Anyone ever have this happen to their horse and what was the diagnosis?
Long post and horse is under vet care with the plan of taking him to a hospital for further diagnosis but I am curious ahead of time to hear of any others experiencing this. 16.2, healthy, athletic Anglo Arabian. Last day of his winter lay off, he slips and falls on ice in the pasture. Falls hard on his right side, hops up, holds the leg up for a second, puts it down, up, down, and walks off fine. I watched him and he appeared ok so I left him out. Later that day we go to ride him and he is lame in the right hind. Vet next day can find nothing significant other than slightly lame. Decide probably bruising but keep him in for the rest of the week, hand walk and reevaluate. He gave me some preloaded Ace to use when he goes for his walk since he can be hot and didn't want to risk reinjury. Inject, take him out and he is like a drunk, staggering around and I am thinking he is a cheap drunk! Couple hours later, no change. Call to the vet and he tells me sometimes ace stays in the system for quite some time so wait until the next day. No better so vet again, horse is really weak and vet thinks neurologic problem and consults with collegue. Collegue suggests some ace got into the spinal column and it would take as long as week to clear. No, horse is getting weaker. OK on a straight line but if he even turns his head to look sideways, he loses his hindquarters, twisting right. Horse is ok in all other respects, eating, drinking, pooping, etc. Very angry to be kept in but quite reasonable when taken out for a walk and grazing.
EPM comes to mind but would that come on so quickly? Horse has never had any issues previous to the fall. Like I said a trip to a vet hospital is being put together but I wanted to get some of your experiences 'cause this is totally new to me! Thanks!
I'm thinking neurological, possibly damaged something (spinal???) when he fell......unless he was somewhat off and that's what triggered his fall on the ice. My horse's EPM came on quick, but she was stumbling for a week or two before the major symptoms.
There is no snooze button on a cat that wants breakfast.
Been there. How old is he? I say look for some trauma in the cervical spine area. Find a good equine clinic that can do cervical xrays.
In the meantime, hopefully your v et is treating the neurological symptoms. IV DMSO and bute is what init ially helped my boy. Once the vet did the xrays she felt it was the neck and we wound up injecting with steroids.
And yes, we went down the epm road as well. A borderline titer ruled it out.
Wobbles usually hits the young ones. CVM hits the older ones.
It is possible that this horse has a hairline fracture somewhere along the hip/pelvis area and yes a fall on the ice could most definitely do that. And yes it is possible for them to walk off fine at first.
The next possibility is that he may need to have some chiropractic work done as he may have knocked something out of alignment. My horse is going through this right now after flipping himself over when he decided to act like a butthead. He walks and trots off great but at certain exercises, like bending to the right he is off. A normal lameness eval would not detect that he is truly off but flexing his neck to the right shows it.
In regards to the Ace, was this his first time on it? It is possible for him to be that affected by it and still be diminishing at the same time.
There may truly be some neurological issues working their way around him as well. EPM is definitely something that can come on that suddenly so it shouldn't be ruled out.
Did your vet actually come to the farm or did he diagnose this over the phone?I know that you said you were working on going to the vet but if you just had a few conversations then you need to get him out to see him. I know that we as horse people do a lot of our own vetting but as a vet tech, it is very frustrating when people just call to have a diagnosis over the phone because more often than you'd like to know, there's something more serious going on than you are seeing than by the time we get out there, things are a hot mess and more expensive to deal with, and then the owners face some hard decisions. I always tell our owners that it's better to pay a farm call for nothing than it is to pay for a little problem that they made worse with their good intentions. Not saying that is what you are doing but he really needs to be seen because if it is a fracture or EPM, things will only get worse and more expensive.
I hope that everything works out ok for you guys. Keep us posted.
The only time I've seen anything similar was in my husband's 21 year old OTTB. Apparently he fell in the pasture overnight and was neurologic as all get out the next morning. He couldn't turn to the right- would whirl left to go right, had trouble standing, etc. We did steroids, etc. but came to the conclusion that he had a bit of calcification break off and impinge the spinal column. He was older and let's just say didn't have a good gonna-get-myself-well ethic (kind of an Eyore horse if I ever did see one), so ultimately we had him put down. I sure hope your guy makes a quick recovery. Many jingles!
Two years after recovering from EPM with mild residual deficits, my Gwen got a bee in her bonnet and ran the fence line in the big pasture one day. I brought her in that night and she could barely walk in a straight line--she had some grass stains on her hocks so I know she went down at least once. (I wasn't home, my husband saw her galloping)
She never recovered--went from bad to worse and eventually could do almost nothing except turn in circles. We figure she must have injured her spine, or that the EPM had come back with a vengeance, although the fence-running was temporally a very obvious trigger.
My older draft mare suddenly developed a lean to the left this spring, during snow-slush season. Upon observing her and doing the 'tail pull' test, the Vet immediately said it was neurological. EPM blood test was negative (it's rare in our area), and the mare has been well vaccinated against EEE WEE. X-rays of her neck show minor arthritic changes, but nothing that one would not normally expect in a 19-year-old horse. Bute straightened her up, but then we had a ton of rain (and thus mud), and the poor mare tilted in the other direction! I upped the Bute for a few days, and she has now straightened up again but still walks a bit tentatively. She can canter just fine, and has not been lame.
I'm thinking of getting a chiropractic evaluation, but will wait just a bit more before doing so. The Vet said she hasn't had much success with chiropractic treatments in the horses she treats (she doesn't do chiropractic, but there is a Vet in the area who does).
So, sorry, I'm not much help to you, but misery does love company