Wrapping legs after hard work
 
 

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Wrapping legs after hard work

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  • Wrapping a horses legs -how to
  • Race hoses wrap legs after

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    04-04-2013, 10:08 AM
  #1
Trained
Wrapping legs after hard work

I didn't want to hijack someone's thread.

In the spring and fall I work as a vet assistant on the track. I catch urine and help bleed. Sometimes if the trainers are short and I'm not busy I will help cut racing bandages and wrap before they leave. I've been doing it for years and I'm good with the racers so the trainers that know me trust me. I've never wanted to bother them with my questions.

For the wrapping, its usually a paste that looks and feels like plaster of Paris (but obviously isn't), then a layer of brown paper or plastic wrap, then standing pads then standing wraps or vet wrap.

Would someone explain to me about what you put on the horses legs after the hard workouts? What is that plastery stuff? Why would some choose to put paper versus plastic on top of that?

For someone not madly racing their horses, is this something a rider should ever consider doing? Is it a preventative or only done for some horses?
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    04-04-2013, 10:16 AM
  #2
Weanling
The paste is meant to pull heat of the leg. Think of it as a ice pack on leg. It pulls heat out slowly so they have less chance of founder or further legs problems. Some people like plastic as it holds up a little better and will keep the paste there longer. Paper will sometimes suck up some of the paste...etc.
     
    04-04-2013, 11:15 AM
  #3
Weanling
The paste is generally some form of "mineral ice" (like people use) it is meant to pull out heat and tighten the leg. The paper vs plastic is for a few reasons- should the wrap slip or start to come off, the paper will generally tear, where plastic could bunch up and cause a pressure point and injuring the tendons. Another reason is the paper breathes better than plastic, if you are trying to draw heat out and it can't leave the bandage because plastic is holding it in, A. You are not accomplishing what you set out to and B. It could blister the horse's leg. That is why when "sweating" a horse's leg with furazone etc, you use saran wrap instead of paper, because you want to hold the heat in.

Hope this helps!
     
    04-08-2013, 04:11 PM
  #4
Foal
The clay pasty stuff is called a poultice. It helps draw out heat and any inflammation, keeps legs cool and tight after a workout. Wrapping with paper and plastic helps keep the poultice in place and from soaking into the bandage. Plastic would keep it moist longer, but hold in a bit of heat. Paper would dry a bit faster but any heat would pass through. I don't think there is a huge difference, mostly personal preference.

Poulticing is not that common these days. I do eventing, and I rarely see anyone poultice at events anymore. It might be helpful for a horse that gets some minor inflammation after a hard workout, but some liniment and standing wraps would probably be just as effective, and then you don't have to spend 20 mins hosing it all off after it dries. I wouldn't poultice unless I had a very specific reason to. I think it used to be more of a go-to thing in the past, but now there's a lot of quicker and easier things you can do, so people are going away from that. Except the racing people, they do love their poulticing! :)
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    04-08-2013, 04:18 PM
  #5
Trained
They do love poulticing at the track. That's why I was asking - I only ever see it used at the track. EVERY horse gets it done which made me think it was a 'must do' for all. Admittedly I've never asked my horse to gallop 3 miles and jump 18 huge timber fences but I was still feeling vaguely guilty that maybe I wasn't treating him right ;) I just lose it when it's my own horse I'm talking about (he's a precious snowflake dontcha know!)
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    04-08-2013, 04:22 PM
  #6
Green Broke
Haha yes poultice. I love it. I always poultice after a clinic, show or event or a cross country school. It works as a brace and prevents swelling and heat.

I don't like it with plastic as I find it traps heat which defeats the whole reason we do it. The paper towel really just keeps the cottons/quilts clean
     
    04-08-2013, 04:24 PM
  #7
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by albertaeventer    
The clay pasty stuff is called a poultice. It helps draw out heat and any inflammation, keeps legs cool and tight after a workout. Wrapping with paper and plastic helps keep the poultice in place and from soaking into the bandage. Plastic would keep it moist longer, but hold in a bit of heat. Paper would dry a bit faster but any heat would pass through. I don't think there is a huge difference, mostly personal preference.

Poulticing is not that common these days. I do eventing, and I rarely see anyone poultice at events anymore. It might be helpful for a horse that gets some minor inflammation after a hard workout, but some liniment and standing wraps would probably be just as effective, and then you don't have to spend 20 mins hosing it all off after it dries. I wouldn't poultice unless I had a very specific reason to. I think it used to be more of a go-to thing in the past, but now there's a lot of quicker and easier things you can do, so people are going away from that. Except the racing people, they do love their poulticing! :)
Weird... I still see it used at events and in jumper barns on a regular basis. Yes it is a "go to" but its still common and has its place. I don't use it after every workout but I still do it after clinics or cross country schooling and the jumper/eventing barns I have worked at still use it. People were using Green Cool as a "go to" but it tests positive so its not used much anymore.
     
    04-08-2013, 04:28 PM
  #8
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by NBEventer    
Weird... I still see it used at events and in jumper barns on a regular basis. Yes it is a "go to" but its still common and has its place. I don't use it after every workout but I still do it after clinics or cross country schooling and the jumper/eventing barns I have worked at still use it. People were using Green Cool as a "go to" but it tests positive so its not used much anymore.
I'm sure it's more of a regional thing, everywhere's going to be a little different of course. In my area lots of people are going to the Back on Track wraps actually, and in my own experience they keep legs far cool and tighter than standing wraps. Different strokes for different folks
     
    04-08-2013, 04:33 PM
  #9
Weanling
Lots of show/event people here use poultice regularly. I was always told though that you only use paper when you poultice and plastic for sweats.
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    04-08-2013, 04:35 PM
  #10
Green Broke
Back On Track is great if you can afford it. I have some BOT cottons but still like my poultice. Its tried, tested and true.
     

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