Too Much Dressage Makes Georgie’s Brain Swell

On Tuesday I headed to the barn to work on all the things Sarah had Georgie and I work on in our lesson Monday. But when I got there her forehead was slightly swollen and she had this weird swollen vein on her neck. (We never found out why this vein was swollen) I showed Sarah and she suggested I call a fellow friend eventer who is also a vet. Georgie was happy to eat and seemed fairly bright so I made an appt for the vet to come the following day. I took her cribbing collar off for the night and lined her stall with towels so she had nothing to crib on.

The following day the towels were miraculously still intact and Georgie’s swelling had gone down. A small wound was found right where the forelock meets her head. Perhaps a rub from the collar? Or a puncture? I was told to keep the collar off and if she continued to improve I could ride on Thursday. Thursday she looked and felt good and I was more worried about the cribbing than the wound as she had destroyed the towels and was back to her usual antics.

Then yesterday, Saturday, she had gross serum pouring down her head and it seemed a bit more swollen again. So I hosed the serum of, let her graze while I did some other things and figured I’d check her again this morning and if it was ok we could go on a conditioning ride before it got too hot.

Saturday- a litte serum which got on her new halter that my farrier said

Saturday- a litte serum which got on her new halter that my farrier said “Looked like something a 12 year old girl got for her first pony.” Whatever. I love it.

On my way to the barn at 7am the barn manager calls me. Georgie’s face is covered in serum and incredibly swollen. I explain I am on my way down and call the vet.

Hard to get a great pic but her eye and forehead were all puffy

Hard to get a great pic but her eye and forehead were all puffy

Vet came out and sedated Georgie. We worked on removing serum which was sticky like dried honey and as we pulled it off, her hair came off too. And her forelock, that I had been working SO hard on growing out since I clipped my bridle path a bit too forward this winter, started coming out too, as we pulled serum out of it. After lots of scrubbing, IV antibiotics and anti inflammatories, we scrubbed some more. And then Georgie got the biggest insult of all. A wrap to keep a poultice on the wound. Event pony? Not anymore. She now looks more like a patient post plastic surgery.

Vaseline all down her face to keep serum from sticking to what hair is left there

Vaseline all down her face to keep serum from sticking to what hair is left there

We discussed how this may have happened and the vet feels that yes a puncture wound is possible, as is a spider bite. (We then discussed snake bites in horses which was fascinating, but definitely not what happened to her..) Regardless, as long as antibiotics do their job we should be good to go soon. I don’t know what “soon” means, but am hopeful it means REALLY soon.

I know we all love horses and can’t imagine our lives without them, but man, some days, I wonder what life was like before I made emergency vet calls on Sunday mornings and had to spend my days wrapping the head of a horse who suddenly becomes a giraffe.

Fingers crossed we’re able to get on later this week and ride, and that Georgie resembles less of an ogre in the coming days.

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2 thoughts on “Too Much Dressage Makes Georgie’s Brain Swell

  1. Yikes. Glad she has such good care.

    Liked by 1 person

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