Monday, August 4, 2014

Healing Misty

Misty's story will be an interesting, and potentially heartbreaking one. I can't tell you much about her past, but I can say that she is a 4 year old Standardbred mare that foundered very badly back in January. She has not been managed appropriately since then and her feet may be irrepairable. But her stoic nature, and sweet eyes made me give her a second chance. I am her proud/scared/worried new owner. This story is just beginning again for Misty, and it may yet be even more heartbreaking than it has already. She may remain uncomfortable and painful, or even become worse, and if that happens, I am prepared to help her pass on peacefully. But in the meantime, we will be doing our best to get her comfortable, keep her feet trimmed correctly, and encourage new hoof growth. Cross your fingers...we need the luck.

Misty upon arriving at my house. She is wearing the styrofoam pads I had asked her previous owners to use instead of shoes, which had been nailed on the bottom of her misshapen hooves just to try to get her sole off the ground. However, the styrofoam was crushed flat and not doing any good. While still at her previous owners, I had removed some of her super long curled up toe and lowered her heels, but was afraid to do too much without radiographs, which we had not done at that time. Then applied the pads...but the pads have to be layered on and replaced every time they become crushed down.

The first changes I made now that Misty is at my house: 1) House her in deep sand (initially was about 6 inches deep of dry sand). 2) Keep the wraps off and give her rotten feet a chance to dry out. 3) Start her on antiinflammatory medications - phenylbutazone.  4) Offer all the free choice grass hay she can eat, 5) Start a complete mineral/vitamin supplement that will support healthy hoof growth. 

Her toe is growing very slowly compared to her heels, if at all, and the deformed hoof capsule is contributing to further deformation.

She has also blown at least 3 abscesses at some time in the recent past on her two front feet, and could potentially blow more. I'm hoping she just keeps the majority of her hoof capsule intact. I worry about this huge crack at her heel and I'm hoping it doesn't extend forward any further, or pinch new growing tissues.

She also has a very convex sole and the sole just in front of the frog is pushed out the most. This makes her very uncomfortable on hard surfaces.

These are the quick rads I shot through her wraps and pads while still at her previous owners (right before I took her home) because we were all curious what was going on inside there.

Obviously there is rotation and sinking of the coffin bone, with an excessively curved dorsal hoof wall, but not much else can be assumed because there is tape and a pad also in the view.

This journey with Misty is just beginning, but I will continue to post about our progress (or lack thereof).  It may be a year or two in the making (time to grow a new hoof), or it may be over in a few months.  It all depends on her comfort.


Andrea -Mustang Saga said...

Ouch! Poor girl.

Anonymous said...

Kudos to you for taking her on. And sending best healing wishes to her.