Thursday, September 24, 2009
I had the farrier out yesterday to take a look at Java's hoof. He is not agressive at finding an abscess, but could give me an idea of where it was, etc. Well, Java stepped out of her stall really lame in the morning, heat was near the back of her hoof. I gave her 1 gram of bute at 8:00 am. Java spent about 4 hours out, came into her stall to rest for a while and then I hand grazed her around the barn for about 20 minutes before the farrier got here at 3:00. She dramatically improved as he pulled up the driveway. We both laughed because she was three legged lame in the morning and looked decent with him watching her. The hoof testers showed that she is tender on her outside heel of that hoof.. and a little on the other heel of the same hoof. He sees a tiny spot where there might be something. He barely dug at it, did a little trim (he and I don't want a bigger problem to deal with) and she showed some improvement.
This may mean that it is not an abscess. Maybe a bruise... maybe a little abscess... maybe something else. She has swelling up the back of her leg with some heat (that has me worried). No digital pulse, this is not unusual for her. The heat in her hoof is minor today, but if I look for heat today I find it in the outside wall of that hoof, and up her leg a little.
Today she is still pretty lame, but better than yesterday. I'm going to wait and see. I'll attempt to soak her today (NOT her favorite activity) and see if I can help things along. But if it's an abscess I don't mind her being turned out and walking around as long as she feels OK, but of course I'm watching her every move. No bute since yesterday morning. I want to see what direction she goes in as long as she is comfortable enough without bute. And, that will give me a good idea of how bad this (whatever it happens to be) is. She is moving around less, but pretty comfortable overall.
The poor baby Java (slightly sarcastic) this morning:
Java giving me the "poor baby Java look".
We'll handgraze later, but put her in the other paddock for now with a flake of her favorite flavor of hay (had to excavate in the loft for this bale!) with her favorite one eared batman flymask.
I'm wondering if this is a bad bruise... or a teeny tiny abscess... Really, I would be fine with either. I don't like LEG problems. I took her temp to be sure (the poor baby java look got me worried), and it is normal. One thing that I do know, she is very happy. That's the best part.
This is how I think this happened: Java was acting like a dink a couple of weeks ago and ran the fence line where it is sandy and hard. MAYBE a piece of sand got in along the hoof wall that would probably not have happened if I had her trimmed on time. Then we went for a few trail rides. This may have worked a little piece of sand in... or we stepped on something on the trail that bruised her. I'm thinking piece of sand. I do think that if I had not put off her last trim there would have been less of an opportunity for that sand to get wedged in there... but we'll find out soon hopefully. Oh, and for another bit of info since I know you are all wondering... I pick her hooves daily. And when we ride, the are picked before and after riding. I saw some separation along that wall and ignored it... bad mommy. That won't happen again.