Side Effects of Ulcer Treatment

Not listed on the little tubes of Omeprazole:

Warning: Rider may experience frustration/anxiety/crankiness due to not riding.


Warning: Rider may or may not gain 5-10 lbs, due to not riding.


Warning: Horse may lose his beautiful topline, due to not riding.


Warning: Horse may gain weight. Just like rider, it will go straight to his gut. (Kidding- thank goodness my horse is gaining weight)


Warning: Rider may have to delay move-up to Training another year, due to not riding.


While I whinge about our waistlines and all that, it should be noted, there have also been some positives from the ulcer treatment:

Warning: Horse may start prancing around his field, the little show off.


Warning: Horse may want to move forward again.


Warning: Horse may become a happier, brighter eyed beastie.


Eh, so I guess it’s OK, all in all 🙂

Plans to *gasp* sit in my saddle tonight, hope this goes well!

First post-ulcer workout

So, I lunged Foster on Tuesday to see how he felt. He definitely was brighter and happier in his stall, but I wasn’t sure how exercise would go. I was looking for nappy behavior, anger or running around in obvious discomfort. This was the first time doing anything with him in about 2 weeks, and a full week into his ulcer treatment. Per the vet’s directions, he munched on some alfalfa mash before heading to the arena.

Watch out y’all, crazy horse on the loose.

Although sinfully lazy, I thought his overall demeanor was quite relaxed and pleasant. Maybe he was a bit slower due to the full belly, but I’ll take the improvement for sure!

Week One and Done

Truthfully, without having ridden my horse in almost two weeks, I am finding myself a bit un-inspired in general. Luckily (luckily?) there are some house projects starting tomorrow that will occupy my time, and maybe a blog post or two.

Bonus- while stopping by my parent's house I found this gem of my father riding, circa mid 1980s

Bonus- while stopping by my parent’s house I found this gem of my father riding, circa mid 1980s

Otherwise, today marks the end of week 1 of Foster’s ulcer treatment. Tonight at the barn I’m going to assess how Foster is doing by throwing him on the lunge with a full stomach, per the vet’s orders, and see if he wants to move forward at all. If he’s not ready, I’ll try again in a couple days.

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I stopped by on my way home from Savannah yesterday to make sure all his limbs were intact and thought he looked a little more bright eyed than he did last week. Maybe he was just excited to show off his war-paint (aka mud), or maybe he was glad to see me after my lengthy absence. Who knows.

Post with the lunging results tomorrow!

The Verdict Is In

It’s confirmed: we have ulcers!

Or rather, we, as in Foster, has one grade 3 ulcer and two grade 4 ulcers, the latter of which are bleeding they are so deep. Poor guy. (See photo here)

Still, even though no one wants their creature to be in pain, I am so relieved to be able to put a name finally to all the odd behavior of late. Now we can work on fixing it.

Homeboy is going to get his ulcer treatment and lots of sympathy from me for the next month or so. We’ll re-scope in 4 weeks to be sure they are gone.

Sleepy post-scoping Foster

Sleepy post-scoping Foster

In the world of nutrition, after hearing from many, including Emily from The Exquisite Equine, about the powers of Vitamin E supplement, Foster is also starting a new supplement program. We’re introducing him to Elevate W.S., a water-soluble version, for the first 40 days and then he gets transferred to a powder version that he will stay on indefinitely. It seems other horses have done really well and changed body condition when put on E, and I hope Foster will do the same. Here’s to more photos of my horse’s derriere!

Our spring season has had a bit of a kink thrown in it with yesterday’s confirmation, but it’s hard to be disappointed when I can look forward to my horse getting back to his normal, cheerful self. We’ll be foregoing the Combined Training show at MacNairs on April 12, and probably also a planned cross country schooling at the Horse Park.

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Instead, it looks as though I may school the Training course in May followed by a CT the next day (if fitness allows) and proceed with Novice at the Virginia Horse Trials a couple weeks later. Then our official Training debut would be in July! When all is said and done, we’re just a little delayed.

Foster will be getting the rest of the week completely off to let the UlcerGard do its job, and I’ll be searching the web for a suitable Nibble Net to slow down his intake of hay and ideally help prevent any other ulcers. That among other options for keeping future out breaks at bay.

Expect annoying posts about my horse’s every mood swing for the next couple weeks. Looking forward to seeing positive changes!


Today’s the Day

As if the universe was trying to make things easier for me, it just so happens that my mother and my husband share the same birthday. In fact, there are many shared birthdays between our families- his sister and my brother, his grandmother and my father… Anyways. Luckily I was already good at remembering birthdays, but I’ll take any universal help I can get.

Birthday kids

Birthday kids

But before I get to wine and dine my beloved tonight, and pester him about what he’ll be blogging about next, I have a rather important appointment this morning.

No grumpy Foster photos today sorry

No grumpy Foster photos today sorry

You guessed it- Mister Fosterpants is getting himself scoped.

I only wish I could have done it last week, or even the moment I decided to scratch from the show. But alas, spring shots dominated the vet’s schedule and so wait we did.

Happy times in Italy

Happy times in Italy

I am desperate to see ulcers today, because the alternative to me is going down a rabbit hole of what-if’s and why’s that I’d much rather avoid.

A day of change! Today’s the day!