Foal with contracted tendons

Discussion in 'Horse Health' started by NBChoice, Mar 20, 2017.

  1. NBChoice

    NBChoice Senior Member

    May 15, 2014
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  2. Compadre

    Compadre Senior Member

    Aug 9, 2012
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    I've read that most horses born with contracted tendons can go on with no further issues if it is corrected in time. If that's the case, I think it's great. I don't know if the severity of this case changes that prognosis, and the article doesn't really say.

    I do feel a bit differently about things like the Friesian colt with dwarfism. Don't remember how that turned out, but it felt wrong to try and medically help an issue where the quality of life will never be normal.
  3. equinitis

    equinitis Senior Member

    Nov 1, 2011
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    Depends of the prognosis for me too. What are the chances for treatment resulting in a sound animal?
  4. Kristal H

    Kristal H Senior Member

    Jan 19, 2016
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    It's amazing how fast foals that were born looking like they came out of an eggbeater can improve with good care.

    This filly was born with the cord cinched around her hock so tight there was an indent in the bone. The pelvis was crooked with the right hip forward. The hock bent out and forward. She was windswept. The fetlock was lax and she stood on the joint not her hoof. I literally got sick to my stomach. The ortho surgeon was called to see her day one.... No surgery just stall rest for 2 weeks and then a small paddock for a few weeks after that.

    Attached Files:

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  5. CJ

    CJ Senior Member

    Mar 20, 2004
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    If thats what it takes to get her right and let her outgrow the malady, its worth the effort, I think. Their pasterns need some time to get used enough to get off the ground sometimes, although her case is much more severe. I hope what theyre doing will make here al/right in the end.
  6. slc

    slc Senior Member

    Feb 19, 2004
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    What I understand is that some foals can recover, and others cannot. Statements saying all can live and statements saying none can live, would both be wrong.

    Now I was able to play all of the video of the filly from the original post, from what I saw, I was worried that that filly would not recover.

    I also don't know if a vet did the wrapping and splinting or not. My only glance of it didn't look too promising.

    I think that in most cases, vets will give a realistic picture of the foal's potential for recovery. Vets often will assure people that quite bad cases can recover.

    But not all can recover. In my experience, not all people make a choice that's fair to the animal. There are foals with developmental problems who should be euthanized at birth. I would consult with a vet who has a great deal of experience with such problems. For a small fee, a person can probably send a video to one of the top experts on these disorders, and get an outside opinion as well.

    I think it's extremely important to have a vet look at the foal and discuss in a very clear-eyed manner, what is fair to the animal. If the animal that can't recover is kept alive, this can result in a great deal of suffering of the animal as it becomes larger and the legs collapse more and more.

    Because this foal has such severe problems in all four legs, and is so unstable in so many different ways, I don't think she should be allowed to suffer further. A veterinarian should make a determination and the owners should respect that. I think since the foal does not appear to be getting any supportive care, it won't be long anyway. And yes, I'd love to be wrong.
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2017
  7. VermilionStrife

    VermilionStrife Senior Member

    Apr 12, 2012
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    I appreciate Kristal's comment about coming out of an egg beater. Lol

    If the vet listed prognosis as good and they continue to work with the vet, I see no reason why the filly can't have a normal life. From what I have seen/experienced a lot of babies have lax or contracted tendons that quickly be corrected.
  8. Faster Horses

    Faster Horses Senior Member

    Aug 24, 2011
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    I know calves are not horses, but young animals are similar so I'll share my story.

    Calves, especially big bull calves that were a little extra crammed before birth, will occasionally come out with very contracted tendons.

    We've managed to correct quite a few calves, relatively quickly, using splints.

    The calves usually cannot stand up by themselves for the first couple of days, but adjust quickly and grow out of it pretty quick.

    I have a problem with these folks using GoFundMe instead of ponying up their own cash, but that's about it.
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  9. Dona Worry

    Dona Worry Senior Member

    May 11, 2016
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    Padded splints sounds labor intensive, but if they feel she is worth it, more power to them.
    It has only been a week, and if she seems to be improving and the vet is on board with it all, I wish them luck. She is a cutie.
  10. D_BaldStockings

    D_BaldStockings Senior Member

    Nov 24, 2010
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    I do have a problem with the gofundme plea, and I wonder that the foal is only splinted every 4 hours (no pic of the foal wearing splints) so I really don't know how to 'judge' the success of the treatment so far. No mention of massage or stretching work or exploring other therapies...

    I have had foals down on their pasterns when born, but they do 'come up' over a week or so. Never anything that couldn't stand on its' own. The sideways/ outward knee deviation worries me.

    There are many leg deviations that can be surgically corrected, but if the filly doesn't improve drastically and surgery is not in the picture due to finances?
    Sooner or later they will have to make the hard decision.

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