Breath…

So why on earth am I home alone on a Friday night at 9pm. Because I had a very scary moment with Gen today…

So I got to the barn today a little bit later than usual…so I knew I had to rush. It was after the normal bring in time, but not by a lot so I was not that surprised to find the ponies still out. The barn was being cleaned so Gen and I tried not to get in the way and slow things down. After he was all sparkly clean (or as sparkly clean as a white horse can get in the winter…although with the article Wendy sent me there might be hope for Gen yet…anyway) I figured I would just do Gen’s stall myself to help out and so that I could put him away in a clean stall.

At about that same time I had to move Gen from the cross ties. I looked at my sleepy pony and figured he would be okay to hang out in the barn aisle while I did his stall. At first I tried to ground tie him. It only took about 10 seconds and three “GENNYRAL!! ENOUGH. STAND!”‘s to realize that was not going to work tonight so I picked up the end of the lead rope and held him loosely while I did the stall. They use trash cans as muck buckets so I had one of those blocking his way in and he was relatively content to be tethered to his mommy and play with all of his things in the aisle.

I don’t know about you, but when I do the stall I clean the edges first and then slowly pile the clean shavings around the edge as I work my way towards the middle which is usually where all the pee is. I was almost done when it happened. I looked up to find Gen was looking at me. In a split second I knew what he was going to do. He took a quick step forward in to the stall and I yelled “NO” hoping to stop him since the entrance was mostly blocked by the manure filled trash can.

As soon as I yelled Gen panicked and tried to fly forward…only he couldn’t really fit so he bumped the trash and and the wall which freaked him out even more. As he was lunging forward in a panic his right hind leg hit the center of the stall mat that was slick with pee and had no shavings on it. His leg slipped out from under him with a dramatic sound and everything else happened in slow motion.

The barn owner came running over as Gen’s front legs gave out causing him to tilt more right and fall over on his side, butt first and then all the way over. I stepped back to the edge of the stall in shock and to get out of the way while Gen lifted his head. It felt like a year had gone by before Gen started to scrabble with all four legs. I was frozen. I couldn’t think. I was so sure that Gen had hurt himself. Even though it felt like it took forever, it was probably just a matter of a few seconds before Gen was able to get himself rolled over enough so that he could tuck his back legs under him and rock up.

He stood up and was shaking like leaf. I flew over to him (also shaking mind you) and jumped to hug my horse. The Barn Owner rushed in to the stall asking where I was hurt. I just turned to look and said that I wasn’t while I kept hugging Gen. They pointed out that while the stalls are a nice size they didn’t think that there was enough space for a horse to fall and panic without a person getting hurt. Apparently there is. I was much to concerned about Gen at that point to even think about a witty answer.

Gen still had panic in his eyes as I tried to be calm while I walked him back out of the stall. I tied him up very carefully this time in the aisle while I assed the damage. Luckly there was no heat or swelling in his legs. He butt muscles were warm and very, very tense and sensitive to the touch but that was about it. I even felt for heat or swelling on his knees and hips because I could not believe that he was okay after taking such a spill. Once I was sure he was okay I went to work on trying to calm him down. Poor scared pony. It took a few minutes for him to stop shaking and the oreo eyes to go away.

I made sure to make going back in to his now clean stall while a giant pile of shaving in it as slow and relaxing as possible since we were both still on edge. As soon as I took his halter off Gen went right to eating his hay clearly telling me he was okay.

I am trying to be calm about things because hey, he is okay. Man that was scary though! I was clearly frazzled as I drove away and had no fun while I was out and instead headed home early. I can’t help but be upset. I feel like my back is in knots. Of all the things I do trying to keep Gen safe and healthy he almost got hurt because I was rushing and not following my pony club safety rules.

I am sure in a few days I will look back and laugh at this, but for now I think both Gen and I are fully traumatized…

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7 thoughts on “Breath…

  1. i think you panic a little too often…i can understand a little worry now and then about something (and yes, this situation was one where i would have been a bit worried too) but by panicking and running to him and making a big fuss about it, you just showed him that it was a scary ordeal. I just went through a fall with my guy while he was in the trailer. We were driving around a corner and he must have been peeing because he slipped and fell down. We stopped the truck, i got out and had a looksy (we were a few minutes from home), and i saw a spot of blood on his hip and he was a little shaky, but up. So we drove home and unloaded, just like any normal day. Then i went ahead and CALMLY cleaned up his owwy, checked all his legs and mucles (very tense, very warm), but then i loaded him back in and out about 16 times until he was relaxed, then i unloaded and tied him up for a grooming, like nothing had happened. I find this works with any experience that doesn’t involve broken bones. Hemi hops right in the trailer still (my friend’s and my own) and hasn’t had any lasting effects. Now, if i had acted like it was a big deal and let my heart rate soar, i am most certain he wouldn’t have been willing to get in so nice and easy the next time. As it was? he forgot why he was scared in just a few short minutes. Lol, but this is coming from the girl who everyone likes to trail ride their crazy horses with because she can keep just about anyone calm during just about every situation. so dont worry about it, dont make things a big deal for them, and move on. Everyone’s fine, everything is fine…. off to the next adventure. and if you ever want any help with something, feel free to e-mail me personally! 🙂
    i think it shows up on your page

  2. Scary, yes. But I’m with hemiluver. Your horse went down because he made a dumb choice. He paid the consequences, end of story. As long as he (and you) didn’t get hurt I’d try my best to laugh it off as just another stupid move on his part. Hey, he could have just hung out until you were done, but no, he chose to push his weight around and be a dork. It happens. I’ve watched my horses run, spin and (sometimes) skid to a fall in the pasture and I don’t go running out in a panic when that happens. Yes, I’ll make sure they didn’t get hurt, but horses sometimes do dumb things and that’s just a simple fact of life. Don’t beat yourself up. Your horse disobeyed you and tried to shove his way into a place that you asked him NOT to go. From that point on what happened was his own fault. Glad neither of you got hurt in the process and maybe, just maybe your horse taught himself a little lesson!

  3. Glad you and your horse are ok! I have seen my 1 ton Belgian do an actual faceplant and roll as a function of deciding at the last possible second that he wanted to go left out of the pasture. I thought he was dead for sure. I honestly didn’t think that it was possible for a horse to physically do a somersault… it is… sort of.

    Glad your horse didn’t spook further and hurt you in the process!

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