Bowed Tendon? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 01-15-2018, 02:00 AM Thread Starter
Green Broke
 
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Bowed Tendon?

Back story for the curious:

I lost my (forgive the cliche) "heart horse" that I bred, raised and trained earlier this week at the age of 3.5 from Throat cancer after a 4 month battle and 3 different vets. I'm not sure if that is a motivating factor of my current dilemma or not.

While the long, frustrating battle for my late geldings life was going On, I worked with a high strung mare fresh off the track i was selling for a friend. She is an ottb mare, a cribber, with a moderate bowed tendon that has healed. The first time I brought her in she was impossible to catch, so extremely stressed when tied she weaved in panic until drenched and was nearly impossible to remove her over grown shoes from. Everything was worth reacting to. Within a couple sessions she was searching me out in the pasture, begging to come in. Now I can ride her, and she's doing well(very sensitive, forward mare). She loves to work, and she tries so hard for me.

But a track broke, experienced rider only, cribber with an old bowed tendon and chipped feet is a very hard sell.

I'm finding myself attached. This mare has sold a minimum of 3 times in her 7 years. I might be crazy but I'm actually considering trying to turn her into a trail/mountain horse.

So the question, if you've stuck with me thus far, is what is the prognosis for a moderate bow healing to near normal functionality?

Any one with experience on this?
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post #2 of 9 Old 01-15-2018, 03:28 AM
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It depends on the severity of the bow.

Personally I have had many horses 'with a leg' to use racing terms, and providing that they have had the rest needed for the tendon to heal, they have been fine.

Hard ground and fast work are a compromised tendon worse enemy.
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post #3 of 9 Old 01-15-2018, 07:16 AM
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How long rest did she have? Tendons do heal, but 6-8 weeks only heals the scar tissue, remodeling phase that comes next takes 6-12 months generally.

Had a mare like that where I worked who was not given enough time several times to heal the tendon, so the lameness would come back, but after she had enough time off in the field where she could move her own phase, the tendon did heal and the horse, who was supposed to be not ridable ever again, became ridable and enjoyed working.
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post #4 of 9 Old 01-15-2018, 11:33 AM
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High or low bow?
How long ago was the bow?
How fast was it detected?
What was done when it bowed if anything?
Evidence of firing, or external treatments done?
Do you know if they did any PRP therapy or something similar?
Stem cell, tens unit, fat injections.....???
How much time was the horse given to heal?
Did that bow ever re-injure?

Depending upon those answers would make me take on a project or walk-away...
Racehorses who bow can find a new career...
But they seldom ever race again with the same striding or ability shown so are just dismissed and given away/sold when it occurs and you, as a rehabber look at a minimum of 6 months for a true full heal to take place on a minor bow...
The damage is usually to great to do a return to all-out flat racing...but to do trail work... think it depends upon what you refer to as "trail work" of ride trails for pleasure or ride trails in timed, hard action, demanding trail/endurance competition.
I would be doing some ultrasounds first to see exactly what has healed, how it healed and what those replacement fibers look like...

....
jmo...
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The worst day is instantly better when shared with my horse.....
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post #5 of 9 Old 01-15-2018, 11:44 AM
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I'm really only repeating whats already been said but unless ultrasounds were done at the time of the injury to the tendon you don't know the extent of the damage and it's that the determines future soundness.
We had an OTTB in the UK that had 'broken down' racing over fences, fired and rested and remained sound for the rest of his life including hunting, showjumping and hunter trials but I had a lovely Irish Cob given too me that despite being given time to heal and recover didn't stay sound once the workload was increased and couldn't even cope with fairly light hacking
I think I would pass on that horse especially as it has some other issues but if you do decide to proceed you must prepare yourself for the outcome if it doesn't work out
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Just winging it is not a plan
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post #6 of 9 Old 01-16-2018, 11:03 AM
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If you like her, i would get the vet up to ultrasound the leg. Make sure it has completely healed. Tendons are very difficult to heal up and once healed are never as strong as they were originally. If you like trail riding at a walk or trot with limited cantering, she should be fine for your needs. But i would have her checked.

I would say no for competition, unless you only want to do flatwork.

A friend regularly rides her ex racer as a trail horse. I must admit, she is a really good looking horse and seems to have a good mind on her.
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post #7 of 9 Old 01-18-2018, 10:18 PM Thread Starter
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I decided to pass on her. Thanks for the input.
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post #8 of 9 Old 01-19-2018, 11:44 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by horselovinguy View Post
High or low bow?
How long ago was the bow?
How fast was it detected?
What was done when it bowed if anything?
Evidence of firing, or external treatments done?
Do you know if they did any PRP therapy or something similar?
Stem cell, tens unit, fat injections.....???
How much time was the horse given to heal?
Did that bow ever reinjure? ..

....
jmo...
I thought my last reply post deserved an explanation. I really appreciate those who took the time to reply. My decision was motivated not only by the fact that I can't answer the above questions(current owner bought her to try racing her, doesn't know the answers but thinks she's sound. The decision to retire her is motivated more by the fact she mentally can't do it.), but also the cribbing was a factor.
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post #9 of 9 Old 01-19-2018, 12:37 PM
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I am sure you made the correct choice.
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