All this extreme weather in Kentucky has cause an usual number of hoof abscesses. I wish I had stock in duct tape! Anyway, most resolve easily but sometimes you get one that goes deep and can effect the surface of the coffin bone. Ivan was three legged lame for three days with an absess in spite of soaking and animalintex packs so we had it x rayed. Sure enough the sole was underrun with it and the tip of the bone was infected. I took pictures of the surgery to debride the bone and resolve the abcess. Thought it might be interesting for other horse owners. Ater this procedure the vet returned and introduced medical grade maggots under the hospital plate. They only eat the necrotic tissue and insure the hoof heals and the abscess doesn't return. Too gross even for me to take pictures of <g> He was sound almost immediately. The link will start the slideshow.
Windward Farm, Washougal, WA- our work in progress, our money pit, our home!
As usual, your photography is amazing--and that was fascinating to watch! I've been treating a terrible thrush infection in a 26 yo for 3 months, and got to watch a super vet finally get to the bottom of it last night. I hope your boy heals quickly, and cheers to the the wee maggots! Old fashioned medical treatments are wonderful!
Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!
My guess would be the shoe was applied beforehand to help keep everything clean after surgery. If you had to glue on a shoe afterward you might contaminate the site, or get glue in the hole or something.
Plus, if the patient feels any pain and gets fussy, the shoe is already on. But those are just my guesses.
The shoe goes on first to stabilize the hoof and to keep contamination in check. When you have to cut away so much you need the shoe to stabilize the foot . The putty like substance they put in at the last was to keep equal pressure on the rest of the sole so the horse doesn't come through the bottom. The bone is actually exposed so the hospital plate keeps it sealed and supported. I will try to get a shot of the maggots on Saturday morning. When they go in they look like tiny grains of white rice. When they come out they are big and fat and creepy <s>
I've been dealing with this in KY as well, though luckily not quite as bad. My mare's abscess just wasn't getting better with the usual treatments even after the farrier dug it out. There were a couple days when I could barely force her to walk. I took her in to have her foot xrayed and sure enough, she had some osteomyelitis in her coffin bone. We did 4 days of CleanTrax and LA200 and she's doing great. Still having to keep her slipper on and treat the hole with Xenodine, which has been a pain with all this rain. I suppose I can't complain though, since we avoided curetting or worse.
yea, another reason for the shoe (on top of protection and stability) might also be to put on a hospital plate. which will seal the hoof off form foreign matter, possible damage, AND allows the owner to lift, treat, and put back on