I bought Baron in 2008. We’ve had ups and downs, the downs coming mostly in the form of injuries to Baron. When I got Baron, I didn’t know what I was doing and I was a beginner rider. Eight years later I’m an intermediate rider but I still have so much to learn.
For the past three years I’ve had project horses. Thunder, Heidi, Spirit and Stanley were horses I either bought as a project or fostered for a local rescue. I was able to do that because I had incredibly cheap board at a beautiful piece of property. That property is most likely selling to a developer and I’ll have to move. It will be just me and Baron again, no project horses.
I’m excited to focus on him again. Last summer was really rough. He started acting weird, very lackluster and “nqh” (not quite right). He was losing weight and seemed miserable. I could tell he was in pain but had no obvious symptoms. It was to the point where I was thinking of euthanasia. It was that bad. I thought maybe all his old injuries were catching up to him and he was just arthritic and miserable. Then one day he started limping, not just a little, I mean three legged lame, could barely get around. Then, not surprisingly, he blew an abscess not once but 4 times. Three places in the sole and one at the coronary band. And then he was perfectly fine! I was riding my project horse Heidi during that time so, once he was all healed up, my friend Karen started riding Baron on the trails. Since then, he’s kept improving. His weight is up, his coat is slick and shiny, and he is happy to be back in work. He’s the type of horse that enjoys having a job.
With that in mind, I’d like to pursue a new challenge with him. Endurance riding. It’s a little crazy, I know. He’s a 14 year old, 16.1 ottb with arthritis. He is not the ideal endurance mount. I’m not looking to do Tevis. I would be happy to complete a 25 mile ride with a sound horse. We may start conditioning and find out that he just can’t hold up to the work. But we may find out that the conditioning keeps his joints loose and helps him stay healthy. My vet and farrier both say that movement is the best thing for him. We shall see. If he can’t do the big mileage stuff, we’ll be trail riders. I’ll be happy either way!