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Don Merisse: 2002 Hanoverian Prix St. George Dressage Gelding

So I got him in September of 2016.  He was given to me because he was dangerous – he would spin and rear frequently, and he has shivers.  I believe he was in pain then, and being forced to work through it, which was the major reason he had behavior issues.  He was very shut down emotionally.

In December of that year, he tore his LF suspensory.  I tried to do his rehab myself, but when it came time to start tack walking him, he was extremely dangerous.  He was angry, pent up, and neurotic.  I took him to a rehab facility to help me.

I finally got to the point where he was trotting laps under saddle (June 2017) but he had a terrible attitude…he had pretty much given up on life.  He colicked that month, and had to go to Rood & Riddle for surgery, where they removed a six foot long impaction.  He then flared up with a case of salmonella while at the hospital (apparently common when their immune systems are stressed) and he was put into quarantine, which further depressed him.  His recovery was complicated by the shivers, so multiple times he went down and wasn’t able to get up, and had to be put in a sling.

When I finally brought him home to my farm, he still had to be in quarantine for 30 days.  In the fall of 2017 I tried to bring him back to work, but he had severe behavioral problems, he was dangerous again, and he was lame.  The suspensory had healed, but all the time on stall rest over the past year had caused his shivers and arthritis to become unmanageable.  We tried bute, and previcox, and injections – none of it really made a difference.

By early 2018, I didn’t know what to do.  Because of his shivers, he needed to stay in work, but I couldn’t seem to get him going.  He wasn’t a good candidate for retirement, because he doesn’t do well staying outside for long, he can’t be barefoot, and he was getting progressively more depressed and angry.  He was lunging at horses, pinning his ears at people, including me, and over all had a vibe of “I give up.”  I began to think about euthanasia because I couldn’t seem to provide quality of life for him no matter what I tried.

Then Excel Eq Supplements approached me about a sponsorship, and putting Don on that product seemed to help make him a little healthier and more comfortable.  He was able to start doing some light work, and that seemed to help the shivers.  We were making slow progress, but he was still lame on his LF and RH.  I would frequently have to give him quite a bit of bute to help with that, which I knew wasn’t good for him, but I had so many variables to juggle with this horse.  Even then, the bute only helped a little. Some days were worse than others.  He still had days where he would rear and spin, but at least his mood overall had improved some.

When I started him on the CBD, he became completely sound in 2-3 days.  Since then, his ability and willingness to work has improved exponentially. He is hardly spooky at all now.  A year ago, I was terrified of this horse.  Now we can hack outside the arena, gallop in the fields, and have fun.  I don’t think this horse has ever been able to do that in his entire life.  The CBD has made him sound physically and mentally.  He has even started to bond more deeply with me– I think because he’s actually happy.  Words cannot express how much that means to me.

I can’t believe how much more effective the CBD is than anything else I’ve ever used with Don or any other horse.  100% recommend it to everyone!

Natalie Martin

PEARL EQUESTRIAN

Comments (3)

  • Jenna, that’s such an inspiring story! Don is on your Hope pellets? That’s incredible. Please keep us posted with this story and more.

    • Yes he is! Amazing story:)

  • Awesome !! I am soooooo happy for you both !!!!!

    Mary Edwards

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