Here’s some clarification. First of all, we didn’t have a contract with the trainer – he’s not that kind of trainer. We live in the country, and it’s a country kind of thing – agreements on a handshake and all. Believe it or not, I’m pretty comfortable with that, at least in this case. He’s a nice guy who’s very good with horses and up to this point, he’s done a really good job with Moonshine and with Pistol, our friend Shari’s 3-year-old filly who was there all month too. He’s completely torn up about this incident and in fact is offering to pay for all damages. We’ll probably come to some sort of agreement about that. Again, the country way.
So what happened is this. Lance was trail riding Moonshine this morning. He has ridden her every day, at first just inside the arena and paddocks, but as he got more comfortable with her, he started taking her out on trails on his property. It’s unclear exactly where he was riding her today, but for the last several days she has been no trouble at all, so he was comfortable riding her on open trails. He came across a neighbor and stopped to chat. The neighbor was not on horseback, so Lance dismounted and tied Moonshine, possibly to a tree. She stood quietly while they chatted, as she always has for us too. Then she suddenly, for no reason he could discern, went berserk. Before he could grab her she had broken the reins and started bucking like a wild bronco. Again, she has never done that. Up till now, her problem – and only when being ridden – was “crow-hopping,” a kind of half-buck. She nearly ran him over; bucked to the fence, where he thought she was going to go through it; stopped at the fence then continued bucking in another direction, down the driveway where she started half-running, half-bucking toward the road. He ran after her at a dead run (so she must have been going at a pretty good clip) but she made it to the road, where she ran into a moving car. The car did not hit her, she hit it. On the passenger side. Lance knew the woman, who stopped and talked to him. She “knows someone” who does body work and says she’ll do it cheap. A $400 figure was bandied about. We’ll see on that, I guess.
As for Moonshine, she has a small abrasion on her left hip; she ripped a shoe off (the nails ripped right out, leaving tears in the hoof but the soft structures appear to be okay). There is no heat or swelling anywhere on her body, so far. She seems to be a bit shaken but okay. Lance wasn’t there when we came by to see her tonight, but his mother was keeping an eye on her while he was gone. She thought he would probably be staying with her in the barn all night. He has a supply of meds and our vet’s number – she sees all his horses too (on a side note, I’m now working for our vet; I’ve been there 2 1/2 weeks now. It’s sure a good connection to have at the moment).
We’ll update you tomorrow, once the vet has seen her and her condition is more clear. Thanks for all your kind thoughts!