Who Actually Knows the Difference?
Between founder and laminitis? Everytime I read a topic about founder, I think to myself "Is it really founder or laminitis?" Founder is probably one of the most misunderstood things in the horse world!
My understanding is founder involves the coffin bone as a result of laminitis. Laminitis is inflammation of the laminae.
A horse can have laminitis and may not founder but not have founder without first having the laminitis issue.
Laminitis is the inflammation of the lamina (sp?) or the tissue between the coffin bone and the hoof wall.
Founder is caused by laminitis - that is when the lamina becomes inflamed enough and enough swelling and fluid develops to push/rotate the coffin bone down. The amount of rotation depends on the amount of swelling/fluid.
Laminitis does not always result in founder. Founder always results from laminitis.
I'm interested to see responses also. My first horse had laminitis and from my understanding, as a result, he foundered. He got better and then he just went downhill and had to be put to sleep at the age of 7 :(. The stupid BO put him out on very fresh spring grass for an entire WEEK and as a result, he got laminitis. "well, horses in the wild can do it" was his explanation. GAH! poor Sky :(
barrelracer up- that makes sense. thanks for the info!
The way to tell if your horse is acutely foundering is not only will they walk with their front feet stretched forward and the hind feet tucked under to support more of the weight, but they will have a pulse at the back of the fetlock near where the bulb of the heal ties in.
You should NOT feel a pulse at the back of the fetlock. If you do call the vet RIGHT THEN, don't walk - run.
The hoof will also become warm to the touch.
The feet should be placed in cool water and all food taken away.
The vet will administer anti-inflammatories and restrict the diet to plain old grass hay.
X-rays in a week or so to show the degree of rotation. Then trimming and shoeing in response to the Xrays.
Diet will almost always be an issue after an episode.
Causes include, high sugar diet, stress, poor body condition - at the time, or excess body fat - at the time and idiopathic (AKA no clue why). Their is a link to insulin production and the amount of risk said horse will have to foundering.
When a horse has an abscess the hoof will be warm and will have a pulse too.
Pregnant mares can have a high rate of founder too.
My basic understanding (probably oversimplified as well, lol) is that founder is a symptom of laminitis.
My question: I have heard that laminitis is basically permanent, and this is what predisposes an already foundered horse to founder again. Is this correct?
Eventerdrew, that's a heck of a story. Wow. :cry:
Laminitis is the tearing and inflamation of the laminae from the wall.
Founder is the rotation of the coffin bone due to laminitis.
Scoutrider, great question!
SOMETIMES, in the worst cases of laminites the lamini can actually "disenigrate" seperating the coffin bone from the hoof wall. In cases such as this, yes their is permanent damage and the horse will founder.
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