Update post 7: good news!
...and I'm worrying myself sick. Smallish, hot, soft swelling just above the fetlock on the right hind for about a week. I just can't accept that this mare might have a serious soft tissue injury. :( She's been more like family to me than most of my real family. Not a candidate for long-term rehab, anything more than a few months and she'll become dangerous to herself and others (happened two winters ago when she had to go through a quick 2 month rehab due to a large cut). It's been a week that she's been confined to her stall with a yard, and she's already stressing and cribbing about not going to work (I seriously love this mare).
Hoping for a minor issue, but having days until the vet comes to do a solid diagnosis, there is plenty of time for lots of ugly scenarios to grow in my mind.
I'm lucky that I'll be able to keep her (I don't care about not being able to ride), but I know it'll break her heart to be retired so abruptly. She knows her job and enjoys it, I can't imagine taking that away. But here I am putting the cart before the horse. *breathesdeeply*
Anyone have any success stories of horses who were able to come back after tendons/suspensories on hind limbs? I need to think positive thoughts, but it's so hard! Thanks in advance, COTH.