I am so sorry to hear about your horse......
Would be interested in what part of victoria you live in...........I live in the Ballarat area...........and yes stringhalt is going around...there has been over 50 horses put down because of it..........it affects the nervous system of the spine affecting the hind quarters and working its way up to the brain it can paralys's the larynx causing choke.... if not treated can be fatal. sometimes treatment doesn't work. can take 6 to 18 months to get over.
For anyone else out there who wants to know more....please read on.
stringhalt is a build up of toxins as there is no grass, the horses are eating the weeds, and there are a number of them (so don't be fooled)
Be aware there are very SUBTLE signs before your horse gets that bad. (I am in touch with a man who is saving these horses).
If in doubt put your horse where there is no grass just dirt, start them on vitamin B and magnesium (can be a magnesium salt lick)
good quality hay, and a grain mix. (NO LUCERNE) and work them on the lunge, if not able to ride them. they will loose muscle mass.
-you may notice your horse has become on and off highly strung for no reason
-he stumbles or trips for no reason
-seem a little stiff in the back legs, now and then.
-your horse goes to walk and there is a slight tremour in one or both of the hind legs.
-you pick a hoof up and your horse can't hold the weight and may go down.
-you may notice loss a muscle in the hind quarters. (work them if ok to ride then do so or lung them.
-during this time these horses can back and turn without trouble. -be alert, watch them closely you may miss any of these signs.
-in the later stages horse has troble backing and turning.
-cannot seem to negotiate between gates or fencing
-there hind quarters become numbish and they dont know where ther back legs are
-lifting hind legs, like colic, but as foot come down it strides forward
-muscles seem to contract.
I.ve seen all of this, my girlfriends horse got it so bad it couldn't move, (bacwards sidways or forward) she is in contact with this guy as well. he told her what to do, when her horse got extremely bad he treated her with lazer and physio, to eleviate the pain...my mare had similar symptoms, I think we caught it early. she I think will be ok.
my friend and I have seen many horses with this. in the early stages and later.
Have also heard of a horse that was seen the day before with no signs, the next day this horse was down. It had gone straight to the brain, horse was put down.
I'm not saying your horse had this, but since you live in vic thought this was worth writing about.