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Sunday, January 31, 2010

Colt's Diagnosis

And the diagnosis is...

"Left front fetlock medial collateral ligament injury"

Colt, Bella Jo, Cindy Sue and I had a very nice trip to Idaho and back for the visit to Idaho Equine Hospital. Thank goodness Cindy Sue woke me up in the early morning and I couldn't get back to sleep because I'd forgotten that there is a 1 hour time difference...I'm sure glad that thought popped into my brain as I lay tossing and turning!!!

The roads were clear except for a lil' bit of frost over the pass just west of home. I was glad when the sun finally started coming up though. It's open range with cattle and wild horses running. It's always a caution when you drive that stretch of road.

We arrived a lil' bit late...after missing the exit and having to go 5 miles farther down I-84 to the next exit to get back. It's always a challenge for me to drive in that much traffic too. I hadn't been there for 2 years. But we made it without incident.

This is their arena for excercise and also lunging
horses during lameness exams.
Directly left of the indoor arena is an outdoor round pen.

To enter the facility, you have to pull up to the automatic
gate, tell them who you are, and they open the gate for you.
The building to the left are offices, exam rooms, and
surgery rooms. The building to the right contains
some of their indoor stalls.

After parking and unloading your horse,
you are greeted by usually three people (the Dr.,
an assistant, and a student who is putting in
an internship) and the preliminary evaluation takes place
right there in the parking lot as with this horse.

These are the outside stalls. Colt is waiting for
me in the first stall on the left.
The buildings behind are part of the
Idaho Center which is a huge multi use facility
including equine events.

I packed my camera in with me, but didn't get a chance to take any photos of Colt during his exam. I needed to keep my brain focused on the Dr.

I wrapped Colt's front legs with stable bandages for the trip to give him support, and I always use shavings in my trailer. When I unwrapped his legs the left one looked much better than the day before! I haven't been able to wrap his legs because he was ripping the bandages off in a matter of minutes. But, the left fetlock was still slightly larger than the right, especially on the inside.

His preliminary trot around the parking lot didn't show much lameness, just a lil' bit of a shorter stride on the left. Dr. Knox did a flex test on the left front and he trotted off sound then too. We took him to the arena and the assistant lunged him both ways. Colt again wasn't showing any significant signs of lameness.

We took him inside for radiographs. Out of the 4 angles done, only the view from straight on showed the slight disfigurement on the inside (in just about the spot where the pastern bone meets up with the fetlock. It showed a tiny spot which Dr. Knox said was probably bone. Most likely Colt got it when the hoof and pastern went one way and the fetlock the other...I would suspect either a hole in the pasture or maybe ice, but most likely a hole. It's just one of those things that happens. He loves to play with that Brego horse.

The injury doesn't warrant removal of the bone because of it's size being so small, and Dr. Knox considered the injury to be moderate; a little more serious than a slight sprain. When the Dr. held the hoof, pastern, fetlock, and cannon bone in a straight line and pressed with a twisting motion, there definitely a reaction of soreness from Colt.

The good news is that everything I had done for Colt was correct, and there wasn't anything else to be done except for the bad news...wait for time to heal it...six weeks to be exact. Six weeks of stall/confined run rest and in hand exercise. I can expand Colt's run as the weeks go by, but we don't want him running, stopping, and twisting to re-injure himself.

Colt got to take a break after his exam. He got a lil'
bit of alfalfa and water. But, he was ready to go
home, because he whinny'd at me when he saw
me coming to get him!

Colt had seen Dr. Knox as a 2 year old when he over extended his left front knee and got a tiny, very tiny bone spur. Dr. Knox was very pleased with his recuperation; there was absolutely no swelling or soreness.

We get to go back in six weeks for a check up. Hopefully at that time Dr. Knox will give us the go ahead to start Colt back into training...starting slowly of course to build up strength in the leg.

The drive home was beautiful. The pups enjoyed
a romp in the melting snow along the highway.

The part I enjoy about the trip is that there's
only 15 miles of actual "traffic" that I have
to drive through. The rest of the drive
is open, beautiful space.

I think I could live out here too!
I saw lots of newborn calves, but could never
find a spot to pull over. There's
lots and lots of big ranches in this
part of the state.

This is coming into one of my favorite lil' towns
in Eastern Oregon, Jordan Valley. Home
of the "Big Loop Rodeo!"

Colt and I thank all of our readers that have been leaving us such uplifting, supportive comments and sending all those healing thoughts. We're on the road to recovery and you all sure helped keep our spirits up. Thank You!!!



the7msn said...

Whew! All things considered, that's good news. Six weeks will fly by before you know it. And what a beautiful facility that Idaho Equine Hospital is. Very impressive.

Paint Girl said...

I hope Colt gets better real quick!! I am sure the time will fly by, and you will be riding him before you know it!
The hospital is very nice, and what lovely scenery to get there!!

mj said...

So glad to hear that Colt is going to recover and six weeks isn't all that bad for a young horse. So give the guy a big hug and tell him to try to enjoy his stall rest! I know that's easier said than done, but at least it's a good time of year to stay in and stay quiet. You'll both be rearing to go coming spring time!

Shirley said...

So glad it's not serious, and at least it isn't the middle of summer which would really hamper your training. To keep his legs wrapped would sure help; how about duct tape over the wraps where they do up?

Sydney said...

Hopefully colt gets better soon. Did you ever figure out the arnica thing? I asked my mom who uses it regularly for her arthritis and she said the same as I did, the creme doesn't do anything, the gel is the only one worth getting.

Anonymous said...

I'm happy the news is good...I know it seems like a long time but at least you can feel good that what you were doing was the right thing. Glad you had a "good" trip!

Cowgirl Rae said...

Good to hear, I didn't think it looked major serious. Besides its gonna be at least 6 weeks for the ground and weather to improve enough for much training anyway.

Time to focus on the other project for a while.

Breathe said...

Glad to hear the injury won't require anything major. What a beautiful drive! I miss seeing mountains (I grew up on the Franklins, and the hills are just not the same).

I'm new and already enjoying your wonderful photos and beautiful horses...

wilsonc said...

So you have to go all the way to Nampa to see the vet? That's quite a drive! I've heard of Jordan Valley's rodeo before. Do you know when it is? I think hubby expressed an interest in going there some time. We are big rodeo fans as you already know. I have a special post about the roundup for tomorrow or Tuesday. I'm really glad that Colt's injury wasn't worse. It shouldn't interfere with your vaquero clinic right?

Oregon Equestrian said...

Glad you had a safe trip. Open rangeland on the east side of the Cascades has its own hazards.

Good to know what the problem is, that you did no harm, and that you were instinctively doing the right thing.

Stall rest and hand walking a young horse must be an in-joke with vets. Yeah. Right.'s to a speedy and full recovery.

Pony Girl said...

Glad to hear Colt will heal up with a little rest. It will be difficult to contain that winter coltish spunkiness, but tell him to be a good boy so he can heal and get back to work in time for spring! :)
I love the country out there! It's so vast and beautiful.

Reddunappy said...

Glad Colt had good news, I am so glad he is going to heal up, so we can see the rest of your journey together!

Rising Rainbow said...

Six weeks in winter is much easier than six weeks in summer at least for people. I don't know about young horses...confinement is confinement to them I'm afraid. But in the big picture not a bad sentence. It could have been much worse. Hopefully it will be over in the blink of an eye and you and Colt will be back working again.

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Wow! The Idaho Equine facility is quote impressive. What a good horse mom you are to take your boy to such a great place to check him out, too.
Bummer about the diagnosis and I hope it doesn't put a damper on your plans. I'm sure he'll surprise you and heal fast, and stronger than ever.
That was some beautiful country you drove in. I'm the same way about traffic and crowds and the city. My blood pressure rises and I get stressed. As soon as I'm back in the country, I breathe a sigh of relief! :)


lisa said...

That is great news! Hopefully you can get a good nights sleep and Colt will enjoy being pampered for six weeks;)

Anonymous said...

What a nice vet facility! At least you know that what you did is right, and now you know what is wrong and what to do. It's good to know he'll be all right in the end.

Sarah said...

Glad Colt's injury was nothing too serious, but too bad you have such a long recovery in front of him!

I don't know the exact route you took, but that is a beautiful area of Oregon to drive in. I love the vast expanses of almost nothing but sage, cows, and random ranch houses and barns. Very peacefull and beautiful!

CTG Ponies said...

So glad to hear that he's on the road to recovery!

The Wife said...

Glad to hear he is on the road to recovery. It'll be the end of the 6 weeks before ya know it. My gosh, it's already February! I can't believe it!

gtyyup said...

Thank you everyone for your comments and words of encouragement for Colt! Idaho Equine really is a state of the art facility in these parts and it's well worth the distance to get their expertise counseling.

Breathe~Thanks for following along. OK, so where are the Franklins...which state? Even here on the E side of Oregon, it's a lot different than the W side where I grew up. Mt. Hood was always just right there.

wilsonc~For the type of injury that Colt had, my choices are either Bend Equine or Idaho Equine. I got acquainted with Idaho Equine when I first moved here, so I've stayed with them; I really like their staff and facility. Harney County has a vet clinic, but not nearly as up to date as Bend or Idaho. This year's Big Loop Rodeo will be May 14-16. The web site is www dot biglooprodeo dot com We always try to go, but life just seems to always get in the way that time of year. And, no, I think Colt will be back in training and able to do the Mike Bridges clinic this spring, but I may not get to do the cattle clinic like I did last year. I've just got to see where he is at that time.

Oregon Equestrian~Yea...hand walking a pent up horse is a joke!! But, I can lunge Colt as long as he doesn't get to screwing around too far, so good! But we're only 4 days into this!

Sarah~We live 40 miles SE of Burns off of Hwy 78. So I take 78 over to Burns Jct and go north on Hwy 95 to Marsing then on to Nampa. South on 95 takes you to Winnemucca NV. I would think that you've come through this way before. It really is beautiful.

Heart of a Cowgirl said...

I missed this (initial) post apparently. Glad to hear that Colt is recuperating well, though. We have our little mare on stall rest/hand walking for THREE MONTHS...UGH. She is getting "cabin fever", too...

Andrea said...

I missed this! My four year old has the same injury. Ozzie has been put on stall confinement for months!! He's been in the stall with no turn out and only hand walking for the last two months. His ligament was torn really badly. I am glad Colt is doing better!

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