WALNUT CREEK — Lifting the foreleg of 11-year-old Landon, equine veterinarian Jamie Textor tenderly probes the Danish Warmblood’s mostly-healed limb as if handling the leg of a celebrated dancer or athlete.
And in a way, she is, because the horse owned by Heather Matrisian has won multiple prizes for his multi-tasking “dressage,” a highly skilled form of competition that is an Olympic event and includes performing specialized gaits and even a pirouette.
“It’s like ballet for horses,” says Matrisian.
After stroking Landon’s neck and whispering assurances, Textor’s fingers test her patient’s “splint” bone for lameness. Landon remains unperturbed, perhaps comforted by the familiarity of his “home turf hay” at North Peak Equestrian in Walnut Creek. Landon is receiving care “stall-side,” the veterinarian equivalent of a country doctor’s house call.