Not the news I wanted to hear
Well Lizzy saw the vet/chiro last night. Her neck was out at c5? and she needed some adjusting on the right hip. I was very happy with the exam, he actually did a full exam on her and answered all of my questions and did a flex test on her back left. Her front legs were in excellent shape but her back left fetlock has been holding some fluid for the past couple months.
So I was told no endurance for her. We can do the novice rides since they are under 15 miles but nothing more or she will need injections. I am to keep her in work at a bare minimum of 3 days per week but 5 days is ideal. No matter what she must stay in work. She has arthritis and possibly the worst in her back left fetlock so come fall we will have another exam and reasses where she is and xrays will be taken. He doesn't think it is anything other than arthritis right now but we will eventually want xrays to know exactly what we are dealing with.
I am quite bummed about this as she was supposed to be my endurance horse this year but now we are limited to just a good working trail ride. We are starting slowly and will be conditioning this summer. She was out of work from her tendon injury for a few weeks and ever since bringing her back she has been stiff and short strided. So vet said bute for the first week of bringing back into work to get her past that initial sore stage. Not a high dose or anything but enough to make her comfortable enough to work.
She is on Smartpaks senior joint supplement, the herb free one as we were supposed to compete this year. But it will be about another month before we should expect to see any results from it.
Sorry about the book but I knew this was eventually coming but I wish it wasn't so soon. She is in great health otherwise and actually moves pretty good for a 20 yr old.
No one has anything to share? Here is her last night and yes I did chop off her mane. She was having skin issues from her mane trapping heat and moisture so I cut it instead of braiding everyday. I actually like it better this way, she has a pretty good sized neck to pull it off.
Aww that's too bad :( She looks awesome for a 20 year old! Do you know if she'll be able to do endurance races again? Or will she be retired permanently?
I would do the hock injections and see about doing monthly IM injections of Adequan in addition to her joint supplements. That can make a WORLD of difference in her comfort level and keep her able to do some endurance rides with you. Not cheap, but a really good horse is worth every dime you put into them.
Thank you both. She MUST stay in work. That was a for sure thing the vet says even if another injury comes up she will at least have to be hand walked. Never less than working 3 days a week but 5 is ideal even if I have to pay someone.
He didn't feel injections were necissary yet unless I wanted to push her up into 25+ miles. She is a rescue (a real, true rescue) so all I know is the farm she came from was guaranteed to not have taken care of any animals. She was seized from there when she was 18 so that many years of crappy nutrition and no vet care probably took a toll on her joints.
I can't really afford injections right now. I'm still in college and I work 52 hours a week just to pay for her current needs. But if the vet says she will not be comfortable without them then I will find a way for her to get them. He feels I have a good plan with conditioning through the summer and then re-evalutate in fall with xrays to see where we are at.
Sounds like you have things sorted pretty well for her. If she does come up sore id say maybe putting her on a painkiller? I like Recovery EQ personally. Its not the cheapest but not as expensive as injections and works pretty well. Best wishes for you and Lizzy!
Thank you. The vet actually prescribed bute for the first 7-10 days she's back in work and then if she ever is too sore. As long as she shows no signs of ulcers, she doesn't have a history of them so we should be good.
She is turned out 24/7 on about 20ish acres, probably more so she moves around a lot.
How long do those with arthritic horses usually work them? Since she is going to be worked 5 days a week I'm just wondering how long she should be worked on those days? We have a wonderful trail system just a walk down the road and an indoor arena.
it is tough to think of are horse being off but she will do fine I use the smartpax senior also on my draft and it works I just trail ride I know that is not the same but it works good luck
Sorry to hear that Poppy, you must feel disappointed but we've had arthritic ponies and horse live very long useful lives in light to medium work
I do think that maybe serious endurance riding for a horse of her age with her terrible history of neglect before you saved her was always likely to be too much of an 'ask'
What have you done to that mane though??????
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