Bent solid metal

I don’t know how to express how utterly horrifying this was for me…

Last Friday I went out to feed breakfast.  I was talking to myself,  as usual,  on the way down to the barn and heard Ava and Joy nicker back at me when they heard me approaching.

I open the door to the barn,  step in,  and glance over to see Ava and Joy standing by their doors waiting on breakfast. Before I can even turn to start getting hay,  I see Ava slowly start sinking backward over her haunches.  Almost as if she’s stretching her front legs.  Except,  she keeps sinking backward.  To the point where I’m pretty sure she’s going to roll over backwards if she doesn’t stop soon.

I was frozen,  staring at her as she slowly started toppling backwards.  A growing sense of dread was filling me.

And then pandemonium broke loose.

Ava panicked,  scrambled to get her feet back under her,  but couldn’t.  She fell into the middle divider, which cracked and groaned,  then started falling the other direction. She spun around,  and slammed her rear end into the front wall so hard I saw the whole wall bow out toward me. Parts popped off the door and shot across the barn. I was so sure that the entire wall would come crashing down on top of me that I dove out the barn door. 

When it held,  I ran back in and saw Ava desperately trying to keep her feet, but slamming herself into everything, until finally she fell hard, wedged up into a corner.  Her legs furiously kicking.

I couldn’t breathe.

I couldn’t help her.

I could barely pull out my phone,  my hands were shaking so hard. Finally got the vets voice mail and left them a hysterical voice message. 

By the time I finished leaving a message,  Ava had somehow gotten to her feet again.  She was facing away from me,  her head hung low, not moving. 

I was scared to death to enter the stall.

I felt like a coward.

Within a few minutes,  Ava turned back towards me.  We stared at each other a moment while i tried to make “everything’ll be fine noises” at her, but I’m pretty sure came out more as “holy crap we’re fucked!” noises.

I waited for the next crash.

I waited for something.

But nothing happened…

It was like absolutely fucking NOTHING had happened to her!

If it weren’t for the shattered hanging buckets, the cracked stall boards,  and the metal feeder being bent at new angles,  you’d never guess anything had occurred.  All that pandemonium,  all that crazy,  and Ava’s just standing there like nothing happened…

I was still not trusting the calm,  but I cracked the stall door a touch and tossed in a bit of hay… then quickly shut and locked it again.  Ava ate as I stood at the stall door.  After a minute she stepped closer to the door and pushed her neck up against it for me to rub.  She seemed to want contact, so i scratched her through the bars…   feeling like an asshole for being to chicken to open the door,  but not trusting that whatever happened wouldn’t happen again at any second.

It wasn’t too much longer after that,  and the vet’s office called back.

By the time the vet got here,  Ava had cleaned up all her hay,  plus more hay,  and was acting “normal”.  She was even feeling snarky enough to glare at Joy and try to kick Jessie through the fence.

Vet thinks she had a grand mal seizure.  He took blood, checked her heart and lungs (healthy).  We’re still waiting on blood work results.  The vet said it could be liver,  it could be brain,  it could be anything and undetectable. It may never happen again,  it may be cyclical,  it may get worse.

I even asked him to check out my feed,  as a desperate gamble to find anything that may have cause it,  and he said what I was feeding and how much was good.

Ava seems fine now.  She’s eating well,  drinking well.  She’s enjoying roaming the pasture and harassing Jessie and Joy.

But… What do i do now?!


The entire week I’ve been stuck.  Ava had a seizure.  Not a little,  “wow, that’s weird”, seizure,  but a big,  destroy solid walls and bend metal, seizure.  And all week,  everyone acts like nothing happened.   

But I’m stuck at that single point in time.  

What the hell do i do now?! 

What would you do? 

11 thoughts on “Bent solid metal

  1. What would I do now? Probably pace around in circles a lot and have second thoughts about selling Joy just in case Ava became unrideable, The scary thing here is that the event is totally unpredictable. I’m not a vet, so I would just listen to whatever the vet says and think ahead based on his advice. Even if it never happens again, you don’t know in the current moment that it won’t. So maybe just use history as your guide, and figure the longer she goes without an episode the less chance there is of it recurring.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. For starters I would not ride this horse if she is a riding horse I would retire her at least temporarily. I would also do whatever i could to make the barn safer. Remove anything the could go flying from her stall if she has another seizure. And I would try to be calm until I got blood work results etc from the vet and ash his or her advice . Maybe if there is an equine hospital or a university with an vet program i would find out if they have an equine neurologist and get a consult with them. I’m so sorry this had to happen and I am not surprised you are reeling in the aftermath of something this dramatic.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree with the above, I wouldn’t ride her anymore, at least until you get some answers from the blood work (and I hope you find some). If it could happen at any time, it could happen while you’re sitting on her and she could kill you. Is she a candidate for living outside 24/7? That would probably be safer than being in a stall (even if she has access to a run or something), because there wouldn’t be anything to get caught on in an open field.

    I hope you get answers, and I am so sorry this happened. I would be freaking out.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You mentioned keeping her on pasture 24/7. I was just reading some other cases where horses had seizures and that’s what the owners ended up doing. My only stumbling block with that is Ava’s got IR, so I have to be careful about grass intake. It may be as simple as a grazing muzzle though…
      Thanks for the suggestions!


  4. I wouldn’t think anything of it. Look the horse in the eye, tell her that if she pulls that seizure crap when you’re on her, the seizure is going to be the least of her problems, and carry on. Ava is a drama queen and it wouldn’t surprise me one bit to find out she faked the whole thing just to get extra rations.


    • I should sell tickets to Ava’s shows. It was quite, uh, impressive.

      You know I’ve tried that whole “If you [whatever], that’ll be the last thing you ever do again” routine, and it never works. She knows I’m a push over. πŸ˜‰


    • “Yo, Alpo, it’s dinner time!” HAhahah Love it!
      Every time I have to enter her stall now, I grab her by the shoulders and try to shake her… just to see if she’s still steady. Not like that really does any good, but Ava gives me crazy looks and I find that hilarious!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Pingback: Life Stopped | Avandarre In Dressage

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