Yesterday I tacked Tom up, thinking that I'd just loosen him up a bit and expect extra stiffness from 2 days off and a neck-ful of shots. I'm happy to report that he wasn't that bad. Yes, he was stiff and reluctant to move at first, but after 10 minutes of walking then trotting, he loosened up quite nicely and worked well. I didn't push the issue. My goal was just to get him comfortable. The only cranky session came with left canter. He was reluctant to bend and didn't seem to want to push from behind at all. To the right was good and we really got rolling along and had some fun. To the left got better, but never as loose as the right. We played with some trot work and I put him away with lots of pats.
I've been feeding Thomas 6 to 8 wintergreen Tums before I ride. He LOVES them! The vets at New England Equine suggested I try giving him those before work. They felt that even though he doesn't have ulcers he may have a sour tummy, and the Tums might help with that. They are low in carbs, so a good treat for EPSM horses. The extra calcium can't hurt either. It was bothering me that I couldn't give him ANY treats. A handful of hay just doesn't seem to cut it!