Your horse limps into the barn from turnout and you closely examine his lame leg. When you find the head of a nail protruding from the frog, you carefully place the foot down and plan your next move. You may feel compelled to take the following steps:
Are any of these steps incorrect? Let’s take a look at what could have been an underlying problem.
A Missed Opportunity
You have rang the emergency number of your local large animal hospital to have a veterinarian examine the wound immediately rather than risk the possible consequences of a delay, ranging from infection to internal structure damage. But during the veterinary exam, while your veterinarian applauds your prompt treatment and reporting of the injury, he suggests you might have taken a slightly different course of action. What should you have done differently?
Recognizing that we want to address the injury in the most effective way possible, we would offer the following guidance.
A Measured Approach
While circumstances and injuries are always unique, consider taking these steps.
Penetrating hoof wounds can be extremely serious, causing infection and direct trauma to vital structures. Knowing a wound tract’s depth and direction can help your veterinarian assess structural damage, choose the best diagnostic imaging study, provide appropriate on-site treatment, and prescribe the proper aftercare.
Carolina Equine Hospital
Has your horse come up lame only for you to find a nail in his hoof? Before pulling it, give our office a call (336-349-4080) so we can assess the situation and assist you in your horse's care.