Sunday, October 19, 2008

Lame No More

With huge relief I am delighted to announce that Red has recovered from his August mystery lameness and last night he walked, trotted, and cantered on the longe line with a steady gait - totally sound! Not that he was delighted to "work for his dinner", but he took his job seriously and did his best. Our healing plan seems to have worked. Now, how to ensure that he stays sound?

He was toned and looking buff when he got injured in August. We need to work on reconditioning cuz he has lost muscle tone after just cruisin' with the herd for seven weeks. Red has always resisted cantering. Recently I've learned that may be related to a sticking patella and/or a tilted pelvis contributing to his lowered back.

I figure I've got the following systems to tend to: hoofs, hocks, stifle, hip, and back. His damaged left rear hoof has grown a solid outside hoof platform and the coronary injury is about half an inch from the bottom of his outside quarter. The heel bulb is not longer swollen. I've ordered some Cetyl-M to help with osteoarthritic changes in his hocks and stifle. There is a good description of the product at Equine Ink and an informative article on locking stifle syndrone and Cetyl-M at Brenda Imus' "Gaits of Gold" website .

Plan to Keep Red Sound:
Hoofs - continue bringing back the toe and lowering his heels. Maintain bevels weekly. Continue with Farrier's Formula supplement. Keep rear toes short and rockered for early breakover to minimize stifle stresses.
Joints: start with Cetyl-M
Stifle: Condition muscles and start hill work - work on collection - aaacckkk - Red is a high headed, low backed horse who has never been taught to work within any kind of frame. We have been working on straightness and lateral flexibility. I really don't know how much collection is possible with this guy in his 17th year.
Hip and Back: I'm going to schedule some chiropractic work. We only have one person in Humboldt County but I have heard some very good things about him.

Red and I will be most grateful for any suggestions from our guests!

Now Red, his current main concerns are that HE is always first instead of Lyra, that he gets to be with his beloved Coal - boss mare of the general pasture, and that I remember what is REALLY important and don't forget his carrots, crunchies, or his nightly raid to steal Lyra's LMF Senior.


Latigo Liz said...
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Latigo Liz said...

So glad he’s mended! I have a feeling it may have been an abscess. Sometimes you can’t even see where they blow out and they can take months to clear up.

Looking forward to more Red adventures!

One Red Horse said...

Thanks Liz, I REALLY wondered about an abscess tho my vet, several hundred dollars later, insisted it was not. But then I disagreed about my vet's assessment as to the cause of his lameness.

Latigo Liz said...

Did your vet do radiographs/x-rays? Ariel’s showed up plain as day and I didn’t even think that she was abscessing!

One Red Horse said...

What a process we went through - took hours. Fist hoof testers and she ruled out abscesses. Then nerve blocks, then x-rays. She diagnosed bone spavin and fixating patella. Did not account for why Red went from sound to seriously lame overnight. She discounted kick though you could see an imprint on edge of stifle. Figure I learned about the state of Red's joints which was good, but not why he was lame.

Latigo Liz said...

The vet didn’t definitively diagnose it with the x-rays? Hmmm. I still suspect a deep abscess that wouldn’t test with hoof testers... But I haven’t seen the films, either.

Cactus Jack Splash said...

So glad to read he is sound...
Hank has some similar symptoms as Red had. Turns out that he has an old back injury (prior us) that is located in his lumbar region that has started to fuse. When he has been working hard or twists weird it pinches on a nerve and raises all kinds of trouble with his hind took a bit of mystery solving to finally figure it all out. Needless to say his jumping days are over, but he can still pack someone down a trail at a walk or trot all day long.
We are working on collection with him to help compensate for the problem.