Show Recap: Dressage at MacNair’s

I know many people, including myself, were expecting to see a complete show recap today.

Surprise! I didn’t go to the show. Or rather, I did, but Foster did not.

photo 2 (27)

Saturday I went out to the barn to prepare, and before giving him a bath I hopped on him. Since the horses had been stuck inside due to rain all day, I gave him a long (10-15 min) walk warmup before asking to trot. Normal trot seemed an impossibility to Foster- instead his options were short choppy pony trot, short choppy up-and-down canter, or walk.

I did what I could to coax him through it, offering stretchy trot and canter, and staying in two-point to get off his back (as much as you can two-point in a dressage saddle, that is).

I gave him a walk break before deciding to try one last thing- sitting. Making my seat as quiet as possible, we trotted around the arena in relative peace. I ended it on a good note and put him up.


All night I wondered what to do, if I should scratch or continue on with the show as planned. As I was giving a ride to the show to a friend as well, I went ahead the next morning and hooked up the trailer.

Sometimes talking through your issues is the best way to bring clarity to the situation. As I consoled the few people there about where or not I should take my (potentially/probably?) ulcery horse to the show, it became obvious- Foster should stay home.

I asked A to document Foster's cleanliness, since he certainly won't look like this on our next visit!

I asked A to document Foster’s cleanliness, since he certainly won’t look like this on our next visit!

So, my ultra clean, beautifully trimmed horse spent Sunday in the sunshine instead of the dressage court. My friend had an excellent day, scoring a blue ribbon in her second ever dressage test and giving her horse a positive showing experience. I immediately made peace with my decision to leave Foster home and have contacted the vet to get him scoped. My desperate hope is that we will find ulcers and can begin treatment as quickly as possible.

fb_DSC7176While it would have been nice to ride at the show, in front of my favorite judge (she’s a tough cookie but great feedback!), the day ended up being a success even without any saddle time.


8 thoughts on “Show Recap: Dressage at MacNair’s

  1. Good decision! If he does have ulcers, it would be a bummer to have a potentially bad experience if he isn’t feeling well. He is so handsome, as always ;).

    Your friends horse is a cutie!!! Congrats to her!

  2. sorry Foster isn’t feeling well. hopefully with some vet assistance he’ll be back to 100% soon! your friend’s horse is super handsome too – congrats to them!

  3. Hoping it is ulcers only because ulcers are so easy to fix vs. an unknown or something more difficult to treat!!!

    Gus had them and they went undiagnosed for almost a year and probably would of continued to be undiagnosed except I was able to take him to a free scoping clinic. He did not look like your typical ulcer horse nor behaved like one- he actually improved when ridden instead of acting worse! But that just goes to show you ulcers really can be the silent disease in horses and you can’t pin point who has them unless you scope! Good Luck Foster!!

    • Regarding your first statement- YES. Exactly- would love to see exactly what the problem is and get it fixed, as well as know that I can take steps to prevent it next time.

      That’s really interesting that Gus had them and improved with riding- what a great opportunity to do a free scoping clinic! Wish I had one of those I could take Foster to instead!!

  4. Pingback: Feel the Burn | A House on a Hill

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