Holistic Horsekeeping Newsletter September 2016

September 2016

3 reasons your horse won’t pick up his foot

Holistic Horsekeeping
How to have a healthy happy horse.
Volume 21, Number 9

In This Issue:

1. 3 reasons your horse won’t pick up his foot
2. New Mobile Friendly Website at Holistic Horsekeeping


1.  3 reasons your horse won’t pick up his foot

Madalyn with horseYou go to pick up a foot on your normally cooperative horse and he says “no”. What is your horse trying to tell you? There are 3 reasons your horse won’t pick up a foot.

Reason #1 Pain
Your horse may have an injury to the affected leg and it hurts him to bend it. Check your horse closely for swelling or sensitivity that could indicate a kick wound or injury from a fall. Next check his joints and tendons for swelling or heat. If the affected leg seems ok then check the other leg to see if your horse does not want to put extra weight on it. Make sure to be extra careful to check the hoof for an abscess or bruise. If your horse does not want to pick up either front foot or any foot at all you may be dealing with laminitis.

InjuryPro is a wonderful product to help the horse heal from injuries. If your horse is showing signs of laminitis you will want to determine the cause with metabolic testing and evaluation of the management. The Understanding and Managing Cushing’s Disease, Insulin Resistance and Laminitis e book helps you navigate the challenges of diagnosing and caring for these horses.

Reason #2 Neurological issues
Loss of coordination can make a horse hesitant to bring any foot off the ground. Observe your horse walking and notice if he seems at all impaired. Gently back him up and turn him in tight circles. If you have any doubts about your horse’s movement have your vet do a neurological exam.

Protozoal infections are possible causes of incoordination and they can be hard to diagnose and treat successfully. Karbo Combo pellets support the digestion in the horse and provide immune support which allows the horse to overcome mild protozoal infections.

Reason #3 Gut discomfort
It seems weird to think of gut problems as one of the 3 reasons your horse won’t pick up his foot but here is what can happen. If there is inflammation around the stomach or intestines the connective tissues in the area will be affected. The phrenic nerve carries nerve impulses from these connective tissues and this nerve enters the spinal column in the area of the lower neck where it ties into the shoulder. Stomach issues will affect the circulation to the left shoulder and leg. Small intestine or liver inflammation will affect the right shoulder and leg through these connective tissue attachments and phrenic nerve feedback. Hind end problems can be caused by inflammation of the large intestine or lack of blood supply to the gut secondary to a worm aneurism. Actual organ damage, such as ulcers, will affect the vagal nerve which enters the spinal column at the upper portion of the neck. Neck pain in the poll region or the lower neck can make a horse unwilling to pick up his feet.

Supporting the digestive tract with a probiotic/antioxidant/blue green algae product is a good insurance policy against gut inflammation. These human grade probiotics help support the population of good bacteria in the gut, antioxidants help combat inflammation and blue green algae provides balanced nutrition for your horse and the good bacteria in his gut.

Ulcer pain can be treated with GastroPlus Pro, which coats the sensitive gut lining and increases circulation to speed healing. With ulcers you always want to look at the management and diet of your horse. Stress can be a big cause of ulcers. Check out www.horsetemperament.com to find the best management plan for your horse based on his Five Element temperament type.

Horses don’t just decide one day to not be good about their feet. If your horse won’t pick up a foot he is trying to let you know he has a problem. Consider these 3 reasons your horse won’t pick up a foot and you should be able to figure out the problem and provide appropriate treatment.
2. New Mobile Friendly Website at Holistic Horsekeeping

NewWebPicWe are very happy to announce that our new website is up and running so be sure to surf on over to www.holistichorsekeeping.com and check it out. One of the great new features is that this site is very mobile friendly making it easy to order your horse products and informational materials right from your Smart phone or tablet. You’ll still find lots of great free resources and quality products just in an easier to locate format. We’d love to have your feedback on what you think of the new site.


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