Hissy Fit

Hanging out in my box

She’s got rain rot, or rain scald or whatever you want to call it. I’m going with rain rot because its rotten to deal with. She’s not the only one in my barn with it there are several. This weather isn’t making it easy to deal with. The patches on her back and hips are clearing up with my betadine and MTG 1 hour long every single day with out waver treatment. The rain rot on her legs is slow going. My girl hates and I mean hates it when you have to fuss with her back legs, its always a struggle between scraping off the rain rot scabs as quickly and efficiently as i can before she gets too dancey and kicky. I’ve got it down pretty good but this is a process I don’t enjoy. After some trusted advice and some research I decided that a vinegar bath was in order to change the pH on her skin and make it an inhospitable place for the rain rot, in hopes it would help me quash the spread.

I prepared. The day before I sprayed her down with apple cider vinegar from a spray bottle, she didn’t bat an eye, stood for it and didn’t have any adverse reactions to it. She smelled like an Easter egg but that bothered me more then her in fact it didn’t bother her at all. The next day when my barn was quiet and empty in the hot afternoon after attaching a sprayer to my hose so the vinegar bath would be deluded, getting the water temp perfect so the princess wouldn’t complain it was too cold and after turning off the fans because the noise of them in the dreaded  wash stall bothers her I lead my girl into the wash stall. To my surprise she did well. It’s always a crap shoot with the wash stall, it echo’s in there, she doesn’t like it and though I’ve been working with her trying to make it a non scary place we still have a long way to go. She stood for her bath at first. I hosed her down and every thing was going good, after a couple minutes she started to dance a little. Lucky for me a friend at the barn showed up and helped me by distracting her. I could tell after a bit she she was reaching her limit, the dancing got more intense, so the bath bath time was over.  She got some treats as I pulled out my new sweat scraper. That’s when she lost her mind.

The worst temper tantrum I have ever seen from her. Snorting, dancing, attempting  to rear in the cross ties. When she realised she couldn’t really rear she decided she should use both back legs and kick the wash stall wall like a bucking bronco. Dangerous for her and for me. I tried to calm her enough to get her out of the stall in a calm manner. Nope wasnt going to happen. She did her bronco act a few more times. A quick decision needed to be made, she was going to hurt herself if i didn’t get her out of there. I was able to get one cross tie off and get her lead rope on her. She swung her body out into the isle as I got the other tie off her. I was thinking she was going to bolt but she didn’t, she danced and pranced in a racehorse fashion but she didn’t bolt. I got her into her stall where her temper tantrum continued. Snorting, pacing in circles, pawing at the ground. It was like a switch flipped in her head. I’ve only seen her like this a couple times. Once when she saw an unfamiliar white dog running around the barn (must be a white dog in her past that freaked her out) and the first time I tried to take her on the trail in reaction to the mud hole. You cant get her to come back down from whatever horse tantrum planet shes on and pay attention to you. I tried to distract her so see if that would work and it of course didn’t, so I walked away and let her have her teen aged girl tantrum (but mom all the other kids are going!). Though she did eventually cam down, she was still wound up and anxious when I left the barn that day.

Of course the next day she was my super sweet lovable horse again who stood calmly for her rain rot treatment. It was a bad moment for her and for me. The last thing I want to do is let her think she can get her way by throwing a tantrum. I also don’t want her to hurt herself or me. So I’m on the hunt for some training help. I dont want that to happen again and though i’m thinking she had just hit the wall that day and it was just a bad moment for her, it wouldn’t hurt to get a little help with some of this stuff. Shes a wonderful lovable horse, shes also headstrong, clever, bratty and still very much a baby girl. A few tips and tricks in how to deal with some of this stuff wouldn’t hurt me, if even if to just reinforce I’m doing something correctly… every day is a new lesson.