Friday, September 01, 2006

David Hannum, not P.T. Barnum, was right*

The horse psychic was a total bust. Unfortunately it was a waste of money as well as time. I'm super disappointed, although I should have expected exactly what I got.

Here is what happened. My trainer and I were waiting outside the barn when a van pulled up. On the front, in large letters, was printed ANIMAL COMMUNICATOR. Wow. Kinda unexpected, but, okay, so you want to advertise. I'm down with that. The lady walked up and introduced herself, then we went into the barn. She said it didn't matter if he was in his stall or not, so we just stood outside the stall where he could hang his head out the doorway or not, whatever he chose to do. When she first walked up she talked to Kaswyn and was petting his face. He seemed mildly interested but was more curious to see if anyone had brought him anything tasty to eat. When no treats were forthcoming, he retreated to the back of his stall.

Here is how it went down....

ANIMAL COMMUNICATOR: So, he's a jumper
ME: No....
AC: Well, then you event him, you know, jump cross country.
ME: No, he's a dressage horse.
AC: (frowing) Well he's showing me jumping over a creek and running up a hill on the other side. Someone must have evented him before you got him.
ME: No, I really don't think so.
AC: How long have you had him?
ME: 12 years. I bought him when he was 3 and I broke him myself.
AC: Oh, well then I don't know where that is coming from. Maybe trail riding or something.
ME: Um, sure. Maybe.
AC: Well what do you want to know?
ME: I want to know if he hurts anywhere or if there is anything we do when I ride him that makes him hurt or uncomfortable.
AC: (pauses with eyes closed) He says he has a big belly ache, that he's been on the brink of colic many times, and even coliced a few times.
ME: He's only coliced once, 8 years ago, and it was a very mild gas colic. And I had his stomach scoped for ulcers and he had nothing.
AC: (another pause) He's saying it's not actually his stomach, but further down. Small intestines. It's because he does not drink enough water.
ME: (thinking silently to myself "This is all wrong. My horse is a great water drinker") Huh.
AC: You need to drop treats in his water to make him fish around for them so his water intake goes up.
ME: ("He dips his hay in his water buckets when he eats. He gets plenty of water") Uh-huh.
AC: You need to put him on Ester-C. That will soften up his manure, boost his immune system and make him more regular.
ME: ("This horse craps ALL THE TIME, and his poop is perfectly normal soft healthy horse poop.") Okay. Fine. So he's not saying anything about his legs or back at all?
AC: (pause) No, nothing.
ME: Nothing about his hocks? Or perhaps his left front leg?
AC: (pause) No, he does not hurt there at all, No place except the belly.
ME: You know he has navicular in that left front leg and I had him nerved last month.
AC: (pause) He's not showing me anything there.

And so it went. She ended up telling me some things that I really wanted to believe - he thinks I'm a "good egg", he doesn't want to retire, he loves to train and show, loves it when I ride him. But how can I just believe the good things? Somehow I can't justify it, much as I want to.

AC also did a reading on my trainers horse, but she spent less then half of the time with him that she spent with Kaswyn. Before she left my trainer asked AC if she could tell her anything about her dog when she was a puppy.

AC: You got her from rescue?
Trainer: Yes
AC: (pause) She was with a family that had kids. She had so much energy that the parents could not handle her and the kids both. She says she didn't do anything wrong, but just frustrated the parents. She was just trying to keep up with the kids.

After AC left my trainer said to me "All that about my dog was total BS. I know where she came from. A single guy who didn't have enough time for her owned her. "

Either we have a bunch of fibbing animals, or this woman isn't as gifted as she thinks.

*Who said "There's a sucker born every minute."? Not who you might think!


craig said...

I'm sorry, honey. I know you only want the best for your horse, and are willing to go to any extreme to help him... even some places that are, shall we say, outside of the norm?

Let's see what the new (old) shoes do for him. I certainly have a lot more faith in your ferrier than Miss Cleo.

Dressage Mom said...

At least AC didn't have a fake jamacian accent. That would have queered the deal from the get-go.

Anonymous said...

sorry this didn't work out for you..perhaps the wrong person was,probably. in any event,i think critical skepticism is an absolutely necessary element to an endeavor like this. it's unfortunate that a "miss" like this can lead to SARCASTIC skepticism...which seems more like a pat answer for questions less easily--not impossibly--answered. i think YOU have the best chance of understanding what Kaswyn needs if you're open to listening...your tummy knows what he's saying. I think we often mock that which we don't's not for everyone...could be ...all the tools are in your possesion already. Sort of like deciding finally to LEARN how to speak French...just have to DO it myself to really know what the cab fare is!

Anonymous said...

I have found with 'time' that tissues 'shrink' and contract. Especially after an injury. All the other tissues in the vicinity have to take up the load that once wasn't theirs and it fatiques those healthy tissues. We age, they age. This in turn creates an alteration in the gate. No Xray, MRI, scoping, imagings will detect this. Only exploratory surgery might possibly tell, maybe. But who wants to put their horse thru something that is conjecture. I wouldn't. You certainly don't. If only our horses could talk... Stretching might be the best, the only bet before each ride.... to lengthen those tissues that have contracted and/or loosen up those that are tight... TLC!

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