Sport Horse Spotlight

Real Estate Spotlight


Sale Spotlight

  • Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.



Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You�re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the Forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it�details of personal disputes may be better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts, though are not legally obligated to do so, regardless of content.

Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting. Moderators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts unless they have been alerted and have determined that a post, thread or user has violated the Forums� policies. Moderators do not regularly independently monitor the Forums for such violations.

Profanity, outright vulgarity, blatant personal insults or otherwise inappropriate statements will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

Users may provide their positive or negative experiences with or opinions of companies, products, individuals, etc.; however, accounts involving allegations of criminal behavior against named individuals or companies MUST be first-hand accounts and may NOT be made anonymously.

If a situation has been reported upon by a reputable news source or addressed by law enforcement or the legal system it is open for discussion, but if an individual wants to make their own claims of criminal behavior against a named party in the course of that discussion, they too must identify themselves by first and last name and the account must be first-person.

Criminal allegations that do not satisfy these requirements, when brought to our attention, may be removed pending satisfaction of these criteria, and we reserve the right to err on the side of caution when making these determinations.

Credible threats of suicide will be reported to the police along with identifying user information at our disposal, in addition to referring the user to suicide helpline resources such as 1-800-SUICIDE or 1-800-273-TALK.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it�s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users� profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses � Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it�s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who�s selling it, it doesn�t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions � Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services � Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products � While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements � Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be �bumped� excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues � Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators� discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the �alert� button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your �Ignore� list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you�d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user�s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 5/9/18)
See more
See less

Laminitis in the healthy horse?

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Laminitis in the healthy horse?

    Hi folks,

    A few weeks ago my 14yo gelding came up very lame and xrays revealed abscesses in the toe area of both front feet. The vet was able to open both from the sole and they were mostly dry with no noticeable drainage. I have owned this horse since birth and he has literally never had an abscess in his life. He has good feet, no problems with cracks or thin soles. I know that unexplainable abcesses in both front feet can be a sign of laminitis. There were no signs of laminitis on the xrays but the vet said it does not always show up right away so I will have more xrays taken in a few weeks.

    Now here is the quandary... this horse does not have any signs of Cushings or IR. His weight is normal and he is fit and gets ridden 5 days a week. He maintains healthy weight without difficulty but he also is not an air fern who packs on weight easily. He is on 3lbs of quality low starch pelleted feed 2x daily.

    I am having him tested for Cushing’s just in case. He is on pasture board so it is somewhat difficult to have him fast so I wasn’t planning on testing for IR and my vet agrees it’s not necessary as he does not have any signs. Also, his pasture does have spring grass coming up and it is over-grazed which I know stresses and increases sugar levels but my understanding is that should not make a healthy fit horse develop laminitis. The grass itself is also sparse and the pasture is only approx 5 acres w/ 4 horses.

    So, my question for you is have you ever had a completely healthy (no IR or Cushings) fit horse spontaneously develop laminitis w/ no triggering event? Have you ever had a Cushings or IR horse who showed absolutely 0 signs of either condition?

    Many thanks in advance for your thoughts.
    LFC...Pass it on!!
    PRESTO: Foolsih Miracle x Salute the Truth

  • #2
    Why do you think this is laminitis and not just abscess?

    I've gone through several abscess rounds with my barefoot mare. She even had both front feet affected after I took her to an away clinic and she pranced around for 48 hours in a gravel paddock because she knew there was a stallion some where in the property.. Didn't come up lame at the time but two weeks later she abscessed in both front feet.

    I have never involved a vet in an abscess, have just soaked and wrapped under the guidance of my coach/ trimmer.

    Mare has never had any sign of laminitis.

    While repeat abscess can be one symptom of laminitis, an abscess with no other symptoms is more likely to be from a bruise.


    • #3
      OP -- I assume you would have mentioned it as a symptom of IR, but does your horse have a hard crest?
      Nothing with horses is ever easy or cheap. And if it is, you're doing it wrong. They always rip out part of your soul when they leave. I guess that's how they find us later.


      • Original Poster

        I suspect laminitis because it’s in both front feet and my horse has never had an abscess in his life and he does not have thin or easily bruised soles. He had only been ridden in the ring at home, no unusual activity or outings.

        twelvegates - Nope, he’s not even a little cresty.
        Last edited by BarnBrat; Feb. 4, 2020, 05:59 PM.
        LFC...Pass it on!!
        PRESTO: Foolsih Miracle x Salute the Truth


        • #5
          It's probably good to rule out everything else, but not having had an abscess before is not necessarily a sign that it's not just a normal abscess now. My 12 year old, who I've had since he was a yearling with no changes in diet/pasture/work had his first abscess last late winter/early spring. He has not had another one since.


          • #6
            Abscess is not usually the first sign of laminitis.

            Laminitis shows up as heat in all 4 feet because it is systemic. And if it progresses to founder it leaves characteristic rings and a deformed shape as the coffin bone drops.

            Horses are prone to laminitis through over feeding and
            obesity that leads to metabolic problems (like pre diabetes in humans), from Cushing's, from acute infections and from concussion like ridung on too much pavement.

            It's good to do all the tests if you've got a vet on board already but I have seen so many horses get very occasional abscesses unrelated to laminitis that I would never think there was an obvious link.



            • #7
              I don't believe that healthy horses get laminitis without some external factor. (ie sudden over eating, road founder etc). My quarter horse's initial Cushing's symptom was being very tender footed after having his shoes pulled for the winter. After a course of bute to rule out just a short trim, I had him tested for both Cushings and insulin resistance. No insulin resistance, but he was hypo thyroid and had cushings. He started on 1/2 tablet of prescend and it has been gradually increased to 1 1/2 over the years and still his only symptom is ouch feet after a trim.


              • #8
                OP, given some of the other posts at the moment, I want to applaud you for taking such initiative in making sure there’s nothing more here.

                I doubt it’s laminitis, but he is a horse. As such anything at all is possible.
                Show me your horse and I will tell you who you are.


                • Original Poster

                  Thanks everyone. If he didn’t have abscesses in BOTH front feet I wouldn’t be so suspect of laminitis and that there may be an underlying metabolic cause, despite the lack of typical symptoms of metabolic disease.
                  LFC...Pass it on!!
                  PRESTO: Foolsih Miracle x Salute the Truth


                  • #10
                    He may have excellent feet, but if your weather is like ours ( constant wet) It is easy enough for a foot or 2 softened by wet living conditions to abscess all of a sudden.

                    As they age even a lifelong healthy horse can be sensitive to mild changes in their diet or living conditions and laminitis can happen. Any changes in hay source? What is the pasture ground like?

                    Being proactive is good and can bring peace of mind.


                    • #11
                      We have a horse at my barn that is positive for IR, but has no signs. I'm not certain how common that is, but there he is. He was tested for metabolic issues when he became tender on all four hooves a few winters ago. It was part of a general well being veterinarian visit and we were somewhat astonished with that result. Thankfully he has responded completely to a diet change and dry paddock.


                      • #12
                        Has your veterinarian given any thought to a possible keratoma?
                        Some riders change their horse, they change their saddle, they change their teacher; they never change themselves.

                        Remember the horse does all the work, we just sit there and look pretty.


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by BarnBrat View Post

                          So, my question for you is have you ever had a completely healthy (no IR or Cushings) fit horse spontaneously develop laminitis w/ no triggering event?
                          I have a customer who's horse went lame about a week or two after I shod it. Both fronts hot,pulses and sore to hoof testers. I didn't see any obvious signs that it was a shoeing issue. She said don't worry about it this happens every once in awhile. I thought she was nuts! Next day the horse was sound. Only thing I can think is the horse had minor acute laminitis.

                          That said, it's a bit of a stretch to go from sudden acute laminitis to abscesses. Acute laminitis will cause pressure on the toe but you need a bacterial infection to get an abscess.

                          What I have seen, which sounds like what you had, a very small bacterial infection which went undetected in both feet. It got to the point it made the horse present lameness in both front feet. Vet suspected laminitis. I happened to dig around the feet a little. Found an abscess in both feet. Just like yours, very little fluid but enough to make it look like laminitis. Horse was sound in a day or two.

                          Eric Russell CJF


                          • Original Poster

                            AMackenchie, ugh did not want to hear that. Was the horse at least a bit of an air fern or maybe slightly chubby? Also was the horse fit and in consistent work?
                            LFC...Pass it on!!
                            PRESTO: Foolsih Miracle x Salute the Truth


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by BarnBrat View Post
                              AMackenchie, ugh did not want to hear that. Was the horse at least a bit of an air fern or maybe slightly chubby? Also was the horse fit and in consistent work?
                              This fellow belongs to a boarder and is a Morgan/Quarter Horse cross. He was in work as a pleasure mount; hacking out, dressage and etc...

                              He hadn't given us concern about metabolic issues. The horse had been with us for several years. He kept good weight with good management and was able to be out with a group of horses on pasture with no issues. Now, after he was tested and was positive for Insulin Resistance he began to develop some of the signs we equate with metabolic issues, such as the body changing with slight crest and he generates a good deal of smegma in the winter. He was 10 years old at the time of his diagnosis and is 14 now. He was always barefoot.

                              Thankfully his condition is controlled with the dry paddock and diet. We had the room here to make him a paddock off a stall. He's not too happy with this arrangement but he simply cannot have even a sprig of green. We did try, limiting his time out and adding a grazing muzzle, but any green affected the tenderness in his hooves and our farrier reported stretching of the laminae. With the diet limitations of simple first cutting in a hay net and zero green, his status has stabilized. His owner can ride him on soft ground lightly. She chooses not to shoe him and she and the horse seem to enjoy their partial retirement.


                              • #16
                                A couple of random abscesses in the toes (diagnosed by a vet) without heat and a pulse are typically not the primary signs of Laminitis and think you might be jumping to the worst possible conclusions here with very little evidence.

                                Since these abscesses are in both toes and he lives outside, it sounds like he got tangled in something or got a couple of minor stone bruises, maybe stepped in rocks or a bottom rail pawing, maybe looking for grass, that developed into abscesses. Horses living out find all sorts of things to get into, even if we remove all possible hazards, and we never observe anything to explain the sudden appearance of cuts, bruises and the like.

                                If anything might be suspect in causing abscesses in otherwise healthy, properly managed horses, it’s consistent, wet ground. IIRC, NC has been experiencing record rainfall lately with no time between storms to really dry out. That’s where I’d be looking, maybe get him on drier ground even just temporarily.

                                And try not to panic.

                                When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                                The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.


                                • #17
                                  I just had my son's Half-Arabian gelding tested for IR/Cushings. There were no clinical signs, but I had a hunch and wanted to be proactive or have a baseline, since I've had two cushingoids in the past. He's 17. Vet was not concerned, and thought if anything, he might be IR (easy keeper, but not grossly overweight by any means). Results: slightly positive, but positive nonetheless, for Cushings.

                                  It doesn't hurt to have them tested. For peace of mind if nothing else.