She's actually adjusting better than I thought she would to her increased seeing challenges and I've been reading a TON on managing a "seeing impaired" horse.
Thinking back, I'm realizing more and more that the signs were there all along that she had vision loss, I just didn't know what to look for and she functions so well that she seemed like a normal horse.
In any case, my current "success" has been leading her. Since her vision got worse a few weeks ago, I've been having a heck of a time leading her. Either she's charging ahead and spooking at every little thing or she's walking super close to me, directly behind me, which is dangerous if something spooks her.
In one of the articles I read, the author suggested leading a blind/vision impaired horse by the halter strap under the chin, so today I gave it a try. And I'm surprised to say that it worked like a charm. No spooks, Lacey didn't drag behind, she didn't charge ahead, she actually seemed happy to have physical reassurance that I was there.
Who would have thought!
We went on our ride and I had to work so hard to "be" her eyes. She did pretty well but she kept veering off the path whenever it changed direction (she seemed to be using the taller weeds along the edge of the path to follow the trail...).
It was rather sad, I mean, she's one of those "let me do my work of keeping us safe, you just sit there and look pro" horses. I guess though that this turn of events is like that grandma everyone knows who's surly and refuses help for forever but once she really needs the help, she accepts it without complaint.
My legs are going to be like iron pretty soon! LOL!
She was also very reluctant to go faster than a trot anywhere. The things I've read say that that's not unusual with new vision issues. It was kinda weird though to have her be happy sticking to walk. Usually she's like "let's run 24/7!!!". We did get a good canter in up our usual cantering hill which she seemed to really enjoy.
Then later this girl, who comes out to hang out with Lacey, came out and we basically spent 2 hours brushing Lacey and loving her. Lacey ADORED it. She stood pretty much stock still the entire time and just seemed to be enjoying herself, she even fell asleep on her feet for a bit. She got a little antsy towards the end but after 2 hours, I don't blame her!
It was really nice and we got SO MUCH shedding hair out of her coat!!
The vet is coming tomorrow to do shots and hopefully give me/us a real prognosis... I'm a little scared but no matter what, it'll be ok.
Oh! And I was talking to my dad about this whole Lacey thing and mentioned that I wasn't sure what I was going to do with her during the summer since I've decided to not go to camp due to Lacey's eyes and how much extra stress that would cause. And he said to me "Well, do you know how the neighbor's would feel about a horse in our field?", we have about an acre below our house... So I have to go ask the neighbors and make sure they'd be ok, but Lacey might get to spend the summer in my literal backyard! Yay!
I haven't figured out all the logistics of it since the llamas couldn't live with her at my house, since they're wild, and she'd be by herself, plus dramatic change of locale when her sight is going? But we'll get it worked out. It could be cool to have her there, and our meadow is like the perfect combo between sunny and shade which would be really good for her eyes.
Pretty flowers in my neighbor's backyard:
Lacey's newest saddle pad, from Gidget. :)
Coming over to say hi...
"Um, no. You need to come right back over here and pet me more. I did not sanction your leaving. Hmph."
"SADDLE PAD? It looks cute but also a little scary. I'm not sure how to react..."
"Well, it doesn't smell like it's going to eat me... Maybe If I lick it?" (she actually did lick, then bite, it, silly girl!)
Then today. It was the worst weather today. Pouring rain alllllll day. The worst. But Lacey needed to be ridden and with the way she's been lately, that's best in the morning when people aren't out running/walking dogs on the trail.
Poneh has strong negative feelings towards rain. Poor poneh.
Alert! With her cute pad. I'm not sure why she's standing like that though...Maybe she was pretending to be a ships mascot thingy? I dunno......
Aww. And her cute riding halter. I made it for her quite a while ago. I'd like to make another one because that one is really much too big but I just haven't yet.
The trail, so green and wet!!
Then we went back home, she got her snuggly fleece cooler on and her lightweight blanket, and then she got fed.
She was a happy girl.
Thanks for looking! :)