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Contracted foal

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  • Contracted foal

    I have a 2 day old foal that is slightly contracted. He spent 8 hrs in bandages yesterday with a shot of Tetracycline and is quite a bit better today..still over at the knee but mildly. He hasn't been turned out yet per my vet's instructions, although I read a lot of conflicting reports. We are leaving him another day to see if he improves more on his own and I was just curious how often this happens or if bandages/antibiodic shot is the only way to straighten them up. What are the chances this foal will just get better naturally? Thanks!

  • #2
    Start him on Foalaide paste ASAP. Progressive and Buckeye have similar products, can't remember which is which, one is a drench (rejuvinaide?) and one is a paste, but either of them will produce a massive difference within a week or so.
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    • #3
      Absolutely agree with Molly Malone. Either Buckeye foal aid or Progressive rejuvenaide.
      \"If you are going through hell, keep going.\" ~Churchill~


      • #4
        I would not turn the mare and foal out.


        • #5
          Agreed with Molly and Quinn.
          Randee Beckman ~Otteridge Farm, LLC (http://on.fb.me/1iJEqvR)~ Marketing Manager - The Clothes Horse & Jennifer Oliver Equine Insurance Specialist


          • #6
            Rejuvenaide ASAP or the Buckeye drench


            • #7
              I agree with Ann K. No turnout.

              The drench helps if there is a deficiency in the diet. Otherwise, no.

              Speaking from personal experience ...


              • #8
                Originally posted by Oakstable
                The drench helps if there is a deficiency in the diet. Otherwise, no.

                Speaking from personal experience ...
                Oakstable, I don't see a drench on their website. Where is it?
                Randee Beckman ~Otteridge Farm, LLC (http://on.fb.me/1iJEqvR)~ Marketing Manager - The Clothes Horse & Jennifer Oliver Equine Insurance Specialist


                • #9
                  Yep, Rejuvenaide and limited turnout (no more than a small paddock). I had a contracted foal last year, and the Rujevenaide made the world of difference. I wanted to avoid the OxyTet, and he was VERY quickly improved with the Rejuvenaide.
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                  • #10
                    I live in Canada and don't have access to some of those suggested products but used a local version that worked great when the colts legs started to contract at a couple weeks old. It was amazing how well and quickly it worked.


                    • #11
                      I had a contracted foal some years ago. The oral supps didn't help.

                      A special brace suggested by a COTHer's vet really helped along with the OxyTet.

                      It really depends on severity.

                      I had one many years ago that did not have a happy ending. The second one (out of 40-some foals over the years) turned out just peachy.


                      • #12
                        The other thing that my vet does is makes her clients strip her stalls down to bare rubber mats.........bank all your shavings around the edge.......having the foal walk on hard even ground does wonders......it allows the foot to stay flat and allows the check ligament to stretch allowing the fetlock to drop.......my friend had a foal with pretty pronounced contraction and it took 2 to 3 days of bare rubber mats and the foal was fine.



                        • #13
                          If he's only slightly contracted, eg his feet are on the ground relatively normally, it's just that his knees are knocked forward a bit, what you have done/are doing should bring him right, as long as there is not a nutritional problem that has caused the contraction. Bandage for WARMTH, not support. I have some wraps with a metallic thread through them for this purpose, they work well. The metallic thread warms up nicely, causes relaxation in the tight tendons. Too much running around will cause the tendons to contract when they are tired, so you want some walking around in a big foaling stall, but not wild leaping around in a large paddock, or for the foal to become "overtired".

                          Splinting is only necessary if the foot is not going in the right direction when the foal steps down on the leg. This would be a more serious condition than what you are describing I think.


                          • #14
                            Your vet has given you good advice and I'd follow it. It won't hurt to try the drenches as well - I've had no experience with them but know others who have tried them.

                            I have had two foals with contraction at birth - one a borderline premie, one a bad dystocia with other issues as well (we'll leave him to the side). Oxy-Tet, bandaging and staying in for a bit, with restrictions on turn out for a bit more, worked fine for the borderline premie.

                            I think there is a lot of anecdotal "oh, turn them out, they'll be fine and come along on their own" out there but I've never found those people with those stories to be very reliable and I'm not sure I'd want to take such advice (it's a bit like those who say - oh, just trim off the heel of that horse who's clubbing and that'll fix him).


                            • Original Poster

                              He is doing much better now. The vet came by and gave him another Tetracycline shot on Monday, which makes me nervous, but he seems to be fine and went out today for a few hours. The contraction is almost gone so everything seemed to work. Now I just need to find a good foal blanket that will stay on for the 11 degree weather we have coming!


                              • #16
                                LOTS of turnout
                                Stall mats in stall
                                Do NOT over feed, keep protein lower

                                Buy a rasp and LIGHTLY rasp heels down every other day or so til problem works itself out.

                                If you're persistent about attending the problem it's not a big deal. Ignore it and horse will pay.
                                Now in Kentucky


                                • #17
                                  I agree with the reguvinade..have had very good results with this. Good luck.......


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by keepthelegend View Post
                                    He is doing much better now. The vet came by and gave him another Tetracycline shot on Monday, which makes me nervous, but he seems to be fine and went out today for a few hours. The contraction is almost gone so everything seemed to work. Now I just need to find a good foal blanket that will stay on for the 11 degree weather we have coming!
                                    He will be fine. I had one that was contracted at birth but with 2 shots of Oxytet and one day in bandages he improved greatly and soon was 100%. At his inspection, the inspectors remarked how gorgeous his legs were. So don't worry; you are doing all the right things.

                                    I agree the rejuvenaide is a good product and cannot hurt - it is good to promote proper bone development generally anyway.
                                    Roseknoll Sporthorses


                                    • #19
                                      Contracted foal/ blanket suggestion

                                      We had a foal born last February then, within a week or so, the temps dropped into the single digits with wind. I went to a pet store and bought a doggie blanket, about Great Dane size, with a velcro belly wrap and velcro closure across chest (which I reimforced with duct tape). That worked fine, though he outgrew that blanket in another few weeks. It was just basically like any good turnout, only for large dogs. Worked great and very safe, nothing to catch on anything and nothing to chew off! I couldn't order a true foal blanket in time to do any good with the frigid weather coming so quickly! Best of luck!