Alana

For those of you following Alana’s story I am going to start updating here.

For those of you who haven’t been following the story, here is where we are so far. I had a student who wanted to buy a horse, so we found her the perfect mare. At 16 and about 16 hands the chestnut paint mare is striking, if a bit skinny. She was recently rescued from a hoarder and has been gaining weight in the month since.

She arrived last Tuesday and seemed to be settling in well. She was still in new-horse quarantine when I walked out to feed her Friday morning and found her 3-legged-lame. There was no sign of trauma, but it was starting to swell in the shoulder and upper arm area.

The vet came out and x-rayed her. Despite finding nothing on the x-rays she wanted to put her down on gut instinct. She had seen a mare carrying her leg similarly who did have a broken leg and never healed. She conceded privately it could be something else including cellulitis, pigeon fever and a few other things.

I would have agreed she should be put down if there had been a break on the x-rays or any sign of trauma to the area indicating a break, but there weren’t any abrasions, she was in isolation so it wasn’t a kick and she was clean which she wouldn’t have been if she fell.

My farrier and I both had the gut feeling it might be an infection, so her owners are giving me three days to see what I can with alternative care. I evaluated Alana and put her on a personalized feed and supplement program supported by topical sprays.

Yesterday she was able to put a bit of weight on it, not enough to walk, but she would use it for support if she wanted to use or rest a back foot.

Despite her leg, she is still fast when she wants to be and enjoys eating even when stealing my lawn grass. Last night I heard a clatter and ran out praying she hadn’t slipped and fallen. By the time I got there she had pushed the gate open, someone had forgotten to latch it, it knocked over a bucket which was the sound I heard, hopped out onto the yard and was happily enjoying my lawn. I was able to get a rope around her neck and lead her back in without trouble, but I could tell she would rather be out where there was more grass. I couldn’t get irritated at her because she still enjoys life and wants to do things. I just make sure to latch the gate now.

My prayer for today is that she will be able to limp on four legs by this evening and will be fully healed without complications.

 

For those of you who have been wondering what happened to me, I have continued to teach. Horses and students have come and gone, but Cole’, Mint, Countess and Little Bit are still here. I have been taking classes in horse nutrition and alternative care which, along with teaching and starting a business creating custom supplement plans for horses and humans has taken up most of my time.

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