Stonestreet Farm release:
The recovery of champion Rachel Alexandra from abdominal surgery in mid-February took its biggest step forward Tuesday as it was announced the 2009 Horse of the Year was able to return home to Stonestreet Farm.
The champion daughter of Medaglia d’Oro had been recuperating at Rood & Riddle Equine Hospital since February 13th when she underwent surgery to repair a section of her small colon that was damaged when she foaled a Bernardini filly a day earlier. While she did have a subsequent surgical procedure in early March to drain an abscess adjacent to her reproductive tract and rectum, Rachel Alexandra continued to show improved appetite and attitude.
“Having Rachel home is a milestone in her recovery,” said Stonestreet Farm owner Barbara Banke, “I am deeply grateful to Drs. (Brett) Woodie, (Bonnie) Barr….and the entire Rood & Riddle team for the unparalleled care Rachel has received. A special thank you to Alex Riddle for keeping Rachel’s fans updated on her progress and to Medicine Technician Brent Comer for his dedication to her care.”
Video of Rachel Alexandra’s return home courtesy of Stonestreet can be found here: http://bit.ly/YCEjpL
Stonestreet employees decorated her stall with cards from fans as they awaited her arrival; a get-well banner from Fair Grounds Racecourse stretched across the barn, ready to welcome the hard-fighting champion home. Both Stonestreet and Rood & Riddle medical technicians will continued to monitor Rachel Alexandra around the clock while Dr. Barr checks her progress with daily visits to the farm.
“This time of transition is a big step, as well as an added stress in her recovery from a very serious, life-threatening condition. We feel, however, that she is ready to take on this challenge, and in doing so, she takes the next step toward getting back to life on the farm,” said Barr.
Rachel Alexandra’s first few days at home will focus on ensuring she is comfortable in her surroundings through hand grazing. She will then transition to a small, temporary round pen the size of her stall. As she becomes comfortable and her team feels satisfied with her progress, panels will be inserted to gradually extend that round pen.
These slow, deliberate, day-to-day steps are designed to evolve into turnout in a regularly sized round pen followed ultimately by transition to a small paddock. While this process could take as little as a couple of weeks, her team will set a cautious pace.
Stonestreet had previously announced that Rachel Alexandra’s Bernardini filly had been placed with a nurse mare and will not be reunited with her birth mother.