This morning Red and I had a consultation, think of it as getting a second opinion, with animal communicator Linda Wahlund. Linda is also a Reiki Master. I am just not a new age "whoo whoo" type person, neither is Linda. I like and respect her. She is down-to-earth and a horsewoman. Here are my notes of our consultation:
The very first thing out of Red's "mouth" was that he had been whacked a good one by another horse, this really shook him, it was a 10 out of 10 on a seriousness scale. It really made an impression on Red. The kick is directly related to his current lameness. (I had not mentioned my belief that Red had been kicked and that it contributed to the problem).
Linda asked Red how he wanted to show her his body and after a minute she reported to me they would start from the bottom.
There was a pain in his fetlock and ache in the lower part of the long bone in the front of the hock and a little ache in the hock. There is pain in his stifle - lots of pain. The hip is fine. She reviewed the spine - there are little things here and there, nothing major, a little ache around mid back. I asked about a need for adjustments and the answer came back, nothing to adjust but he would like some massage in his midback. It would help to stretch the back upwards like a cat stretching. Tail work would help - she described left hand under tail and right hand on top grasping the tail, keeping the curve, push in the tail then slowly rock your weight back and he will move foreward.
The stifle is totally fixable - 3-4 weeks, no, 2-3 weeks. It would help to push inward around there and on the hip. You don't have to be in the exact spot, you will find the spot that will need touching. She recommended the book Touching Horses and offered to loan it to me.
In trying to describe her impressions Linda said it is almost like the stifle is pushed in and sideways - and this tweaked it. She said she understood why Dr. Mott might think it was a fixated patella. She said it is like your hip, and the bursa on the side of the bone on each leg where it attaches to the side bone, like he went down hill and had to catch himself or slipped and pulled a tendon.
The front of the fetlock feels like age and arthritic related pain.
Something is at the back of the hock, not a big deal to Red. He had some trouble with hock bone spur. Nothing we can do about it. It prevents him from extending his leg all the way, he may seem stiff or bumpy at the trot.
She asked Red about different treatments:
- will a change in diet help - no
- supplements - no
- pharmaceuticals - yes, but only about 50%
I asked again about Glucosamine and Chondroitin. She paused and said it would help his overall comfort.
Linda that shared that Red doesn't really care about this (the hock), it is not a huge deal to him, it just part of who he is.
There is more concern with the fetlock. . . not exactly the fetlock, on the front of the pastern in the intricate little bones there. There is achiness. She recommended essential oils on the joint, therapeutic grade.
I asked about arnica, she said it would be helpful.
I asked if the bolt damage to the corornary band and heel buttress on the outside right leg was implicated, she said it is making the fetlock concern more pronounced.
Linda considered several oils - in addition to arnica, those recommended were:
Lavender (he wanted it)
From Red came a request for the herb self-heal. He could get it in his feed.
Linda noted there is an energetic weakness in Red's rear right leg - gaps in the energy field that need to be filled in. It is an easy place for other horses to kick him.
When I asked if there was anything else Red wanted she asked and then said he hates when you use that thing that pulls on his mouth - he said "Keep that thing away from me".
She asked me what I rode him in - usually I ride with a Dr. Cook's Bitless Bridle but forgot it for Cuneo Creek, she said she would tell him that was why, he really hates the snaffle I rode him with.
Then she said that Red told her he is good because he likes me, not because he has to be good. He could do whatever he wants to but he likes me. (This is SO Red Tee Bar, he is NOT a "lick and chew" kind of guy!)
He was not so crazy about the vet business.
Red wanted to point out that his left foot is getting tired as he compensates for his right side.
Red was a bit annoyed at being contacted by Linda. When she first contacted him, he asked her why she was bothering him. Close to the end, Red said that he tells me things all the time. Linda told him she was giving me a second opinion.
Linda suggested doing a body scan for energy holes and detoxing energetically. The energy hole in his left side is like a target for other horses who want to kick him.
I asked how I could help about the new little gelding who I think was responsible for the kick - he is the only pale horse (not white) and has been trying to steal Coal. Linda described him as a "fly in the ointment". She suggested a protective ring of white light and stressed filling the energy hole in the area of Red's right rear leg.
I am beyond pleased with Linda's consultation. Not only did the horsey opinions she shared perfectly fit my Red Horse, the overall information complements the diagnosis I finally received yesterday from Dr. Mott. Here is a summary of what Dr. Mott had to say:
1. The shadow on his femur was just the angle of the xray
2. Hock joint = ( ) in two lower tarsal joints of the right hock (the non-movable ones) and a bone spur on the distal tarsal bone.
3. In the right stifle intermittent upward patella fixation is secondary to the hock issues.
4. The exam and xrays ruled out anything that would precipitate a more acute response (there is no trauma).
Recommendations: Joint injections with cortisone.
My thoughts: The DJD was pre-existing and chronic for a long time - it just doesn't explain for me how come Red went so lame overnight. I told her I preferred to begin with a more conservative approach - up the level of supplements and that I thought that rushing to joint injections when we had just done a summer of many trail miles with no problems was a more intense response than I preferred. She had not recalled that we had done so much trail riding.
I felt like I was given a textbook diagnosis that certainly does document the state of Red's joints but does not account for whatever happened last Thursday to have him go from sound to a lameness rating of 4. For over 6 Big Ones I now have it well documented that Red has bone spavin.
Here is my plan:
1. Joint Supplements
3. Essential Oils
5. Energy work on the gap in his right hind leg.
6. Continued exercise.
Many folks have suggested that I might want to move Red out of general pasture. This is a hard choice. He loves general pasture, being with the herd is dear to him and I don't believe I will ever take him from what he loves so much.
Thank you everyone who has shared your sympathy and well-wishes. Red is already on the mend!
Here is Red's massage oil, custom blended by Red:
Base of grape seed oil (2 ounces) (may promote wound healing)
lavender oil (1 oz) ( rub for rheumatic ailments)
arnica oil (1 oz) (actually, I picked this and the pendulum confirmed) (reducing the swelling and pain of bruises, sprains, muscle or joint problems)
Roman chamomile (1/2 oz) (anti-inflamatory)
17 drops ginger oil (reduces inflamation)
15 drops pine oil (sore joints and muslces)
15 drops black spruce oil (muscle pains, circulation)
8 drops camphor oil (reduces inflamation)
4 drops clove oil (pain relief, blook circulation)
4 drops cinnamon oil (pain relief)
3 drops geranium oil
Now I'm about to go woo-woo on you - how did Red, a horse, blend his own oil? Well I got one of those new fangled pendulums. Seriously. Yep. And the thing just amazed me. I know next to nothing about essential oils. I just held the pendululm in front of each oil. For most it hung straight down, submissive to gravity. For the ones in the recipe it started to spin in a healthy, 2 inch circle. Woo woo woo woo. Dang. Same thing happened when I asked Red for how much of each ingredients - drops or ounces - it circled or hung motionless. For drops I counted and when it started to circle, I wrote down the drops and that is how many went into the brew.
WHOA!!!!! I just looked everything up and linked the ingredients to reference pages. Looks like an incredible massage oil for sore joints and muscles. Think I'll use it on my sore knees.
update September 1, 2009: Red is still 100 per cent sound. Not a lame step. NO injections. I'm very, very grateful. Oh, Steamer, the little fellow whose kick packed such a wallop, and Red have come to a truce. They are now united against the new bay gelding. Sigh.