It is strange that my last post was about losing a horse because I got a warning about that with Kasane today.
About 4:30, the barn owner called and said Kasane wasn’t putting any weight on her front right foot. She was holding it up and not moving forward. She ate her dinner but she wasn’t walking around. She had not moved the 10 feet to eat her hay. Highly unusual for a mare who is a hay vacuum.
When I got to the barn, she was standing near her bucket holding her front right foot on the tip of her toe. She was shaking. Her muscles around her shoulders and her flanks were trembling. She periodically would cock her back left leg with her front leg still not taking any weight. Her hindquarters seemed unstable. She kept looking at her sides, yawning and holding her head sideways, and then looking at her other side. There are no visible signs of trauma that could provide a reason for the way she looks.
At first, I was worried she was colicking, but this wasn’t like any colic I had seen before. I had never seen her in pain like this. This mare has been through a lot, with a good bit of that being centered on her front right leg. What in the world had she done now to the leg with the past suspensory ligament issue?
I called the vet. She had us give Kasane some banamine (pain reliever). The vet came out about 45 minutes later. We tried to get Kasane to move, and she would not walk. She would pivot her haunches around but would not put any weight on that front leg. The vet gave Kasane a dose of dex to help with pain and any inflammation. No sore spots, injuries, damage. Usually, when a horse has done something like this to themselves, there is an obvious reason like damage to the skin or something. Absolutely nothing. No real response to palpating her shoulder or leg. When the vet tested the leg’s range of motion, Kasane did react a little when the vet stretched her leg back and a little when she stretched it to the front. Moving to the side didn’t bother her. Hoof testers showed nothing.
Then we talked about possibilities. Not an abscess. It seems to be something in her shoulder and not in the foot or the lower leg. It could be a pinched nerve or a combination of things. And things got really scary because the f-word was mentioned: fracture. There is a possibility that Kasane has fractured some part of her leg or shoulder. If she has moved from her current spot in the morning, then things are more positive.
Fractures are very hard to treat. Much of the time, the outlook is not good. So there was the hint to prepare me for the possible quality of life talk that is a prelude to the talk about possibly putting a horse down.
So it is a Tuesday night and I am trying desperately to not think about having to possibly put my girl down tomorrow. I went grocery shopping to buy meals and things that did not require much cooking because if I do have to do the unthinkable. I won’t be in any shape to cook or to do anything. I’m trying not to think about it but I’m doing what I have to prepare. Just in case. If I’m not prepared, then it seems like something bad might happen. Something worse.
Last Saturday, we had one of our best lessons. She got bouncy and was gorgeous and amazing and bam! three days later she’s lame with who knows what this time on the same leg that has been the focus of years of vet attention.
Please, Miracle Mare, have a miracle in the morning.