Lifting rear legs, possible stringhalt?

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Lifting rear legs, possible stringhalt?

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  • 1 Post By trailhorserider

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    10-13-2013, 09:26 PM
Lifting rear legs, possible stringhalt?

Sorry guys, it's a bit long so I can get the whole timeline in there.

Ok, so between the 5-12th of October I was in Christchurch, New Zealand. So nowhere near my horses, my mum was taking care of them for me. Mitch got an abscess in his right front hoof a few days before I left so I had the vet out and got that all sorted.

The Wednesday(9th), so I am told, while I was away he developed a stringhalt like motion to his left rear leg, both while standing/grazing and walking. Nobody told me at the time otherwise I would have had a vet sent out there, I didn't get home until the 12th which was when I was told about it so of course I went out and checked him over, but he seemed fine, there was no stringhalt motion to his leg, no swelling or heat, no objections to me picking up the leg or any other legs so no obvious signs of pain, he just looked at me as if to say what on earth are you looking for?

So up until today I haven't personally seen him do the motion, today in NZ is Monday the 14th October.
I drive past the paddock on my way home at lunchtime and he is grazing, when suddenly his RIGHT rear leg hitches right up to his belly and then goes back down again, he didn't pause during his grazing or anything, it was like a completely involuntary movement that had gone unnoticed by him. I called him over and he did it a couple times while walking along but the more he walked, the less the movement occured.

Is this possibly stringhalt? It was the first thought that occured to me, but I can't see any plants that would have caused it in his paddock, I'll go out and have another look shortly, and I will be ringing the vet so please nobody panic about that one

Mum and dad both agree that it started as his left rear leg, but when I questioned them today after seeing Mitch they both said they had seen him doing it with the right rear leg just this morning. So I am either thinking stringhalt or maybe he has hurt his lower back or rump. I'm not sure whether to get a vet out asap or not since there is no obvious signs of pain or discomfort, and it doesn't seem to be bothering him. I will be ringing the vets though, and also my acupuncturist who does physio and chiropractics etc.
I have a friend coming out this afternoon to look him over again with me and I can have a video taken if that is of any help, but basically I've never seen or dealt with stringhalt before so does anybody have any experience with this sort of thing, or is there anything else it could be?
It is spring time here too, so the grasses are pretty rich and new plants are growing but nothing that I have seen that should cause this, and DJ is showing no symptoms either.
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    10-13-2013, 09:57 PM
It sounds like his hock is locking. A lot of growing horses can get this. Normally it clears up on its own with some trotting. Its when there stay standing gears gets stuck. So it catches and that when you get that strange leg thing. It much more common in the hind legs.
    10-13-2013, 10:02 PM
Originally Posted by Freemare    
It sounds like his hock is locking. A lot of growing horses can get this. Normally it clears up on its own with some trotting. Its when there stay standing gears gets stuck. So it catches and that when you get that strange leg thing. It much more common in the hind legs.
I did wonder this, but being 10yo shouldn't he have completely finished growing? He has never shown signs of this before either.
I have a friend with a 4yo who has a locking stifle and his obviously locks and then unlocks, but Mitchs just kind of randomly hitches all the way up and goes down again, there's no pause in the movement or anything. At first I thought he was colicing because it just looked like he was kicking his belly but it's definitely not colic.
    10-14-2013, 12:15 AM
Green Broke
Stupid question, but he's not being bothered by flies or maybe his sheath needs cleaning?
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    10-14-2013, 06:51 PM
Nope no flies around yet, and I didn't even think about the sheath cleaning, it shouldn't be since I clean him out regularly but I will check that too thank you :) I moved him into a different paddock yesterday after finding some flatweed in his paddock.
I tested everything again, turning him and backing him, isolating his hindquarters and his forequarters, everything. He showed no signs of the stringhalt movement or anything else, so now I'm more confused!

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