I was interested in the concept of Bespoke supplements having studied Nutrition as part of my Equine Sports Science degree. Three months prior to starting here I had taken on a 14 yr old TB mare who was a recently recovered neglect case. She was timid and nervous and lacked any strength or topline. I started lunging her, then rode her but it was clear she was scared and hurting. Our first hack resulted in her eyes glazing over and she froze, reared, spun and bolted a few times. I felt it wasn’t malicious, just fear! She was a dripping mess when we got back! I had her back checked, did a little lunge work and then turned her away for the winter so we could bond more.
When I brought her back in work I still felt she was hurting somewhere. If the side reins pulled on the roller she would rear and freak out. Tightening the girth when on board was a no-go and I had to lunge her before riding. I got her back looked at again and her Intercostal muscles were all in spasm. She had some intensive physiotherapy with Victoria Berryman-Watts as she was a ball of tension head to foot! So much so, she could hardly handle manual manipulation so Vickie used her laser and ultrasound machines to aid her releasing the muscle spasm. She set up a rehab and treatment programme for Clover to recover. She went back into work to build her up and strengthen her topline.
She was still quite hot to ride so I decided now she was back in work to put her on a Calming/Digestive/Toning Bespoke and a StepFree. She took a good 5 weeks to respond to the Bespoke and I gave her the recommend amount of StepFree before I rode each time. I used the StepFree as relaxing calmer as the Bespoke had done that job sufficiently but she was still a tight little ball. I gradually brought the quantitiy down to the point I could mount straight away without lunging and without sitting so quiet in case I moved suddenly! The StepFree is now redundant as she is maintained on her Bespoke. She has put on muscle and topline. Her physio says she would hardly believe it’s the same horse!
I now have her on an Joint Bespoke to maintain her joints as she gets on in her years.
We are now in full work, able to hack out regularly in company and alone and we have even been nanny to nappy horses and youngsters!!
I have been amazed by her transformation. She still has regular maintenance physiotherapy but she is now such a lovely, calm, relaxed mare. The Bespoke has helped her considerably and she will stay on it as she is still building muscle to strengthen her weak topline and she looks and moves like a 5 yr old not 15 yr old!!
I started work at Hack Up on 6th November 2014. I now help Alex formulate and cross check formulations!
Nicola Haden Scott BSc (Hons)
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