Locking Stifle?

       The Horse Forum > Keeping and Caring for Horses > Horse Health

Locking Stifle?

This is a discussion on Locking Stifle? within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category
  • Magnesium locking stifle
  • Is locked stifles genetic

LinkBack Thread Tools
    05-21-2010, 09:06 PM
Green Broke
Locking Stifle?

*sighs* It never ends. I'm getting out of horses. I am so done with this crap.

Does anyone here have to deal with locking stifles, also known as upward fixation of the patella? My dollface of a 3 year old Paint filly has magically decided she needs to be a horse that has this problem. She was eating in the arena quietly tonight with the others, and all of a sudden Shay-la is hollering because there's Jynx DRAGGING her right hind leg behind her. She spent probably 10-15 minutes dragging it around, with it popping back into place every couple steps and then dragging again. Someone told me to back her up - every step the leg would lock, twist and then pop violently back into place.

We spent about 30-45 minutes walking her around and we finally got it to stop locking - but now every 5th or 6th step she takes, the leg buckles out backwards at the stifle joint. This is weird - a girl at the ranch owns a horse with locking stifle and they said they've never seen that before - once it unlocks, he's good to go. Jynx flat out isn't walking normal - the stifle and hock keep buckling every few steps.

Any advice? I've called the vet, no answer, it's late and a long weekend and I'm not paying hundreds of dollars to have him out on an emergency. I'm just beside myself - from what I understand, this isn't just a "fluke" occurance, she's going to have this problem for life. AND it's genetic.

I just developed a WHOLE new beef with backyard idiot breeders.
Sponsored Links
    05-21-2010, 09:15 PM
Ugh, I am so sorry. I wish that Vida were still on here, she has experience with that in one of her fillies. I don't know of anything to help but I hope it can be fixed without surgery.
    05-21-2010, 09:25 PM
Green Broke
I've done some reading and APPARENTLY it can be a somewhat bothersome but not life altering problem in young horses. Jynx definitely has weak stifles, we can thank her glorious conformation for that, and apparently there are a few issues that can cause it such as trim angles and mineral deficiency. That made me stop and pay attention as Jynx is on a general electrolyte/mineral supplement for her tying up problem - makes me wonder if I'm not facing a totally different problem that's actually stemming from the same source. I was only giving her the electrolytes on days I rode - maybe she needs to be getting them every single day.

I freaking hope anyway, this is ridiculous. She's got a week to clear up before she's getting shipped off as someone elses problem. She's a sweetheart but this is just to many flipping defects in a short time for me to want to risk her dying on me before I can recoup SOME of my losses.
    05-21-2010, 09:39 PM
I personally don't consider the tying up thing a defect at all, several of my horses have done it at least once in their life; Dobe, Pokey, Bessie, and Flash. She only did it once and that doesn't exactly set a pattern LOL. There are so many different things that could cause it in any horse. I think if it was me, I would completely forget about that and just focus on figuring out the stifle problem before you make a decision you may regret later on.
    05-21-2010, 09:41 PM
I don't know how it works in horses, but my sisters cat has that. I think they called it a Luxated Patella, though. There are four grades of severity. Here is part of an article on it:

Grade 1:
Intermittent patellar luxation - occasional carrying of the affected limb. The patella can easily be manually luxated at full extension of the stifle, but returns to proper position when pressure is released.
Grade 2:
Frequent patellar luxation - in some cases luxation is more or less permanent. The affected limb is sometimes carried, although the dog may walk with the stifle slightly flexed.
Grade 3:
Permanent patellar luxation - even though the patella is luxated; many animals will walk with the limb in a semi-flexed position.
Grade 4:
Permanent patellar luxation - the affected limb is either carried or the animal walks in a crouched position, with the limb partially flexed.

I think that if it gets too bad then they will need surgery and they are at a high risk for early arthritis and other joint issues because of it.
    05-21-2010, 09:43 PM
I know I just read about this, I'll have to look it up, I can't remember what it said.

I'm so sorry this is happening. I just can't imagine. Looks like you got stuck with a lemon of a rescue, huh? ::sigh:: I'll let you know what that book says when I can find it. =|
    05-21-2010, 09:44 PM
The Luxations can be trauma induced, hereditary, or I have heard, caused by a mineral deficiancy.
    05-21-2010, 09:59 PM
When it locks, try backing her up several steps to unlock it.

There is a surgery, I don't know what the success rate is, where they cut one of the patellar ligaments.

I have only ever seen one horse with this, and it was an older horse with lots of other soundness issues.

Sorry, and good luck.
    05-21-2010, 10:02 PM
Sorry about the stifle issue!

A possible clue to me is that this is a 3-year-old, and youngsters need time to develop before they are required to do any work in small spaces, like longeing or round-penning. (I don't know what you've asked her to do.) OTT's are at risk for developing stifle issues due to changing from forward running to small-space work. On a job, I had to round-pen a young mare whom the boss said locked up, and it happened during the circling.
    05-21-2010, 10:50 PM
Green Broke
What's funny about that is I've actually done quite a bit of round penning work with Jynx, but almost nothing since last year. The circles were very large and we did almost exclusively trotting and not for massive amounts of time or anything.

She doesn't get round penned or lunged anymore and hasn't really much at all for the last six months. She's docile enough I just get on and ride - and our rides are quite light. Maybe half an hour, mostly walking, lots of big loop jogging and a couple big canter circles (using whole arena). I REALLY don't think it's work related. Her last ride, we hit the trail - 5km of almost totally walking and jogging (no cantering).

Jynx is very post legged and that's the number one factor in this - she's already ultra predisposed to it. I'm going to give her the weekend, and then I'm calling a vet early next week if this doesn't sort itself out to see what diagnosis I'm looking at.

Quick Reply
Please help keep the Horse Forum enjoyable by reporting rude posts.

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Locking Legs?? sophie123 Horse Health 8 11-27-2009 09:26 AM
Locking stifles painted pegasus Horse Health 7 06-30-2008 09:51 PM
Locking Fetlock aliandheli Horse Health 0 03-01-2007 10:27 PM

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 05:38 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0