Would you ride as a wound is healing?
Some of you might have seen my other thread about treating my mare for sarcoids. She has two forms (occult and nodular) under her right "armpit" area. We are currently 1 week into treatment with Aldara, a topical ointment that essentially stimulates an immune reaction by which the body produces cells that attack the cancerous tissue- the result is a progressively open, raw sore as the bad cells slough off and (hopefully) healthy skin reemerges. The picture below is after two days of treatment; it's continued to open up since the picture was taken, leaving more raw, exposed skin. We just finished the first week of a 4-week treatment cycle.
My vet told me I should continue to ride during this time- to "treat her like a horse" and not have her standing around for a month. I'm finding that's easier said than done. While she's not obviously sore (so far continuing to let me apply the ointment and clean the area; not limping or favoring the leg), I just feel so guilty as I see this open wound continuing to grow. Given it's location, doesn't it just seem like it has to hurt as the skin stretches and pulls around the wound? Maybe I'm just being a softy, but even at just a walk and light trot, every stride I feel like I'm making her hurt.
I thought I'd ask for advice here, because I think I need to mentally decide whether I'm going to ride her or I'm not during treatment. Yesterday when I rode, I was clearly babying her, and had a terrible ride because of it. I was nervous and tense, and that made her the same way. So, either I'm going to commit to riding her and really riding, or I'm not. For what it's worth, this is not a highly tuned performance horse- we're working on being able to do a training level dressage test, but she's not jumping huge fences or going on 20 mile rides. She's maybe being ridden 30-45 minutes 3-4 times/week. Would you continue on with this kind of riding during treatment?