|Woo-hoo! He does water!|
Neighbor Kim acquired a new horse, bay Arab gelding J.D., and we decided to ride together one morning last month. Red hadn’t been out in a while, so we saddled up and met on the road, then went to play in the gravel pit a little. J.D. seems to be a great horse, calm and well-trained, and happy with his job. We took them through the water – Red for practice as water is one of his least favorite obstacles, and J.D. to see how he handled it (perfectly, by the way). Red was wearing his hoof boots, and due to the extreme fly year we’re having, I liberally coated him in Wipe before leaving the barn. As soon as we emerged from the water, he started stomping his feet, mostly his hinds. It seemed to be a fly stomp type thing, but he didn’t have any flies. I hopped off to check his boots, even removing & replacing them to make sure there weren’t any foreign objects or debris in them or beneath the gaiters. All appeared fine, but the behavior didn’t stop until his legs had dried. This was odd, but as he seemed fine, we continued on.
Heading up the road, Becca passed us on her way to the barn, and we found out she & another neighbor Katie were going to ride together as well. Instant pony party! So, Kim and I did a little meander down the road & back while Becca & Katie were getting ready, then we all met up to ride together.
|Becca, Katie, & Kim|
We headed back to the gravel pit, with Becca’s & Katie’s horses both a little hot – blowing the stereotype of “crazy Arabs” right out of the water yet again! The two Arabs in the bunch were the calm ones. We did the water again, and the exact same thing happened with Red fiercely stomping again as soon as we emerged. I removed all four boots and continued the rest of the ride barefoot and with no stomping. The only explanation I can rationalize is some reaction or irritation between the gaiters and the oily Wipe fly repellant. He has certainly been through water with the boots/gaiters on many times in the past without ever having a reaction like this before. Red does have a history of some skin reactions to fly products previously, although to my knowledge it has only been products with citronella in them. I am very careful to only buy products without citronella for him. His skin appeared normal, and even after the ride and the next day the skin continued to be normal without any flaking, hair loss, swelling, or any other obvious sign of a reaction. I guess I won’t be using Wipe on him when he’ll be using boots and potentially getting wet!
|Becca & Kaos|