• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com 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.

Announcement

Collapse

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 are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

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 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Hock spur - inject or cut our losses?

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Hock spur - inject or cut our losses?

    I have a coming 5 year old with a small hock spur in his left hock. We found this out during a PPE when he was 3 years old. At the time we considered cutting our losses and putting him down, but he is such a sweet loving gelding who had not shown any signs of lameness yet so we decided to wait and see what happened when he was started under saddle. We realized then that all the money we had invested in him would never be recuperated, nor would the money we invested from that point on, but we hoped that he would at least be "usable" for someone so he could find a good home.

    So we waited until he was 4.5 years old to start him. He has been under saddle for 3 months now, and he is going relatively well, but he is bucking VIOLENTLY in the right lead canter, so we have to accept the reality that it is most likely the hock spurs (because he is generally a very easy going and lazy horse).

    That leaves us with a really tough decision - at what point do you throw in the towel?

    I have no experience with hock injections or hock spurs - so I have no frame of reference - I have no problem getting him injected twice a year for the rest of his life if it works, but I don't want to throw my money down the drain if I am just delaying the inevitable.

    Suggestions? Anyone have success with hock injections as a treatment for bone spurs?
    Be firm, fair, kind, clear, consistent, patient, and, above all else, maintain a sense of humour.
    www.stargazerfarm.ca

  • #2
    To answer your question, it would be highly dependent on how significant the spur is and where exactly it is located in the hock. There are many horses that have a hock spur and it never causes any ill effects. I am a little confused because you say small spur, but then note you were thinking of putting him down. I would be very surprised if a small spur was cause for that. While it obviously is coincidental that he is showing signs of behavior issues while going to the right, there certainly "could" be other causes so I would think a full evaluation might be warranted. Have you x-rayed his hock again...any change? No change would say just a little, but if there were significant changes that might tell you more given the short timeframe.

    What breed is he? How big is he?

    Comment


    • #3
      I would repeat the radiographs and see how it's progressed before making any decisions. If the new rads look TERRIBLE and the spur has progressed into something more serious...well....you've got your answer. If the rads are unchanged and you've still just got a small spur, perhaps it would be worth trying injections.

      Comment


      • #4
        Is he positive to flexing ?
        http://sporthorsesnw.com/
        https://www.facebook.com/pages/Sport...01526589966216

        Comment

        • Original Poster

          #5
          Is he positive to flexing ?
          Nothing showed up in the flexion tests when he was 3 - but perhaps now would be different.

          I guess it is time to get the vet out again and re-do the rads.

          What breed is he? How big is he?
          He is a Dutch Warmblood and Quarter Horse cross and is 16.2hh. He has an amazing temperament - everyone always falls in love with him because he is a real snuggle bug and very handsome. My husband is head over heels in love with him - so he is taking the thought of euthanizing him the hardest. Horses can be so heart breaking.

          I have the rads saved somewhere on my computer - I will see if I can post them somewhere.
          Be firm, fair, kind, clear, consistent, patient, and, above all else, maintain a sense of humour.
          www.stargazerfarm.ca

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Ysabel View Post
            Nothing showed up in the flexion tests when he was 3 - but perhaps now would be different.

            I guess it is time to get the vet out again and re-do the rads.



            He is a Dutch Warmblood and Quarter Horse cross and is 16.2hh. He has an amazing temperament - everyone always falls in love with him because he is a real snuggle bug and very handsome. My husband is head over heels in love with him - so he is taking the thought of euthanizing him the hardest. Horses can be so heart breaking.

            I have the rads saved somewhere on my computer - I will see if I can post them somewhere.
            Honestly, I think you might be way ahead of yourself. First, do an evaluation and see if he is positive to the flexions, if he is not (as he wasn't at 3) then you might really be going somewhere you don't have to. A spur in a WB is really not that surprising -- where it is and how it may or may not be affecting the joint is really the question you need to get answered.

            Comment


            • #7
              He is a Dutch Warmblood and Quarter Horse cross and is 16.2hh. He has an amazing temperament - everyone always falls in love with him because he is a real snuggle bug and very handsome. My husband is head over heels in love with him - so he is taking the thought of euthanizing him the hardest. Horses can be so heart breaking

              Honestly, I have never heard of anying euthing over hock chips?. We had one youngster with chips in both of his hocks and we found them at age one. He had the surgery, which in most cases is very straightforward and highly successful, and he recovered with no ill effects and totally normal hocks (and excellent prognosis for a full sport career). The reason it is good to have the surgery done early is because it prevents the chips from causing osteoarthritis down the road. Once the arthritis developes then you have that to contend with ie injections ect. Most horses respond very well to injections and if he is sound to look at I am doubtful the arthritis is even bad at all?

              If the xrays show that he may not hold up to a sport career long term, then why not find him a home where he will be used less ie as a pleasure or low level horse? Mild hock arthritis (if that is even what it is at this point) shouldn't be a death sentence!
              www.svhanoverians.com

              "Simple: Breeding,Training, Riding". Wolfram Wittig.

              Comment


              • #8
                I have a 9yo mare who had bilateral bone spurs in the lower hock joint (basically a little lip at the top of the cannon bone) at 5. Mild response to flexion on one. She has taken three riders Training level eventing, one First Level dressage schooling 2nd, and never had any problem with regular work.

                vet opinions to original rads? "she's worthless" (potential buyer's vet), "remove surgically" (one of my vets) and "problem? Where? Are you kidding? Put her to work and if it's a problem inject it" (rood & riddle vet)

                Jennifer
                Third Charm Event Team

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Ysabel View Post

                  I have no experience with hock injections or hock spurs - so I have no frame of reference - I have no problem getting him injected twice a year for the rest of his life if it works, but I don't want to throw my money down the drain if I am just delaying the inevitable.

                  Suggestions? Anyone have success with hock injections as a treatment for bone spurs?

                  With a good sport vet....hock injections are not a huge deal. Our vet does them at the farm. Not overly expensive (few hundred). Little tranq, two days off...horse is back in work. There can be complications but it is unusual. A young horse might just need them once every few years....or at most once a year...especially if you supplement with other joint supplements like Pentosan or Adaquan.

                  BUT before you head there...make sure that is the issue. Flex, repeat xrays....and I would have it blocked and see if the horse goes better.

                  I wouldn't give up on him yet if he has such a great personality. Good luck!!!
                  ** Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip. ~Winston Churchill? **

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    If the xrays show that he may not hold up to a sport career long term, then why not find him a home where he will be used less ie as a pleasure or low level horse?
                    That was really all we were hoping for - even if he could do lower level dressage and trail riding I would be happy. With his temperament I could even use him as a school horse. But he can't do any of that if he is bucking in the canter.

                    It is the original vet who put the thought of euthanizing him in my head - she had me in tears by the time she was off the phone with me - but then a few friend talked me down off my "ledge", and that is when I made the decision to just put him to work and keep our fingers crossed. I also talked to a few more vets since that told me that hock spurs "may" never give him troubles - so I was feeling good about my decision - but when the bucking started the words of the original vet sort of came back to haunt me. That is why I came on here - to hear from people with experience dealing with this.
                    Be firm, fair, kind, clear, consistent, patient, and, above all else, maintain a sense of humour.
                    www.stargazerfarm.ca

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Years ago I bought a seven y.o. Hanoverian mare who had a hock spur. She was sound to flexions and in work. The spur was significant enough that my consulting vet didn't think she would be a good idea if I were looking to resell, but I wasn't, so I got her. His comment at the time was that maintaining the hock, should she have trouble later, wouldn't be too difficult. She is now 18 and has never taken a lame step. I'm another who is puzzled by euthanasia suggestions for a horse who is said to have a small spur. I would certainly want to redo the rads and have another evaluation of the hock, especially now that your horse is in work.
                      Mystic Owl Sporthorses
                      www.mysticowlsporthorses.com

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Ysabel View Post
                        That was really all we were hoping for - even if he could do lower level dressage and trail riding I would be happy. With his temperament I could even use him as a school horse. But he can't do any of that if he is bucking in the canter.

                        It is the original vet who put the thought of euthanizing him in my head - she had me in tears by the time she was off the phone with me - but then a few friend talked me down off my "ledge", and that is when I made the decision to just put him to work and keep our fingers crossed. I also talked to a few more vets since that told me that hock spurs "may" never give him troubles - so I was feeling good about my decision - but when the bucking started the words of the original vet sort of came back to haunt me. That is why I came on here - to hear from people with experience dealing with this.
                        I'd put the words of that original vet right out of your mind...sounds like that one was off their rocker to be that extreme with what was then a 3 year old. Particularly since he wasn't even lame. I'd take a breath, put the euthanizing out of your mind and slowly work through the present issues. It really isn't all that surprising to hit bumps on the training road even with the most laid back individuals. I will tell you I have a 13 year old WB doing the 3'6 hunters who certainly has some blemishes on his x-rays -- including his hocks. But they've really not changed in the last 8 years and he does his job happily. (He does sometimes like to buck! ) I think you'll get through this just fine!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Why would you consider euthanasia for a small hock spur? Many horses off the track and sport horses in later years develop hock spurs to varying degrees. I would consult a second vet and get flexions, x-rays, and discuss treatment plans (hock injections and an injectable joint supplement such as legend or adequan).

                          I would look to saddle fit or sore back for the bucking under saddle.
                          .

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Let's put some logic into this situation. You have a young horse with a minor x ray finding who also bucks when going into right canter.

                            The question is are these two things linked? If they are linked then the cause would be pain. So the answer, surely, is to aim to remove the possibility of pain and see if the horse's behaviour changes.

                            The simplest way to do this is to give your horse a loading dose of Bute. It's cheap and effective. If your horse stops bucking then you know the cause of the behaviour is pain although you don't know where that pain is coming from but it would then make sense to have a vet out and do nerve blocks in the horse's leg to establish the area that is sore.

                            IMO jumping to the conclusion that a minor x ray change =pain = misbehaviour = euthanise is madness! Give the horse a chance.

                            I also think that jumping straight to hock injections is jumping to conclusions. You have to find out if the bucking (which is the problem. If the horse was not bucking you would not have a problem, would you?) is pain related or behavioural.

                            The logical path to follow is Bute then reassess under saddle.
                            If no improvement send the horse away for reschooling.
                            If there is improvement call your vet for a full lameness work up with nerve blocks.

                            I'd be very surprised if this is anything more than a schooling issue.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by stolensilver View Post
                              Let's put some logic into this situation. You have a young horse with a minor x ray finding who also bucks when going into right canter.

                              The question is are these two things linked? If they are linked then the cause would be pain. So the answer, surely, is to aim to remove the possibility of pain and see if the horse's behaviour changes.

                              The simplest way to do this is to give your horse a loading dose of Bute. It's cheap and effective. If your horse stops bucking then you know the cause of the behaviour is pain although you don't know where that pain is coming from but it would then make sense to have a vet out and do nerve blocks in the horse's leg to establish the area that is sore.

                              IMO jumping to the conclusion that a minor x ray change =pain = misbehaviour = euthanise is madness! Give the horse a chance.

                              I also think that jumping straight to hock injections is jumping to conclusions. You have to find out if the bucking (which is the problem. If the horse was not bucking you would not have a problem, would you?) is pain related or behavioural.

                              The logical path to follow is Bute then reassess under saddle.
                              If no improvement send the horse away for reschooling.
                              If there is improvement call your vet for a full lameness work up with nerve blocks.

                              I'd be very surprised if this is anything more than a schooling issue.
                              this covers it prefectly
                              Providence Farm
                              http://providencefarmpintos.blogspot.com/

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by stolensilver View Post
                                Let's put some logic into this situation. You have a young horse with a minor x ray finding who also bucks when going into right canter.

                                The question is are these two things linked? If they are linked then the cause would be pain. So the answer, surely, is to aim to remove the possibility of pain and see if the horse's behaviour changes.

                                The simplest way to do this is to give your horse a loading dose of Bute. It's cheap and effective. If your horse stops bucking then you know the cause of the behaviour is pain although you don't know where that pain is coming from but it would then make sense to have a vet out and do nerve blocks in the horse's leg to establish the area that is sore.

                                IMO jumping to the conclusion that a minor x ray change =pain = misbehaviour = euthanise is madness! Give the horse a chance.

                                I also think that jumping straight to hock injections is jumping to conclusions. You have to find out if the bucking (which is the problem. If the horse was not bucking you would not have a problem, would you?) is pain related or behavioural.

                                The logical path to follow is Bute then reassess under saddle.
                                If no improvement send the horse away for reschooling.
                                If there is improvement call your vet for a full lameness work up with nerve blocks.

                                I'd be very surprised if this is anything more than a schooling issue.
                                Well said!

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by stolensilver View Post
                                  Let's put some logic into this situation. You have a young horse with a minor x ray finding who also bucks when going into right canter.

                                  The question is are these two things linked? If they are linked then the cause would be pain. So the answer, surely, is to aim to remove the possibility of pain and see if the horse's behaviour changes.

                                  The simplest way to do this is to give your horse a loading dose of Bute. It's cheap and effective. If your horse stops bucking then you know the cause of the behaviour is pain although you don't know where that pain is coming from but it would then make sense to have a vet out and do nerve blocks in the horse's leg to establish the area that is sore.

                                  IMO jumping to the conclusion that a minor x ray change =pain = misbehaviour = euthanise is madness! Give the horse a chance.

                                  I also think that jumping straight to hock injections is jumping to conclusions. You have to find out if the bucking (which is the problem. If the horse was not bucking you would not have a problem, would you?) is pain related or behavioural.

                                  The logical path to follow is Bute then reassess under saddle.
                                  If no improvement send the horse away for reschooling.
                                  If there is improvement call your vet for a full lameness work up with nerve blocks.

                                  I'd be very surprised if this is anything more than a schooling issue.
                                  I agree with this 100%. There is a real possibility that the bucking is merely a coincidence, rather than something caused by a small spur that did not flex positively at age three. Your vet who was talking euthanasia sounds like a wack job. I hope he doesn't do many PPEs. I would do exactly what stolensilver recommends.

                                  I also had a Hanoverian that I bought as a 4 year old with hock spurs. They never bothered him. He was not unusual.
                                  Mary Lou
                                  http://www.homeagainfarm.com

                                  https://www.facebook.com/HomeAgainFarmHanoverians

                                  Member OMGiH I loff my mares clique

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    #18
                                    Thanks you have all been very helpful and have made me feel a lot better.

                                    It is really hard to feel comfortable having a different opinion then a vet when you don't know that much about the condition. Since I have no knowledge of hock spurs other than what little I have been able to find online it was very easy for the vet to make me feel hopeless. On one hand you don't want to be that annoying client that always thinks they know better than the vet, on the other hand I do realize that vets are just people and not infallible.

                                    I will will try a loading dose of bute on him tonight and see what happens.

                                    What worries me about the bucking is the way he is bucking - I expect silliness and/or stubbornness in a youngster so I am not surprised to see bucking in the canter - but when he bucks he is kicking out violently and tucking his tail between his legs - he just looks very irritated and worried. That makes me think pain somewhere so the bute idea may be able to confirm that for me.

                                    I don't think it is saddle fit since he is doing in on the lunge - I don't dare to try and canter him under saddle if he is that bad on a lung line (I would come off for sure - and I don't bounce like I use to). I have been trying to do lots of trot work under saddle in the hopes that it was a balance issue and the trot work would strengthen him and the trot has improved A LOT over the past few months.
                                    Be firm, fair, kind, clear, consistent, patient, and, above all else, maintain a sense of humour.
                                    www.stargazerfarm.ca

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      I had something not dissimilar happen when I put a 4 1/2 year old mare to work. She got extremely leg and body sore, although not bucking sore. I doubt if she has ever bucked in her life. We gave her two months off, hock and three months of IM injections of one of those not to be used Adequan or Legend substitutes, and brought her back to work in straight lines for quite a while. She also got massage and accupuncture.

                                      She had a complete lameness exam with all that entails with a conventional vet, and she also had a vet who practices alternative medicine. She was fine after going through this regime.

                                      You'd be surprised how hard going round in small circles (longeing and pure arena work) can be on a young horse's joints.

                                      Hock spurs--I've had one with those, and they are not necessarily the kiss of death. You can have them removed if they are causing trouble. Any state that has racing will have practices that do such work rather frequently--vet schools also do it.
                                      "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
                                      Thread killer Extraordinaire

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        If the horse has a badly fitting saddle on, saddle issues can show up on the longe, not just under saddle. In fact some horses will buck on the longe and never buck under saddle, without any saddle problems.

                                        A good dose of bute may be a less expensive way to see if pain is causing the bucking. However, if you don't get a definitive answer with the bute, I'd recommend shooting some new xrays and doing some new flexions. I'd also recommend you use a different vet (one that specializes in lameness) if you go that route.
                                        Mary Lou
                                        http://www.homeagainfarm.com

                                        https://www.facebook.com/HomeAgainFarmHanoverians

                                        Member OMGiH I loff my mares clique

                                        Comment

                                        Working...
                                        X