Congenital lateral patellar (sub)luxation
My stallion has just been diagnosed with the above, so I was wondering if anyone on here has ever dealt with it before as it is very common in small breads eg Miniature horses and british Shetlands. The vet said it isn't bad enough to need operated on but he is have a lot of trouble right now with his legs. A couple of days after his lameness exam to find out why he is always stiff his patella dislocated about 5 days ago now and is still lame, he is on box rest and pain killers but I was wondering how over people treated their horses/ponies also I was wondering if there was anything that will help prevent his knee caps from dislocating as the vet said there wasn't anything but I want to try my ****edest to get him and keep him sound and he is my heart horse.
Sorry for the long story and I hope it makes sense.
In large horses this typically happens due to over straight hind leg conformation. The patella dislocates and is replaced manually by manipulation. A horse that dislocates will tend to do it again..
The issue is the construction of the leg (or so I have heard) and there is nothing you can do surgically.
What I have heard can help is to get the horse to trot up a lot of hills. This works like physical therapy and strengthens (and thereby tightens) the supporting structure. I think that means the horse gains strength and due to larger and more responsive muscles the tendons tighten.
I do know this.. the surgery often done on dogs to fix this is not done on horses. However, you have a little guy (Shetland) and live in Scotland.. if I recall correctly.. and I think you have access to one of the finest veterinary research colleges in the world there. You might want to pursue this with them?
Walking him whilst his legs are bad will make his legs worse, we could get him to that vet but right now we don't have the money to get him there let alone the vets bills as it would come to around $1000 to get him there, the vet also said he doesn't have it bad enough to operate. Also in shetland ponies it is nothing to do with the straightness of leg as my stallion has near perfect conformation, it is a genetic condition which leads to the ligaments being to loose and the ridge the patella sits in too shallow which is why the operation works as they can either tighten the ligaments or deepen the grove.
Will you continue to breed him knowing he has this genetic problem and is likely to pass it on?
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Defo not he is one of the best shetlands I have ever seen but I would not wish what he is going through right now on any other pony.
You could try squaring his toes. That makes him come off the ground before the ligament catches. Ans, as soon as he may move, do hill work to build muscle which pulls the ligaments straight. Non invasive and free, and with a little luck, it will work.
It isn't stifle lock, lateral patella luxation means the groves that the patella sits in aren't deep enough and the patella ligaments are too loose which causes the patella to basically dislocate but will be trying to get him fit when he is sound again as he has to have a job to do as he can not longer be bred from.
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