Thursday, March 13, 2014

I'm Not Going To Panic... Yet

My trimmer was out today for Lilly's 5 week appointment. I noticed as I was bringing her in from the pasture, she was a little bit tender. She definitely doesn't have a pair of rock crushers, but usually she's not quite that tender on the footing leading in from the pasture.

When Crystal was trimming, we found the possible culprit... she had some bruised laminae on both front hooves. I couldn't get a very good picture, but the bruise on her left front was worse than the bruise on her right (the right being the seedy toe hoof). The bruises were both in similar spots and the white line was nice and tight, so we're crossing our fingers that she doesn't have a touch of laminitis. Or if it is, hopefully it's mechanical. Like perhaps the hoof wall had a little too much leverage on it. Her mustang rolls still looked pretty good, so I'm not sure about leverage causing an issue, but maybe she bruised herself playing in the pasture... we've had a couple nice days and the horses have been playing a lot. Or maybe her hoof was slightly unbalanced since we were at 5 weeks since her last trim. I'm ok with all the possibilities we came up with, except laminitis.

Bruises on both hooves were near the center of the toe.
It's a little early in the year for things to be getting crazy with the sugar levels in the grass, I would think. We'll have two days of super nice weather but then we go back to crappy cold weather. So if the grass is spiking during the warm stuff, it's being stifled during the cold... rinse and repeat. There's a little bit of green grass out there, but not a whole lot.

I'm slightly panicked, but trying to convince myself it's just a tiny, minor issue. I'll be monitoring her closely, but if she actually has a touch of real laminitis, the upcoming summer months do not look promising.


  1. Have you done a spring ACTH test on her? - it tends to be more accurate in the spring. Hoof soreness/bruising, although mechanically caused, is almost always metabolic in origin (assuming there's no aggressive trimming going on).

    Good luck.

    1. I haven't had one done yet, but it's on the list when my vet does spring vaccines. When I had it done last fall she mentioned it would be better to do it in the spring. Perhaps I should go ahead and schedule that now.

      There's no aggressive trimming going on, which is one reason I like this trimmer so much.


    2. It could be that she's pre-Cushings, but if that's the case, the treatments seem to work very well. Also, is she on a supplement containing chromium? - that tends to be very helpful with glucose metabolism.

    3. That's what we were thinking too... everyone has been telling me the medication works well, so hopefully that's the case if she is indeed pre-Cushings.

      She's not on any supplements currently, but I'll do some research on chromium. Thank you!

  2. Warm days and cold nights are the perfect storm for spiking sugar levels in grass. Even if there's not much out there in the pasture, the sugar levels can be sky-high. This was always the time of year that even an hour or two on grass would cause Saga to be ouchy, much to my frustration! Summer was actually way easier, since the sugar levels were lower and steadier.

    Whatever it is, I hope that Lilly goes back to 100% quickly!

  3. I hope it's just minor!! My guy foundered awhile back and I'm constantly worried about it, it's no fun to freak out all Summer! :(

  4. Ditto on what jenj said.

    It's when the temperature swings are drastic, that the sugar spikes - whenever they happen. We've had a number of those days recently here in NC.

    The stress of the variable temps cause the grass to produce tons of sugar, (it acts kind of like antifreeze for the plant), more than a particular time of year, though the spikes tend to happen in the spring and fall most often.

    FIngers crossed that it's nothing. :D