Mitch went lame, it's just getting worse? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 27 Old 05-13-2011, 07:38 PM Thread Starter
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Question Mitch went lame, it's just getting worse?

So last Saturday I started bringing Mitch back into work (after me being thrown severley by him in february) and he was really good, I rode him lightly every day for 3 days, on the 3rd we had a small canter and he was fine, on the Tuesday (4th day) I got on him and he seemed off at the walk, so I got off, checked all his hooves, picked them out again and sent him walking and trotting on the lunge... Sure enough he was limping.
So I haven't ridden him since then, hoping it was just a stone bruise or something minor, he had a little bit of heat in the left front hoof the next day, but none since then. His lameness is just getting worse though, it was only slight on tuesday and now he struggles to even walk let alone trot in the paddock, hence why I haven't ridden.
It was quite hard to distinguish which hoof he was sore in at first and I was worried he may have hurt his tendon again (previous bowed tendon in right front) but after this morning on the lead it's definately the left front.
There's no stones in the paddock he's in (that I've seen) and he's in on his own.
Any idea's?

R.I.P ~ Bubbles - 25yo tb mare - 13.04.2011 ~ 8:30am ~ passed away naturally and peacefully in my arms
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post #2 of 27 Old 05-13-2011, 09:17 PM Thread Starter
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Actually while I remember, he's also bobbing his head a lot in time with his left front hoof.

Would it be an idea to call a vet if he's not improving by monday?

R.I.P ~ Bubbles - 25yo tb mare - 13.04.2011 ~ 8:30am ~ passed away naturally and peacefully in my arms
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post #3 of 27 Old 05-13-2011, 09:34 PM
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If there is not heat or swelling in the leg, and the lameness is pretty sudden and severe, with heat in the hoof, I would bet on it being an abscess. If his leg starts to swell or you find heat in it, then I'd say call a vet, but if it's an abscess, I'd soak him in epsom salt and very warm water for a couple days and see if you can get it to pop. If it is an abscess, as soon as it pops he should be noticeably sounder on that foot.

"Keep a leg on each side and your mind in the middle"
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post #4 of 27 Old 05-13-2011, 10:10 PM
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Originally Posted by apachiedragon View Post
If there is not heat or swelling in the leg, and the lameness is pretty sudden and severe, with heat in the hoof, I would bet on it being an abscess. If his leg starts to swell or you find heat in it, then I'd say call a vet, but if it's an abscess, I'd soak him in epsom salt and very warm water for a couple days and see if you can get it to pop. If it is an abscess, as soon as it pops he should be noticeably sounder on that foot.
after you soak it you should wrap it. i use poultice then put a baby diaper on, then put vet wrap and then duct tape to water proof it. change it daily.

"It is the difficult horses that have the most to give you." - LENDON GRAY
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post #5 of 27 Old 05-14-2011, 01:05 AM Thread Starter
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after you soak it you should wrap it. i use poultice then put a baby diaper on, then put vet wrap and then duct tape to water proof it. change it daily.
I'm sure I can find all that sort of stuff at home... But poultice is? I hear the word all the time but I'm not sure exactly what it is

R.I.P ~ Bubbles - 25yo tb mare - 13.04.2011 ~ 8:30am ~ passed away naturally and peacefully in my arms
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post #6 of 27 Old 05-16-2011, 02:12 AM Thread Starter
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Right, I can't believe I didn't know what poultice was (although in my defence lots of my horsey friends had the "huh?" look when I asked them today)
I soaked Mitch's hoof for around 20 minutes (with a bit of difficulty) and then wrapped it like suggested.

But... Any tips on how to make the whole process easier? I don't have the luxury of indoor areas to do the process in, so I put a clean slab of wood on the ground so Mitch was standing on the wood not the mud. But is there an easier way to soak his hoof, without spending $90 on a poultice boot?
I found the duct tape the most difficult part though to be honest, is there another way anyone can think of to waterproof the dressing?

R.I.P ~ Bubbles - 25yo tb mare - 13.04.2011 ~ 8:30am ~ passed away naturally and peacefully in my arms
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post #7 of 27 Old 05-16-2011, 07:22 AM
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I always just stand mine in a rubber feed tub for soaking and then stand them on a sheet of cardboard to dry (or wood works, like you said) and then wrap with layers of first a clean diaper, duct tape (make sure you don't put the duct tape up over the coronary band or you risk affecting circulation) then something like a plastic bread bag or big ziplock, and then another layer of duct tape. It's not waterproof by any means, but unless they are really slopping around, it usually does the trick. But you have to replace it daily and make sure you keep the hoof really clean.

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post #8 of 27 Old 05-16-2011, 07:27 AM
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I soak in a bucket.
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post #9 of 27 Old 05-17-2011, 05:12 AM Thread Starter
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I actually ended up cutting a tube out of a car tyre inner tube, and put his hoof into it with the epsom salt water, then tying the end of it up so it wouldn't leak... He likes to play with water e.g. tipping it out and splashing in it, so a bucket is useless for me. Today I stood him in a bottom piece of a plastic 44 gallon drum which i found easier than the wood to keep him clean while i grabbed fresh supplies. It was blowing a howling gale while I was replacing everything and it was pouring down with rain, and all Mitch wanted to do was nuzzle his nose into my neck... I appreciate that, just not while I'm trying to put on a fresh bandage etc

I'm hoping it will work soon-ish, I don't particularly want the vet to have to cut into his hoof to find an abcess... But if he doesn't get any better soon I will be organising the vet to have a proper look

R.I.P ~ Bubbles - 25yo tb mare - 13.04.2011 ~ 8:30am ~ passed away naturally and peacefully in my arms
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post #10 of 27 Old 05-17-2011, 07:34 AM
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That sounds creative. Glad you found something that is working. Most abscesses will pop in a couple days once they show up lame, but some can be stubborn. After you've soaked him, you may take a hoof pick and press on the bottom of his hoof in various places and see if you can find a sore spot. A vet or farrier will use testers, but the tip of a hoof pick works just as well.

"Keep a leg on each side and your mind in the middle"
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