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re: systems failure

Yes, I'm jumping in w/o knowing the actual details.  Too far from my
horse today I guess.

1st- IF its verified that there was a "coach" involved who gave a rookie
rider such horrible, horse endangering advice, this "coach" should be
banned from AERC membership (for more than a year) plus a letter sent
with every RM's information packet informing them that this person is
not allowed to participate in AERC events. Calling oneself expert and
then encouraging a rookie to gallop throughout their 1st ride and to
ignore advice from a ride vet borders on the criminal in my book.  I
don't think any rookie horse should canter its 1st 50, we need to know
how they handle ride excitement (eating,drinking ...) before going fast
even if they are conditioned for speed. 

2nd- I don't know how the vetting was done at this ride, and I'm not a
vet.  I DO know that some ride vets check horses as soon as they pulse
down and I DO Know that adrenalin can mask real problems in a horse -my
horse had a mild colic after passing a vet check once (2nd check on a 2
hold 50).  Luckily he starting giving me most all the signs of an upset
tummy about 10 min. later & continued to show discomfort throughout the
hold, so I knew I needed to pull.  And it was a mild case that cleared
up very quickly when I went to ride vet and got treatment. He's also
fooled me by being 100% on the trail and then being grade 2 on the final
exam after I've waited most of the alloted hour to let him eat, etc.
Perhaps the vet committee should change the veterinary handbook to
recommend that horses not be checked earlier than say 15 minutes? after
pulsing down. I don't think it should be a hard & fast rule as there are
times when the vets need to look at some horses early to keep up; but
ride vets should all be aware that problems can be masked when horses
are barely pulsed down, so that if logistics don't allow having a wait
period they know they need to be extra cautious if anything is "just a
little bit" off; and ask the rider to bring the horse back before the
end of the hold before giving their final ok to continue the ride.  As
riders we need to know this too, so that we know better than to ignore
any warning signs our horses give us just because they passed the vet
check, especially if we know they were pumped up when the vet looked at

Often RM could help newer vets out by alerting them to rookie riders and
to the riders that will push the limits rather than telling the vets if
something is not quite right & heeding the vets advice if told they need
to slow down. A rookie rider alert could be a line under the ride #, or
addition of letter R with the #, something like that. Id love to have a
slash or something for the other case, but realistically that has to
just be a verbal warning to a new vet to "scrutinize # xxx extra close,
that rider may not work with you if the horse is not 100% today."  

Teresa Van Hove

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