Leg injury on a rescue horse - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 10 Old 07-03-2012, 01:41 PM Thread Starter
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Leg injury on a rescue horse

I recently stumbled upon a sweet horse that an owner is trying to re-home due to an injury that the owner doesn't have the patience to treat. I'm thinking I have the time and space at the moment to do some rehab, and my other geldings would love to have a new pasture buddy. I was wondering if anyone has any opinions on this injury. I believe this picture is almost a year after the initial accident. The owner has been battling with infection and proud flesh, though I think treatment has been pretty minimal. The horse still occasionally favors the leg.
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The basest horn of his hoof is more musical than the pipe of Hermes.
He's of the color of the nutmeg and of the heart of the ginger.
His neigh is like the bidding of a monarch,
And his countenance enforces homage.
- William Shakespeare
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post #2 of 10 Old 07-03-2012, 01:55 PM
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Ouch...that looks horrible. Do you know if it was treated by a vet? I am surprised he only favors the leg occasionally. He definitely needs some TLC...glad he is going to get the treatment he needs.
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post #3 of 10 Old 07-03-2012, 02:09 PM
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Have you had a vet give an opinion of his prognosis? I have seen similar injuries, one that had a bad outcome. My mother's horse had a similar injury. Unfortunately, hoof cells grew into the area above the coronary band creating a bad lameness. The horse had to be put down. Are you willing to have a pasture pet only? It may be what is in order here.
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post #4 of 10 Old 07-03-2012, 02:16 PM
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I have seen some pretty bad injuries, and that could heal up. I would try some Vetericyn . It does work. Another remedy would be scarlet oil which I have used per a Vets order on a wound caused by a horse running through a t post and barbed wire (not my horse, I simply did the after care) .Be sure to keep it dry and clean. The horse should heal up , you may want to keep him confined some . He may only be able for light trail riding, it depends on how much scar tissue develops and how deep . Good luck. Vetericyn its kinda spendy but worked, and not as painful as the scarlet oil,but both worked and left minimul to no scar tissue.
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post #5 of 10 Old 07-03-2012, 02:26 PM
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AS LONG AS there is no tendon/muscular damage, you could heal this. Proud-flesh results from sloppy nursing, as you have already assessed. Horses are remarkably able to heal. My QH, "Ro Go Bar" (1982-2009, RIP) had an injury with a wooden fence. The 1 x 4 went right into his front chest and just missed an artery, with a good 3" diameter gash. My vet was unavailable, I was out of town, BUT my trustworthy eldest DD called out the you of I emergency, and the Vet prescribed daily flushing with iodine and water in a huge syringe, then using a sterile cloth to cover the open wound with nitrofuricin. After several months you couldn 't find the wound anymore. AMAZING!!
I'm not a Vet, but there are treatments to abraid the proud-flesh and retreat the wound. If the horse is worth it, I say go for it. =D
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post #6 of 10 Old 07-03-2012, 02:38 PM
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Looking at that I would first and foremost get a vet out to see about an Xray (first) to see if there is an underlying issue that is beyond help. If that is clear, have the vet think about debriding it which will involve freezing it (as in local anesthesia) cutting out the proud flesh and inappropriate scar tissue and then treating it with powdered alum (to keep the proud flesh at bay).

If the coronary band is damaged, it may be too late.. but time will tell. If you need to cover it (I hate to when Proud Flesh is involved), look at using sanitary napkins to hold the medication on the wound (after the vet care) and cover with vet wrap. You may need to see if you can get silver nitrate sticks to kill the proud flesh back if you have to cover it (at least that is what us old tymers did).

This might be OK. Might is the operative word. Get an Xray first... and a little vet help. If the Xrays are NG, then putting the horse down may be the best bet for the horse.

There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man. ~Winston Churchill
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post #7 of 10 Old 07-04-2012, 05:19 AM
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If the injury is a year old, I see some good news. Looking at the hoof growth below the injury I see no deformity or hoof wall damage. That is a very good sign. This wound may not be healing due poor care. I had a horse with a similar but far worse injury in the same area. I cleaned and debrided it daily with a soft nylon brush, povodine iodine dilution and antibacterial soap. Kept it wrapped, too. It healed up with only minor scarring after 8 weeks. Antibiotics oral or injections might help speed things up as well. Consulting a vet is always helpful. Best wishes and please keep us updated.
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post #8 of 10 Old 07-04-2012, 09:35 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you everyone! That is very helpful. I just felt bad for this guy, he's a sweet horse and he's already 14, he's given his life to people and worked hard, and now he is just being discarded. I wanted to just take him where he would be comfortable and safe and loved. I don't mind if he will never be rideable, I'm prepared to just keep him as a pet. If my vet eventually thinks he can do some light trails, I might use him as a mount for my daughter, but I'm not taking him as a riding horse. He just really stole my heart. Supposedly, the owner had a vet come out when he was first injured and "the vet thought he would be okay", but to my knowledge there wasn't much of an exam, certainly not x-rays or anything like that. He doesn't seem to be in pain, he eats well and runs with the other horses in the pasture. My hope is to re-hab enough that he can have a comfortable life and not need to be put down just because his former humans didn't give him proper care. My first task will be to call my vet out. Fortunately I live very close to the UCDavis vet school and we have some world class vets and access to excellent treatment in this area, so I am hoping he will be okay. :) Thanks!!
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The basest horn of his hoof is more musical than the pipe of Hermes.
He's of the color of the nutmeg and of the heart of the ginger.
His neigh is like the bidding of a monarch,
And his countenance enforces homage.
- William Shakespeare
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post #9 of 10 Old 07-04-2012, 09:46 AM
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How fortunate he was to land in your world cherriebark! Best of luck and let us know what the Vet says.

We grow too soon old, and too late smart.
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post #10 of 10 Old 07-04-2012, 11:06 AM
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What a wonderful thing you are doing.
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