Thursday, May 17, 2007

More Life Lessons - an Arabian Filly Injured Part 4

Part one

With the Arabian filly pulling out most of her stitches, I immediately called the vet back to see what could be done with the wound. About half of the skin was too damaged to save and had to be removed but surprisingly Jack found life tissue at the edges or very near the edges in the rest. He trimmed dead skin were necessary and restitched everything that looked like there was even a remote possibility of saving. In the end, it was about 50/50.

It was the lower part closest to her knee that was in the best shape. Since the bandage would droop down from the top, the upper part was exposed sooner to the on slot by the filly. That exposed open wound on the top part was now larger than the original injury. We were going to have to find a way to keep the filly from picking at her wound.

Talking with the veterinarian, we decided the best hope was to keep the filly cross tied as much as possible and also to sedate her as needed. Just the thought of leaving a yearling filly cross-tied in her stall for extended periods of time makes me sad but the idea of losing her because she gets septic for the wound is even more frightening, so cross-ties and drugs it was.

Even in the cross ties, the dressing fell away from the wound and the filly managed to do more damage to the wound. By the end of the first week, the stitches were all out and the entire wound was angry and infected and the surface of the wound had grown. There was no way to save any of the damaged tissue.

In the meantime, I had posted on Marestare in their Question & Answer section asking for help. I explained the situation and asked for any and all ideas that might help to keep Echo from attacking her wound.

There were the obvious suggestions about collars and muzzles to keep the horse from chewing the wound. However, we had determined that she was rubbing it against things as well. Things to keep her mouth off the wound weren't going to deter her from the rubbing. It took a few posts to explain all the particulars of Echo's situation but thankfully, some suggestions were made that were feasible ideas.

I ended up buying large size soccer shin guards. I cut the elastic strap off the bottom but left the elastic cuff to help keep the guard in place above the knee. Dave punched two holes (one on each side) at the top of the shin guard being careful to put the holes through the fiberglass portion of the shin guard. Then using cotton reins with snaps on the ends, I attached the reins to the shin guard running the reins up, over her back and under her belly, tying them.

Worrying about rub marks from the reins, I put a blanket on the filly. (In the image about she's wearing a sheet. Note the dressing slipping out underneath the shin guard) Running the reins on the outside of the blanket. It took a little tweaking to get the reins to stay in place instead of falling down her neck and over her head when she ate, but The shin guard was positioned in exactly the right place to protect the wound if we could just keep it there.

To be continued....

Part 5


  1. Aaaah I should have known that you would have tried all the obvious solutions LOL. I will add this one of yours to my repetoir LOL. The things we will do. I hope this was successful. Will check in tomorrow and see what the next instalment holds. I really do feel your pain. Man we really do need to get together and swap horror stories LOL.

    Hope your finger and your aching muscles are feeling better.

    Oh yes, the penicillin, the vet wanted me to give the stallion that we gelded 20cc a day for 5 days to ward off infection. I hate having to stick them but he has been really good about it.

    ((((Hugs)))), will "talk" tomorrow.


  2. I got the chance to catch up on my reading this week and I must say that I am impressed! Your blog is great Mikael. I just don't understand where you find the time to write (and write well) just about every day! I can barely keep up with writing a post a week. Keep up the good work

  3. Thanks, Kelly, I really enjoy writing and after a hard day it help me unwind so I guess you could say it's therapy for me.