Always Trust Your Instincts

So when I drove up to the barn yesterday at 5:55 am I was greeted by the Leopard Appaloosa…in the driveway! He had broken out at some point during the night! I quickly was able to catch him (with the help of a little grain) and had gotten him put safely away just as the barn owner and her son walked in to fee breakfast! They walked in on the barn being a complete mess and already knew what happened before I told them. Bad Appy!

My sweet Gennyral came over to the gate as he heard us talking and made sure that I came right over by being a total attention getting pain in the butt! I had been hoping to see the swelling going down, but there was no suck luck. Not only had it not gone down, it actually grew in size! It was about 8 inches across and 16 inches down as of 6am. There was still a little heat at the top. I grabbed an ice pack and some alcohol and treated Gen in his field (I didn’t want to disrupt the barn morning routine any more then I already had). I got a great picture of him in his fly mask with the morning sun rising behind him! Hopefully I will get a few minutes to post it later today.

Since the swelling had grown instead of gone down I left a message for my vet to come out and check on Gen. I know you all thought it was a bug bite and that it would go away, but I know my horse and this was something I wanted my vet to check out. I was already at work before he called me back (normal people don’t have to be at work by 7am?). He told me that Gen’s bump did not sound normal. The recommendation was to put animax (an ointment) topically on all of the site (there was a lot of “site” mind you) and to give him a snack with half a pack of Dex in it. That way Gen would get a little bit of steroid and a little bit of histamine blocker. My vet had morning appointments down in the southern part of the state, but he would see Gen in the afternoon.

Since I was at work I had to call the barn owner. Poor woman had to go through all my stuff (and let me tell you, I have a lot of stuff) to find the Dex and Animax so she could treat Gennyral. She took care of my boy and told me she would call me in an hour if there was any change. At 11:30 on the dot she called me to say that that there was no difference. I relayed that message to my vet who told me that he would be out there by 2 and I shouldn’t worry.

The thing is, I was more frustrated then worried. I just wanted to know what was wrong!

When the vet called me at 2:30 I was glad I had made him come out. Gen had a tick embedded in his skin. Like really in there. I have a hard time imagining how deep it must have been considering I couldn’t even feel it or see it during the previous 40+ hours! My vet was able to get the tick out and he gave Gen a shot of steroid and a shot of antihistamine so he would start to feel better quick. I told you all my horse was special. How many other horses do you know that get ticks in them and not just on them 😛

By the time I got out of work it was already dark, but I wanted to check on my boy anyway. It was like a party at the barn because all the boarders were already there! Gen was already out for night turnout, but lucky for him I keep a flashlight in my tack trunk so I let him stay outside while I looked him over.

There was still a lot of swelling so I am going to head back to the barn right now and check on him again. There was also now clearly a “site of impact”. I will take pictures for you all because who doesn’t love pictures of the gross stuff 😛 I better get a move on!

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7 thoughts on “Always Trust Your Instincts

  1. I’m sorry I doubted your instincts. Can you forgive me? Glad it all worked out. Do you know what type of tick it was?

  2. Yikes! I’m glad you got the vet out to take a look. I would have done the same. Hope Gen is feeling better now that the tick’s been removed!

    Also, BAD Leopard Appy! That horse needs a hobby, LOL.

  3. That was a great lesson. I really thought it was a Kick bite or absess. Lesson learn if your not sure call the vet.

    That had to be suprise to see the bad ass appy

  4. In all my years of working around animals and pulling those gross disgusting ticks OFF of animals, I have never seen one imbedded so deep that you couldn’t tell it was a tick. All I can say is -WOW-

    When I was in (vet tech) school, we were taught that ANYTHING that an owner calls about and thinks is a problem should be looked at regardless of what the description sounds like (or what we think). I’d say that was a good call to have Gen looked at (still shaking head in surprise that it was a tick…Eeeewww)…and I agree with you that trusting your instincts rarely proves wrong.

    It sounds like Gen was a good boy through it all and thankfully it was nothing too serious (except for the “yuck” factor)!! ..maybe some extra treats for the brave and handsome pony are in order 😀

  5. Crazy! :O It really looked like a bug bite in that first pic. But the fact that it began GROWING rather than shrinking is scary. I would have called my vet too. Hope he does not have to deal with Lyme or anything tick related.

  6. glad you called the vet…..

    animax is a great product and works on so many skin problems, especially fungus and the like. But beware…it’s generic panalog and not legal in the show ring. It will show up in a random drug test! If you plan to show, take him off it AT LEAST 2 weeks before!

    And I agree…you KNOW your horse…call the vet when you think you need one…if the vet won’t come, find another!!! But always trust your instincts!!

    These BUGS!!!! Spiders can leave bites like that too….

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