Castration Complications. - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 05-03-2012, 09:36 AM Thread Starter
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Castration Complications.

Three weeks ago my horse Tango was gelded, everything seemed to be going normally until Friday evening last week when the swelling that had been steadily reducing suddenly reappeared and actually worsened! I called my vet back out. The incision had closed up prematurely. He opened it back up. There were no signs of infection but he gave me a weeksí worth of antibiotics as a precaution. He said the swelling was tissue edema from it not being able to drain and that the swelling should go down soon. Itís been almost a week now and the swelling has not reduced. It looks like the incision has once again sealed up tight. Iíve been working him daily. Heís not yet broke to ride and I donít have a horse to pony off of so Iíve literally been taking him with me on my runs and free lunging him daily. Heís turned out all day not standing in a stall. He is eating and drinking normally, heís able to fully extend and pee. His gait does indicate some discomfort as he wonít pick his hind legs up as much as normal (he looks like heís dragging his toes a bit) and he really does not like to canter. My mom suggested that if he will let me, to try and gently message it, I will be calling the vet tomorrow if it looks the same for some advice, but I was curious if anyone else had ever had similar complications from gelding that they may have some advice?
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post #2 of 9 Old 05-03-2012, 09:47 AM
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I had my boy gelded about 3 weeks ago aswell and the fist week after he was done everything was great there was hardly any swelling at all he was walking round fine and even cantering. 2 weeks after he was walking very funny bit back and looked very stiff he wouldnt lift his legs much while walking but there was no swelling. He was eating and drinking as normal. Phoned the vet and when she come out she said he has healed well but with the change in the weather he might have flicked up some mud while running round and caused him to get an infection she cut open the wounde and inside was a load of puss. She drained it all out and flushed it and gave me a weeks worth of antibiotics. He is now back to his self and running round once agen.

Hope your tango gets better soon!
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post #3 of 9 Old 05-03-2012, 10:45 AM
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Monitor his temperature 2 times a day. An infection will bring it up. A serious infection will bring it up substantially.

I would give him more exercise and would turn him out with older geldings if you have the opportunity to do that. They usually pick on a young newly castrated one enough to keep them moving.

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post #4 of 9 Old 05-03-2012, 10:50 AM
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Trotting is a better action for keeping the incision open and reducing swelling than cantering is. If your horse is stalled, he will need to be exercised at LEAST 3 times a day, if on turnout, at least twice a day. Don't assume because he has room to move that he's actually doing it, if he's uncomfortable, he's not moving more than he has to. Don't skimp on this or you'll need more surgery down the road that will be much more expensive than the gelding, and the recovery will be the same.
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post #5 of 9 Old 05-03-2012, 11:44 AM
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Has the vet suggested any hydrotherapy? Do you have any bug issues right now?
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post #6 of 9 Old 05-03-2012, 12:25 PM
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Is he out with any other horses? I just went through this with my boy since he was out on pasture 24/7 but when out on pasture since he was sore he didn't move around much which just added to the problem. How long are you lunging him each day and how many times? He really needs to keep moving as much as possible for it to stay open and drain. Trotting is the most effective since it moves everything in that area around. Also try hosing him down there (not into the wounds just on the upper side areas and let it run down) for about 15 mins 3 times a day. My boy was so swollen by 3 weeks that I was ready to call a vet to open him back up! 4 days out with a new pasture buddy (running, bucking, playing) and the swelling was GONE! (Keep in mind he's 9 or 10 years old so this is tougher on him).

Photos would be helpful, and please keep us updated.


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post #7 of 9 Old 05-03-2012, 12:35 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for some of the feedback. As I noted before, Saturday when my vet came out to reopen the incision he found no sign of infection and cleaned out the area with antiseptic, he also gave me a weeksí worth of antibiotics just as a preventive measure. Iíve been administering them daily as instructed. My guess is heíll be coming back out to open it up again. My hope is that someone may have some advice for exercise that will keep it open and draining. Iíve been trotting him about 45 minutes a day broken up into 2 sessions when I can but mostly all at once as Iím working during the week. My mom has been taking him for a walk with her as well when she can. I have no older geldings to turn him out with. I live in South East Michigan and have not hills to speak of anywhere near my home. It is clear the trotting is not effective in keeping this thing open and draining. Would maybe adding some ground poles help to lift his trot and keep it open?
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post #8 of 9 Old 05-03-2012, 12:45 PM Thread Starter
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I have a big mare that has been in some sort of heat ever since I brought him home, and a gelding mule. I tried to put Tango out with my mule the other day and bring my mare up front, but my mule busted the gate trying to get to my mare. He's become so obsessed and so possessive of her He will literally try and attack Tango if I walk him by the fence. The entire thing is rather disharmonious and I'm still trying to figure out what I can do about them, but in the mean time I have no other options to turn him out with another horse without worrying one of my boys will end up getting hurt. If anyone has any suggestions about that, that would be great!
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post #9 of 9 Old 05-03-2012, 09:01 PM
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How is he to handle? Is he boarded at a facility? Your best bet is to try to find a way to get him worked at LEAST another hour a day. You're having the same problems I was with my boy, that 45 minutes does great but everything starts closing up & scabbing over since he stands still the other 23 hours. I would highly recomment at least 3 sessions a day of hydrotherapy (15 mins each) and at least 3 sessions a day of trotting (at 30-45 mins each).


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