Laminitis I'm parinoid!

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Laminitis I'm parinoid!

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  • Corrective devices for foundered horses
  • Am i being paranoidvabout my horse getting laminitis

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    09-28-2011, 10:01 PM
Laminitis I'm parinoid!

Any one have a horse that has foundered? Do we even use that word any more? Has your horse ever been the same and have any treatments helped?
My horse does not have it but I'm parinoid about what food to feed and whats the best for a low activity horse. Any info would be appreciated.
Thanks Dawn
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    09-28-2011, 11:18 PM
Welcome to the Forum!!!!!

Yep, I've met quite a few.

To be honest, it totally depends on the degree of rotation. I've seen horses that are sound with corrective shoeing, and I've seen horses that just recover on their own with some bute and time off grass. Then again, I've also heard of horses being put down.

This is what I do to prevent both founder and colic:
Spring time, I limit grass intake to get them used to it slowly.
I never let my horse get too fat. If he gets overweight, I put a grazing muzzle on him.
Buying new hay, I always work them onto it. I have met horses that founder off of different hay. (By different, I mean from straight grass to high content alfalfa mix or the like)
And of course, keep an eye on them and check them often. At the first signs of discomfort, take them off grass. If it seems they are sore or need assistance, or you think they may have foundered, call a vet.

If you are worried, call an experienced horse person or vet in your area and ask them for advice. Different areas of the country have different problems, and they must be dealt with depending on your location. A vet or experienced person can help you develop a nutritional plan to keep your horses safe.
    09-29-2011, 12:13 AM
Avoid excessive grazing on lush pastures, particularly in the spring and fall, or after the grass has been stressed and is now rebounding. Keep your horse from getting overweight. You may have your vet evaluate for risk factors like IR or EMS or Cushings.

It's far easier to prevent than treat and keep from reoccuring...
    09-29-2011, 01:59 AM
Originally Posted by dawnhoadley    
Any one have a horse that has foundered? Do we even use that word any more?
'Founder' is a layman's term meaning laminitis. In the United States, it suggests that the condition has deteriorated to the point of solar penetration by the distal phalanx (coffin bone). In western Europe the term is still used interchangeably with laminitis.

Has your horse ever been the same and have any treatments helped?
None of my own, but have assisted numerous client owned horses with this condition. Treatments vary somewhat, dependent upon extent of the pathology, but the protocol nearly invariably is designed to address the secondary mechanical failures associated with the disease.

Solar caudal support is critical in the early on-set stages. Formal approach focuses on relieving DDFT pull on the distal phalanx via caudal wedging and supporting the coffin bone via frog support.

A solid, communicative vet/farrier/owner team offers the best opportunity for recovery. Radiographic diagnostics and, when appropriate, venogram exams can assist in determining precise orthotic mechanics, measuring progress and any damage to the vascular bed.

My horse does not have it but I'm parinoid about what food to feed and whats the best for a low activity horse. Any info would be appreciated.
Thanks Dawn
Dietary analysis/discussions are best accomplished through your local veterinarian. Every horse owner should have an "emergency kit" on hand and know when and how to apply it. That kit should consist of duct tape and pre-cut heavy gauge pads, either construction grade stryrofoam or EVA poly material cut to a wedge pattern. Know your horses vital signs. Become familiar with his digital pulse, normal body temperature, heart rate and general sense of "normal" hoof temperatures. Keep a record of these values in your emergency kit for future reference.

Every instance of acute on-set laminitis should be treated as an emergency situation. Never take a "wait and see" approach if you suspect laminitis. Always engage both your vet and your farrier. The vet will provide specific diagnostics. The farrier will address the critical mechanical needs.

It is important to know that there is no "cure" for laminitis. The treatment and best chance for recovery exists in addressing the catastrophic mechanical failure secondary to the disease. Speed is important.

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    09-29-2011, 05:08 AM
Originally Posted by dawnhoadley    
Any one have a horse that has foundered? Do we even use that word any more? Has your horse ever been the same and have any treatments helped?
My horse does not have it but I'm parinoid about what food to feed and whats the best for a low activity horse. Any info would be appreciated.
Thanks Dawn
Hi, as a hoof care practitioner I don't think your concern is at all paranoid. It's a very common, potentially very serious condition & it's far better to take preventative measures that allow it to happen & attempt treatment. Founder is the common term for laminitis, but usually refers to mechanical changes as well, not just inflammation that lami may refer to. Do your homework & & are 2 good sources to start with. Diet plays a huge part and long term fat horses can get lami from insulin resistance(among other causes) which is similar to type 2 diabetes. If changes in bodyshape, diet & lifestyle are made, an IR horse shouldn't be any more likely to get lami repeatedly. If the problem has progressed to substantial loss of P3 then rehab may not be possible, but the hoof damage is generally able to be rehabbed to a fair degree(maybe not high performance competition or such)with the right treatment.
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    09-29-2011, 11:11 AM

Thank you for all the replies and great info!
I'm new here and still figuring out how this forum works so thanks again everyone!
    10-20-2011, 02:11 AM
I have to reply to this thread even though it's relatively old.

I had a mare back over 20 years ago that had "founder". I believe it was caused by what is now known as Cushings disease as she had all the typical symptoms. I am assuming though that back then there was either none or very little knowledge about metabolic diseases such as IR or Cushings because my vet at the time didn't mention either. He took X-rays of her front feet and found on examining the films that her P3 had rotated 6 degrees!! Apparently she had foundered before we bought her and I was never informed. He then recommended a farrier with experience in corrective shoeing on foundered horses and he also prescribed her to be on a regular dose of bute.

After a whole year consisting of many shoeing/trimming sessions and quite a few containers of bute powder my mare wasn't getting any better. I remember one visit of the farrier in particular though because I looked very closely at the soles of her feet after he had trimmed them. Even to my untrained eye it was glaringly evident that she had a serious problem! Her white line was approximately an inch in width and was pock marked with holes filled with blood/puss! I now know that was the separation of the laminae from the wall of the hoof and once that occured there was no hope for her. I am at least greatful that her P3 didn't rotate to the point where it came through the sole of her hoof.

About a week later I walked into the barn to feed her and noticed her standing with all her weight on her back feet and her front feet barely touching the ground! The look in her eye told me that she couldn't take any more torture so the vet came out the very next day and relieved her of her pain. :(

I forgot to mention that we also took her off her grain and switched her hay over to straight grass hay. The paddock our horses were in had no grass left so that wasn't an issue.

Needless to say I wish I knew then what I know now about Cushings and its symptoms as well as laminitis and how to properly help a horse survive it. If I did have that knowledge I could of possibly saved her life... or at least saved her suffering for that year. After 20+ years I still blame myself for her suffering and I have never got over her loss.

    10-20-2011, 05:50 AM
Originally Posted by mysticdragon72    
After 20+ years I still blame myself for her suffering and I have never got over her loss.
Hindsight's a bitch, isn't it?? But you don't deserve to beat yourself up over it in the least, as you were doing the best possible by her, given the knowledge you had at the time, which is all you could possibly do.

Of course, can't cure all, by a long shot, but I've seen with my own eyes horses with sole penetration return to soundness and have owned one of them, which is what got me on this 'boat' in the first place.

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