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[RC] Descanso disasters, vol 2 - sherman

Even with rapid HR recoveries and many mini-checks (I do exactly what you
suggest, checking HR and seeing that they can recover every time we stop for
any reason) a colic can sneak up. It happened to Shadow 43 miles into a
ride. She always pulsed down to below 60 within 2 or 3 min. at the most, and
we'd been riding conservatively, not letting the HRs go much over 135. At
the 43 mile check, she pulsed down in about 2 minutes, as usual, then ate
and drank, then we went and vetted, all okay, then we go back to let the
horses eat more and Shadow starts staggering and trying to fall down. We
rushed to the vet and she had no gut sounds now, this was within 10 minutes
after we'd vetted and gut sounds had been fine, HR 48. So sometimes, it's
just a matter of $#&T happens. Fortunately, Shadow recovered after one shot
of banamine, then started eating again and gut sounds were back in about 30
minutes, no trip to the hospital or fluids, just hours of monitoring her


Hello Ed,

You are right that many factors enter in and I agree that the 10min 60bpm is
simple but no guarantee. What I was getting at was to use every stop to
check recovery for a while to prevent a buildup of heat or stress or
dehydration or whatever, sort of like a string of mini training rides
instead of the big vet check to vet check push. Gives a rider a better
chance to recognize trouble sooner and also learn what kind of trail and
speed causes the worst recovery times for their horse. Definitely not gonna
get top ten on that routine, just dinner. ;-)

Don Huston

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