This last week both Selena and I were at Virginia for the CCI**. It’s not that often throughout the year that we are both away for more than a day. Previously, Solo has often had time off while we are both gone, but he is older now and his work needs to be more consistent.

The first day we were away, he was ponied out on the hills. Unfortunately, he was feeling rather frisky and managed to get away from the ponier (my spell-check can’t get over some of these words…). No big deal, he hung around and off they went home. He did go for a little tour, but nothing outrageous. Next day he was taken down to the indoor arena and lunged – all was well. On the third day, he was lame. No heat, no swelling, no trauma, just lame. He had been out the night before with Waldo in the paddock. I feel he has to have done something while he was turned out, if it had happened during his getaway, he would have shown something on the lunge the next day.

Anyway, for the moment, he is having a few days off to see what that will accomplish. Since there is not a single thing to be seen or felt on the surface, I don’t have a clue, but it is likely to be as simple as a stone bruise, since something like 90% of all lamenesses are in the foot. Tomorrow Selena and I are meeting up with Solo’s owners, Mr. & Mrs. Sean Dennis at the RWF where we mean to buy Solo his new winter blanket. I am going to be looking for something hi tech that will be extremely lightweight and warm enough to use on it’s own. We are already experiencing some tenderness on his wither area and he is only wearing rainsheets.

If you remember, the same problem last winter started him rearing while I was breaking him. This year he will be in Florida from mid January onwards, but he still needs a good blanket, the stalls down there tend to be very open to cope with the heat. During the short winter, cold winds, rain and frost are common and the open stables provide about the same protection as good field shelters. If it makes you all feel better/warmer….other than the first day we were down there, which was sweltering, it was just as cold at the Virginia Horse Centre as it is here at Hawkridge Farm.

However, I was very taken by Virginia, the mountains were breathtaking and truly blue, plus dynamite hills to get your horse fit on. It’s such a pity we didn’t manage to grab that bit of the continent for Canada đŸ˜‰