Horses are a beautiful addition to any pasture, dry lot or front yard. But beyond their ornamental attributes, most of us like horses for their athletic ability—to pack us down the trail, sail over a five foot oxer, or master the elusive one tempe of upper level dressage. Pain can stop even the most stoic among us, and lameness in horses remains one of our most daunting medical challenges. Since our patients can’t talk to us, we need a systematic approach to determining the source of the pain, the cause (if we can find it) and a treatment suitable for the malady.
Over the recent thirty years, I have learned numerous methods for diagnosing and treating lameness in horses. As a member of the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) and the Farriers of Idaho Guild (FIG), I have attended lectures, short-courses and workshops dedicated to the study of problems afflicting equine athletes. A proper diagnosis is key, and a good physical exam, diagnostic nerve blocks and flexion tests are just part of my analytic arsenal. Digital ultrasound and new, computerized x-ray technology has been real asset to finding the cause of lameness in many horses. The fact that this technology is portable means we can do this in your barn…today! As in most things, early detection is critical, so if you have any questions, even if you just think your horse may have a problem, give me a call at 208 365-4085.