trim causing suspensory tenderness?

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trim causing suspensory tenderness?

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    07-24-2014, 03:45 AM
Question trim causing suspensory tenderness?

We went out to ride this weekend and Blossom (18 yr. Old KMSH mare) came up to the fence lame in a hind leg. It looked really stiff and sore. I hosed it and got her into the vet on Tues. Morning for a lameness workup. We've never had any problems in the past and I was hoping she'd just strained it or stepped wrong. Hoof checked out fine, but she showed some slight tenderness in her distal suspensory and you could see in a round pen that she took short strides and sometimes (after flexion) hopped with that leg. (Really she had improved a lot from the weekend.) The vet put her on 1 gram of Bute morning and night for 5 days and then 1 gram a day for the next 5 days, with limited movement. Stall rest is not something Blossom handles well so she's in a small pasture with her constant companion, my husband's 22 yr old OTTB.

When we were at the vets I was looking carefully at her hind feet and realized that even though the farrier had been out two weeks before, her hind feet were rather long in the toe, and her heel was low. I'm not being nuts if I think this might have contributed to her suspensory soreness? I'm going to speak to my farrier (who's always been wonderful) about trimming her feet differently. I have two questions: 1. IF this is a contributing factor, would shoeing her back feet with a small wedge at the heel help her until her heels regrow? She currently is only shod in the front and that's because of the terrain we ride on. I've had her two years and her feet have always been wonderful. 2. If it would help, should we do it immediately or wait for his scheduled visit on Aug. 20? I like our farrier. He's always done good work and he's super reliable about coming when we need him. His son has started helping him and I think he's the one that's leaving the toe long and taking off too much heel. If we can work with him, I'd prefer to do that than to change farriers. I do not want to offend him, but I want my horse sound! This may or may not have been the cause, but it sure isn't helping. Or am I nuts?
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    07-24-2014, 07:34 AM
Your vet should be giving you a treatment plan, which includes hoof care. What did the ultrasound look like, as a suspensory injury can end a riding horse's career and is nothing to play around with. These type of injuries need accurate and aggressive treatment
    07-24-2014, 11:58 AM
Sounds like a strain as itīs one leg that is effected.
Your shoer should know the situation and whether to put shoes on the back or not.
HagonNag and Patty Stiller like this.
    07-25-2014, 06:11 PM
Spoke with my vet today who clarified that we are dealing with a very slight strain and agreed that my idea of shoeing the rear hooves was a good idea. Farrier has been called and we discussed a shoe with a small wedge, or a bar. Blossom is much improved with no sign of any problem at a walk. We will continue with bute twice a day until Monday, drop it to once a day for 5 days and vet will re-check the following Monday.
    07-25-2014, 07:30 PM
Green Broke
I've dealt with this and still am for different reasons on the same horse

I don't know why such a sweet/willing/compliant/in-your-pocket horse has to be the one frought with so many problems.

You know the saying "If I had a duck it would drown"? That would be Joker

Those strained tendons from the heels being cut too short are most likely something you will have to deal with, the rest of your horse's life. That means standing over top the farrier, no matter how good that person is or how much you trust them. They need constant reminder to NOT cut those way down because cutting heels way down is what they do -- just like the beautician who cuts your hair too short after you've warned them not to

^^^Joker never could have an excessive amount of heel come off, in one strike, because he has a fractured sacrum that affects his way of travel ---- on those slightly sickle-hocked legs that do better barefoot because he twists himself right out of a pair of shoes, after about three weeks

Joker sees a chiropractor 2 - 4 times yearly, depending how many times I can afford.

^^^Joker also has torn (I MEAN torn) tendons on the front from the nice re-hab farrier (serious founder) taking too much heel in one strike. The very angry vet did ultrasounds - very angry because he spoke to the AFA certified farrier, regarding how he wanted this horse trimmed.

I ended up flat on my back in April, could not get to the barn to save my soul. That meant ^^^Joker did not get his foundered hooves rasped every few days to keep his heels low and his tendons "un-strained". My trimmers come every four weeks but that horse still needs his hooves rasped 2 - 3 times weekly.

When the trimmers came in early May, the brother who trims Joker took off what was needed to keep Joker at what is normal for him.

Well guess what, Joker pulled up two legged lame due to too much strain on the tendons. He is that sensitive.

Meaning, if I don't keep his hooves filed and those heels shaved a couple millimeters 2 - 3 times weekly, Joker will end up lame with tendon issues. He will live with that the rest of his life.

I can't ride anymore and he is not ridable for the kind of riding I like to do. Even if we were both able get out on the trails, I would not shoe him. He wears Boa trail boots to pasture, and he'd wear them on the trails.

Shoes or boots, it's whatever works for you in your environment. All I'm sayin' is be prepared to deal with this forever after as there are some horses that shaving just one or two millimeters extra off the heels is going to cause them to come up sore or lame

If your horse puffs up, Animalintex pads work great or the cheaper but more laborious route would be Sore-No-More cold poultice of bentonite clay and arnica. It can be vet wrapped - I've vet-wrapped it for the last two years not only on ^^^Joker but on my heart horse with hock/ankle arthritis.

Leave it on at night, cold hose in the AM, slather some Gel-Flex from Cox Laboratories, on for turnout and the horse is "limping better" for at least 20 minutes

I'm not trying to sound crass -- lol lol lol This stuff gets old and frustrating with enough passage of time Joker is not going anywhere but, mercenary that I am, I can at least be grateful he just turned 19 instead of nine

<sigh> Bute <sigh> be careful of ulcers. ^^^Joker now deals with mild ulcers from all the bute he had when he first foundered but, his founder was a real doozy - it's a wonder he didn't sink on the LF.
HagonNag likes this.
    07-25-2014, 07:50 PM
I doubt the trim caused one sided lameness. The horse probably slipped, or stepped in a hole.
Follow the VEts instructions, and ask the farrier to be a tad more cautious. Some farriers get lazy, take it for granted, that you will have them back.
HagonNag and Patty Stiller like this.
    07-25-2014, 07:57 PM
Long term long toes and low heels are certainly a recipe for stressed tendons/ligaments. Did the vet take any xrays of the foot to see how things look inside?
HagonNag and waresbear like this.
    07-26-2014, 08:55 AM
^^ could not have said it better my boy puck, you took the words out of my mouth
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    07-27-2014, 03:42 AM
I did not read where the OP has stated this has been a long term issue with the low heels. And it is only on leg lame.
HagonNag likes this.
    07-29-2014, 07:43 PM
Thank you everyone, for your help and advice. Blossom is recovering nicely, there is very little sign of any problem today. I had the farrier out and he was dismayed at how quickly her hooves had grown out. This may or may not be the case, but he was very concerned and accommodating and re-trimmed her hind feet. She has not had a history of long toes. We decided that the trim was enough to ease any strain and she isn't getting shod in the rear at this time. It's always an option we can look at in the future. My vet is convinced it's a minor strain from possibly stepping in a hole, or taking a wrong step. We will continue bute once a day through Friday and the vet will re-check her Monday with no bute in her system.
I'm hoping against hope that this is a one time thing, but she is an older mare and I'm prepared to baby her along until it's right. If this turns out to be a permanent problem and she is unrideable, she'll have a happy retirement. After her show career she was used to teach children to ride and was a valuable brood mare. Her former owner is still getting requests for foals from her, but I've nixed breeding her. If she retires, she might still have one foal left in her... either way, we'll both be happy and she'll still have a home. I just really hope this resolves.
walkinthewalk and stevenson like this.

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