In what is being called the “most shocking veterinary news of the century,” U.S. Highest Scoring Horse of All Time Ballynoe Castle RM is facing a crossroads in his career after a routine examination this week uncovered a previously hidden set of testicles.
Kathleen Blauth-Murray, the longtime head groom for Buck Davidson Eventing who cares for the 15-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding daily, was the first to notice the change.
“I know every inch of this horse,” Kathleen said, “so when these lumps appeared between his back legs, I thought something was terribly wrong at first.” She called the vet immediately, and the entire Team BDJ crew was on hand as they anxiously awaited a diagnosis.
Buck was as baffled by the developments as everyone else. “He’s fighting fit since he’s been preparing for Rolex, his appetite was normal, and his personality is as friendly as ever,” Buck explained. “Unless you knew where to look, you’d never think there was anything weird going on with him.”
It didn’t take long for the vet to determine that the lumps were not actually a cause for concern, but the BDJ team was still shocked when the vet told them that the lumps were actually testicles that had waited upwards of 14 years to descend.
“We all know that Reggie has balls of steel when jumping cross country, but we were still surprised to learn that he really does have actual balls,” Buck said.
What made this discovery even more extraordinary was the fact that Reggie was gelded in his younger years, meaning that he actually had two sets of testicles. Veterinary records from his previous examinations show no account of this medical anomaly, but vets have assured Buck and owners Carl and Cassie Segal that Reggie is “fully functional and anatomically correct.”
“We were absolutely stunned, but also excited,” Buck said. “We’ve always talked about how great it would be if Reggie could have offspring to pass along his boldness and temperament. Now, he just might have that chance. It’s an incredible opportunity for Carl and Cassie.”
Buck said plans are still up in the air for when Reggie will start his breeding career. The horse’s bloodlines, which include the Grand Prix stallion Ramiro B, could have major implications for the next generation of eventing horses, so this is exciting news for breeders around the world.
Kathleen, who rode Reggie down the aisle in her wedding and plans to use him as a leadline mount for her two daughters, is as thrilled as the rest of Team BDJ and said that she wants to be “first in line to own a Reggie baby.”
“What started as a possible medical scare turned into a huge blessing in disguise,” Kathleen said. “That this just so happened to be April Fool’s Day makes it even better!”
Happy April Fool’s Day, and Go Eventing!