Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Truthful Tuesday: Romey edition

Well... You know how you say you want answers when your horse is NQR? Yeah. Sometimes the guessing is a little more fun. As you may recall, Romey has been not all that sound pretty much ever since I got him. Initially we thought it was the "ankle injury" (which was really a suspensory because of course it was) that he got on the track that ended his career not being fully healed. So we did light flat work all last summer to keep him sane but still allow for healing. The vet came back in the fall for him because he was noticeably unsound behind. Which we figured was maybe there all along, but masked by him being more lame on the front leg which by that point was much better.
Unfortunately for Romey, the day the vet came out in the fall he took second fiddle to Jampy and HIS mystery lameness. By the time we were done with Jamp, it was getting pretty late. Romey presented much like Jamp had. Neither blocked out sound anywhere from their foot all the way through the stifles. This does not make for easy diagnostics my friends! Unfortunately, we ran out of hours in the day and vet and I decided that since it was almost winter to just rest him early, and see what we have in the spring. Ok by me! He continued with daily turnout but we stopped riding.
Also in the fall, I had someone come out to do some body work on both boys. (Poor Rio can't have that done, not recommended for neuro horses.) Figured it couldn't hurt and maybe she would find something my regular vet and I couldn't see. No surprises on Jampy, but we did find that Romey may have kissing spine. Of course something like 80% of thoroughbreds have it, so it's not surprising. But it did leave questions. Does he have it and it's causing the lameness? Does he have it and it's not actually of consequence? Maybe he doesn't even have it?! She agreed that since he's having the winter off anyway, unless he seems uncomfortable hanging out, it was ok to wait until spring to really dig into diagnosing that. So all of that brings us to last Friday when my regular vet was back with lots of time for both horses. We'll save Jampy's info for tomorrow though, as his isn't that exciting.

Romey presented (as I've been feeling all spring) as pretty sound to the left but very unsound to the right. We did some flexions but nothing really made it better or worse. Thus, we moved on to the fun part: Ultra sound! ($$$$$) The ultra sound found that he has a great big tear in his meniscus, BUT he has no edema surrounding it. Due to that, Doc wasn't convinced that's the problem. He said it's really hard to believe that's making him so acutely unsound with no fluid or inflammation surrounding it whatsoever. Can't argue that really. So we moved on to x-rays...($$$$$$$$$$$$$$)

Doc started with stifles because that's really what he was thinking after watching him go under saddle. But those came out clear. We then moved on to hips which also looked pretty good. So lower we went, to some part of the femur that I can't remember what it's called. And low and behold... My horse has a broken leg. YOU GUYS. MY HORSE HAS A BROKEN LEG! Doc says it's old, definitely happened years ago. But that is like 99% why he is so unsound to the right. Excellent.We also took some pictures of his spine to see about that kissing spine, which yes, he has that too. But like the meniscus, Doc doesn't think it's causing him any duress at the moment.
Where does that leave things with him? I don't really know for sure. Doc has seen this injury a few times in the past, and he says they never get worse. (Ok, well he's lame though, sooo...) He said that we could have some success injecting his SI to see if that helps, but that we can't inject away the actual injury. So we did the SI, and he's coming back in a few weeks to see if that helped him at all. He doesn't think he's really in pain, but rather mechanically, he has a hitch in his git-along (if you will). So he's rideable, if you don't mind an uneven moving horse. Will he ever be a show horse? Likely not. Will he jump? Probably. But not higher than 2'6" most likely. I'm holding off on making any decisions until we see if the injection makes any difference. But I imagine I will be looking for a place for him to live out in a field somewhere. Or a home that doesn't care if he's uneven and just wants something to play with in the back yard. He'll be tough to place for that though since he's not friendly and cuddly. I guess if you guys know anyone who might want a pasture pet that bites, but is really pretty, send them my way!

After all that blabbing... Here's my confession today:
I bought a horse for $2800. I spent another $2800 on the prepurchase. And somehow I STILL wound up with a horse with a broken leg. Who bites.

Have any of you been in a similar situation? Any suggestions on a retirement home? He's only 8, so I need something pretty affordable, as I imagine he'll be living the retired life for a VERY long time.

17 comments:

  1. Ouch sister. That hurts. At least mine was free and I didn't do a prepurchase? Haha he still bites though.

    Best wishes to you and Romey.

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    1. I mean, I've spent way more on broken horses... so there's that?

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  2. Sucky situation 😔 hopefully the injections help his comfort levels a little. I'm not sure what it costs you to keep him per month at home, but I know of a retirement board place near me owned by a vet for under $300/mo. If you're interested I can get you their website.

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    1. Would love to know the site! My place isn't conducive to retirement because I don't have adequate turnout for that life.

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    2. http://www.thelittletreefarm.com/

      The place is fantastic from what I've heard. And reasonable coats when compared to board costs on the coasts!

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  3. I'm so sorry! If it makes you feel better my first horse was $10k, who then had $7k worth of colic surgery a year and a half later, to only freak out waking up and destroyed tendons in both front legs was only pasture sound. We sold him for $1 back to his breeder to be a babysitter for her weanlings.

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    1. Ugh! That also sucks! At least he found a good home though!

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  4. Wow. I'm so sorry. Maybe he could go back to his breeder or you could consider sending him to a TB retirement home. I can't believe your repurchase didn't catch a broken leg.

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    1. Probably not the breeder, I think he came from a tb breeding factory, but maybe I can look into TB retirement.
      I think it wasn't caught because he's not really positive on the flexions, and who x-rays that high? Maybe me from now on!

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  5. WTF Romey! Way to go big or go home. Ugh, hopefully a good pasture home magically springs up for you.

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    1. Yeah, if you're gonna be broken, might as well LITERALLY be broken!
      Thanks! Me too. It would be a touch easier if he was more pleasant. At least he's pretty!

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  6. AHH!!! That sucks! Fingers crossed the injections help :) Is pasture board cheap where you are? You can find pasture in my neck of the woods for 100 or less, something like that might be a good option too.

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    1. I don't even think there's any pasture board around here. CT is really developed so land is generally tough to come by. There are some retirement places in the VA area, but they're not super cheap. I'm sure I'll find something though. I haven't really started the hunt yet.

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  7. If he's not hurting and rideable, could he be a good inexpensive horse for a kid who just wants something to ride in 4-H or something? I don't know how advanced a rider he would need, but might be an option?

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    1. My vet seems to think he's pretty comfortable, so that could be an option eventually for him. Right now he's still really green and does naughty things like spin and run away. His tendency though, is to be really quiet and a little lazy. So with training, that could be an option for him.

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  8. Oh wow, that's terrible. I'm so sorry.

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    1. Thank you. It is a bummer, that's for sure.

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