Standing on ice/effects on legs?
 
 

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Standing on ice/effects on legs?

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        01-08-2014, 03:44 PM
      #1
    Yearling
    Standing on ice/effects on legs?

    My boarding barn's turnout areas have turned into pure skating rinks for the past two weeks. There is really nothing that can be done, but the horses are basically standing on inch thick, hard ice if they choose to be out of their stalls in the run-out areas (stalls are nicely bedded with thick pine shavings over rubber mats).

    I'm starting to worry that standing on such a hard, unforgiven surface can't be good for them long-term. Also, the ice isn't just a smooth surface, but full of deep divots from freezing and thawing, so the footing is uneven in addition to hard.

    Since I am a worry-wort by nature when it comes to my animals, I convinced myself that my mare was standing unusually parked out today while on the cross-ties. But, when I took her in the arena on soft footing and hand-walked/trotted her out, she was moving fine.

    But still- what are the implications of this bad footing on leg health/soundness? Anything? Or, just tell me to stop worrying!
         
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        01-08-2014, 04:26 PM
      #2
    Trained
    Walking through/on/over all those frozen hoof prints is understandably hard on the feet and joints and can make them sore, but nothing permanent or anything to worry about.
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        01-08-2014, 04:29 PM
      #3
    Weanling
    I wouldn't think that it would be a big deal since they have the option to stand on much softer ground, also it's only for the winter. If they were on, say, concrete all year round in the same area it would be a lot worse I think. Not to mention, I'm sure your horse is happier being able to go outside!

    Maybe someone else has direct experience with this, though, we're not even getting below freezing here most nights!
         
        01-08-2014, 07:42 PM
      #4
    Yearling
    Yes, I think you're both right- thanks for the piece of mind. Uncomfortable for now, probably, but not likely a long-term problem.

    And 2bigreds- you're definitely right, she would much prefer to be outside. The door from the stall to the run-out is open 24 hours, and she is almost always out.

    Our big problem right now is that there is a short road the horses have to walk down to the large pasture where they are usually turned out, but it is pure ice and down a somewhat steep hill. So it is just not physically possible to walk the horses down there to be turned out daily. So, they are stuck in small paddocks, or the run-outs attached to stalls for the horses who have them (mine does).

    We've had some icy patches on there before, but it's never been like this. It's hard to see when we'll get warm enough temps for it to melt, but it's possible both days this weekend will be above freezing, so that should help.
         
        01-08-2014, 07:50 PM
      #5
    Green Broke
    Are the horses with other horses in the same pen? Just a caution. As YEARS ago.. my two horses were chasing eachother and one found the littlest patch of ice to slip on.. breaking her leg:/

    Not trying to worry you.. but just warn you..
         
        01-08-2014, 07:52 PM
      #6
    Yearling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by barrelbeginner    
    Are the horses with other horses in the same pen? Just a caution. As YEARS ago.. my two horses were chasing eachother and one found the littlest patch of ice to slip on.. breaking her leg:/

    Not trying to worry you.. but just warn you..
    Yikes! Scary. No, they are in their own pens but everyone is nose-to-nose over the fences. So, of course I suppose they could still try to chase each other and slip. They are still horses.
         
        01-08-2014, 07:58 PM
      #7
    Green Broke
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by egrogan    
    Yikes! Scary. No, they are in their own pens but everyone is nose-to-nose over the fences. So, of course I suppose they could still try to chase each other and slip. They are still horses.
    Im not sure if it would cause that much harm through the fences.. and yeah.. it was scary.. but I did not read your post where it said that the ice is more ROUGH then slick.. so Im thinking your horse should be fine?
         
        01-10-2014, 06:28 PM
      #8
    Green Broke
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by barrelbeginner    
    Are the horses with other horses in the same pen? Just a caution. As YEARS ago.. my two horses were chasing eachother and one found the littlest patch of ice to slip on.. breaking her leg:/

    Not trying to worry you.. but just warn you..
    That would be my main concern too. To me ice equals no turnout.
         
        01-10-2014, 10:45 PM
      #9
    Foal
    I don't have much to add to whats been said already but.. you said the ice wasn't smooth and had divots in it, my filly just got a sole abscess and the vet figures it was probably stepping on a hard piece of ice or something like that. Just a warning is all, just maybe make sure you check there feet on a regular basis to make sure no ice chunks are stuck in there hoofs.
         
        01-11-2014, 08:44 AM
      #10
    Yearling
    Got more freezing rain last night so now there's a sheer 1/4 inch layer of more ice on top of the rough patches. Only good news is that it should warm up to 50*F today, and stay above freezing for the next several days, so that should knock the ice down.

    Sorry to hear about your abscess problems northern horse!
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