My cousin's horse is 17ish and he's also semi-lame, but it's not very noticable. She has had him seen by various veterinarians, but no one can quite pin-point what is causing it. He's fine walking and cantering, but sometimes does a slight headbob at the trot.
They can't find anything that seems to hurt him, and they don't know his history. He is treated monthly with chiro and gets acupuncture every 3 months. She also got him a custom saddle. The chiro seems to help the best. She still rides him 3-5 days a week, doing strictly dressage. Although her trainer will jump him every now and then.
She evens shows him at Training/First level dressage (schooling shows) since he's fine on just 1 gram of bute. No judge has ever said anything to her about the way he looks.
It's really weird, but it works for them and she's never had a vet say "this horse needs to be retired", "he's in pain" or "he's field sound only".
It's obvious he loves what he does, and he's managed properly. It depends on your horse, the problem, what kind of light riding you're going to be doing and most importantly, the opinion of your vet. Good luck!
Its Not My HOrse.. Its My friends.
He has old injurys and he got a bad kick which almost broke his leg. He has operadacthas or something lyk that (soz dunno how 2 spell it or say it!) in both hocks.
The vet told her that he would need injections and more x rays
I know another lady whose horse was kicked in her hind leg. She had a hairline fracture - was on stall rest for 8 months (not even hand walking). They weren't sure if she would heal because she stall walks A LOT (1/2 arab). Well she did, and now she's back out in the event field.
If it's in both hocks my guess would be riding him wouldn't be in his best interest. But I know nothing of that condition. Just wait for the vet's advice :)
My horse, Indian, has it. It seriously depends on the cause. My horse got his knee blown out at a trail ride by a 18hh hefty draft horse, compared to his 15.2 QH body. Honestly? There are some days that he is limping badly to his feed, while others we can easily trot and lighty canter and not bob his head at the slightest.
Indian has gone through many injections, xrays, tons of different meds, and bute. I don't think it is the end of this horse, though it does depend on the case of the horse itself.