I went out to the barn to check on Ashke's legs, since we rode a lot yesterday and it was pretty rocky. He was favoring his feet. All four of them I think, but the worse was his front right. He had a couple of steps on our ride where he felt pretty hobbled, but when I checked his foot, there was nothing in it. (No stone or other foreign object.) That was about half way through our ride, when we had the same distance to go either direction we went. Because of the wet and mud and the lack of riding outside of the arena, his feet were a bit soft and I think the rocky soil was a bad choice.
Hindsight is 20/20. Of course, I knew I had bitten off more than I could chew when I was leading him back down off the mountain, but at that point I was in for a pound. I couldn't trailer him home.
I also think he might be dealing with some muscle pain. I know I am. I tried lunging him and he was fine at the walk but obviously lame at the trot. He was some better after a light warm-up, but it was pretty obvious his feet hurt. I took him into the barn and after a short fight, convinced him to walk into the shower stall. I petted him and fed him peppermints and rubbed him a lot. I also cold hosed his legs and checked for swelling or heat. There was nothing. I cleaned his hooves and checked for bruising, but that's probably not something I will be able to see without Michelle coming out and checking for me. Nothing looked out of place or injured.
I borrowed some Bute from N, although Dessa had offered me some when she saw me working on his feet. I gave him two grams. I coated the carrots and then had to hand feed them to him because he hated the taste. He kept dropping them in the straw and pushing them around to get the Bute off. I figured if they were in his mouth, the powder came off on his tongue. I need to keep some type of sweet feed around in case I need to feed him something like that in the future.
Going back out tomorrow to see if he is feeling any better. Shots are Wednesday and I am going to ask Dr Long to leave me some Bute so I can continue to treat him. If it's just muscle soreness and simple foot pain he should be better tomorrow. If it's a gravel, it may take longer to tell.