29 February 2016
To cut a lony story short (ish lol), our pony has been lame for around 4 week. Initially came back from competing and possible sprain (this is now resolved). After vet check and two weeks box rest I was not happy as she was a little short and careful turning. flexions all good and everything else spot on. Took her for a lameness workup. No tendon/ligament injury. The vet quickly found the leg which was originally lame was no longer and actually her opposite hind was lame on the lunge. (Little stiff on hard ground but other wise ok). An obvious area of sensitivity was located around where a nail had pinched her hoof. Ponies shoe taken off and left to either heal or worsen. Immediately on arrival home she was a bit sore and footy. Next morning BOOM on three legs. Farrier called and poulticed. Pretty standard hot then dry routine followed. Gradual improvement noted over the next few days. Her hooves seem to be intermittently warm/cold. This seems to be normal for her. I think I am worrying more than normal at the minute in light of the lameness. So after 5 day since original farrier visit and abcess dug out. Instructions followed to the word, I turned out over night. Arrived not knowing what to expect (im so anxious!!!). She looked good, but I did notice that her affected hoof was quite warm. Shes once again footy and her stride has shortened a bit. All her other hooves were cool (the opposite hind has fluctuated in heat). I called back again at dinner time as I wanted to check for any swelling etc. All four seemed quite warm, so nothing overly alarming, but a little warmer than I would like. The plan tomorrow is for some hydrotherapy and the farrier is calling.

I have had no experience personally of abscess's and I and am aware recovery can vary. But my irrational brain is going haywire! I suppose what I am asking, do other people find limbs/hooves can vary in this situation or should I be worrying and get some xrays. My assurance is that we are meeting our farrier anyway tomorrow, but I wondered what other peoples experiences are? Are they warm up and above the coronary band due to a complication or could it be due to the fact she is a total whimp and turned out barefoot, perhaps increasing circulation or more tender without shoes?

Secondly, the slight 'carefulness' when turning has been the issue all along, since the original sprain. I had a physio visit after her box rest prior to the abscess being diagnosed. We found her back to be quite tight in areas and the muscles in her back end to generally be a bit sore and uncomfy. They were gently released a little, but my feeling is that Pony has over compensated and this will release with some rehab when she is sound. This will be her 6th week off so she has had plenty of rest and is now turned out overnight. I will go back to vet advice if needed and speak to our physio, but generally I am wondering If she is sound and tracking up when her back shoes are replaced can my kids gently hack her and help the muscles to relax then self and hope that the turning improves or do alarm bells ring. I just don't know what to think and find that vets and physios seem to contradict each other. I plan to take professional advice and continue with hydrotherapy/treadmill work once shoes are on, I just wanted other peoples experiences/thoughts. This all feels so drawn out bless her. I wonder if all these things are related or secondary compensation? I suppose we could never know.