Lame horse - no one can figure out why!!! HELP before he is put down

Discussion in 'Horse Health' started by Saph, Aug 13, 2009.

  1. Saph

    Saph Senior Member

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    A long while, I got a gelding off the track. He had fallen on the track, and pulled his front left tendon, which bowed. They gave him 6 months off, and he was still ouchy.

    I got him, gave him a solid year off, and then 6 months of plain lunging. The bow on the left leg became barely visible.

    When I finally rode him, over 2 months, he started to go lame again. I rested him for 3 months, and started lunging him again. He was totally and completely sound when lunged. I started riding him (very light work) and he went lame again.

    We took him to the vet. She scanned the tendons on all 4 legs. She did xrays from the hoof to the hocks on the front and back legs. She did a lameness test, and he did not get worse on flexion. She could find nothing wrong in the xrays and scans, except that he had thin soles.

    We got a second opinion on the xrays and scans, and all he could find was thin soles.

    I rested him, and bought those boots for his hooves (Can't remember what they are called). We got a specialist farrier to shoe him, working with the vet. Same result - fine when lunged, lame when ridden.

    He has had his back checked (with a second opinion by another vet) - nothing wrong. He has had the chiro out for him (can't find anything wrong :rolleyes:) His saddle has been fitted, with the vet working with the saddle fitter. The saddle fits fine.

    He has good conformation, except that he dishes a little on the right front (the leg without the bowed tendon). The other thing that we picked up, was that the right shoulder is much bigger than the left shoulder. It is bone and not muscle. His shoulders are not sore on palpatation. His neck is not sore. The farrier did tests on his feet, and he showed no reaction or signs of pain.

    He has had another 6 months off doing nothing. Then 3 months of lunging. After about 3 half-hours of very light ridden work (pretty much walking around a flat arena with good going), he is dead lame again.

    When he is lunging, he works long and low without any gadgets. His movement is supple and flowing.

    If I cannot get some idea of what is happening to this horse, he will be put down next week. ALL suggestions, no matter how far fetched, will be very welcome. He is the most super sweet horse I have seen - he does not deserve this.



    PLEASE PLEASE HELP ME

    Biscuits for anyone who got through that :)

    My eternal gratitude for anyone who has any suggestions to help
     






  2. KristinJ

    KristinJ Senior Member+

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    Is he currently sound now? So if you were to lunge him tomorrow he would be sound, but if you got on him, he wouldn't be? I know some horses can no longer carry wait, although you said you checked everything out. Some horses are 'bridle' lame, maybe it's in his head?

    Either way, if he is pasture sound why would you put him down?
     
  3. Saph

    Saph Senior Member

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    Here are two pictures of this spectacular boy jumping at a show at home in the short period that he was sound. I don't expect him to jump again, I jsut wanted to show him off :D

    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]
     
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  4. Saph

    Saph Senior Member

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    Thanks for the answer, KristinJ.

    He is currently lame. He would not be sound on the lunge if I lunged him now. He needs a few weeks off, and then he lunges with no issues at all.

    We have though of saddle lameness - he is lunged in a saddle and bridle with reins (Tied up ssafely, of course!). If you have and other ideas on how to check for it, that would be great :) We have also tried to ride him through it with no results. When we gave him a sachet of bute, and got on him again, he was sound, which seems to rule out saddle lameness.

    I would put him down, because horses are expensive to keep, and I cannot afford my working horses, along with a pasture ornement.
     
  5. Chester

    Chester Senior Member+

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    Whilst I do not have any ideas about the lameness, the vets do seem to have run all the tests, I do commend you on having the horses best long term interest at heart even if it means putting him down.

    I understand not being able to finance a pasture ornament for the rest of its life, especially with a younger horse. I think putting him down is far better option for him than to end up in the wrong hands with someone who may pay a few dollars for him and believe they need to recoup that money with work.
     
    hamerface likes this.
  6. JBandRio

    JBandRio Senior Member+

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    He's adorable!!!

    Do you guys have the ability to do bone scans?

    When you say he's "lame", what does he look like, exactly?
     
  7. Haas Horse Farm

    Haas Horse Farm Senior Member+

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    Have they looked to see if he has any convex bones... meaning a bone the grows the wrong direction...
     
  8. JBandRio

    JBandRio Senior Member+

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    HHF, what do you mean? I'm not following you. What's an example of a bone growing "the wrong direction"? :confused:
     
  9. FoxyRoxy1507

    FoxyRoxy1507 Senior Member+

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    this sounds like my horse. he was given to me bc the vets and farriers looked at his back and his legs and had the chiropractor and really good farriers out. only problem was, they were x-raying the wrong places. my trainers friend that had him for a couple months had his withers x-rayed and it showed up that if that saddle pushed too much onto his withers he would go lame, when he was a baby he either fell or was kicked in his withers and it broke. it grew back and u cant tell without the xrays but if the saddle didnt sit just right on him he would go lame, but only at that time, he moves just fine and jumps insanely well still so u could try looking at that
     
  10. Saph

    Saph Senior Member

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    Haas Horse Farm, which bones would you scan to see if they were growing in the wrong direction? We have done the lower legs, but that sounds like it could be a very good plan.

    JBandRio, I am going to try to take a video with my phone this evening, to post here. Depending on the level of lameness that he is showing, it looks like the lameness could be in the hocks, or the front right leg. Sometimes it looks like he is lame on all 4 legs.

    FoxyRoxy, that makes alot of sense. I tried to ride him yesterday without a saddle after he showed bad signs of being lame, and he was still lame. But I suppose that I could also be pressing on his withers when I ride bareback... and if his withers were sore after the saddle, I suppose riding bareback to check this would be pointless.

    Thanks for the support, Chester, I really appreciate it. I could NEVER sell him - he is so honest with his jumping that I can imagine how that could potentially be abused. And even if I find a really honest person to give/sell him to, I can never guarentee who he will be sold onto later down the line...

    I feel sick to the stomach when I think of having to put this horse down. Please keep coming with all the wonderful ideas - I am going to try each and every one of them.
     






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