Since Gwen has a little residual swelling in her hock from her last infection, the vet suggested that I walk her between bandage changes to try to get the fluids moving. So yesterday, since it wasn't dark yet, I decided to try a bit of trotting in hand to see if I could get her blood flowing a little.
I'll interject a little background here: this mare had zero halter training prior to last May and when I got her in August it was still very difficult to halter her in her stall. She's also extremely herdbound and still throws a fit every time I take her brother out of the barn without her. Plus, because she's been injured, I haven't been able to do much with her other than groom her. So given that, I was hoping she'd be good but was expecting a nervous, spooky, crazy horse (but thought, "at least that'll get the blood moving").
She was lovely. As soon as we got off the concrete heading away from the barn (and away from her brother), I asked her to trot and she stepped right up next to me pretty as you please. She didn't try to run in front of me, or drag behind me, or even pull on the lead rope. Nor did she spook or throw a fit, and we were heading AWAY from the barn. I stopped and let her graze at the end of the driveway (about 300 yards from the barn) and then trotted back and she was still a total doll. I think she even thought it was fun, her stride was completely relaxed and her ears were pricked forward.
I think that's a great improvement for four months! Now if only she'd let me clean out those hind feet...