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Possible Splint ?

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  • Possible Splint ?

    My 15 YO Holsteiner cross has been working amazingly with no issues at all for quite some time. He is on Adequan and sometimes warms up a little stiff in his left hind, but has been super sound for over a year. My trainer witnessed, last Tuesday, him and his buddy gelding galloping all out to the fence line and then attempting to slam on the brakes, which usually works (makes me cringe every time though), but it is like monsoon season here lately so his hind end slipped up under him until he was sitting like a dog. That evening he was slightly off on the lunge at the trot and clearly not wanting to use his hind end in his normal popping up off the ground upward transitions. I checked that left hind leg and there was a small swelling about the size of a large marble and some heat on the outside about 6 inches below his hock, however, after standing quietly on the cross ties for about 10 minutes, the heat went away. It was too late then to buy poultice, but I did the next day and attempted to keep him wrapped and in a stall with a run in.

    Thursday the bump was feeling more "squishy" and less hard like a knot, and the heat had not returned. Friday morning he started to hate being in all the time and got loose and galloped around like a madman, and the barn owner had to call me, out of breath, at 10am to tell me that he mysteriously escaped and she had been chasing him around the property for the better part of an hour. Since then he has been out at night when his buddy is in so he quietly stands by the barn and then he goes in during the day. He is wrapped with a clay poultice then cotton and standing wraps (I have been polo wrapping his right hind so it doesn't get sore from him favoring it). When he is wrapped he moves MUCH better, but he continues to be short at the trot. I was researching about splints online, and that is what it seems to be, but they say it is very uncommon in older horses and in the area where the lump is.

    The common suggestion seems to be 30 days trying to keep him quiet. I am wondering if he maybe could have gotten a splint at a young age that occasionally gets inflamed? I would definitely love to have a vet out as soon as it is feasible, but am wondering if, in the interim, anyone has experience with something similar and what the outcome was. Thanks!!!

  • #2
    It sounds like it could either be a splint or a wind puff. Many would argue wind-puffs only occur on BOTH legs but that's not completely true. Usually with wind puffs there is little to know heat and the swelling will go down during exercise due to better circulation...tuns out my gelding has the same thing yours does only on the front leg and he has lameness. I am keeping my fingers crossed it is not a tendon injury which could be the problem with your horse. I'd say to try and keep him quiet, cold hose, after a week or so lunge him lightly see how he does otherwise maybe call the vet....


    • Original Poster


      It has been nearly 2 weeks now, and he is looking quite a bit better. I have been keeping him in during the days and out at night. The lump is "squishy" now, rather than like a hard knot, which I believe it good news ? Not sure. He is moving much better off his hind end, but that could be because he got his Adequan shot last Monday. He is still a bit short in that left hind though. Really not sure what it could be. I don't know what the vet could really do if they did come out, though I am going to ask her to look at it when she comes out for his next Adequan shot. My fear is that I will spend several hundred bucks having it X rayed only to have her advise stall rest (which I am doing anyway). Thoughts ?