Leg Protection - The Horse Forum

 
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post #1 of 6 Old 06-11-2011, 09:55 PM Thread Starter
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Question Leg Protection

My horse Dancer is starting to develop a bit of arthritis I believe. When I clean his hooves sometimes I notice a click in his joints on his back legs. My BO recommended starting him on MSM which I have done. He seems to do fine otherwise. Not lame. I was wondering if I should get him some protective boots for when I work him? I was looking at the SMB Sports Medicine Boots and was wondering if that would be useful. (BTW, when I say work I mean trailriding, w/t, and eventually c, we are by no means truely athletic.) I've also thought about getting some bell boots. He is trippy and clutsy. I don't have ground polls to trot over so I don't really have a way to work on that unless someone else has an idea.

Anywho, to the point. Would some kind of supportive boot help him or not really?
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post #2 of 6 Old 06-11-2011, 10:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Puddintat View Post
My horse Dancer is starting to develop a bit of arthritis I believe. When I clean his hooves sometimes I notice a click in his joints on his back legs. My BO recommended starting him on MSM which I have done. He seems to do fine otherwise. Not lame. I was wondering if I should get him some protective boots for when I work him? I was looking at the SMB Sports Medicine Boots and was wondering if that would be useful. (BTW, when I say work I mean trailriding, w/t, and eventually c, we are by no means truely athletic.) I've also thought about getting some bell boots. He is trippy and clutsy. I don't have ground polls to trot over so I don't really have a way to work on that unless someone else has an idea.

Anywho, to the point. Would some kind of supportive boot help him or not really?
I think it would help him. Even though he's not doing what other horses/riders consider truely "athletic work" if it's enough work for him and if his body is telling you he needs protection and supplements I say go for it I'd rather have them just in case. We always use front splint boots on our horses at my barn even when not jumping or doing anything intense (maybe out of habit?) but I'm sure it would help him out a great deal. Good luck
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post #3 of 6 Old 06-12-2011, 02:57 AM
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Bell boots will not help with tripping and in fact, may make it worse. I hate to ride in bell boots because I had a horse step on his own bell boot and then go down on his knees and dump me in the sand arena.

The SMB's might help, but you have to put them on tight enough.

HOw old is Dancer? If he starts to really get bad, consider Adequan injections (intra muscluar, not IN the joints) they seem to make a big difference, but are expensive. Keep Dancer moving and allow him to warm up.
Clicking is not really a big deal.

As for tripping, many possible reasons; toes too long or other shoeing problems, hock or stifle issues , laziness!. That last one is my guess. You need to work him more and require him to be engaged and stepping under more. Practice backing h9im up hills some.

So many things can be issues for tripping.
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post #4 of 6 Old 06-13-2011, 05:08 AM
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Most horses will click in a joint, it does not necessarily mean that they are arthritic.
Msm is a good idea, I feed it to all horses as a preventative measure, you can also add some glucosamine if you are really concerned which is good for long term protection of joints if fed on a regular basis.

Work boots won't do much at all and if you're not doing a hell of a lot of difficult work with him, they're not hugely necessary. I only boot my dressage horses as they are doing lateral work and collection places increased strain on their tendons. But they won't do anything for arthritis.
The only boots that might help are magnetic boots, I didn't see any improvement after using them on my boy with arthritis in his hock, but friends swear by them for their horses with mild arthritic changes so they might be worth looking into.

I, like tiny, would not bother with bell boots unless he is actually pulling front shoes off or damaging the coronet band. Otherwise, its just something else for him to trip on.
Again as tiny said, in most cases tripping is not due to arthritis and other medical reasons, but because the horse is not picking its feet up - being lazy. Do some work on getting him off your leg and moving forward without dragging his feet, lots of transitions and changes of rein. This will help him out on trails and well as any arena work.

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post #5 of 6 Old 06-14-2011, 09:14 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone. I'm glad I asked before I went and bought anything.
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post #6 of 6 Old 06-14-2011, 09:26 PM
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I agree about boots. I don't have any arthritic ones now, but have had. I had an older mare that we tried a ton of different supplements. She had been on MSM for awhile & it did help but when we added desert yucca to her diet it really helped her. It's also fairly cheap, so that was a bonus. She stayed sound until she passed at 34.

Life is like a camera. Focus on what's important, Capture the good times, Develop from the negatives and if things don't work out, Take another shot.
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