I've had this blog going for about a year now, so it must be time to progress from epic ride stories and picture novels of my herd to the other great endurance blog gift: product reviews. I'm a big believer in try and use whatever works best for you, your horse, and your unique situation, but I also really value insights, experiences, and recommendations on products for the horse and rider that come from outside. I horde tips and knowledge from other blogs and websites, and damn it, it's time I start contributing too (totally just heard that last bit said in my mom's voice in my head..and then couldn't spell "heard" other than "herd" for a good four attempts..)
So, my first product review, because it's current in use and mind, shall be for Trail-Rite's Magical Ointment. I bought an Easyboot Glove for a spare from the very nice Trail-Rite Tack lady at Cuyama XP end of last month, and then sheepishly asked to borrow her fly spray since neither A nor I had brought any and the gnats were driving Desire nuts (there was a gnat warning in the ride paperwork, that's my bad). When I mentioned that D gets sores on her belly from the persistent biting bugs in the summer and I have to keep ointment/fly prevention on them at all times, the Trail-Rite gal threw in a 2 oz. sample jar of the Magical Ointment with the boot. I was told it works wonders for cuts, girth rubs and abrasions, and also repels flies.
I was appreciative, threw it in my crew bag, and didn't really think about it again. After the rainy, muddy, sandy, sweaty, Sunday Day 3 50 miler, I noticed that Desire had a bit of a girth rub on her left side under all the mud and sweat. She has pretty sensitive skin, I had to buy my first mohair girth for her as any other girth I tried seemed to rub little pink spots; I hadn't had an issue with the mohair previously BUT mud, sand, sweat, and sensitive skin= issue, no doubt.
When I got home on Monday (ok, probably more like Tuesday morning, coz Monday it was late & I was exhausted) and really got to clean her up it was already scabbing over and healing. I used my usual cut/abrasion treatment, Vetericyn--btw, mini product review though I think everyone already knows about it, I LOVE Vetericyn, it took care of Thrush in Desire's hooves and has healed many a wound of varying size and severity in my horses and dogs, including the mountain lion claw and bite marks our black lab once ended up with, and seriously nasty hot spots our 100 lb lazy hound got last summer.
Last Friday I finally got around to riding Desire again for the first time since the XP, and discovered I had left my mohair girth in A's trailer. D'oh. She is going to Whiskeytown this weekend and promised it would come with her, but that left me with no mohair in the meantime. The Vetericyn had done well and the rub was pretty well healed over, so I decided to risk it, wise or not. I chose my smoothest neoprene girth, lubricated the healing girth spot some, didn't tighten the girth down too tight, and went for an easy 12 mile meander with minimal trotting and moving out. On return I found that it indeed probably hadn't been wise, as the girth had rubbed the healing skin off the previous rub and it was now raw again, with a week until our next 50 at Whiskeytown. Shiiiiit.
Here enters, at last, Trail-Rite's Magical Ointment. I DO find a way to make everything wordy, don't I? Just trying for full disclosure but good grief, get on with the review already lady. Because the rub was now raw and I wanted it protected as well as coated with something healing (the Vetericyn just sprays on clear and the bugs are beginning to come out here at home, so I didn't want it further irritated) I dug out the little Magical Ointment jar. The ointment is a nice sherbet orange color with an unoffensive, slightly fly repellent-esque scent, and it easily gooped onto Desire's rub, providing full coverage to the small rub without having to smear things around a lot and get too messy. The progression was thus:
Friday p.m.: raw, fresh, pink girth rub, apply goop
Monday: a little crusty but lot's of new healing skin growth, apply goop to lubricate it and keep up the healing
Wednesday, this a.m.: almost fully healed, in fact almost invisible, a little crusty so I gooped some more on there to keep things supple.
From fresh, raw girth rub to almost fully healed and invisible in 5 days, I'll take it! I am confident it will be fine by Saturday for the ride and I did order a back-up mohair girth that will be here tomorrow (thanks for the insanely fast shipping, Distance Depot).
The ointment isn't smelly, is easy to use, and a 4 oz jar is $12.50 or the largest offered is 16 oz. for $38.75. I used maybe 1/4 of the 2 oz sample jar in this girth rub healing project, so I'd say it does go a long way. The ingredients as per the label are White petrolatum, lanolin, sulfur, zinc oxide, oil of Thuja, scarlet red, and phenol. Last summer I used War Paint on Desire's bug bites but it's sticky, runny, and really difficult to use in the heat and I personally don't like the deodorant-like application AT ALL. I'm definitely going to be using Trail-Rite's Magical Ointment on the bug bites this summer and I'm quite happy to have discovered it! Thanks for the sample, kind Trail-Rite lady! (totally should know her name, but don't.)
Hope this helps someone, somewhere! Get gooping.