السبت 22 يونيو 2024

First Aid for Trail and Home

موقع أيام نيوز

In the event of a serious injury or illness you should always seek veterinary attention if a vet is available. However when youre out on the trail it is important to have a thorough understanding of how to treat common injuries or illnesses until they can be seen to by a vet.
Lameness
If your horse begins to limp when you are riding along a trail the cause of the limp is a mild temporary bruise or sprain similar to stubbing your toe or slightly twisting your ankle. Within a couple of minutes or a few hundred meters the limp should wear off. However if the limp is pronounced or does not disappear within several minutes you need to get off and examine the foot and leg for a stone lodged under the shoe or in the sole a wound a puncture a sprain or another injury.
A loose or tossed shoe can also produce lamenesslike symptoms. You may be able to retighten the nails on a loose shoe with simple tools if not walk rather than ride the horse back to where it can be reshod. On longer journeys with horses that have a good solid hoof wall we will pull the remaining shoe trim the feet but leave enough hoof wall for the trail and continue to ride barefoot always conscious of the condition of the bare feet.

Because we ride through all kinds of rugged terrain with stone covered brush choked trails it is not uncommon to find a foot or leg with a scrape bruise or small cut. I always feel better if I do find a minor injury as it eliminates the possibility of a serious sprain or other damage like a pulled tendon navicular laminitis etc. There is no point in treating a small wound before getting to camp or back to your vehicle as the topical will simply wear off or wash off.
If you cannot determine the cause of the limp and it is pronounced you need to perform a closer examination and reduce the movement of and weight borne by the horse. You can usually detect a sprain by the presence of heat and swelling the horses sensitivity to pressure and the stance of the horse. Touching the coronet band and ankle area of both the healthy foot and the injured foot will help you to detect heat or swelling in the injured area. If you firmly squeeze the ankle pastern or coronet band in the area of injury the horse will often react by pulling its foot away or lifting its head. Dont be alarmed if your trail horse stands at rest with the back leg slightly lifted this is a normal resting position. However it is not normal for a horse to stand with a front leg lifted or a toe pointed this is an indication of an injury.
If there is no obvious wound or indication of a sprain then take a good look at the sole of the hoof for a puncture or