X-Ray Results and More

So, to recap where we left off last in the lameness chronicles. The bone scan helped us cross several items on the list, and after another lameness evaluation with blocking we were able to pinpoint the lameness primarily to the hind feet and suspected that negative palmar angles were making him sore.

Not Foster, but an example of a horse with negative palmar angle (back of line is down rather than up) compared to ground

Not Foster, but an example of a horse with negative palmar angle (back of line is down rather than up) compared to ground

This morning I am happy to say that the palmar angle theory was accurate, and the vet literally high-fived me when she saw them. It was really really great to have my farrier there in conjunction, and we can already see a difference in trotting him off in his new hind shoes- rocker shoes with magic cushion and a pad. Also good news, Foster has a lot of sole to work with which makesthe farrier’s job much easier in moving back the break-point and relieving the heels. He’ll be shod probably on a 5 week schedule and after 3 shoeing cycles we’ll x-ray again to make sure we’re still on the right track. Very happy that we have a plan and a solution already in play!

Getting shod

Getting shod

But I did say there was more…
So much more, and Foster was a patient boy throughout

So much more, and Foster was a patient boy throughout

The front right continues to come and go with swelling and the tiniest amount of heat, so we did a quick flexion test on the fetlock, which turned out to be positive.  Remember we’ve only been walking so I couldn’t say if he’s been lame on it recently or not. We went ahead and shot an x-ray on it to check it out. Turns out, Foster has bone chips in two different places in the fetlock, which she thinks is causing the lameness as well as his huge “windpuff” on that leg. Just to be doubly sure, we then blocked the fetlock joint and got an improvement, which helped rule out a suspensory issue versus the bone chips for causing the discomfort.
Creature wants more cookies instead of a bandage where we blocked the joint

Creature wants more cookies instead of a bandage where we blocked the joint

So, all in all, I’m glad we’re pretty certain there’s not a suspensory issue that we’re dealing with. However, it does look like Foster should have surgery if I want him to have a chance at a long career. Considering that he’s 8, it’s the option I’m exploring most right now. Surgery would mean probably a 3 month road back into work but ideally sets us up for success thereafter.
I’m hoping to make a decision this week regarding where we will go and when the surgery will happen. This is not the way I thought the morning would go, but I am grateful to still have some things to be grateful for.