Observations from the vet line
|June 15, 2017||Posted by Melinda under Equine Endurance|
Last weekend I had the pleasure of vetting another endurance ride. I would be hard pressed to decide what I enjoyed more – vetting or riding. Both are rewarding, hard work, long days, and come with lessons learned.
Oh yes, I learn as much from working the vet line all day as I do out on the trail.
Here are the things that Mel-the-vet wants Mel-the-rider to do differently at rides (or continue to avoid) based on what she’s seen on this side of the line – and maybe there’s some things that resonate with you too.
This post is now available in “Go Ride Far.”
“Go Ride Far” is a collection of revised and updated posts, as well as new content that focuses on what I wish I had known prior to my first endurance ride. (original release details here)
For the price of the fru-fru coffee ($3.99) the ebook covers:
- How to easily and intuitively back a trailer
- Take control of your conditioning and training
- Recognize and fix a “bonk”
- The never before told story of Dr. Mel’s first endurance ride
…and more from the running, riding, writing veterinarian and Singletrack Press!
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PS here’s some unrelated content that was in the original post that didn’t make it into the book!
I’m so looking forward to my next ride!!!!!!! Two weeks until Farley’s first 50 mile of the season. Yesterday we did our go/no-go conditioning ride and while it was not ideal (LOTS of elevation gain in the hottest part of the day, solo for 3 1/2 hours, combined with a headache for me, made for a VERY GRUMPY MARE and a LESS THAN PATIENT RIDER) there was enough there for me to feel comfortable doing the 50 miler. Now I just need to go practice my trot outs and not let all this fly out of my brain when I take my stethoscope off and put my helmet on!
Lots of good advice here. We really need to work more on Eugene’s manners at the vet checks. He’s not rubbing or being rude, but he’s just terrified of strangers touching him and spins around trying to avoid it.
Poor thing :(. That’s tough.
It’s not that bad, but I realize vets dislike it and your post reminded me that good manner make an impression
This is really interesting….I’m moving to Toronto from Australia soon and I’m desperately trying to absorb all information I can about endurance out there… Two big differences I learnt from this post: 1) You do trot outs with the saddle (and looks like the bridle) on – it’s just a halter out here. 2) You’re allowed to give the horse a ‘pop on the rump’ – not permitted out here, if the horse won’t go, it’s simply game over. Looking forward to learning more in the coming months 🙂
Sometimes trot outs are done with a saddle and sometimes without – depending on the weather and logistics of the check, the head vet will specify at the ride meeting which checks will be tack off and which are tack optional.
Interesting about the pop on the rump thing!
Some of the differences might have to do with which organization is sanctioning? most of my rides that I ride and vet are AERC and are NOT FEI sanctioned.
Yep, I tend to ride AERA and not FEI too 🙂 I’m planning on volunteering at a few events when I get out there to see how it all works…it’s going to be a learning experience, that’s for sure!
Great article and thanks for this Dr Mel! As a Vet that does this as well I try to be very aware of the loops and seldom encourage riders to stand for Best Condition because the horses need to rest and they deserve it. At FEI rides hazing of any sort is strictly not allowed so keep that in mind and I would always say that the horse has a better judged trot w/o the saddle so keep that in mind 🙂 Sincerely Glenn Sinclair DVM
Since I’m not the head vet at this point I don’t have a say on tack on versus off but I’ll keep that in mind if I ever am.
As a rider I don’t stand for BC – my horse doesn’t enjoy it and doesn’t show well and it’s just not worth it. As a vet, I hate seeing a horse win while another horse or two looked FABULOUS and had a chance. Someone is going to stand and win it, so if I see a horse I think has a good chance even considering time and weight, and feel like I should encourage if they are willing.
Yes, I know FEI differs in several details and I am NOT FEI certified and the rides I vet (and mostly ride) are not FEI sanctioned. (and I added a clarification in the post for anyone that might be confused :)).
I’ve been a rider for quite some time but vetting the rides is a BLAST.