Better information makes for healthier horses,
Horseadvice.com is where equine science and horse sense intersect.

Discussion on 2 week old QH colt with buck knees

Use the navigation bar above to access articles and more discussions on this topic.
Author Message
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

marcia walt
New Member
Username: marciaw

Post Number: 1
Registered: 5-2008
Posted on Friday, May 30, 2008 - 3:15 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

I have the colt in a straw bedded stall with his mother. He is quite lively and bored. He is not having trouble getting around or up or down. I pulled him from the 700 acre mare pasture the morning he was born as I felt one of his knees was a bit knocked. Our mares get most of their nutrition from grazing. We do put out grass hay when it is very cold or wet. At this time the mare is getting grass hay and some supplemental pellets. I don't know that I noticed his knees being buck when I first brought him in. Perhaps they were and it just wasn't what I was seeing. They were just baby legs. Now I can see he doesn't straighten them out when he is standing and sometimes they look a bit shaky. My question is should I be doing more or something different? How long should I wait before I take him to a vet? We live in a remote place. He would have to travel for 1 1/2 hours on dirt road and then another 30 minutes on pavement. Thank you for any information you all have.

Marcia
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Suzanne Reed
Member
Username: sureed

Post Number: 104
Registered: 10-2005
Posted on Saturday, May 31, 2008 - 1:05 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Marcia,

I look forward to Dr. O's advice and the experience of others on your question. I'm not sure if confining the foal is the best approach as some level of moderate exercise can help straighten those knees. However, now that he has been confined, introducing him to more freedom will need to be done carefully as you don't want him careening around at ninety miles an hour on the first turn out. These are pictures of my foal at three days and again at 3 months. He is a lovely almost yearling now with straight legs and lovely movement.

All the best,

Suzanne

Cappy at three days

Cappy at three months
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Robert N. Oglesby DVM
Moderator
Username: dro

Post Number: 20752
Registered: 1-1997
Posted on Saturday, May 31, 2008 - 4:40 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Much depends on the severity of the contracture marcia. The article describes the way we treat contracted tendons in foals and may give you some guidelines for mild to severe contractures.
DrO
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

marcia walt
New Member
Username: marciaw

Post Number: 3
Registered: 5-2008
Posted on Sunday, Jun 1, 2008 - 12:14 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

DrO and Suzanne, Thank you for responding. Sometimes I feel isolated out here and spend too much time on worry. I reread the article and feel I am on the right path. By the article's description I think this colt, Truman, would be a mild to moderate case. He it not at all on his toes, and gets around very well. I don't even notice the buck knees when he is playing in his pen. When he runs to the end and then cuts back and forth his knees seem fine. His pen is five panels and a gate large.

Suzanne I'm especially encouraged by the pictures of your colt. I don't think Truman's knees are any more bent than your colt's were. How old was your colt when you felt his knees were really better? I get up every morning and hurry out to the barn to see if I can see any change. Everyone here at the ranch has a different opinion.

The upside... I've already been haltering him, which is unheard of around here during our busy branding season. He is quite a character and already enjoys people. He is a wonderful rose dun color. Any cowboy's dream!

Thanks again for the feedback. Just sharing my concerns feels proactive.

I'll keep you all posted! If I learn how to send pictures I'll be sure and post some.

Marcia
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Suzanne Reed
Member
Username: sureed

Post Number: 105
Registered: 10-2005
Posted on Sunday, Jun 1, 2008 - 12:15 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Marcia,

It was a gradual process but I would say Cappy was perfectly straight after two months. Because I board out my breeding operation an hour away from my home, I only see my breeding horses every few weeks, so had the benefit of always seeing improvement every time I visited. Checking every day probably is not as satisfying. However, it is important to make sure he is not getting any worse. Sounds like he is progressing nicely. You may want to take a picture once a week to track his progress so you have a more objective measure of the improvement.

Here are a few more shots of Cappy at a few days old and now.

Best wishes and keep us posted.

SuzanneCappy at 3 days old

Cappy at 3 days old (2)

Cappy now
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Marcia Walt
New Member
Username: marciaw

Post Number: 4
Registered: 5-2008
Posted on Tuesday, Jun 3, 2008 - 2:55 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Suzanne and DrO,

This morning when I went out to do chores I couldn't believe how much better Truman's knees looked. After he played hard for a while they got a bit shaky and less straight, but I was really excited to see the change. I am going to take him to a larger pen to play for just a few hours today, and see how he does. He is climbing the walls in his small pen. Thanks again!

Marcia
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Robert N. Oglesby DVM
Moderator
Username: dro

Post Number: 20774
Registered: 1-1997
Posted on Tuesday, Jun 3, 2008 - 9:28 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Good to hear Marcia.
DrO
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Suzanne Reed
Member
Username: sureed

Post Number: 107
Registered: 10-2005
Posted on Tuesday, Jun 3, 2008 - 9:37 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Marcia,

Glad that you are seeing progress. This should work itself out naturally. Just don't let him really exert himself until the legs stabilize. It is a delicate balance between too little and too much exercise. Keep us posted.

Suzanne
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Marcia Walt
Member
Username: marciaw

Post Number: 6
Registered: 5-2008
Posted on Wednesday, Jun 4, 2008 - 1:18 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Suzanne,

Last night I turned Truman and his mother out in a larger pen for just about an hour. I think that was plenty long enough for his first time out. He was able to get his wiggles out and exercise his legs for a bit. Tonight I will do the same. This morning once again his legs look pretty good. I am finding it is better for me to assess his leg's progress in the morning when they are not tired.

Thank you once again! I have appreciated sharing this journey with you. I still haven't given up the idea of posting pictures.

Marcia
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Suzanne Reed
Member
Username: sureed

Post Number: 108
Registered: 10-2005
Posted on Wednesday, Jun 4, 2008 - 3:55 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Marcia,

Feel free to email me photos directly. My email is on my profile. I'd love to track Truman's progress. Glad he is improving. I think the exercise will help as long as it is moderate. At some point you may want to consider putting them out in the larger area permanently as what you really want is the ability move around freely in a low impact way and to avoid those bursts of energy that come from the excitement of being turned out after being confined to a stall.

Keep us posted!

Suzanne
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Robert N. Oglesby DVM
Moderator
Username: dro

Post Number: 20782
Registered: 1-1997
Posted on Thursday, Jun 5, 2008 - 7:50 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Hello Marcia,
Ideal would be exercise to just short of the point of "tiredness" that results in contracture of the knees. The foal is not actually becoming tired but as the muscles are exercised and get stronger they "contract" slightly and the inability of the bony column to lock into place resulting in the trembling. What we need is a little extra growth of this muscle tendon unit in relation to the skeleton so that when at full strength the bones are straight.

For more on how to post images see, Help & Information on Using This Site ยป Uploading Images and Files Into a Posting.
DrO
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Marcia Walt
Member
Username: marciaw

Post Number: 7
Registered: 5-2008
Posted on Thursday, Jun 5, 2008 - 10:05 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Good Morning DrO,

After reading your newest post to me I have a new question. I see Truman's knees tremble after he has a burst of energy and play in just his small pen. Is it too soon to be putting him out in a larger pen? Penning horses is not something I'm real familiar with as the ranch we work for and live on is vast. We only pen horses if we are going to use that horse for work the next day or if there is an injury or illness. So I don't want my discomfort of stalling or penning horses to cloud my judgment there by jumping the gun and turning Truman out too soon. My larger pen has a clay surface.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Suzanne Reed
Member
Username: sureed

Post Number: 110
Registered: 10-2005
Posted on Thursday, Jun 5, 2008 - 12:50 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Marcia,

I can't advise you on this one as Cappy went straight out to pasture at three days old. Even before then, the foaling stall opens to a large paddock where he was able to move around quite a bit, so he never was completely confined. Mom is my slightly ataxic broodmare who is not prone to wild runs and Cappy was happy to stay by her side and move around at the walk and baby trot until he got stronger. I'm just wondering if Truman was let out in a larger space if he would self regulate and not feel the need to celebrate his freedom every time you turn him out. Dr. O, what do you think?

Suzanne
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Robert N. Oglesby DVM
Moderator
Username: dro

Post Number: 20786
Registered: 1-1997
Posted on Friday, Jun 6, 2008 - 7:08 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Both of you have questions that can't be answered without watching the foal. Remember the principle and experiment is the best way to handle this but Suzanne it is a mistake to generalize from one foal to another as the ability of the condition can vary considerably. Pasturing foals with mild to moderate contracture works for almost every foal... but not all. It is at this point you have to consider management, medical, and possibly surgical intervention.
DrO
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Robert N. Oglesby DVM
Moderator
Username: dro

Post Number: 20871
Registered: 1-1997
Posted on Tuesday, Jun 17, 2008 - 11:35 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

We have new information on surgical correction on carpal flexor contractures posted in the article. A recent survey of 72 horses with contraction that had surgery was more encouraging than previously thought.
DrO
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Marcia Walt
Member
Username: marciaw

Post Number: 9
Registered: 5-2008
Posted on Wednesday, Jun 18, 2008 - 11:24 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

DrO,

Thanks for the update. I'm still keeping Truman in although I have increased his pen size. I also let him into a larger pen for a few minutes while I clean his stall. I do feel every day his knees look better. He is now just short of five weeks. As I read and reread the article I have thought more on an extensor rupture, although the way Truman's legs look is described under the Carpal Flexor group when he was first born I could see a very taught common digital extensor tendon. How does a colt's extensor rupture? Is it a birth injury? Thanks again for your thoughts. Also are these kinds of flexural deformities more common in a particular breed or type of horse?

I'll keep you all posted on Truman's recovery and of course on the celebration of his release from jail.

Marcia
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Robert N. Oglesby DVM
Moderator
Username: dro

Post Number: 20879
Registered: 1-1997
Posted on Wednesday, Jun 18, 2008 - 10:54 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

The key to the diagnosis of ECT rupture is the swelling, usually bilateral, on the front distal (lower) carpus.

Rupture occurs from too much stress on the extensors and flexor contracture exacerbates such stress.

I do not know of any breed predisposition but in my practice I notice mild carpal flexure contracture often in QH and QH related breeds than any other.
DrO
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Marcia Walt
Member
Username: marciaw

Post Number: 16
Registered: 5-2008
Posted on Saturday, Jul 19, 2008 - 1:09 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Hi All,
To update you all on Truman. He as been set free!! What a character. I should have named him Houdini! Twice I found him in with another mare and foal. We have good panel pens and I couldn't believe he could get small enough to go under. The first time I thought it was an accident, but when he did it again later that day I knew he had figured it all out. I placed half drums or tubs of water all along the bottom of the panels so when he would lay down he couldn't get so close.

That was a few weeks ago and now I have set him free. He is two months old. When he was born and I felt the need to pen him I never thought he would have to stay in for so long. Although he acts like he has been in the big pasture forever he will still come out of his way to hunt me up if I'm out by the barn and the mares are grazing near by.

I don't think his knees are perfect yet.., but I feel very good about them and only see them as better each day. They are only noticeable to me so I think that is a good sign.

Thanks again for all the encouragement and advice.

One of my best child hood friends has made many good friends on a horse web site sharing her love of horses with others. As I live and work on a large working cattle ranch I always felt like I could get all the feed back I needed from those around me. But I have to admit HorseAdvice.com has been such a great source of information, encouragement, and strength for me. I feel like I am making new friends from other parts of the country and horse industry. And although we may need and use our horses for different reasons and we may differ on styles and opinions we also can find common ground and can offer understanding to others who love and value the horse. We all have a great love for them and hope to offer them and one another the best deal we are able to, or at least I hope so.

One day soon I hope to post a picture of Truman. He is quite the Quarter Horse Tank.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Suzanne Reed
Member
Username: sureed

Post Number: 126
Registered: 10-2005
Posted on Saturday, Jul 19, 2008 - 4:51 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Marcia,

Thanks for the update on Truman. Sounds like he is doing great. Can't wait to see pictures when you get them.

All the best,

Suzanne
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Fran C
Member
Username: canter

Post Number: 1577
Registered: 1-2000
Posted on Sunday, Jul 20, 2008 - 4:36 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Great news, Marcia. Very glad Truman has made so much progress!
Post a Message to this Discussion
Posting
Instructions:
Full Service Members may post to this discussion and should address the orignial poster's concerns or other information posted here. New questions about your horse should be started in a new discussion. Use the navigation bar at the top of this page to return to the parent article and review the article and existing discussions. If your question remains unanswered "Start a New Discussion", the link is under the list of discussions at the bottom of the article.
Post:
Bold text Italics Underline Create a hyperlink Insert a clipart image

Username:
Password:
Options: Enable HTML code in message
Automatically activate URLs in message
Action:
Home Page | Todays Discussions | Search | Top of Page Administration
  http://www.horseadvice.com
is The Horseman's Advisor
Helping Thousands of Equestrians, Farriers, and Veterinarians Every Day
All rights reserved, © 1997 - 2016
Horseadvice.com is a BBB Accredited Business. Click for the BBB Business Review of this Horse Training in Stokesdale NC