Knee Issues

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Knee Issues

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  • My horse has knots on his back knees
  • Equine twisted knee

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    11-30-2010, 02:11 AM
Knee Issues

We bought a 16 year old Arabian gelding back in August. He was over 300 pounds underweight, covered in rain rot, full of worms, feet a mess, you name it.

Now 3 months later, he has picked up 250 pounds, rain rot is almost cleared up, on a regular de-worming schedule and feet looking great.

He looks so much better except for his hip bones still stick out a bit and his croup is still defined. He has a ways to go but is much better.

When we bought him we had noticed his left front knee has knots. Figured it was arthritis and just wanted to get him home. I did a lot of light work with him, free lunging, hand walking ect.

The farrier has really taken a liking to Bravo and has made a kinda pet project out of him. His cannon bone on that left front was twisted and he has worked till it is almost straight now. Just from trimming his feet correctly. Bravo was shod when we bought him but we had the shoes pulled right away and he has been barefoot since.

Bravo never really acted like those knots on his knee bothered him but since the farrier has corrected his leg position, he is sore all of the time. Add the extra weight to that.

He is on DSMO (when he limps and he hates it when I put it on) and his feed (Sentinel LT) is fortified with Glucosamine HCl, Chondroitin Sulfate and MSM.

I am hoping that maybe as his joints adjust to the new position, things will settle back down with his knee.

Any thoughts on how to help him? We are going to have the vet out to do x-rays but it will have to be after the first of the year.
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    11-30-2010, 09:13 AM
It's possible that the farrier made the corrections a little too quick. It's also possible that the changing weather is also aggravating an arthritic condition. Your vet may have some recommendations for a good anti-inflammatory you can give him. (Haven't had that problem with a horse (yet), but did have an issue with my dog. He was so gimpy we thought he would have to be put down, but the vet gave me some stuff (relafin?) that worked like magic!)
    11-30-2010, 10:37 AM
Thanks Dee. I feel so sorry for him. I don't think the mud is helping either. It has rained a lot here.

I will try giving the vet a call and see what they have to say.
    11-30-2010, 12:38 PM
Green Broke
I agree, it could be the weather combined with the new leg position. However, changing the leg position at all could have caused the discomfort. If the leg is twisted, even with a normal proper trim (based on the foot's balance only, not the leg), then changing the foot to MAKE the leg straight will put extra pressure on the horse's joints and tendons. This could cause arthritis and other join issues. I would tell your farrier about this soreness and ask him not to do any corrective trimming. Have him balance the foot only, without worrying about the leg position.

Here's a good blog entry about this issue:
Trimming the Toed-Out or Toed-In Foot - On The Hoof
    11-30-2010, 01:43 PM
That is all the farrier has done, balance the foot. He uses one of those angle measuring things to make sure with him. But getting the foot balanced has caused the cannon bone to straighten and, I guess, put more pressure on that knee.
    11-30-2010, 02:32 PM
Green Broke
Those angle measuring things are not what one should use to balance a foot on a twisted leg. He should be looking at the bottom of the foot and balancing it based on the sole plane and other markers. A horse can have all 4 feet at different angles (usually not off by much, unless the horse has a clubebd foot), and all 4 feet can be well balanced. It all depends on the foot itself. I have never had a trimmer or farrier use an angle tool, nor was I instructed to use one when I learned to trim feet. You can get caught up in measurements and forget about the hoof itself.

I'm not saying your guy is doing a bad or incorrect job. Only that I would ask him about these things and see if he's trying to correct the foot/leg in to what is "normal" and textboot, or what is normal for this horse on that particular foot/leg. Trying to correct a twisted foot/leg in an adult horse can lead to other problems. So, you want to make sure that your farrier is not trying to do that.

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