Weekend recap: my descent into madness

Good news first: there were lots of fun things happening this weekend. Friday after work I went and rode, although kept it short because it was so hot. After that I went to happy hour with some horse friends and had some queso and fajitas and a lovely blue margarita. Fridays are the best.

Saturday was a rare day off with the SO, so we got up and watched the Tour de France time trials, then loaded up the dogs and went off to Bull Creek for some hiking. It was quite a climb up the steepest part of the hill but totally worth it for the view.

bullcreek1 bullcreek2


Afterward we went and hung out on a dog-friendly patio and had a late lunch, then home to shower and chill for a few hours. Then we got re-dressed and headed to my favorite part of the downtown Austin area, South Congress. There’s so many cool restaurants and shops on this street, I can entertain myself all day. Plus the city view is awesome.

SoCo1 SoCo2

We ate, we drank, we had some really amazing desserts at Snack Bar, and we were home by 11pm. Total win.

Sunday morning I got up early for a lesson, AND my friend came out to take pictures/video! So I finally have lots of new media to share. I’m going to break that off into a seperate post though because there was SO MUCH, it’d be a whole ‘nother novel if I tried to fit in all in here.

Now, on to the not-so-good part of the weekend, and why I’m slowly going nuts. There is a pretty contagious virus going around central Texas called Vesicular Stomatitis. It effects mostly cows and horses but also sheep, goats, etc. The virus itself in most cases isn’t a huge deal… the animal usually gets lesions and blisters on the lips, gums, tongue and basically feels like crap for about a week, then it passes and they’re fine. The reason it’s a real problem is that when it shows up in cattle it looks a lot like Foot and Mouth. Obviously this is really bad if you’re trying to sell or ship cattle, hence why the Texas Animal Health Commission monitors cases very closely. If you have an animal show up with it, the property is quarantined for 21 days AFTER the last infected horse is healed. When you figure theres a 2-8 day incubation period, it can be spread by flies/mosquitoes as well as nose to nose contact, then a 7-10 infection period… that can potentially be a pretty good amount of time in quarantine. For all of these reasons, obviously I’d really like to keep it out of our barn.

Enter: me becoming a complete horse hypochondriac. Henry lives in a constant cloud of Pyranha. I check him every single day for any signs of lesions. Yes, even the inside of his mouth. He’s thrilled about it. It goes a lot like this…

Get Henry out of his stall. Inspect every centimeter of his mouth, inside and out. Freak out at his lip coloring (the rim of his lips are naturally speckly). Decide that’s normal. Freak out at the thing on his gum. Oh, that’s chewed up cookie. Stand there and stare at him for a minute, trying to decide if he’s lethargic or just completely bored with me being a crazy person. OH MY GOD THERE’S A FLY ON HIM, KILL IT KIIILLLL IIIITTTTT!!!

Repeat every day.


Luckily my barn is being as proactive about it as possible. The grooms check every horse before they take it out of the stall, they’re spraying all the barns twice a day with super duty insecticide, we have flyers posted up around the barn, etc. But I can’t help but feel like we’re kind of all screwed since it’s spread so easily by flies and mosquitoes, and in a wet Texas summer there’s just no possible way to keep them all out. We’ll see what happens. In the mean time, if you need me I’ll have my face in my horse’s mouth. Happy freakin’ Monday!


26 thoughts on “Weekend recap: my descent into madness

  1. I would be thoroughly freaked out too. I’m also worried that it’s going to make it’s way to ky from people coming in for shows. That would thoroughly suck. I am happy to hear that your barn is being so proactive. I can only hope other barns in the affected area are so good about it. Especially if they have horses traveling to show :/

    Love that peach Kastel!


  2. I know I already commented on your IG, but SoCo was one of my favorite parts of Austin! I never get tired of seeing the bats, and there is SO MUCH GOOD FOOD compacted onto one street, kinda insane but still awesome! Sometimes I miss living there. You can never go wrong with the views from Bull Creek or the 360 Bridge either!

    Oh, and that picture of Henry is adoreableness 🙂


    1. I don’t “do” the bats (they freak me out a little) but I just love everything on SoCo. The shops are so random and neat, all the food is good, there’s some really cool bars/music venues… everything awesome all on one little strip. And not nearly the crowd/craziness of 6th. I’m too old for that shit.


      1. Agreed! As much as I try to convince myself that I’m not getting old, I definitely know that I’m too old for the madness of “dirty 6th.” I do like the respectable, people-go-to-happy-hour-here-because-they-have-real-jobs places on 6th Street though….and I think queso could seriously solve most of the world’s problems!

        PS, not to be a creeper, but when I’m in Austin in November, we’re totally hanging out! I mean, you board with my old trainer at my old barn: I think it’s destiny 🙂


  3. Awww I didn’t realize you were in Austin. I was just there. I’ve never experienced so much queso in my life … 🙂 California Mexican is definitely different.


      1. Haha I don’t blame you. I’ll probably make another trip some time in the next year … the fiancé of one of my close friends is in grad school there.


  4. You crack me up. “A cloud of Pyranha.” Only an equestrian would understand that you weren’t submitting your horse to a death by toothed fish. I love that last photo and I love that your barn is so proactive. When there was a strangles outbreak a few years ago in my last city, I don’t think any of the boarders were well-informed or anything. Definitely no client education with pictures!


  5. Eek Scaresville that outbreak, hope your barn’s proactiveness pays off and you guys don’t get affected.
    Love that Henry shot, he is such a ham.
    Cannot wait to read about lesson and see more media. I ♡ pictures…can never see too many!


  6. We have an outbreak here in Colorado as well. Not at our barn, but in the area. Having dealt with the human version of something similar, I really hope it stays away.


  7. Yay for good weekends! We have that here too and it’s freaking me out. I can’t take my horses out of the backside because they might get exposed, but here’s the kicker: anyone can haul in. All they have to do is put their horse in the quarantine barn for 48 hours. The mosquitoes are awful right now. The best part is the people that haul in are usually match racers and those horses are some of the most likely to bring in diseases. Doesn’t that make a whole lot of sense? Oh yeah, I almost forgot, the yearling sale is in a couple of weeks. Management decided that since our match racing neighbor got ruled off for non-USDA approved drugs they would put the yearlings on the backside of our barn. I’m surrounded by idiots and I swear that if any of our horses get sick, they are going to pay every single cent that it costs me. Yeah, I’ll be joining you in the paranoia department for the rest of my time here along with pulling my hair out.

    *Sorry, I didn’t mean to go on a rant 🙂 I hope Henry stays safe and I’m glad your barn is taking so many precautions.


    1. Totally understandable. There are a lot of horse shows going on right now, and we’re sandwiched right in the middle of a lot of barns. And yes, the mosquitoes are bad here too. So I feel like if any horse in the surrounding couple miles gets it, we’re kind of all just screwed.


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