Relative Something

*this* John W. Hays' take on things and experiences

Test Results

with 2 comments

Our veterinarian called with results of Hunter’s blood work. High levels of glucose and insulin suggest equine insulin resistance or metabolic syndrome. I have a feeling we have slowly been building to this over the last few years of under-exercising and over-feeding our horses.

We’ve had hints of the situation before and made some loose attempts to moderate things over the years, but it appears our efforts have fallen short. The prognosis now is calling for a shift to an extreme that we are struggling to reconcile.

There is a high likelihood that Hunter will need to be confined to the paddock and fed a tightly measured amount of hay that needs pre-soaking to reduce the sugar content even more. It is no way for a horse to live, as far as I’m concerned, but it may be what we have to do.

I can’t imagine what it will do to Hunter’s spirit to confine him to the paddock, surrounded by acres of lush green pasture in the summer.

Honestly, our heads are not in a good place right now to frame this with oodles of positive possibilities. In fact, this news just serves to expose how little I have moved from the cloud of grief that descended upon us on the day Legacy died.

This week the horses are spending most of their time in the barn. Well, Hunter has spent ALL of his time in the barn, and the mares get a little break outside each day while Cyndie mucks the stalls. Even this routine feels so wrong, but it is the immediate treatment required to get him beyond this situation of extremely painful hooves.

They are tolerating it well enough.

Everything here seems to be hanging in limbo. I’m wondering if we shouldn’t just let Wintervale have a break for a year, like we did with our hay-field last summer. Let things rest while giving it a chance to become re-energized for a new season of unseen possibilities after some reflection and re-planning.

We are seeking peace with all the new developments, and making time for reflection is going to help. Despite my inclination to want to immediately escape it all in order to put the challenges behind me, I am trusting in the logic of staying put to discover where this all leads.

For our own good, it is best that we not make any rash decisions in the midst of grief and uncertainty.

Now would be a really good time for me to practice some of that procrastination I’m always bragging about.



Written by johnwhays

February 7, 2018 at 7:00 am

2 Responses

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  1. Actually, procrastination is the last thing I’d associate you with, John. Yes, you think things through but that certainly leads to no amount of action. Like you, I think to myself, I haven’t got much done, but then, if Stephanie is around, she starts reeling off all the things I have done that day but somehow hardly noticed. I think this can be to do with over-stretching yourself such that you lose perspective – almost fall into a daze at times. Maybe, we should take a few more breaks to ‘stay in the picture’ and, paradoxically, connect with the big one. Of course, your blog serves to this end, getting you to take time out and focus, evaluate and add your creative zest to the moment.

    P.S. Show me anyone with horses that feels the horses are getting enough exercise at this time of year. That said, I feel that horses don’t mind slowing down when conditions are hard, for certainly the opposite is also true and Spring is just around the corner.

    Ian Rowcliffe

    February 8, 2018 at 6:52 am

    • Yes, as usual, I think your description of things is pretty accurate.
      Boy, I wish our properties were next door to each other. I could use a good dose of the Forest Garden Estate and communing with you and your vision of things.


      February 8, 2018 at 7:47 am

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