Foal with crooked leg, hel
Hi guys. Well, Zane here was born on July 14th. One of the first things I noticed about him is his back right leg was crooked. I had my vet out right away and he felt the problem was a weak fetlock joint and that the leg would straighten on it's own.
Fast forward to week 4, and the leg is still crooked, although I do think it is getting better. Do you guys have any idea if this is something that will correct itself? I love the little guy and would like to be able to ride him someday. Any thoughts? Ever seen anything like it, and if so, how did it turn out?
He is not lame or sore on it. The hock does look a little wobbly when he walks, but it doesn't stop him from running, rearing, and playing. And he doesn't seem to favor it at all.
PS. The joints do not feel swollen or anything. They are firm.
For reference, this is what it looked like right after he was born.
Thank you guys for your help!
I still think it is likely a deformity of the long bone. I suspect that it will never straighten out enough to look like his other but it may even out some as he grows taller over the next few years. I really don't think that there is much that can be done to help it, I would just be religious about keeping his feet perfect while he is growing to give him the best chance you can. Since he isn't showing any signs of favoring it, all you can really do is sit and wait to see how he grows in the coming years. It is possible (and IMHO, likely) that he will spend his life sound and able to be ridden, just have an ugly leg. My biggest concern would be how his tendons are connected to the hock joint as it appears that the bone puts them in a bind (though it is nearly impossible to tell without actually feeling the leg and watching him move close up). If you haven't seen any signs of improvement in the shape of it or if he begins to favor it when he is closer to a yearling, then you might want to start looking into other options. For right now, though, he's fine.
I am not very optimistic to be honest, sorry. He's super cute and I'm sure he would be just fine as a pasture puff!
A friend of mine that bred and raced TBs had a foal like this only on the front legs (both front).
The foal was too valuable to take a "wait and see" attitude so searched around for an alternative.
Was told to put them in a metal tubing on them for a month.
Won his first race at 2.
That's fascinating, Spyder. How does that work? I mean, I get the mechanics about encouraging the bone to straighten but when I think tubing, I picture pipes and I am wondering how you would put those on the legs?
This was over 20 years ago so just recalling it the best I can from that time.
Maybe now some plastic solid tubing might work. I would if I were the OP search around and be willing to try anything but time is against you. The longer you wait the less opportunity you have.
That sounds like a really good idea and something worth investigating.
The only thing with this foal is attempting a "piping" solution will be tricky on a back leg but I am of the thought that if we want something bad enough we will find a solution.
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