Since his crash at the beginning of May, Russell has had a spot around his left stifle that sometimes gets sweaty. It comes and goes like a mirage, with no rhyme or reason; it doesn't correspond with weather, work or time of day. Rick thinks Russell might have some nerve damage from the wreck, although we have seen no other signs of such - besides this strange, sometimes-sweaty spot:
Not that I'll be noticing it as often; it is jacket season!
Actually, this is just a sheet; I've never blanketed Russell for warmth. I think keeping a sheet on him may reduce the amount of winter hair he grows, but my main objective is keeping him cleaner for faster grooming. Homeschooling Brian dominates my waking hours, so everything else has to be shoe-horned in here and there, and every way of economizing my time helps.
Sometimes when my time is especially limited, I lunge Russell with just a halter and lunge line; saves the time it takes to thoroughly groom, tack up, untack and groom again. It is reassuring to see him walking and trotting around with regular cadence and relaxed tail. This week I've even asked him for a round of canter here and there, which he readily picks up. Last night he was feeling downright frisky and took off leaping and plunging when I first asked him to canter, and moved out in a beautiful forward trot much of the time. He really looked good - more like my dressage partner of the past than he has for a long time!