Lady’s lameness continues. Lady Forelock is an ex-showjumper that came over from Holland in 2009. Since then she’s had a long list of injuries, starting with a broken shoulder, just weeks after she came to her home at the Forelock yard. She’s always been a bit sharp and spooky and is always getting herself into scrapes, usually by jumping at an imaginary foe and falling into a ditch, tree, fence or pond. And despite being a show jumper, show jumping was definitely not a favourite activity. She is happy jumping out on the cross-country course, but jumping a tight course in a small school is not something she has ever enjoyed.
In 2011 we discovered she had problems with her front feet. Her lameness wasn’t immediately obvious because she was lame in both fronts, however a nerve block quickly showed a pronounced lameness in the opposite leg. She had long pasterns, dropped heels and her pedal bone was very close to the sole of her feet. Her feet we very sore and most likely to be the reason she disliked jumping especially if the turns were tight. After trying different shoeing methods we finally found a shoe that suited Lady and she quickly became sound and much happier.
It stayed that way for 5 years, until earlier this year. She started getting days where she was very slightly lame and days where she was extremely lame. The first diagnosis was an abscess in her left hoof, she recovered and was sound again for a few weeks, but then she seemed lame on her right which occasionally switched to the left . After another nerve block, x-rays in both fronts were advised they showed a change to her navicular bone. Apparently the frog support on the shoes she’d been wearing was restricting blood to that area of the hoof and causing pain within the navicular area. A change in shoeing again had a remarkable effect. She was again sound!
Then 4 weeks later I arrived at the yard to find her severely lame on the right. She struggled to turn and this time I thought her luck had finally run out. I reluctantly called the vet thinking that THIS WAS IT but after a long examination the vet thought it was most likely another abscess.
I was SO relieved. An abscess was the best possible diagnosis. The vet actually said a ‘possible abscess’ because the flexible frog support on her wedge made it difficult to see, but I read that as ‘a definite abscess’ because it’s what I wanted it to be. I was told to take her off the bute I’d been giving her and was told to expect her to become extremely lame in the front right again.
However, the extreme lameness on one side hasn’t returned. Instead she appears to be very slightly lame in both fronts on the straight and very sore on both turns.
My worry has returned and the vet is due out again tomorrow. Wish us luck!
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