All of this happened in 9 days - which is when we had our meeting and was last ridden
This all happened in the nine days we were not at our horses. I know it is not his feed or eating problem. All this happened so quickly in 9 days.
Today we went out and rode.
My friend came - so Golley got ridden today.
At a walk he is perfectly fine. At a trot both his front legs are a little bit stiff. At a lope, he really feels different....
Usually horses lope with legs extend out and bending almost every joint? right?? Well today his front legs were stiff. Especially his front left leg.
I don't know how to explain it and I can't find any videos that can represent it fully... This video isn't what he is doing - but it is the best example I can find. You will see that this horse's front legs are in the air a lot and moving his head up and down to help get the legs off the ground quick.. Well Imagine that this horses legs and knees and pastern are all stiff and he is bobbing his head still and his knees and stuff are barely bending. He isn't changing feet and his hind legs are normal. It seems that his right front is better - but just a bit stiffer than usual. His front left, however, is barely bending.
He has also lost a ton of weight. Where his ribs end and there is his flank, it more visible than usual. I can see his ribs more than usual - but not horribly bad, just when he stretches out and I am right next to him I can see a little bumps from his ribs.
Watch the flanks in these photos.
This was about like how he was 9 days ago, look at the flank:
It is just the normal flank size he usually has.
This is kind of how he was like today. His flank really dropped in...it looks a little bit worse than in this photo.
I hope you can picture how his flank would be like. It is similar to the one above, just a little bit in further than usual.
I got on him and I could feel that he lost a lot of weight. I felt like I was going to just slip off because it almost felt like I was riding on a pool noodle in the pool - if you can kinda of vision that.
But the strange thing is that all of this happened in just nine days...
He checked everywhere and nothing was hot, swollen, or even colder than usual. We couldn't find anything that could be wrong.
I think that for his legs it might just be arthritis. My mom and I think that for is weight it just might be because he is starting to show his age. He is about 22 years old and his breed is a Blazer. None of the other horses have lost any weight.
I picked up his stiff foot and it didn't feel different t pick it up. But when he trot and lopes, not only can you feel it while riding, but you can SEE it. He is putting his weight on it, but he isn't stretching out like he normally should at a lope.
We are going out of town for the next three days and when we get back we are going to check up on him to see if there have been any changes - good or bad. When we get back and if it is the same or worse then I will get some photos of his flank and any other parts that look skinnier than usual. If he isn't worse than today then I will try and get a video of his loping so you can have a much better understanding.
We are going to get him vet checked when we get back as well - which is when we will have to show the vet how he rides anyways...
Please just pray for Golley. I am really worried and nervous. I have never had this happen to any of our horses, heck none of our horses have ever even gotten sick or injured. I really hope it isn't something bad though. But I know that that much weight loss in just nine days isn't good. If you have any ideas on anything - please let me know. I will get you more updated when we get more information.
Have you had a drastic weather change recently. I've got one horse that will drop weight and get that "gaunt" look when the weather changes too quickly from cool to really hot, regardless of how much he eats. After he gets acclimated, he regains what he lost and looks good again.
With the stiffness on the front end, I wonder if he maybe had a mild founder incident. He's rather...rotund in the pic from a few days ago. Not to say that most of mine aren't the same way, but a little bit of too fat can make some horses really prone to founder.
I can agree that some horses become harder keepers as they get older, but for him to take such a turn in 9 days, I'm sure it's something other than his age going on.
Those pictures were just examples and I was mainly pointing out his flank. He was never a bit overweight or anything - he has kept the same weight through this year and the past years.
His flank is really dropped in and I can see his ribs more than usual.
If it is Founder's, does it go away? When we get back we are going to try and have a vet come out - but there aren't very many horse vets around our town. But I am sure one will come out.
Founder is where the Lamina in the hoof inflame causing pain on the feet, and can progress into laminates (where the coffin bone sinks and rotates) causing extreme pain and can be fatal (EX coffin bone falling out of the bottom of the hoof). I would get a vet on this asap. Founder dose not cause weight loss and a weight change that quick with stiffness needs to be taken seriously.
Equine Infectious Anemia
DSLD/ESPA Symptoms, Diagnosis and Management
these are the only things I can find and both need a vet asap
We have checked all of his legs and there is no sign of heat, swelling, or pain. We ran our hands down every leg and squeezed many parts of his leg. He didn't flinch or show any pain. When we lifted his leg up it wasn't any different than normal.
We might actually go to our horses tonight - so I will try to get some photos and a video if we do go out. I will get photographs of his flank, his front legs from different angles, and any other part I think might be necessary. I will get a video of him loping so you can see what he does with his legs.
if you would like me to get any other photos of anything else let me know and I will try to get those photos for you too.
Im with smrobs on that, could be a bout of laminitis. The weight loss could be from pain. Laminitis hurts. It is not a death sentence, and for a penetration of the sole he has to be really bad, and would not be moving at all and would be down.
Either a video or good pics of his front feet, on level ground, no grass, taken from groundlevel, from the side and the soles, would help.
Did he have any change of feed, new pasture, has he been vaccinated, had other meds recently?
There is a ton of other possibilities of course. But don't panic just yet....
He has been in the same pasture and had the same feed at his boarding - which he has been at for about 2 or 3 years now. He was vaccinated earlier in the year - so he is good with that. He doesn't take anything else other than that.
Thanks, if we will go out tonight I will make sure to get some of those photos for ya.
I'm leaning toward tetanus or Lyme. Lyme is easily treatable but tetanus not so much, unfortunately. Please call a vet.
We weren't able to make it out today - we were very busy all day.
We called our boarder and asked her to keep an eye on him when they change pastures.
oh, and I know it isn't the changing pastures either - before you ask! :)
Our horses have been there for over two years and the whole time they have been changing pastures a lot. Just to keep the grass mowed down and grow more in their regular ones. Basically a rotation.
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