Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Vet Visit and Scout Examination

Today, our wonderful vet, Dr. Ana, visited to give most of the horses their fall shots - we do flu/rhino two times a year. And she also came to do a lameness evaluation of Scout - he ranges from moderately to pretty badly lame on the left front, and it hasn't really gotten much better in the 10 days since it started. His owner (Jill of Buckskin and Bay) wanted to rule out some things and get some advice on treatment.

Scout is a very curious and friendly horse. Here he is checking out the hoof testers:

He did have some significant sensitivity in the toe and medially in one area of the sole, and also had digital pulses in that foot. Dr. Ana did some x-rays to rule out any rotation or other obvious bony issues - apparently laminitis in one front foot can happen although it's rare. Scout was good about putting his foot on the block, although he wouldn't lift the right front to put it on a corresponding block, so he was standing unevenly, but he didn't seem to care.

When Dr. Ana did lateral x-rays, she put a line on his hoof that will show on the x-rays where the hoof wall is - apparently it can be hard to distinguish:

One thing I like about Dr. Ana is that she is very good with the horses - never rough or unpleasant - and most of the horses really like her. Here's Scout showing his friendly nature:

Dr. Ana says it's very likely to be an abscess, as we had suspected, but that it may take some more time to come out. There wasn't an obvious spot on the sole, so she didn't try to dig around. She thinks the abscess may come out when Scout's farrier trims his hoof wall in the toe area on Friday, or it may work its way up to the coronary band. If he isn't improved in a week, Dr. Ana recommends that she do nerve blocks to localize the source of the pain. For now he can continue to go to turnout, as he seems to feel a bit better in the afternoons after being out.


6 comments:

  1. I rarely let a vet dig for abcesses. It is way to hard to localize where they are going to come out and too often you end up with two holes instead of one. Hope Scout feels better soon!

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  2. What a cutie Scout is! I hope he feels better soon and that if it is an abcess, that it 'pops' soon.

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  3. OOOHHHH Poor little Scout hope he fells better soon!!!!!!

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  4. Can't wait to hear what happens Friday when the farrier comes out. I hope you guys get some difinitive news. He is a cutie.

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  5. Wow...reading all the attempts to find the cause of lameness..it is amazing.

    I have not had an absess with the Wa mare in four years. Not that one maybe could have occured..I have seen small cracks at the hairline sometimes, that dissapear quickly.
    Do you think Shoes make a diff in a horses hoof ?
    Your vet sounds really neat!
    KK

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  6. Seems there is a mystery lameness epidemic going around! One of mine is just getting over a double whammy .... abcessES in the left front and left hind at the same time!
    Here's hoping Scout gets well soon! If it is abcess(es), I'm sending heeling white and icthamol wishes his way!!

    tailwindssouth.blogspot.com

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