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Limping, pregnant mare

Dear Franklin,

Happy Easter, etc.

Need your expertise. My daughters pregnant mare has a limp on her back foot. We spoke with the Vet today and he suggested calling the ferrier. We did and he agreed with the vet that it could be an abscess.

OK, we checked and cleaned the hoof....don't see a thing. She is due any time and has wax on her teats. Her milk bag is very large and hard. Told the vet and he said she could have mastitis. He said to start her on antibiotics and pain medication which we did and he would come look at her tomorrow.

Here's an idea...tell me what you think. Since she is due and the foal is very active could it be possible her hips (bones) are spreading to allow for delivery or the foal is on a nerve causing her to limp?

Thank you, Donna

Hi Donna,

What you have offered as possibilities are valid. I am surprised that a vet would say to put a pregnant mare on any drugs w/o examining her first unless it is an emergency situation. Additionally, some abscesses are too high up in the hoof to be initially seen unless the hoof is tested with hoof testers by someone who really knows how to use them and other possibilities are ruled out. A thorough testing, check out and diagnosis by the vet (at least one very good one) is strongly suggested. If your horse is a highly bred mare to a high level stallion (hefty sums of money involved), etc., consider several veterinary opinions.

Prescribing drugs to a pregnant mare w/o an examination first, I think, is unwise. But that is just my opinion. Good Luck.....

Sincerely, Franklin

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