On turnout, how small is small? When my mare came off stall rest after her suspensory surgery, her "paddock" was made out of 6 stock panels, which meant it was about twice the size of her stall. The first thing she did (after eating hay) was roll; she's a smart girl and won't roll in her stall, and after 6 weeks she must have been very itchy. She did get a cut on one leg from an unnoticed sharp edge on one stock panel, so we booted her after that. But in general, that "paddock" was small enough that she couldn't get up to much trouble. (Oh, and she got tranqs, too...)
Things are looking better now and I may have panicked prematurely. By 24 hours after he hurt himself he was about 95% improved. The joint is still a little puffy and warm but it's not too bad. With the exception of an abscess, I've never in my life seen a horse so dead lame recover so quickly.
I just really underestimated his excitement at being turned out. Like I said, we've been through this before (totally unrelated injury) and he came off a month of stall rest without so much as a fart. I'm back to hand walking right now and my usually mellow gelding has got a chain over his nose and is all puffed up and full of himself. He's minding his manners but it's a struggle for him to do so.
I did turn him loose in the indoor last night. All he did in there was roll once then look at me through the window on the door while I cleaned his stall as if to say "come on, don't just leave me here". My plan for this weekend is to give him ace toward the higher side of the dose, hand walk in the indoor until he's calm, take him out and hand graze to make sure he's really under the influence, then, if I think he's going to behave, hand walk in the paddock, then possibly turn him loose. I may turn him loose again in the indoor but it seems he knows that's where he goes to work, not play.
If he's not ready we'll walk some more. After the 1 month light turnout he gets to have a month of his regular turn out to just start getting some exercise and be a horse for a while before he can start back in work. I'm looking forward to that.
Glad it is looking better than first thought.
I know the paniced feeling well. You think they are on the road to recovery and then they do something stupid and you feel like you are starting all over again.
Jingling that he behaves himself and can soon be back to regular turnout.
I've had luck giving my horse a flake of really good alfalfa hay when she needs to be quiet in turnout after an injury. She only gets that as a treat, or on the trailer as bait, and she really likes it. When it's gone, then she comes in before she gets bored.
If you put that out there for him to munch on , maybe he'll be distracted and won't feel the need to have an explosion like that ? And maybe put it in a few little piles so he wanders around to eat it ? Then bring him in when it's gone.
Anyway, glad that he is improved after the mishap ... they really do try every way possible to give you a heart attack, don't they ??
Well it seems that I did over react last month when I put him out and he carried on until he came up lame. I don't know for sure what he did but he jogged sound again in a couple of days.
So I gave up on trying to turn him out in the small paddock alone and just did hand walking and hand grazing for an hour a day or more. The last two weeks I paid one of the young women at the barn to walk him so that some days he was up to an hour and a half.
He started on the last part of his rehab almost two weeks ago. I aced him a little more heavily, hand walked like I had been, took him out to his pasture and hand grazed for a few minutes. Most of his pasture mates were gone for the day so there were only two other horses out. I thought I'd be all ninja stealthy and bent down and quietly unclipped the lead shank. Took him all of about 3 seconds to realize he was loose. He took off like a shot, galloped around for a few minutes, bucked a bit, then pretty much settled down to eat.
I don't know if he'll stay sound under saddle but at least he looks OK now.
Everyone who see's him during the day tells me that he's running, bucking, and playing a lot. He has never done that before, maybe a short canter or a little buck but that's it. I've owned him three years and he has always had the reputation of being the slowpoke, the horse who is more worried about eating than he is playing.
This level of activity is very unlike him. I hope I'm not in for a wild ride when his rehab is over.
I wonder if he's had some sort of sub-chronic irritation going on all along. It seems almost impossible to believe that it could have been going on for three years without overt lameness but I guess I'll never know.
Awesome news. Never underestimate the power of small irritations though.
Sport had a melanoma on his hock. It was small, didn't seem to be bothering anything. It grew over time, as did his attitude, but we never connected the 2.
He had it removed almost 2 years ago and it was like I brought home a new horse.
I wish I had pushed to have it removed years ago.
I got on my horse for the first time since his September surgery a week ago. While I'm no where near ready to say he's sound, so far everything has looked OK.
We're doing half an hour of light work that consists of about 25 minutes of walk and 5 minutes of trot spread out through the walk work. I have asked him for a canter depart just to see if I have any resistance with either lead (I only let him canter 3 or 4 strides). So far he's willing to pick up either lead.
What is really strange to me is that he is coming out much more forward than he ever was. He's had time off before, but even after several months of not working he's never started back this forward. He'll always be a push rather then a pull model but I'm starting to think it's more than coincidence at this point. He was on a full month of his regular turnout prior to returning to work so he's had plenty of time to blow off any extra steam and even after a week of riding he's maintaining this extra willingness to go forward. He's as quiet and steady as he always has been, just moves out better.
He's also doing a lot more outside in turnout. I've owned him three years and he always used to hang back from the herd. Close enough to see them but 50 or so feet away from them. Now if they're running he's right there in the thick of it. I frequently get to the barn to hear "your horse gallops up to the gate every day now", or "your horse followed me around the fence doing his big trot." This is new for him.
So I'll keep legging him up and see what happens. I figure it's going to take at least a hundred rides with no problems before I start to believe that we may have significantly helped him.
Five down, 95 to go.
I have put him on Pentosan. I've done the 4 week loading dose and I am planning on doing a maintenance dose. What are some common dosing regimens? I was thinking of doing twice monthly for a while and if that goes well maybe going to a once a month dose. I'll discuss it with my vet but am just looking for some general info.
It sounds like he's feeling good! I think you're right about this not being a coincidence. He's probably one of those stoic fellows that tries not to show he's uncomfortable and now with the chip removed and the Pentosan he feels like a million bucks.
Jingles that he continues to keep feeling better! Yay!
Pentosan works well for my Boy. I did the loading dose with him and was giving him an injection once a month, but have bumped him up to every 2 weeks. I can tell when he needs it because he'll start throwing in a little buck when I ask for left canter. Do what you feel he needs and follow your gut.
Boyle Heights Kid 1998 16.2h OTTB Dark Bay Gelding
Tinner's Way x Sculpture by Hail to Reason "Once you go off track, you never go back!"