Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Maisie's Feet are Very Sore

Maisie appears to have developed laminitis in both front feet - we hope not a serious case involving rotation of the coffin bone, but we won't know for sure until we get the x-ray results.  She had been doing well barefoot, but then our ground went from wet and muddy to hard and dry, and she started to get sore - but she continued to act normally when walking on soft ground or grass.  But then yesterday I was watching the horses in the pasture and noticed that when all the mares were running around, she wasn't.  Then this morning at feeding time she was slow to move around in her stall to get to her grain.  She seemed somewhat sorer than she had been the day before, and although she wasn't exhibiting a "founder stance" where a horse puts its weight on its hindquarters to avoid weighting its front feet, she was having some trouble turning and also was shifting from foot to foot.  She was clearly uncomfortable in a way that went beyond just being sore.

I called the vet's emergency line, and arranged for a vet to come out and look at her and take x-rays.  They came and gave her some drugs to fight the inflammation, and also took x-rays.  They think the laminitis is due to mechanical reasons - the hard ground and that she is without shoes (her hoof size and quality isn't the greatest) - rather than the grass, since the soreness got slowly worse with time rather than coming on suddenly.  She is getting a bit older - she's probably about 15, and is a bit heavy - so insulin resistance may play a part as well.

She's on stall rest for the moment, and twice a day anti-inflammation drugs by mouth (luckily, she's very good for this).  Once we know what the x-rays show we'll have a better idea of her prognosis.  The irony was that she was due to get her front shoes back on tomorrow - we'll likely hold off on that since she's pretty uncomfortable and the vet would like to get the inflammation under control before we shoe her.   I feel bad that we didn't get shoes back on her earlier - poor girl!  Please keep Maisie in your thoughts - I'll post tomorrow when we know what the x-rays show.


  1. I hope Maisie will be okay. It's hard to see them not feeling well, but maybe the x-rays will show she's just sore and there's nothing going on mechanically.

  2. Here's hoping the xrays come back normal! We adopted a 24yo pony (now 25) who had foundered in the past, and I have to watch him carefully when the grass comes in - he's been here since the end of last summer, so he saw some grass come in last fall (after drought) and he started to get sore - had to keep him up for about a month while the grass dried up again. And then this spring, same thing, had to keep him off the grass for about a month when it first came in. Thankfully, we watch closely and notice when he first starts shifting his weight around like he's not comfortable. And also, thankfully, both times his soreness has cleared up without any further founder. Wishing the best for Maisie!

  3. Poor Maisie! Are you using pads to help make her more comfortable? Hopefully the xrays will show she's just sore from the hard ground.

  4. Hey Kate, thanks for reading my blog, now I've come to visit yours. Here's some more good wishes for Maisie! Laminitis is so frustrating. Keep us posted, and we'll all hope for clean xrays.

  5. Here's hoping for normal x-rays and that Maisie is back to herself in a few days. Such a frustrating thing for you and the horse.

  6. Sorry to hear that Maisie is having trouble , hopefully just a bump in the road!


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