conditioning is the answer - horses are very strong and often are able to make very good recoveries from this sort of thing.

  4. . . .DOG GAMMIT... That really sucks!!

    I don't think it is time for despair yet though. Your vet seems pretty positive. Relax, think positive healing thoughts and wait on the test results!

  5. I imagine you know this, but make sure to let your farrier know - during rehab the angles on a horse have to be adjusted to ensure they work evening on both sides. It really helped my Arab get back in balance.

    Time will heal. He'll feel better!

  6. Sending good thoughts your (and Bodhi's) way! If the vet thinks he will make a full recovery, that's great! Lots of slow conditioning work just means more bonding time and it will force you to be creative with your training. Definitely not bad things! Just trying to find the positive...:-)

  7. Thanks everyone! You really made my morning to hear the encouragement and good ideas to make lemons into lemonade.
    Breathe- had not crossed my mind about the farrier. Good idea!
    Marissa- thanks for the happy ending story about EPM. I have been doing random searches online and they keep bringing up horror stories. You guys are right. I need to stay positive. Bodhi and I are starting our first day of rehab today! rain or shine!

  8. I'm so sorry to hear about Bodhi! Don't dispair though! It sounds like you caught it way early, which always makes everything better.

    I also have a rehap story that might make things seems a little more hopeful. There was a horse at my old barn who either tore a muscle in his shoulder or severely injured a nerve. It happened completely randomly while someone was riding him- he was fine one step,and the next he was couldn't flex his right elbow. At all. To get back to the barn, he would swing his entire leg forward from the shoulder, hobble a step, and then do it all over. He spent 6 months on complete stall rest, and another year turned out in a hilly paddock to regain some strength before even starting to work again. He started rehabbing in the fall, and by summer, he was back to training level eventing. It took a long time, but this was a horse that literally could not move his leg forward at all, and he made a 100% recovery.

    Slow and steady wins the rehab race.

    I'll keep my fingers crossed that the EPM test comes back negative and your rehab goes smoothly.

  9. Wow thanks Gabrielle! It is good to know of horses coming back 100% from these types of injuries. That injury was much more severe than Bodhi's as well. Poor horse! Stall rest can be really trying. That is so awesome he got to go back to work though!

  10. Golden, I've been wanting to post but can't comment on your blog from work due to security settings (both here and work). Since I often read/comment over lunch, I often don't get to say what I want over here.

    I am not much use, but my heart goes out to you and Bodhi. You are clearly strong and so is he, so I think you will both be well after awhile. The vet's initial prognosis sounds good! 100% recovery is great, even if it takes awhile. I can't imagine how hard this is with the move coming up and everything. The good part is you can focus on simple rehab while readjusting to a new life, right? That kind of routine might be just the thing. Bodhi is young, you've got time to let him heal while you get even smarter. My thoughts are with you guys.

  11. Oh goodness, I'm sorry to hear this. Sounds like a long process, but glad there is a hope of fully recovery. I'm wishing good thoughts for you and your beautiful golden boy. I hope the test results come back quickly and you can rule out EPM and begin your rehab work.

  12. thanks guys! Ruckus-- should I change my security settings? I notice I do not require a code to post while most others do. I am hopelessly technically challenged.