Limping on front right - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 12 Old 06-01-2013, 09:41 PM Thread Starter
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Limping on front right

Today, I noticed my 10 year old mare quarter horse, Angel, limping on her right front leg.
She can put some weight on the foot, but is clearly favoring.
I inspected her sole and outer hoof and see no obvious problems.
I squeezed her ankle, and other leg joints to see if she was having other leg problems.
I spoke to my farrier, whom I respect and have had great service. He suggested we observe her for a couple of days to see if she just stepped on a rock and got a minor bruise, or if she has an abcess.
If an abcess, he says we can drill the hoof to relieve the pressure and stall her for a couple of weeks until it heals.
The alternative for the abcess is to just hold off on riding her and let it pop through. He says once this is done, the ordeal is over with.

While I really trust his opinion and have had great service from him, it just seems a little drastic to just let it go until it pops through. However, in he wild, I guess this is the only way they are resolved.

Any other suggestions? Is there any way to determine if she has a sprained ankle or other ailment?
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post #2 of 12 Old 06-01-2013, 09:44 PM
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Give it a few days and if it's an abcess, I don't know that drilling holes is a wise thing to do, it should come to a head on it's own. Sorry, I never had to deal with an abcess but that's what I have been advised to do if it should happen.
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post #3 of 12 Old 06-01-2013, 10:04 PM
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If its a abcess soak in epsom salt don't have farrier cut a hole to drain it.

I had a farrier do that on my horse and he was lame for almost 2 months never again will I let a farrier do that. I do my own horses feet now so that's never going to be a problem again.
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post #4 of 12 Old 06-02-2013, 12:42 AM
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If it were me, and if you haven't already...I would wash her feet squeaky clean so I could really inspect them. If I could still detect nothing and likewise feel nothing/get no response out of the ordinary on her leg - while an abscess is a real possibility - I would call a vet.

There is just as much horse sense as ever, but the horses have most of it.
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post #5 of 12 Old 06-02-2013, 01:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spirit88 View Post
If its a abcess soak in epsom salt don't have farrier cut a hole to drain it.
This.

I am actually going through the same thing with my mare now. No swelling in her leg at all and she came up lame several hours after a ride. I think it might be a stone bruise. But just in case I am soaking her foot in warm water and epsom salt. I don't think that will hurt even if it is a stone bruise. Today she has shown improvement.
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post #6 of 12 Old 06-02-2013, 03:23 PM
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Cutting an abscess out of the sole makes healing take a great deal longer because sole grows back terribly slowly and can even cause festering and causes the need to wrap the foot etc. I don't do it and I don't advocate it except in very rare situations.

Don't stall the horse, turn it out if you are certain its an abscess. Movement helps pop them adn work the pus out. Its better if it pops out the coronary band but sometimes they come out the heel or the bar area which is ok too.

Surprisingly, doing nothing is often the best thing for an abscess. After it pops, provide supportive care and leave the horse moving so all the crud works out and let it heal up on its own. If its popped up top, you don't need to wrap or really do anything to it. Just let it be.

Also, use soaking and bute judiciously. Buting too early will cause the abscess to linger and not come to a head. Buting late when the thing is about ot pop often will allow the horse to run around and use the foot and pop it however.

Soaking causes the hoof capsule to become flexible and it wont work the abscess out as well as a dry capsule, but conversely, it does soften the skin to allow it to pop once its ripe so to speak. Its kinda a balancing act on soaking and buting.
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post #7 of 12 Old 06-02-2013, 03:34 PM
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It's had to watch a horse deal with a painful abscess as we feel helpless. The horse will often set the foot almost down then lift it, over and over. It can take about 10 days to come to a head altho I've known of some to linger as long as six weeks. An abcess will seek the path of least resistance and that is why we never find them in the toe area. It may start there but it will follow the white line to the buttress area and there it will build until it either blows out the top in soft tissue or it's dug out from the sole.
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post #8 of 12 Old 06-02-2013, 05:08 PM
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Please listen to you farrier. My horse is abscess prone and every time he gets one we have the farrier pop it ASAP, it relieves the pressure immediatly making you horse feel better. As long as you keep the foot covered (I put on the "hole" and put a small square of guaze over that, then wrap the foot in a diaper and wrap the whole hoof in duct tape. DO NOT TAPE ABOVE THE CORONARY BAND!!! And pleasee do not wrap the tape too tight, but be sure to cover the diaper so dirt/water etc. cannot enter.

Letting the abscess work itself out will cause your horse to be in more pain for a longer period of time, also causes an ugly bulge in the hoof that must grow out over many trimming cycles.
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post #9 of 12 Old 06-02-2013, 05:37 PM
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Id be asking myself why my horse was so abscess prone personally no matter how you choose to treat them. It isnt normal for horses to get abscess after abscess. We see them so very rarely anymore thankfully. There is always another (usually fixable) problem causing it to happen. Usually a trimming issue. Just my 2 cents as a hoof care provider.
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post #10 of 12 Old 06-02-2013, 06:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nikkibella View Post
Please listen to you farrier. My horse is abscess prone and every time he gets one we have the farrier pop it ASAP, it relieves the pressure immediatly making you horse feel better. As long as you keep the foot covered (I put on the "hole" and put a small square of guaze over that, then wrap the foot in a diaper and wrap the whole hoof in duct tape. DO NOT TAPE ABOVE THE CORONARY BAND!!! And pleasee do not wrap the tape too tight, but be sure to cover the diaper so dirt/water etc. cannot enter.

Letting the abscess work itself out will cause your horse to be in more pain for a longer period of time, also causes an ugly bulge in the hoof that must grow out over many trimming cycles.
Id rather have a bulge to let grow out then have a farrier digging out the abcess. Iv been there done that. My horse suffered because of it for 2 months.

If your horse is abcessing a lot youv got problems that's not normal.
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