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Sheath area swelling up? UPDATE????

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    10-25-2009, 11:31 PM
Green Broke
Oh interesting, thanks for the advice! I was actually thinking about calling the vet tomorrow to get more info, ill be sure to mention it thanks :)
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    11-16-2009, 04:08 AM
Green Broke
Ok so an update with no answered questions:

Today (over a week since off of dynamite vitamins) he's swollen AGAIN in the same half of the sheath. He has been off of any kind of vitamins or minerals for like 3 weeks now. What could possibly be causing this??? I'm going to call the vet AGAIN tomorrow. He's acting normal, no temp.

Someone is trying to suggest that it's just a bug bite allergy, but I don't like the fact that it's swelling up like this off and on but it never has happened in the past. Please some insighT??? Or some idea about how I can figure it out??
    01-04-2010, 08:57 PM
I'm going to try to resurrect this thread, because my gelding is having the exact same issue, as of today. Swelling on just one side, at the lowest point of his sheath. No temp, acting totally normal. Seems to be peeing normally, but that can be tough to catch without a CCTV . I'm calling my vet tomorrow if there's no change. I'm assuming that he needs cleaned, but I have recently changed bedding (normal supplier started contracting out to a wood pellet company, had to switch to bagged TSC shavings, at least for winter). Scout has also been essentially on stall rest, since the snow's too deep to lead him to the pasture, and the arena is a hard, icy wreck, so edema could make sense, too. Awesome thread, gave me some ideas I never thought of!

Looking for any new ideas, or an update on free_sprtd's gelding! Thank You All!
    01-04-2010, 11:19 PM
It may be a spider bite...or some bug. Seeing as it's winter and cold, spiders are still active, unlike other bitey bugs. My guy had edema (swelling) on one entire side of his torso, turned out to be a sensitivity to 'belly bugs', those little gnats that go to the belly, penis area, and ears. Went away by itself the next few days. So, my advice is to call the vet out, see what he says. I'll keep my fingers crossed that it's minor.
(After doing a little research, I came across some info that correllates blood protien levels with swelling in the sheath area. Your vet can do bloodwork that will rule this out. Apparently it is common in elderly (20's) horses who aren't digesting and absorbing their feed correctly. Put on senior feed, their weight stabilizes, protien levels even out, and swelling abates)
    01-05-2010, 11:15 AM
Ok, I just got in from the barn, so here's an update. Scout's sheath is the same as it was at 9:oo last night. The swelling is "soft," and Scout does not react at all to my examining it, it doesn't seem painful. However, he is now lame in his back end. His stride in his hind legs is uneven, and he is reluctant to disengage his hindquarters or turn on his forehand. No hiking of his hip, or head bobbing. His right hind hoof, the same side as the swollen sheath, is slightly warm in comparison to his other hooves. The farrier was out yesterday, and he had his shoes pulled and a trim, and is currently barefoot, to be reshod when the ice melts.

What do you all think? Is the lameness a coincidence, just tenderness from the recent trim and shoe removal (my current suspicion), or a part of the swelling issue?

@ Goldrush: Scout is around 8 years old, I don't think it's an age-related thing, but common in older horses doesn't mean unheard of in younger ones. Dad's going to take a look-see when he gets back from work around noon, I'll probably call the vet after that. Thank you!
    01-05-2010, 11:20 AM
I'll be watching this. I have never heard of it before.
    01-05-2010, 12:42 PM
Keeping my fingers crossed! Keep us updated!!!
    01-05-2010, 12:48 PM
Is the turnout icy or mucky? Some male horses react to being sedentary and develop light to severe edema in the sheath. Typically exercise reduces the swelling.
    01-05-2010, 02:51 PM
Green Broke
Hi there!
I'm sorry to hear about your gelding swelling up :(, I know I'm a worry wart so when it happened to him I just about freaked! Well the first time he started to swell and it got quite large was when I had taken him off of his horseguard vitamins to switch to an "au naturale" source called Dynamite and that was an allergic reaction I think... Although there was no swelling in his face, I believe that his body wasn't working well with that stuff. Since then, he has consistantly not swollen up from late November to now. But all those weeks inbetween he would get all different degrees of puffy in that area if he was in his stall for too long. We called it "stocking up in his 5th leg!" lol so instead of his legs swelling up, his sheath would if he didn't get enough movement or exercise. The reason why we thought of this is because with exercise, the swelling would go down. So now I just try and make sure he gets turned out everyday even if I have to go to the barn and do it myself.

I also did clean his sheath the first time it happened just to make sure that wasn't it. For me that wasn't the reason. Good luck! Keep me updated :). Oh also have you started using a different type of shavings recently? Make sure it's not a reaction to the shavings. It sounds like he could have injured it, is stocking up, or needs to be cleaned. Keep an eye on it for sure.

By the way I did call my vet, and they told me to get off of the Dynamite product, give him a week off and switch back to his horseguard. It worked for us, but now he stocks up if he's kept up for several days in his stall without turnout. (which I hate doing by the way!!)

IF HE IS ON STALL REST: depending on what it is wrong, is there anyway to take him out twice a day and walk him around for 5 to 10 minutes. If it's moving into his legs I would either say it is stocking up or an allergic reaction to the bedding. Does he have any swelling on his belly, sides or face? Then again, it could be something completely different from what I am talking about. Keep us updated!
    01-05-2010, 03:33 PM
^^ if your horse is stocked up, put stall wraps on him, if you know how to wrap. That should help alot.

My yearling has a little bit of this, just on one side. I think it started once it got cold, because the ground is hard and my mare is less active. He just follows my mare around all day.

I'm not too worried, is not very noticable and I clean him as much as I can.

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