box rest tips please!

noblesteed

Well-Known Member
Joined
3 August 2009
Messages
1,872
Location
Up North
My gelding is back from horsepital after his op and now he's feeling better he's not too impressed with box rest. He has been pacing round his stable which I am not too bothered about as the vet says he needs to move about. He has to walk out twice a day for the next month before a reassessment, and this is a problem as he's just full of it, yesterday he was leaping about!
He currently eats 2 scoops per day of Safe and Sound. He's a very good doer.
What worries me is that he gets bored and depressed quite easily which also makes him bargy and rude. He isn't easy to lead so I got a rope halter but he has no respect for that at all!

The first thing I plan to do is cut hard feed but is this ok as he will need nutrients to heal????? Or how about a balancer mixed with something like Fast Fibre? He won't eat chaff that contains alfalfa and I am not sure which ones don't have it.
He's on a bed of barley straw which he likes to eat in preference to his hay, so I am giving him a nice deep bad so he can root around for tasty bits, along with his haynet.
What else can I do to cheer him up without filling him full of energy and naughtiness??
 

Pinkvboots

Well-Known Member
Joined
25 August 2010
Messages
10,951
Location
Hertfordshire
My horse is in his second month of box rest he was going in a small pen but has just started bucking and rearing so his being hand grazed now, I double net his soaked hay to make it last longer or he would happily munch through a whole bale, he looks like a pregnant mare already bless him, I was sedating him to go out but he needs so much sedalin it was working out expensive and he is calmer with the hand grazing.

In your shoes I wouldn't worry about the straw eating it's not very fattening, but for the walking out I would be inclined on a bridle and lunge line and a bit of sedation to start, you might find after a week or so he settles down with it, not looking forward to when I have to get on mine and start riding after 3 months in.

What operation did your horse have?
 

iconique

Well-Known Member
Joined
9 January 2008
Messages
1,188
Location
Essex
Have you tried him with a mirror, when we had one on long term box rest she loved it. The horse in that box now also loves it as he can watch you coming up the yard and doesn't have to move, he also loves preening the beautiful horse in the reflection (btw some don't and if they do make sure its one that won't break as he also grooms it with his teeth!)
 

noblesteed

Well-Known Member
Joined
3 August 2009
Messages
1,872
Location
Up North
He's had tendon sheath cleaned out as it had filled with scar tissue, he's also had his annular ligament cut (yuck). The vet wants him walking out plenty over poles to get him to stretch the tendon so the sheath doesn't fill with scar tissue again. He will probaby need injections later on as well. The prognosis isn't great so I want him doing his best.
 

annagain

Well-Known Member
Joined
10 December 2008
Messages
11,156
Find the biggest swede you can. Use a corkscrew to start off putting a hole in the middle and then a long handled Phillips screw driver (don't use a flat head one or it will split) to push the hole all the way through. Thread a piece of string or bailing twine through it and tie it in a loop so the swede can spin on it. Attach another string (you can do it with bailing twine, or if you're going to do lots, a lead rope, clip side down is probably easier so you can just clip the swede onto it) to the roof beams and tie the swede to it. Mine play with them for hours. If you get one big enough so they can't get their mouths round them it's even better as they have to take little nibbles out of them rather than grabbing hold of them. Don't put it too close to the wall or they'll just pin it against the wall to eat it!

 

frostyfingers

Well-Known Member
Joined
10 May 2011
Messages
459
Location
Herefordshire
I used dog toys tied to the bars of his stable when he was stuck in a few years back - various rubber things that bounced around and he couldn't get a grip of (I smeared a bit of liquid molasses on them to start with), plus I put a tree branch in for him to chew on. I also left the radio on a talk station and he had a mirror. If you are able to, it might be worth getting a pen set up (I used 3 strands electric tape with the v tall posts) in a corner of the field so he can have a change of scene and some fresh air, put a larger pen around him so his mates are close - I did this after kissing spine surgery and it worked a treat.
 
Top