Teen Forum Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: South East Texas
$1500 is more than four times what I paid for my 'rescue' case, and she was already 90% rehabilitated by the time I got to her...
OP, this horse either needs to be put down now or he needs to see a vet tomorrow at latest. His eye looks very much like our colt Peppin's eye after her detatched the entire retina of his eye and it was dangling from his face...but it is extremely infected. Peppin's eye was seen by a vet within 4 hours (40 minutes after we discovered the injury) and even then infection had already started to set in. The eye had to be amputated and left open for a few days because of the infection and swelling (you should never sow up an infection...it just makes great breeding grounds for the bacteria), and it looked very much like this. Weepy, irritated, swollen, and EXTREMELY painful. Thankfully we caught the infection quickly and he was able to be sown up three days later, but if a vet had not seen him I guarentee you he would have died. I'm going to give you a general cost of what we had done for Peppin...in hopes of showing you just how costly taking on this horse and trying to save him will be. If you can't afford it now, call the vet and have him euthed immediately.
Initial call cost - $290, included antibiotic injections, amputation of the eye, and bute to give him three times a day.
Second visit the next day to evaluate swelling and infection - $80.
Third visit to stitch him up - $300 including sedation (laid full out), cleaning, stitches, and more antibiotics.
Subsequent visits 1 day and 1 week later to fix broken stitches (the swelling popped them) $200.
All together, it cost us about $870 to get his ONE eye healed up (obviously he is now blind in it) and we were lucky. It would have cost more if we didn't know how to remove stitches ourselves. We also had to go clean his eye 3 times a day and he had to wear a fly mask 24/7 for a month that had to be changed two to three times a day, and then we had to help him learn how to cope with his vision lost....and that was just with one eye. Your new horse needs help in BOTH eyes, and will be 50% blind at best.
I'm not telling you this to be cruel, I'm giving you reality. If you think you can do that amount of money...probably times two.... with the understanding that he might be too far gone or that there is a bigger underlying issue causing this, go for it. But he needs it done NOW, not when you can spare the cash. Maybe he'll be ok. Maybe he won't.
Even if he is ok though, you have to realize he will be a little different. Some horses do great with just one eye, some do great with NO eyes...but some do not. Peppin had very serious mental trauma after his whole ordeal, and was very skittish and agressive for a while as he learned to cope. It took careful training to bring him back to a normal state. He doesn't seem to miss his eye much, and I think that is because he lost his eye at a young age... but his depth and height perception are WAY off. Just last month he tried to jump a 5' metal gate for no apparent reason at all, and nearly died when he collided with it, fell over ON his neck, and gashed his knee. That vet and chiropractor bill was a hefty $300, because we weren't sure if he'd broken anything in the fall and he threw his neck and back out. He is a HUGE financial responsiblity. He's very sweet, but we often find ourselves wondering if we did the right thing by him by letting him live.
I hope that you do what it best for your horse. I can't tell you what is best because I am not you...your situation is not mine. But again, if you can not carry the burden of the financial end of this from the get-go...get out now. Put the horse down. It is not cruel to do that, you will end his suffering and he will thank you. Right now he is in terrible pain, and I can't imagine how he is feeling. Be his advocate...choose what you're going to do and do it now.
Everyone in your life is meant to
be in your journey, but not all of
them are meant to stay till the end.