wobblers(plz read) - The Horse Forum

 
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post #1 of 8 Old 08-18-2008, 01:21 PM Thread Starter
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wobblers(plz read)

Does anyone no anyhting about wobblers. We have a horse that drags its back legs and stands way underneath him self. SWhen I flex him nd turn he falls down. I had my vet out and she said it could b EPM but not likley. She said maybe he has wobblers.
If you have any advice that would be great.
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post #2 of 8 Old 08-18-2008, 02:12 PM
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we had a really well bred saddlebred colt that had wobblers - he would look fine, and then just fall down while walking. Flexing improved him, but did not cure him. In the end and to save him from a horrible life, we had him put down.

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post #3 of 8 Old 08-18-2008, 05:59 PM
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Did your vet recommend any testing or give any suggestions other than "it may be wobblers"? If not my first recommendation is to see another vet. At the very least a thorough exam and some bloodwork should generally be run with a horse showing neurological symptoms. Then based upon findings (both physical exam and diagnostic results) more diagnostics or a treatment plan should be determined that fits the history/symptoms/results.

How long have these symptoms been going on? Are they getting worse? How old is your horse?

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post #4 of 8 Old 08-18-2008, 09:33 PM
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If that is all your vet did, then I suggest you find a new vet.

When my horse showed signs of imbalance, dragging hind feet and falling down we had bloodwork done, my vet did a thorough hands-on neuro exam to see how bad he is and grade him, and took him up to the clinic for a DMSO drip immediately which helps to reduce swelling and could help most things that would cause those symptoms. My boy ended up with EPM. However the possibilities could be EPM, wobblers, head or back injury, toxic plants (braken fern, rye staggers, poke weed, etc), WNV (or any number of the other viruses that cause neuro symptoms), and so on. There are so many possibilities and the symptoms are so similar you can not rule any one out just by looking at the horse. In fact EPM needs a spinal tap to be done to be 100% sure.

A guessing game could be the death of your horse, where a diagnosis could help save your horse. It took a couple months of meds and a year of rehab (most done myself with hand walking and such) but he is now back to being a good trail mount. Without the diagnosis I probably would not have my horse.
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post #5 of 8 Old 08-18-2008, 11:45 PM
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well, long sad story short - my first horse had wobblers. I was about 10. He was the only horse I ever really 'clicked' with. In the end I made the decision to put him down, the vet said he would just get worse anyway.
So yeah I don't have any more advice to add, everyone else pretty much said it all lol. Good luck though! :)
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post #6 of 8 Old 08-19-2008, 01:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryle
Did your vet recommend any testing or give any suggestions other than "it may be wobblers"? If not my first recommendation is to see another vet. At the very least a thorough exam and some bloodwork should generally be run with a horse showing neurological symptoms. Then based upon findings (both physical exam and diagnostic results) more diagnostics or a treatment plan should be determined that fits the history/symptoms/results.

How long have these symptoms been going on? Are they getting worse? How old is your horse?
I would also ask how old your horse is. True wobblers usually show up early and most pretty much are put down by age 3. Some don't even make it past 3 months. At the last time I remember there is no actual test for wobblers except an autopsy after death. A friend of mine had to put down both that year's and the previous years TB foals as the second one could not even rise at the age of 4 months ...just as the first foal now a yearling at the time started to show the same symptoms. It was a good race mare but breeding it to TB was becoming a disaster so she went to an arab which seemed to fix the problem and she went on to foal 5 more babies...all Anglo Arabs with no further problems.

There are a few things that could create the same symptoms and I would be looking more at them than wobblers. If you vet can't seem to make up his mind I agree with the others and get a new vet.
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post #7 of 8 Old 08-19-2008, 02:03 AM
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I do not know much of wobblers other than most of the time, it shows up early, aroound 4=6 months of age. It has something to do with the spinal cord (or so I am told). I think I am going to research on this some more, as I do not know much. I do know a girl who had a 5 month old TWH colt who had wobblers. His started out that he was having trouble walking balanced and everyday he got worse. One night he could hardly stand so she took him into the barn and put him in a stall. The next day he stood up ok and walked around his stall ok so she decided to try to lead him out of the barn. She got him out of the stall and he instantly fell over, he got back up and then wobbled all over the barn as she was trying to get him out of the barn so he did not hurt himself while he was in there. He was so unsteady and unable to balance himself she could not even get him close to walking out of a six foot wide door as he would almost fall over. She had to have him go back down again and have him put to sleep unfortunately. I was always told if they have wobblers, it progresses quick and gets severe, there is no mild case of it. As I said before though, I am not 100% positive on this because I do not know much, I just know what I was told by my friend. Going to go do some research I think.

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post #8 of 8 Old 08-20-2008, 08:54 PM
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Hi,

I agree with others that say get tests done.

Apparently, while it is suggested that there are cases that are innate - the horse is born like it - 'wobblers' is generally caused from spinal injury, namely from being tied firm & pulling back. Young horses are most at risk of this, because they're not strong enough for their neck muscles to protect them in any way.

I forget where the study came from regarding this, as I read it a long time ago, so can't verify it. But regardless of verification, there are so many other physical and mental problems that can be caused by tying a horse without proper preparation and safe equipment....

The other thing I thought of with those symptoms is something called 'Stringhalt' here. It is generally caused from the horse eating a lot of flatweed or the likes which causes severe magnesium deficiency and associated neurological problems, appearing mainly as back end mechanical difficulties - the horse has problems walking backwards, turning on hind quarters, balancing back end, often has unusually high back leg action, even as far as kicking himself in the tummy every step...

If you suspect(or tests prove) the above, remove the horse from offending paddock & dose with epsom salt drench(mag sulph) which should correct the imbalance. Then give dstspn of dolomite(calcium & mag.) in feed daily for another week.
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