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[RC] Fwd: A PSA re: leaving sick horses at home - John Teeter

<<Forwarded by request. Note that this is an unsigned post. This unusual occurrence seemed justified (although other exposed horses at the event referenced might be coughing by now...:(

Begin forwarded message:

<<Contact information deleted>>

I took two horses to an endurance ride.

Doesn't matter where or when, I decided this issue should be raised as an educational point.

After we arrived and settled in, other horses arrived and I noticed the horse next door was coughing. I moved my closest horse's paddock a little further away.

When the coughing horse vetted in, imagine, it had an elevated heart rate, and a fever. Obviously it wasn't cleared to start.

The rider indicated that the horse had coughed that week, and that it had seemed NQR (not quite right).

The coughing horse came to the ride with another horse. The other horse did go out the following morning and completed the ride.

Ten days later, you can guess what happened in my barn.

My horse started coughing.

There goes my plans to condition with a friend this weekend -- I will not expose her horse to what my guys might be carrying.

There goes my plans for a ride with two of my other horses next weekend (I will not take them to a ride knowing they've been exposed).

There goes my plans for the ride for the coughing horse for the National Championships. And/or a ride at the end of the month.

I might, just might, be able to make it to the last ride of the season, assuming everyone gets through the incubation period without illness, and everyone's temps stay normal throughout.

To me, that is being a responsible rider and competitor and horse owner and citizen of the distance riding community.

Please, if your horse is NQR and/or coughing, please take its temperature before you put it in the trailer and expose it to countless other horses. If you get your sick horse to a ride, take it and/or it's-not-sick-yet barnmate HOME.

My husband teases me by declaring loudly whenever a horse coughs in my vicinity "Oh no, now you've done it, she's running for the thermometer!" Because I do.

We all have a responsibility not only to our own horses, but to the other horses in ride camp. The other horses in our home barn.

And that is the end of my little Public Service Announcement for the day.

I'm going back to mourning what appears to be the end of my competition season.


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