My darn gelding is lame again

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by CarriBrown, May 11, 2008.

  1. CarriBrown

    CarriBrown Crowing

    About two months ago, my friend was riding my gelding and I was riding my mare. We were loping down a trail in town (we have horse trails instead of sidewalks) and he did a little mis-step. She got off of him and pulled a rock out from a tender spot in his frog. He was a little gimpy, so we stopped at the bar, tied them up, and gave him some rest.
    We came out about an hour later and he would not move. Period. I had to call another friend to come pick me up and take me to my trailer, so I could drive back and load them up. Bo would hardly get in the trailer.
    It never absessed, but I soaked that foot in a salt solution twice a day for several days, and I kept him locked in his stall. I gave him bute for a couple of days, too. He was still a little bit tender for a while, but the shoer came out about four weeks later and said everything was fine. He was walking normal again, and Lige said he had no tender spots in his foot.
    So, I go out tonight to feed, and Bo will not move. [​IMG] He walked gingerly to his stall, I picked that foot, and found another small rock. He's pointing his toe, will not pick up his other front foot (but will pick up both rear) and does not want to put weight on it. AGGGGHHHH. I gave him some bute... I'm out of salt and the feed stores are closed. I'll have to wait until tomorrow.
    Any suggestions? Is this just bad luck or could there be an underlying problem?
  2. sweetshoplady

    sweetshoplady Songster

    Feb 4, 2008
    Venice, Florida
    Don't have any help for you, only hope that his foot gets better.
  3. Meesh

    Meesh Songster

    Feb 12, 2008
    Rocky Mountains
    I would get radiographs. The horse could have fractured the coffin bone. It could be just a bad bruise/abcess, but I would want to rule out a fracture. If you google coffin bone fracture, you will find a lot of information about it.

    Bad bruises and abscesses can also lead to osteomyelitis, but I would hope it's a f/x rather than that. I had a VERY bad experience with osteomyelitis in a horse. [​IMG]

    (used to ride CTR and endurance)
  4. Dodgegal79

    Dodgegal79 Songster

    Dec 1, 2007
    Princeton BC Canada
    Yes sounds like a bruise of the bone. I once had a mare that would go lame on and off. It took me about 3 months to find out why. She had a 3 inch long hawthorn stuck in the heel of her foot. It was the same color and all as her foot. My farrier also pulled a 2 inch piece of wire from her hoof one time too. Maybe scrub his foot down and have a very close look at it.
  5. helmstead

    helmstead Songster

    Mar 12, 2007
    Alfordsville, IN
    I agree with Meesh - sounds like you need some radiographs. I'd worry about a navicular fracture with the toe pointing...sesamoid or coffin damage are possible, too.
  6. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    If you found a rock in his foot again this time, I would say that chances are that it is a combination of poor luck and things maybe not being 100% healed from last time 'round. It is possible there may have been some infection left smouldering in there that blew back up with a repeat bruise, or just a really bad bone or tendon bruise that was reaggravated, or something like that.

    However, because it was so severe and lingering last time and is Back Again, personally I think I'd plunk for xrays to make sure that there is no fracture to the coffin or navicular bone, hidden foreign body way up in there, infection of the bone, etcetera. It is relatively cheap insurance against things that you would *really* wanna know about if they were the case.

    Aside from that, it would be worth doing some more serious poulticing on him (not just soaking his foot in a bucket) to try to get any infection out, IMO. There are a whole lot of ways of doing it, but one simple way is to take several goodly handfuls of bran, mix in a bunch of epsom salts, dampen it slightly (just so it barely holds together to make 'snowballs') and put it in a HEAVY plastic bag big enough to go over his foot, ankle and partway up the cannon. Soak his foot before you put the poultice on btw. Wrap the poultice on carefully, so's not to get a giant wrinkle of plastic across a tendon, using vetrap or a nonelastic standing wrap. Keep him stalled while it's on -- ideally 10-12 hrs if it'll stay on that long but check periodically so you can remove it if you see it starting to come off on its own [​IMG] Repeat daily for several days til there is some sign that the abscess has drained (obvious drainage, or sudden improvement in soundness) and then poultice 1 more day. Use fresh bran each time.

    Good luck,

  7. CarriBrown

    CarriBrown Crowing

    I think you guys are right... I'm going to have to plunk money down for xrays. [​IMG]
    Pat, do you think I could do a clay poultice? I have a huge tub of it here.
  8. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    I guess if I didn't have any Epsom salts and bran, but *did* have some regular clay poultice -- or if I was pretty sure my horse wasn't going to let a full lower-leg poultice stay on him for very long <g> -- a clay poultice would probably be worth trying. I'd pack it into the sole real well and maybe up along the coronary band, put a plastic bag over the foot, and bunge it on with Vetrap. Worth a try.

    Good luck, fingers crossed for you, let us know what the vet ends up saying,

    Pat, who if it makes you feel any better battled a recurring heel abscess for the better part of 3 months a couple of summers ago (ask me how much I spent on antibiotics, xrays and duct tape [​IMG]), and of course it was the one rideable horse, too, but eventually we did get rid of it and it hasn't come back
  9. ginbart

    ginbart Crowing

    Mar 9, 2008
    Bloomsburg, PA
    Brush Iodine or ball solution on frog and soles of feet. This will make your horse's feet hard. Tell the blacksmith to put a full pad on his foot.

    This is per my DH who trains race hores's.
    Last edited: May 12, 2008
  10. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    I wouldn't toughen the soles chemically or have pads put on at the moment -- right now, you have to figure out what's wrong and if it's an abscess (which is quite possible) make really sure it can easily drain itself out.

    Pads can be useful if you *have* to work a horse who has tender soles or is recovering from a serious deep bruise, but they are somewhat counterproductive in the long run since they tend to make the soles thinner and softer IME. Chemically toughening the sole with iodine, ball's solution, venice turpentine, formaldehyde or what-have-you can be useful once or twice after you've had pads on and just removed them, but I'd be awfully careful about doing it any other time - usually it just ends up masking a bad trim job, if it does anything at all.

    A deep bruise, or crack/chip to a bone, mostly needs *rest* (from hard lumpy surfaces that is); an abscess needs draining and healing.



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