Wednesday, August 1, 2012


Danny is approx 24 years old, severe stringhalt, has had it since he came into our family about 4 years ago.
you can clearly see it here

Not much in the right

again it is obvious in the left

He is affected mostly in the left rear leg, but occasionally shows signs in the right as well, usually if it is cold or he is back up.  Nothing is known about his past, what he was used and trained for,or if he suffered an injury. 

He was allowed to "retire" and has been ridden very little since we have had him. In four years I have witnessed his condition progressing to where he is have trouble sensing where he is placing his feet.

note the trauma sight where he continually steps on his own feet

He steps on his own right rear foot often and often places his left rear foot in positions that are un-natural for a horse, he does not move it from that position.

Note how his stringhalt foot is placed directly behind the right foot.  He does not realize where his foot is right now. 

This picture clearly shows that his leg actually comes up far enough to hit his belly.  He has a hard time getting it back down sometimes.
He does do a little better at a canter or trot although I rarely see him go that fast on his own anymore. 

Danny is in good general health.  He is kept up to date on all shots and worming.  He is not prone to founder or thrush and most farriers claim he has some of the best feet they have ever seen on a horse.  Teeth were floated approx 18 months prior to this post.  Vet did not find any hooks or points, just a few waves.  Will have vet down in the next month for full blood panel, just to make the study completely accurate.  The stringhalt hoof does grow slightly longer and flatter than the other 3 hoofs (see pics below)
One year ago, we started a regime of Acupuncture.  Unfortunately in Wyoming there really is no one who is very well trained in this type of medicine, so it had very little effect on him. 

DIET:  Danny is on a simple diet of Wyoming Certified Haycubes (crude protien 18.86%- TDN est. 62%)  and Purina Strategy GX.  He is fed 2x daily and has free run of a pasture all day. Although he really does not graze much.  I would put his weight index at about a 6.  There is no crest present at his neck, nor any fat deposits on his body.

HOUSING: Danny resides in a decent sized paddock.  He is usually alone, with horses in the next paddock, although on occasion I will put either my mare or the other gelding he gets along with in with him.  I always separate at feeding time though as the others will steal his grain.

Danny has suffered a few minor injuries since we have had them. 
1. got in fight with large gelding, was pushed through vinyl fencing, minor cuts and abrasions.
2. large gash or cut on rear of hock, could have been a wire cut, could have been trauma cut from being kicked. Examined by 2 different vets, both agreed the injury was only skin deep.  Cut has healed beautifully (see before and after pics) This was 2 months ago.
3. Last week, trauma to stringhalt hoof, right at coronet band.  Unknown cause, still healing from that.  It does not seem to be causing him much pain, but it is hard to tell with its location.  He does not like me to clean it, where as with the other cut I could scrub daily and he would not move away.  I have not totally ruled out abscess on this one.

The hock cut the day we found it.

Totally healed now 

 The stringhalt hoof abrasion.  I do not like the way this one looks. Sent picture to vet, he says it does not look like abscess, farrier due this week, will have him look as well.

Danny has one old injury on right rear, some proud flesh present.  I do not know how this happened, as he had it when I got him. But I would not be being thorough if I did not mention it.

Here are the pictures of Danny's hooves as of today.  Note that all in all they are in pretty good shape, not quite due for a trim but getting there.  We are in the middle of a drought so they are a little dry, but not near as bad as my other horses.  I do treat with "Horseshoers Secret" directly to hooves, once a week.

Front feet.  Nicely shaped considering he is almost due for a trim.

Right rear foot, also a fairly nice shape.

The strinhalt hoof.  Note that it is slight more elongated, a little lower in the heel. We believe that it is a direct result of the force with which his foot comes down.  It is very hard, which makes gravel or pavement very uncomfortable for him.

I feel that his weight is about as perfect as it could be.

It is my intention to ad a video of him moving to this before post to give everyone a very clear idea of how he moves.
Our next post will be on our treatment plan.

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