Over the long weekend her noisy breathing became more obvious than it had been so first thin Tuesday morning we headed to town to the posh vets as they have access to better gear than our rural practice.
Vet said after listening to her, that she was a bit noisy sounding, possibly a bit of fluid that needed to clear but lets have a look with the scope just to check.
Summer has been scoped before, and it showed her allergy. I suspected this was what was going to show up as the cause of the noise but she also had a throat swelling this time.
What showed up on the images knocked us all sideways. What a horrible mess. They estimated she had about 5 % of a normal airway and started telling me all sorts of things about Tracheostomy's, anti bugs, not being a trekking pony ever again, permanent Trach operation and some other stuff as well as big $$ amounts that just weren't registering.
Wow, back up the truck, I'm thinking. She had a cold, snotty nose, probably an allergy...........didn't she?
And she needs help fast as she could become stressed at any point and would be in an awful situation.
But I am looking at my pony who while is not looking happy, was out eating and drinking not long ago. The vets reaction was to say that Summer was incredibly tough and stoic to be coping as well as what she has and if she had been a thoroughbred, she would have been legs up in the paddock long ago.
But decisions had to be made, and reasonably quickly. We discussed life as a broodmare for her but even as a paddock ornament she was going to need a permanent Traceostomy as her throat was so bad. She may even have needed more surgery to remove the lump.
We opted to treat her with anti inflamatories, and anti bugs, as well as cortizone, leave her at the hospital so that if she went down fast, she would have access to help fast, and take time to think.
After ringing and speaking to the vet again, asking many more questions about having a horse with this procedure done, what was the care involved, how about life as a broodmare with the allergy and needing steroids to control it (you can't have them on steroids to breed from) and generally just thinking properly about things, we came to a decision.
Summer is 7 years old, life as a permanent paddock ornament with a permanent hole in her throat was not an option Charlie or I wanted for her. Even the past few months we notice how she would watch the float (always known as Summer's taxi) disappear without her, and imagined her life as it would be for her and not for my selfish reasons.
Yesterday I spoke again to the vet and she said it was a good decision. She also said that I hadn't missed anything, I hadn't been slack and even she didn't suspect what she saw.
This morning Summer was buried beside Cliffie, under the Oak tree below the house. I have cried more tears than I can remember crying in a long, long time. It wasn't always perfect, but we had plans, places to go, things to do. and now she is gone.
Here is a link to a few of the many images of Summer who was so influencial in my life. She taught me so very much but
A link to a tribute to summer It wasn't meant to end this way.