Action Plan: I will use prevention strategies and signs when it comes to lameness and joint disease.
Rational: By seeing early signs of lameness and joint disease I will be able to contact my vet early to prevent further damage. Once cartilage degradation has begun, then the progressive inflammatory cycle has started and the joint will never successfully heal or return to 100%.
Steps to Achievement: To prevent this terrible thing from happening I need to always be on the look out and feel for pain, swelling, heat, and loss of function.
Articular Cartilage: Specialized tissue lining the ends of bones in a joint. It is composed of a matrix of collagen, proteoglycans (hyaluronic acid & chondroitin sulfate) and water. It allows for a smooth, gliding surface during joint movement and also acts as a shock absorber. Articular Cartilage is continuously being remodeled by breaking down the matrix and replacing it with a new layer.
Bone: Serves as the framework for the horse’s body, where muscles, ligaments and tendon attach. The bone in a joint supports all of the joint’s tissues. A joint needs a healthy bone to function properly.
Ligaments, Tendons and Muscles: All three are involved in providing stability to a joint. If any of these tissues become damaged, the joint will lose stability and may be more susceptible to injury.
Synovial Fluid:Serves to lubricate the joint, provide nutrition to neighbouring cells maintaining joint cartilage as well as remove waste products. Normal joint fluid is pale yellow in colour and oily – similar in consistency to car engine oil.
Action Point: Become skilled at identifying lameness.
Rational: Being able to identify a lame horse will allow me to get the horse medical attention in a timely fashion. The sooner the vet is called the better chances of a successful recovery.
Steps to Achievement: In order to achieve this goal I need to gain further understanding and knowledge of how to identify, outside of readings that the course offers, as I personally need a bit more help. Therefore I will read at least 2 reliable articles.
Articles for me to Read: