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A Good Vet Is Hard To Find

Waiting two weeks for a vet appointment felt like an eternity. Sometimes it’s a challenge when you use the best guy around. Typically, Dr. Randy comes to our house for appointments but all he only had haul-in appointments.

Having owned horses for more than thirty years, we’ve seen our fair share of vets. To say great vets are hard to come by in Kansas City is an understatement. There’s a vet less than a mile from my parents’ house but I’d rather try to perform surgery myself than have him touch my horses. Hauling 40 minutes to Dr. Randy is well worth it. 

On a sweltering Monday we loaded up the trailer with Bruce, Rowdy, and my mom’s horse Gunner. 

Get Yourself a Vet You Can Trust

My favorite thing about seeing Dr. Randy is he doesn’t just treat a symptom; he treats the whole horse. With a simple touch he can tell you if a horse has ulcers or ask if a horse is having certain issues. The answer is always, “Yes!”. My horse anatomy skills are off the charts after asking a thousand questions during every appointment. I always leave with a little more insight and exercises to improve my horses between appointments. 

Rowdy got an adjustment and was showing pain in his hocks. We flexed him and he trotted off sound every time. After some more adjustments we found his Lumbosacral was out, which in turn lit up his hocks. After discussing continued behavioral issues and a general sense of being “off,” we sprung for an EPM test. If nothing else, we’ll hopefully get peace of mind here soon.

Even A Moose Needs Adjusted

Next up was big Bruce. We discussed the big boy’s reluctance to pick up his right lead. I was expecting the worst to be honest. For being massive, Bruce is quite the wuss. Dr. Randy’s block he stands on was reason for snorts. His eyes go full shark and show all of the white when he’s unsure if he likes something. After being poked and prodded on, Bruce finally took a big breath and started licking his lips.

The good news: nothing is horribly wrong. In my mind he needed a stifle injected or had something torn. The bad news: Bruce is in for a lifetime of adjustments mainly due to his size. Dr. Randy told me the big ones tend to be “out” more as they’re dealing with constantly carrying more weight up front which puts pressure on the spine. Bruce’s neck being out pulled on his pelvis causing a twist. Something that is a little off gets amplified as it goes down the line. 

Lucky for Bruce, he has the best chiropractor in town. 

I’m lucky and thankful that growing up my mom always taught us to put the horse first. We were taught preventative maintenance and to know our horses’ limits. I fall into the category where my horse will see the vet before I see a doctor and I know I’m not the only one who does that.

Megan Smith
Published on 09-07-2020
I'm a hunter-jumper rider turned collector of green horses. Trail riding and training my young horses is how I spend time under saddle. My four horses have big personalities and every day at the barn is quite the adventure.