Reins of Rhythm’s Super Star Horse
Gucci was one of those once in a life time horses. There will never be another like her. She was beautiful both inside and out. She was a golden horse that had a golden heart and was worth her weight in gold. Gucci was Reins of Rhythm’s first lesson horse and she was a horse that truly loved her job. She knew each of her riders and would nicker when children came into the barn. She was a horse who would give pony rides all day, carry children around over and over again at pony day camp, and still have her ears perked up and be looking for the next person at the end of a long day.
She happily did the work of multiple horses. That is a rare find for a lesson horse! Especially a horse working with riders with so many different needs as that can be very taxing on a horse. But it didn’t effect Gucci’s super star personality.
Gucci took children to their first shows, and while during lessons she might make them work hard, at the shows she really helped them out and made sure they looked their best! She was known to when a child forgot their dressage pattern and went to turn the wrong way, pull them in the right direction. She was pretty amazing!
Gucci was the horse that no matter what event we were at, I felt safe with even the littlest of riders or any child with special needs on her. She was dependable, steady, and trustworthy. She took care of her kids.
Gucci was the number one horse when it came to pony day camps. It didn’t matter how many rides she had given already, she did not get sour or grumpy. No nipping her leader or those other little habits lesson horses pick up to let you know just what they really think about what they are doing! She was always ready to show the children her tricks – giving kisses and big horse smiles.
Keeping a large group of kids entertained with Gucci was easy. She loved the attention and made sure she was the center of all that attention! She was a great sport for letting the kids paint her, dress her up, etc.
Gucci gave many kids their first adventure on horseback whether it was a pony ride, pony day camp, their first riding lesson, their first show, or even their first trail ride. Trail rides are always a favorite with the children and Gucci made sure they had fun on their adventures.
At various events such as the Barn Christmas Party Gucci loved being the center of attention. She would get dressed up like a Christmas Tree, have sticky red patches stuck to her while the kids played pin the Rudolph nose on Gucci, and of course got lots of candy cane and peppermint treats.
In the summer of 2012, Gucci’s personality
started to change. Her always sweet and easy going temperament towards the other horses started to change and she became aggressive towards the other horses. While she remained sweet and loving towards people, it was obvious something wasn’t quite right. Sometimes she would be grouchy towards her handler when being tacked up and had a hard time staying focused during her lessons. She was thoroughly examined by a veterinarian. No pain issues were found but a blood test did show that she had Lyme disease. She was treated for Lyme but she still just wasn’t right. In the fall of 2012 with her attitude continuing to change, the gleam in her coat starting to leave, and overall just being able to tell something wasn’t right, we took her to an equine hospital where an ultrasound revealed very large and advanced ovarian tumors. Finally an explanation for what was wrong with our super star horse. Surgery was scheduled for January.
In January of 2013, Gucci had surgery to remove the tumors. They were much larger than expected and while initially there were some complications causing there to be concern if she would fully regain use of her hind limbs, that strong little horse pulled through the surgery amazingly well and her recovery went very well. Gucci detested being stuck in her stall.
She got lots of visits, treats, cards, and even stories read to her by her fan club of riders in the lesson program, but she was ready to be back to work! Soon as lesson children started arriving at the barn, Gucci would be pawing away at her stall door making a big ruckus and letting everyone know that was her job!
Finally Gucci was cleared to return to work carrying the small riders and doing just walk lessons. That was one happy horse to be back doing what she loved. She was coming back in the barn from one of her first lessons back to work, just a short 15 minutes of walk in the arena with a young rider leading her. As soon as the instructor took Gucci from the rider and the rider had stepped aside, Gucci dropped to the floor rolling in pain. A sure sign of colic though that stoic horse had held herself together until the child was out of harms way. Emergency vet services were immediately contacted, but they could not get Gucci’s pain level under control so we took her to the Marian Dupont Equine Medical Center but she could not be saved. The colic was not thought in any way to be related to her surgery for the ovarian tumors. When they opened her up, everything from that surgery looked quite well healed. Just one of those freak colics that we will never have an answer why happened.