You know you have seen them. You have dealt with them. And you have always pitied the poor horse owned by them.
The vet is out at the barn again, for the same grey mare that always looks healthy and happy, but is ailing from some serious condition. You wonder why the vet doesn’t just tell the person to get a second opinion. Yet, you realize you have actually seen more than one vet looking at the horse.
There is always a sob story: “She just isn’t feeling good, I think its allergies.” The allergy drop is always a good one for the hypochondriac horse owner because no one can REALLY dispute it. That is, besides the vet, but no one knows what the vet actually told this person. The worst part is, this person REALLY needs you to feel her pain, or her poor horse’s pain. The sympathy tends to feed the hypochondriac horse owner. It’s the attention they get.
The allergy drop is always a good one for the hypochondriac horse owner because no one can REALLY dispute it.
Hypochondriac Horse Owners are like predators and wait to pounce until another boarder arrives. They have been waiting for an hour for another person to show up at the barn. They get all tacked up with you and get on shortly before you.
You enter the ring and it starts:
“She doesn’t feel right today. I think it’s her back, maybe her hip. I don’t think she is lame, but she doesn’t have the usual energy at the walk.”
Even though you just want to ride, you feel bad for her because you know what its like not to be able to. She asks you to watch the horse go. You do, and you don’t see anything wrong. You tell her this and it seems to amplify her concern….somehow. Because if you don’t see it and she feels it, “it must be a very deep tissue injury”.
A week later, you ask her about the “deep tissue injury” and she almost blows it off, but now there is some “dermatitis” that has made her horse unable to ride. You think to yourself, “What? Dermatitis?” The vet pulls in again. The vet barely looks at the horse and is writing something down, hands it to the person and drives off. “Yes! She needs to bathe her twice a day for a week.”
Now you get to hear that looooong drawn out story. You don’t even care anymore.
Hint: Don’t care and don’t feel bad not caring. If you ignore her and if everyone else does the same thing….suddenly….the horse will actually have fewer ailments. If this person does not get rewarded they will act out less. Although, there are the ones who are gratified by the attention of the vet; whom they are paying.
You think to yourself, “What? Dermatitis?” The vet pulls in again…
If you are a hypochondriac horse owner, ask yourself these two questions:
1.) Are you afraid of your horse and just coming up with excuses to not ride?
2.) Do you need to feel important at the barn, and is this your only way to spark up conversation?
If this is you, THE HYPOCHONDRIAC HORSE OWNER, please do everyone else a favor (including your horse) and:
A. OPENLY ADMIT you are scared of your horse
B. SHUT UP and stop bothering other people at the barn
C. Seek professional psychiatry if the problem persists, and
D. Write your vet a big fat check with an apology letter.
Your horse is fine; now go away.