Fitzroy and I, as some of you may have seen from a post a few months ago, got caught in quicksand to his belly over the summer. He was so brave and so obedient despite how scared he was, and he got us both out of there without panicking. However, he really hurt himself, and his back has never recovered. That's been three months he's been lame, and despite time off, box rest, and painkillers.
As a last ditch attempt, my trainer offered to take him off my hands and try working with the vet and physio to work him through it at her yard - I had been offered the chance to take on a young rescue ex-racer which would be ideal for me continuing my eventing, and couldn;t afford both, but would never ever have given up Fitz without her offer and we both knew it. I felt like I was giving up on him, but I didn't know what else to do and she seemed sure she could help him. However it has all just led to him worsening, to both our dismay. I can't afford ongoing attempts to try and sort him, he's very sore despite trying to hard to keep going, and at 15 with arthritic legs, bad feet and difficulty keeping weight on as it is, my trainer told me today that she thinks it's for the best.
I feel horrible agreeing, but I want to compete - that's the whole reason I got Fitzroy in the first place, and we've down so much together and he's taught me so much. This youngster is exactly what I would have looked for in three years time when Fitz was due to retire, but right now I can;t afford to keep them both as Fitz needs lots of hard feed in the winter and year round shoeing as his feet are so bad. I feel horrible, as I love him so much and he;s such a good horse.
He's so steady to ride, he's never bucked or reared in his life! He does cross country like a dream, absolutely loves it and floats over everything. He gets excited when he's out hacking or at competitions and gets right up on his toes and does this huge bouncy trot, but you always feel so safe. He absolutely loves his food, and knows how to open zip pockets to find treats too. He always nickers to me when I walk up to his stable, and will stretch out his neck and tilt his head to get his chin or cheek scratched. He had an op for roaring when he was younger, so he can;t neigh, but instead will bang on doors, scrape the ground or throw buckets to make noise to get your attention. He has no respect for personal space, and pretends he doesn;t like cuddles, but whenever he's cold or has been arguing int he field he will come over and stick his head under my arm for comfort. I can keep him calm when no one else can, and when I walk out of sight he stands and looks, or fidgets and scrapes until he can see me again.
I love him so much, and I will miss him so much - but as he used to be, and how we used to be together, not the way things have been for the last few months. I want to remember loving him, not end up resenting him. Please tell me I'm making the right decision!!