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Horse falling/going in circles. UPDATE last page. Jingles!

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    Horse falling/going in circles. UPDATE last page. Jingles!

    Last week on wednesday our older horse fell during turnout in the paddock. He fell during playing?? We don't really know. But he fell into an electric wire that is around that specific paddock at one side of it. He lay kicking and trying to get up for about 1 to 3 minutes; we don't exactly know and when he stood up he had his eyes turning in his head, his legs were standing strangely and he was turning in small circles and not walking soundly afterwards. He was much in distress; he is our leading gelding so he was quite upset that something like this happened. We took it slowly the next days, only handwalking and turnout. He was sound then and still is sound, thank god. He seemed okay and was easily stressed but further he seemed okay.

    Today 9 days later he almost fell when he was brought outside to the paddock by the barnowner. It scared the shit out of her (and of us when she called and told my boyfriend).
    After asking around a bit someone at the barn has seen him doing some turning in circles on monday (after 5 days).
    I wonder if the first fall was an accident or was the same thing that happened today or whether he has a concussion by the fall or the electric shock that resulted in the almost fall today.
    Do you have ideas or any experience with concussions or electric shock or anything that may cause this behavior in an older horse??
    We could use some jingles just to be sure. Boyfriend was in tears tonight when he told me about it. Please think with me about cause and give us some jingles... We will off course keep a close eye on him and call a vet and ask them too. Yesterday he had a lesson in which he walked/trotted/cantered like a pro??
    Last edited by fargo; Dec. 22, 2006, 06:13 AM.
    Offspring of Ramiro Z clique,member TrakehNERD Clique Very proud and honored to be the human of Fargo (RIP) and Whizzard. Whizz what a true friend you are.

    It clearly sounds like a neurological issue which could mean many things including spinal injury or EPM (usually one sided). it's hard to know if the fall caused the injury or if he fell because of neuro issues .

    I would get the vet to give him a full assessment. It could be dangerous to ride him if he has a neuro deficit.

    here's hoping it's a temporary problem and he recovers soon. Please be careful.


      He may be starting to have mild strokes. I hope not but unexplained falls and odd behavior make it sound like it.




        Call the vet.


          One of those situations where you need a vet as a matter of importance.


            Or seizures. I agree, a vet is needed.
            "If a horse has a "warm" backloose, supple and oscillatinghe can lift the rider...on a "cold" backlow and stiffthe rider achieves nothing other than growing old sitting on it." Charles de Kunffy


              Seizure or stroke? I agree - call the vet.
              She wasn't running away with me, I just couldn't stop her!


                I'd suspect heart attack, or stroke. Hope not, but it is NOT uncommon in the older horses. Good luck.
                Kim H.
                my fat farrier fingers don't type well, and this keyboard mises keystrokestoo so typos are inevitable - I am not iventing a new language or butchering the old. Sorry


                  I agree with all who have said get a vet out. Also, jingles for both of you and hope that the vet can figure out what is wrong with him.


                    Original Poster

                    update and questions

                    Thanks all for the information until now. Today we spoke to the barn owner and she told us that yesterday he had his head reall high and started shaking and started turning in small circles. He hit a electric wire and wall and stopped and started walking normally again.

                    Spoke to our instructor as well and he thought of a stroke or something like that as well. They have another old horse in their stables who just had an attack.
                    I now think seizure, stroke or neurological or brain damage?? Any further thoughts are appreciated. Can vets determine which of these is the case and whether the first fall was cause or result?? Today he was looking fit and acting normal. I agree on the not riding part, hope we can determine what is bothering him and keep him stable.

                    (Could this have anything to do with cushings or be in any way a symptom or related? His feet are not the feet of a cushing horse our farrier says. We have been giving him herbs just in case as people here suggested, because he has had very thick and longish hair. None of the other symptoms.)

                    Please jingle for us. He really is a very important horse for us, especially since we lost fargo so unexpectedly last year..
                    Offspring of Ramiro Z clique,member TrakehNERD Clique Very proud and honored to be the human of Fargo (RIP) and Whizzard. Whizz what a true friend you are.


                      Could also be an inner ear infection...running away from the pain (circles) and equilibrium issues. Pretty rare but they do happen. I had a mare that suffered from this. It was the scariest thing to see her "episodes" and not know what it was.

                      We took her to the hospital for a work up -- after eliminating EPM and brain tumor and/or stroke they suspected inner ear infection. The only way to confirm was putting her under a general and scoping the ear -- the ear canal of the horse makes a 90 degree turn and almost impossible examine standing. That confirmed it.

                      The treatment was bute for inflammation and 3 weeks of Baytril.

                      Just a thought. Does he circle in only one direction? That can be telling.
             See Little Bull Run's stallions at:
                      "Argosy" - YouTube and "Boleem" - YouTube
                      Boleem @ 1993 National Dressage Symposium - YouTube


                        My Appy had something slightly similar. We were walking him in from the pasture one day and he was walking like he was ready to fall over, almost drunk like. It went away for a bit.

                        Then the next day the Feeder called and he was walking the same way in the aisle to his stall. Although never fell.

                        The Vet came, did a bunch of Neuro tests and couldn't come up with anything. He thought a possible small blood clot somewhere and recommended giving him Buffered Aspirin in his grain and it never came back.

                        This was a long time ago, I know it was a lot of aspirin with each feeding, but couldn't tell you exactly how many and how long we did it.

                        Good luck....
                        MnToBe Twinkle Star: "Twinkie"

                        Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!


                          You say this happened a week ago!! If my horse was having maybe mini- seizures, maybe mini- strokes, maybe neurological problems, was walking in circles etc. I would have called the vet. - he would have been out on the spot. Might be inner ear but could even be a tumor.

                          Please Fargo, get your vet out.
                          One pair of good hands is better than having a thousand different bits.


                            There was a horse at a barn I worked at years ago with similar symptoms. It ended up being rabies. Please don't delay getting vet out.
                            Lapeer ... a small drinking town with a farming problem.
                            Proud Closet Canterer!


                              The thing that caused me to get my mare immediate veterinary help then get her to a hospital was:

                              1) There was nothing "subtle" about what was was frightening and dramatic, and reeked of a very serious problem.

                              2) She could fall and break a leg, fracture some body part -- or sustain serious suspensory injuries from the bizarre and freak body contortions from the yet undiagnosed problem.

                              3) My vet is one of the best...and being so, immediately realized he had a "zebra" case on his hands. She never "did it" in front of him as it was sporadic, but his concern about these dramatic and strange symptoms led him to refer me to an equine hospital that could do the diagnostics immediately. He COULD have run up bills trying to figure it out himself over weeks or months, but frankly he saved me a lot of money and time ...and of both our primary concern, the horse a lot of needless danger to herself as well as me, when she had an "episode".

                              BTW, yes...rabies was on the "possibilities" list when I got her to the hospital. I have no doubt had we not acted quickly, my mare would have injured herself badly from the "symptoms" she was displaying.

                              But we had a happy ending because we acted quickly.
                     See Little Bull Run's stallions at:
                              "Argosy" - YouTube and "Boleem" - YouTube
                              Boleem @ 1993 National Dressage Symposium - YouTube


                                yes not to be throwing flames...but I can't understand why the OP hasn't called the vet out yet. If this was a human displaying these symptoms, wouldn't they have been taken to the dr or the ER immediately?
                                Seeing as how another horse has had an "attack" a vet can at least rule out a communicable disease... yeesh.


                                  OK, I'll flame: I cannot fathom why there has been a delay in getting the vet out! And the OP states this horse is very important to them? WTF?
                         GA Horse Rescue


                                    Let's see if I have this right:

                                    This horse is very important to you.

                                    He fell and was entangled in a live electric wire on November 29th.

                                    Since that date, he has been observed on a number of occasions to have either fallen or exhibited a range of obviously abnormal neurological symptoms.

                                    So far, you have talked to your barn owner, your instructor and started a thread on an Internet BB.

                                    "He lives in a cocoon of solipsism"


                                      I agree with sid, an ear or sinus infection was my first thought other than neuro. Either way, it needs to be treated immediately.
                                      RIP Bo, the real Appassionato


                                        What are you waiting for? Get the vet out.
                                        People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but actually from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint - it's more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly... timey wimey... stuff.