I was ready to ride Scout tonight, for the first time since September something. Yesterday, while I was watching football, I did a complete tear-down and deep clean of her bridle. She looks beautiful in her black tack.
I put her in a cavesson and walked her to the indoor arena for a couple of minutes on the longe to watch her move. There were cavelletti laid out, barrels here and there, and lots of orange traffic cones. I gave her a couple of seconds for meet-and-greets with these foreign objects, then picked our circle and moved her out. Nope. That kick she took just below her left rear hock a couple of weeks ago has done its harm. She showed me a short, protected stride, and reluctance at the trot. Time for a vet call.
The architecture of the horse leg has always amazed me, amazed and frightened me. So much carried on so little. Last February, a boarder's new horse (of only four months) turned to launch himself into a gallop with the rest of the small herd. They had startled at a group of hikers emerging from the treeline. One of the hikers thought he had stepped on a fallen branch, cracking it and sending the horses running. But what he really heard was Lug's leg snapping as he twisted into his gallop. It was that simple, that quick. An ordinary winter day that ended with the death of a horse.