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JACK

In honor of the Chagrin Valley Hunter-Jumper Classic, here is one of my favorite stories from the show, simply titled:

JACK

While working at the Chagrin Valley Hunter-Jumper Classic, a trainer rode up and asked me to look at the horse she was on, named Jack. (The name has been changed to protect the innocent.) A nice bay, he was swapping his lead behind at times and moving oddly. As I did a lameness exam with palpation of the legs and flexion tests, it was hard not to see that he had multiple brands: an interesting symbol on each quarter, and a prominent number on either side of his tail. We probably spent fifteen minutes watching, flexing and talking about the horse. Shortly thereafter I called the office to get a rundown on Jack’s medical history, and began to formulate a treatment plan.

About 90 minutes later, a concerned young woman walked a horse up to the truck. She was unfamiliar to me, and upset because this horse she had been un-braiding had released a large, foamy, glob of saliva from his mouth and didn’t want to eat. As I asked questions about what she had seen, I grabbed my thermometer and stethoscope from the truck. Approaching his hind end and grabbing his tail, I noticed very familiar and unique brands on his “hip” and either side of his tail. As I pushed the tail aside and inserted the thermometer, I said ,“Oh, this is Jack!”

The young lady looked at me, astonished. “You recognize him from his butthole?”

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