This is hard to write for me, sharing it is actually the easier part , writing it down an owning it sucks.
To recap Classy Dan was running turning and seldom making a misstep , but I wasn't winning . ( I haven't won much on my faster horses either so I think it safe to say not her fault). At the time driven by desire and convinced there must be something wrong with my now lethargic , low appetite mare ( perhaps because her food made her fell like crap) I searched for a fix. Don't throw my Vet under the bus either he's doing what he thinks will help her and me , he sees the decrease in drive and wants to help her come out of it too. If her body soreness and fatigue had been caused by injury or anemia not her diet it probably would have showed some results. So now adding to the magic natural respiratory aid , and amazing diet full of hidden sugars and fillers that create inflammation I added steroids to the mix. It sounded like just what we needed it's used for debilitated or weakened animals, and are prescribed to stimulate appetite, increase weight gain, strength, and vigor. These drugs help rebuild tissues that are weakened due to disease, injury, or surgery. Steroids have their place in the recovery of horses and I'm not saying they don't or nobody should ever use them. For us for Classy Dan they were a terrible choice not only was it selfish on my part I had no idea what the real side effects could be.
Anabolic steroids such as stanozolol and boldenone are synthetic derivatives of testosterone, the male hormone. Using them can cause increased aggressive and dominant behaviour and cause fillies and mares to show masculine behaviours. This is what happened to her, she shifted from very famine to stud like. I remember visiting with Les McIntyre at Medicine Hat Spring Rodeo and him commenting on her jowls and asking when I started running a stud. That was the first time I really noticed how different he looked because when you see the horse everyday small changes daily don't draw attention. During this time I had started my relationship with my now husband. His reaction to my plan of action was less than favourable at the time. He was certain I was trying to make her something she was not and it wasn't fair. If I wanted to win that bad buy a faster horse. Sure easy for a SW to say he can go to a rodeo and pay to ride one of the best horses going.
Eventually I did hear him but not until I quit imagining what other girls were doing to win and paid attention to what was really going on. The girls who wins day in and day out aren't pumping there horses full of sh*t to make them faster, their horses are that fast. They aren't talking about what they need to do they do it. They show up mentally prepared to win every race, its not a surprise to them and it isn't luck. Their horses are fit, not I ride my horse 4 days a week fit, but if they were people they'd be tri-athlete fit. It was hard to swallow that she maybe didn't have what it takes because I kept remembering how she used to run , but that was a different horse before I had slowly made her break down. Justin never knew that horse so it was obvious to him. My heart just couldn't believe it or wouldn't......
Originally posted to Facebook April 27, 2015
I was born in love with horses. My journey with horses has lead me the to the competitive arena only to send me back to doing homework. I'm going to share what I have learned on this blog, both the good and the bad. Hopefully my mistakes and my answers will help a few horses and their owners along the way.