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RE: [RC] Horse with fear of vet - Karen Williams

I'm wondering how much of the problem is you and how much is the horse.  You
know the "dreaded vet" is coming the one she "doesn't like".  As soon as he
appears its possible that you tense up and get a tighter grip on the lead
rope.  You seem to have a very sensitive horse.  If you tense up don't you
think she will start thinking "uh oh .... something's wrong" and tenses up

Its telling that they had no problem the next day when you *weren't* there
.....  Think about it.

The ride vets aren't going to be giving her shots, so why not get a
stethascope and have friends and stranges around the barn practice going
over her and listening to her pulse.  Make a concerted effort NOT to tense
up when people approach her.


Karen Williams
Spotsylvania, VA

-----Original Message-----
From: ridecamp-owner@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:ridecamp-owner@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx]On Behalf Of Lysane Cree
Sent: Tuesday, February 17, 2004 1:26 PM
To: ridecamp@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: Re: [RC] Horse with fear of vet

I had posted to ridecamp during the summer time about
my filly's fear of the vet. I had received many
responses and encouraging words, so I just wanted to
let you all know that I think we finally may be on the
road of recovery!
I have been working with her alot, playing "vet" with
her (minus the injections). There is one particular
vet that she was the worst with because she had a bad
experience with him, but she has been suspicious of
all strangers, in particular vets. This summer she cut
her leg requiring stitches and she was only moderately
difficult - it was a different vet. This weekend
though the vet came out to the barn where I board it
was the one that she is really scared of. I wanted him
to take a look at her mouth as she has been off her
feed. Her reaction to him was instant - she was
standing quietly on a lead beside me and as soon as he
stepped into her stall, she tensed right up and
wouldn't stand still. He left her stall, her head went
down; he came back in with the injection, up went her
head. She totally got into defensive mode even though
she hasn't seen him in close to a year.  He was not
able to treat her and no one had a twitch around, so
he said he would return the next day with a twitch.
I worried about this all night because I don't really
care for twitches although sometimes it can be
necessary, and I had to be at work. While brushing her
the night before I tried to remind of the things we
had been working on and poked at her neck as if to
give her a needle and played with her mouth and her
top lip.
The barn manager called me and told me that she was an
angel and didn't do anything when he gave her the
shot. They didn't even have to use the twitch.
Yahooooo!!!!!!!!!!!  But this time the vet took the
time to pet her neck and talk to her and let her calm
down before trying anything. I have been telling all
the vets to do this or to feed her some carrots, but
they are often pressed for time and don't want to take
the time.
I am so proud of my filly. There is hope. Her fear is
always nagging me because of course I can't even think
of her doing ctr or endurance if she can't stand being
near a vet. Kind of a problem!! Anyway, thats my story
and hopefully things will only get better. I knew they
only had to give her a chance.

Lysane and Mae West


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Re: [RC] Horse with fear of vet, Lysane Cree