Hovis’ Friday Diary: I seem to have a ‘Kevin’ living in my foot

Dear Diary

My name is Hovis and I am a large stress ulcer-inducing, bank balance-draining, grey hair-causing, alcoholism-enabling equine self-harmer with an unhealthy love of vets. One who has been given the A-Z of equine ailments and seems to be stuck on “C” – collateral ligaments, cartilage, cataracts and now keratoma (and yes, I know that’s a kicking K not a curly C but a: I’m a horse and b: don’t rain on my alliteration parade here, ok? It’s been a bad week). I read the article in Horse & Hound the other week about the horse in the Queen’s parade who had had all sorts of ailments and have set out to prove he is in fact an amateur.

I’m not sure that mum likes me very much right now. Loves me – yes, trust me you only have to have seen the amount of sobbing that’s been going on to know that – but like me? Not so much.

So, you know I might have mentioned in passing the “little hole” I’ve blown in my foot again? Well when I said “little” I was using the sort of measurement woman use to discuss the costs of things like handbags or *cough* saddles *cough* (ie: it really isn’t). In fact, there is a view that if I stand still too long that the local potholing club might like permission to come and explore Hovis hole.

Those of you who have followed me for a while might recall I first blew this hole like a large breaching sperm whale last March just weeks before I met my new bestie Mary King ahead of our British Eventing trial at Belton International Horse Trials. I, of course, recovered like a super hero and still managed to give her the ride of her life, but the hole did take a time to grow out. Then last week it returned like an unwanted house guest and has caused all sorts of excitement with both Cool New Shoes Man and then Herman the German Needle Man being called out by a frankly over reacting mothership.

To be fair CNSM was concerned by what he saw and recommended poulticing immediately, which resulted in five days of wearing more gaffer tape than a politician at an SM club and mother instigating daily pus watch. Sort of like Country Watch, but with less fluffy cute animals. But all in vain. Zero gunk.

Herman the German Needle Man was called out and x-rays taken, which revealed nothing except lots of arthritic bony changes in my right fore. My blood was stolen to test for Cushions (which I was rather concerned about as I have no intention of being a soft furnishing for the rest of my life) and mother’s investment in the longevity of the UK vet wrap market continued. Then Poof! Or more accurately: Pus! Lots of it.

My Cushions test came back clear (thank you very much – I am a gelding of substance, not stuffing) and Herman was subjected to mother’s lengthy explanation of her gut instinct. He does deserve a medal that man because god help him he does listen to her and as such rocked back up again with x-ray machine in hand. And there it was. The faintest hint that, despite all signs to the contrary, mother does have a smidge of connection to me and my welfare and she was in fact probably right. I haz a Kevin in my foot. Kevin the Keratoma. For those of you not familiar with the naming convention for bodily tumours, I am honouring the tradition started by CNSM, who named the cancer removed from his kidney the other year “Colin”. We are hopeful that Kevin can be sent packing in the same way as Colin was and that they can bugger off into the distance to enjoy a long and happy life together.

As I write this I am awaiting to hear when I shall be booked in for surgery, but it could be as early as next week. This is stressing mother far more than me because I get to see the lovely Frances again, who will take me up to Rainbow and all the nice nurses and doctors who looked after me last time I was there. Mother has suggested that she would much rather I didn’t view large vet establishments in the same vein as holiday resorts – i.e. something it’s nice to visit every few years when you’ve saved up enough money – but then killjoy is her middle name.

Continued below…



I will keep you all posted via my Facebook page but fret not; despite my mother walking around looking like a stunned and frankly suicidal zombie, I shall bounce back again. After all, I am the Hoverine.

I’m off to have my last few days with Kevin and look at my 101 book and figure out what I could have next; Mother’s worked her way through “B” – bad back, broken bones and busted bank balance and I’m getting tired of C so ideas on a new letter to research appreciated.

Laters,
Hovis