Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Safe but Not Sound: World Horse Welfare Tries to Help Large, Lame Young Clydesdale
The World Horse Welfare's Belwade Farm in Aberdeenshire, Scotland recently took in its largest charity case ever. Digger is only four years old, and is already 19 hands. Such a large horse might be a novelty that would appear to someone to adopt, but he also needs a lot to eat.
And first, vets at the University of Edinburgh have to decide if his hind limb osteochondrosis ( a floating "bone chip"), coupled with the gait abnormality known as "stringhalt" on the opposite limb, can be treated so the horse has a viable future.
Of course, it is possible that Digger may not even know he's lame. He's so young, he may never have moved correctly so the hitch in his gait is all he knows.
I'd like to share more hind limb lameness videos here so people can get used to what a shiverer and a stringhalt case, for instance, look like.
An interesting footnote to Digger's story is that he was orphaned as a foal and always fed by hand.
Digger would a great "pet" project for someone. I certainly wish him the best and, as always, congratulate WHW for trying to do the right thing.
© Fran Jurga and Hoofcare Publishing. No use without permission. You only need to ask. Fran Jurga's Hoof Blog is a between-issues news service for subscribers to Hoofcare and Lameness Journal. This blog may be read online at the blog page, checked via RSS feed, or received via a digest-type email (requires signup in box at top right of blog page). To subscribe to Hoofcare and Lameness (the journal), please visit the main site, www.hoofcare.com, where many educational products and media related to equine lameness and hoof science can be found. Questions or problems with this blog? Send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.