Category Archives: Sick Horses Stall

Lameness Exam

Have your veterinarian perform a lameness exam to aid in diagnosing cause of lameness.

A lameness exam is a great way to get the diagnosis of your horses lameness started. The lameness exam is often broken up in to multiple steps:

Physical Examination: visually examining the horse of any visible signs of lameness, conformation defects, palpation and manipulation to view heat, pain or swelling.

Examination in Motion: examining the horse in its 3 gaits (if horse is capable of doing more then a walk). Often done in hand or ridden.

Flexion Tests: stress particular areas and structures in the horse to see if they show any lameness or worsened lameness. Flexion of a joint is often performed and horse is immediately asked to trot away.

Horses in Casts

Check your horses cast at least twice daily.

A horse with a cast should be checked frequently. We check them frequently to make sure no cast sores; cast sores can become very problematic in your horses recovery. Checking your horses cast involves:

  • checking for heat or discharge
  • checking for an increase in lameness
  • checking the bottom of the cast for ware marks or splitting
  • checking/replacing bandage around top/bottom of cast to prevent dirt and debris from entering
  • checking for pain or swelling above/below cast

Is my horse lame?

Know signs of lameness before they get to far.

Knowing signs of initial lameness can help you to get a quick diagnosis before the lameness becomes a permanent of debilitating problem for your horse. Some signs of lameness include:

  • stiff movement
  • limping
  • sore muscles
  • head bobbing
  • reluctance to move/lift legs
  • inflammation and heat
  • digital pulses

Quarintine Protocols

New arrivals and sick horses should be quarantined/isolated for a minimum of 14 days, ideally 30 days.

Isolating new arrivals and sick horses allows you to properly monitor said horse while keeping the others in your herd safe. While horse is isolated you should monitor his manure, feed/water intake, for any signs of sickness/disease and make sure to do a daily health check. By keeping new arrivals and sick horses in quarantine you are preventing the spread of sickness and disease to your main herd as well as making sure these new arrivals don’t catch anything for the residing herd as well.

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