I searched through some threads on this topic, but the only one i found was from 2009. I have a couple additional questions on this subject for anyone that might have some insight. My vet was out today for routine vax and wormer. i showed her the teeny bulb of swelling on his right hind at the very base of his cannon bone. i was told it's windpuff and isn't a concern as long as there's no heat, lameness, soreness, etc. She offered to inject with cortisone. which i said "no thanks." to. My trainers says it is something that can be aggravated by the sudden heat we had today. (we went from 60 degree weather, to 80 degree weather overnight)
so what's the opinion here?
can the heat make this issue worse?? should i rethink the idea of the cortisone injections?
I've always heard that they are blemish, but are a sign that the horse has had hard use. My Mustang has them, and it's my fault because I trotted him on a dirt road on ONE ride. One ride, and he's blemished for life. :-(
They may go down if the horse isn't used for a while, but I've heard they are permanent because once the pocket that fills with fluid stretches out like that, it will always be prone to doing that. I haven't heard about the cortisone injections, so I don't know if they help.
The good news is, they are generally just a blemish. My Mustang is as sound as can be. But I hate it that he has them, because when I bought him he didn't have them. But I learned from that experience.
Anyway, maybe others can shed some more insight. But I think it's most likely permanent. I have even heard that they can be drained, but that doesn't do much good because the pocket just fills up with fluid again.
Did the vet think the cortisone would shrink it? My vet has never mentioned anything like that. But maybe I didn't ask and just assumed they were hopeless.
Generally, windpuffs are a sign of over-riding an unfit horse. A horse who is not used to hard work who is worked hard over the period of a few days to a few weeks may develop windpuffs as the tendon sheaths of the leg become inflamed.
Now, if these are accompanied with adema, heat or pulses I would be worried however usually once they are there you're stuck with them. Cortisone injections can reduce the appearance although they can also introduce complications. It is safer to just leave them.
Make sure your horse is conditioned properly and that you are properly cooling out the legs after every ride, good luck!
okay so how about standing wraps? he is ridden every day. Either by me, or in a lesson. However, we jump pretty big on saturdays. He is properly warmed up and properly cooled down after our big jumping days... but i was thinking of starting to wrap his front and back legs and then pulling them off on sunday when i come back out to ride. Do you suppose that might help with keeping "windpuffs" at bay?
I am not sure about wrapping his legs but my horse has windpuffs too. She was used very intensely in a lesson program and that is where she developed them. She was definitely overworked at times and jumped too often. When I got her vet checked the vet told me they were windpuffs and that they're nothing to worry about. Just ignore them! So maybe the wrapping will help but they probably won't go away so it might not make a difference? Good Luck!
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