My whole world caved in today. I got the call I hoped would never come at 7:30 this morning. My dear baby boy (he was actually probably in his early to mid thirties... I don't know for sure) died after a short illness. What started as a moderate laminitic flare ended in Bink's unexplained death. He was found in his stall this morning, laying on his right side, legs straight out. He had obviously died during the night as he was in full rigor and cool to my touch on this hot, humid Tampa, Florida morning. Had I known that last night when I told him "see you tomorrow, boy," that I would never see him again, I would have slept in his stall with him.
It wasn't the laminitis that killed him... he was wearing prescription shoes and was taking meds that were supposed to have helped. In the 3 weeks since I noticed something wasn't right, I had 2 different vets on site with him, giving him meds, IVs, bute, banamine, nitro, dmso, you name it -- spared no expense for the greatest horse in the world. He was worth every penny and more. I always said that if I had to sell everything I owned and beg in the streets that horse would never be taken from me. During his exam yesterday morning, the vet commented that he was walking well -- still a bit sore -- but so well that he should be acting far better than he looked like he felt. He had that sad, painful look for 2 weeks and I tried EVERYTHING to fix it, to get my spunky, happy baby back and trail ready.
I had planned to send him to Gainesville this morning for a full toxicology screen if he wasn't looking better this morning, but it wasn't meant to be. We thought perhaps it might be colic, even though he wasn't exhibiting many of the classic symptoms, he wasn't pooping much. Gave him mineral oil and his bowels moved that evening with no evidence of impaction. Although it was little consolation, his blood tests all came back normal. He was a little dehydrated and we were also going to give him additional fluid IVs this morning. He had fluids last night, too. As a matter of fact, the last message I received on his condition was that he had pooped and was standing and drinking water. That news made me confident enough in today to go to sleep. I wish I could take it all back to last night and stayed with him so he didn't have to die alone.
This morning I buried my riding partner, my love, my whole world. My only consolation was that he didn't linger and suffer horribly. But I've been left to suffer the guilt of not knowing what I could have done differently to save him. I don't know if I'll ever have another horse again. Bink filled my whole heart and now that he's dead, he took that space and love with him.
Find my Dad, Bink-Bink, he will love you and keep you safe until I can find you (and I will find you). He's an accomplished horseman and I promise he will love you as I have forever. I'll find you, baby boy. I'll never let you go in my heart.