It's been forever since I last posted on here, been busy with life as a whole. But I will try to get back to writing, it's a great stress reliever and fun to do. Where to begin.....

Last Friday I was able to shadow another veterinarian, Doctor Rob van Wessum. Dr. van Wessum is a specialty vet, focusing on sports medicine for sport horses. He has a very nice clinic on a lovely 12 acres of land out in Mason, Michigan. He owns four Warmbloods which he uses for FEI level Dressage. His international level horse is now retired at 22 years and used as his police mount(yes, the man is already amazing until you add in that he's a deputy for the mounted police which makes him AWESOME). A beautiful light grey with dark flecks, Luciano stands a towering 18 hands high(he IS after all a GERMAN warmblood, and Lord knows everything from Germany is bigger). Luciano has a sweet personality and quiet disposition, despite his massive size. Next to Luciano is Wally, another Warmblood. All black and just barely under 18 hands, Wally is a social butterfly. He stuck his head out of his stall and gave me a very warm greeting as he searched my pockets for treats(I'm known state wide as the Crazy Carrot Lady). Next to Wally is a smaller(a SMALL warmblood you ask?) warmblood named Buster(I believe). He was more reserved and stayed quietly in his stall. In the final stall stood a massive beast. He too is a German Warmblood, who, at 4 years old, stand 18.1 hands and will mature to 19 hands, His name, is Tiny. Like most youngsters, Tiny is quite playful. When Dr. Van Wessum opened his stall he immediately grabbled blankets, bell boots and bags of bedding which he dragged or tossed across his stall. Tiny is massive and an attention hog, but quite loveable. He's a future Olympic prospect. Ok, enough about the magnificent horses, now onto the actual vet part.

Dr. Van Wessum comes from the Netherlands where he was a vet for the Netherland military's horses and canines. He is also a FEI level Dressage rider who did International competitions with Luciano, and hopes to ride in the Olympics on Tiny in the next 5-10 years. He is also a deputy for the Ingham County Mounted Division, taught/teaches at MSU and trains people and horses in Dressage. His wife, Kimberly Johnston is also a specialty veterinarian and works with him. Equine All-Sports Medicine is a specialty clinic owned and operated by Doctor and Mrs. van Wessum. There really aren't many who haven't heard of him, as I'm beginning  to see. Because Dr. van Wessum is a specialty clinic, cases are few and far between, which is how he likes it. He makes great money, has time to train and ride and still do what he loves. The simple pleasures of life. The day I shadowed was a busy day in  the sense of three cases on one day being busy. Two massive Warmbloods (both GORGEOUS), rolled up the driveway and into two stalls(the horses walked, not rolled, the trailer did that...). One had issues with his leg, his hooves, and needed x-rays done. The other one had hurt its back, which was swollen, and needed an ultrasound done. Seeing the hoof x-rays was neat, as it showed the Coffin bone, Short Pastern and Long Pastern, images I'd only seen on the internet. The ultrasound on the back was new and cool seeing the images from that visit and the visit before. After the images were collected and discussed with the owners, they left and we waited for the last client to show. There is a lot of waiting involved in a specialty clinic, but when you have four horses that is perfectly fine. Our last client rolled in, another lovely warmblood. He had hurt his (superficial I believe) tendon in his leg. Dr. van Wessum did an ultrasound of his leg, comparing it to one done before and the one done after. I instantly recognized the images as Dr. Esterline had had a case with a warmblood mare that was very very very similar. The two vets even prescribed the same  treatment as each other!!

It was a very good time. I greatly enjoyed it and Dr. van Wessum said to schedule more time to come out with him. Which is pretty awesome since Kern Road vets said MSU students get first call before I ever will. I'll be looking to schedule more time next week I hope.

Now, a Beekman Report: Cruiser's cough seems be improving, he has had it since June. I've been paying very close attention to the cough and to him. Last week our arena and Beekman school was put on lockdown due to a shooting nearby, it was a short-lived twist for our day. The horses all have their fluffy winter coats in. Rufie is even darker now, looking like a chocolate covered bay as compared to the flaming red during the summer. One of our feeders was hurt by our paint, Money. She decided to take a bucket of feed out into a field of eight horses and shake  it in an effort to get them all in for dinner. Money reared and knocked her down, scraping and bruising her arm. Let this be a lesson of what not to ever do in a field with just one or one-hundred horses, and if you choose to do this bring a carrot stick and wear a helmet!! Horses are dangerous, no matter what shape or size no matter how well you know them. I now carry a carrot stick during morning feeding as the horses have been acting unruly. Oulav has thrown the gate into me before and nearly kicked me in the chest and head bucking. Money too has tried to rush over me and buck and Sully is no different. A carrot stick is now brought with me to back the horses up and to use in defense should the occasion arise. Our arena is heated which means no freezing in the winter, thank God :) . Oh, yes, and our resident barn cat, all black and named Fat Cat, has decided to adopt me. He is the highlight of my mornings with his constant cuddles and precious purrsssss. Oh, the simple pleasures of life......

That is all for now, I will write more soon, until then

Have a happy ride~


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Comment by Paula Stevens on November 8, 2015 at 7:42pm

good to be back Jackie.  I'll get to reading all your posts soon :) . I dunno, Jackie, I'm beginning to think Warmbloods are in fact elephants in disguise.

Comment by Jackie Cochran on November 8, 2015 at 6:01pm

Glad to see you back Paula.

Are you sure those Warm Bloods aren't elephants in disguise? 

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