If treatment is recommended, your vet can drain the excess fluid under sterile conditions and inject a steroid as an anti-inflammatory drug, followed by bandaging the ankle to prevent fluid build-up again. Unfortunately, fluid accumulation in the bursa often returns once this bandage is removed.
A clipped ankle is due to distension of the subcutaneous bursa or the development of an acquired bursa overlying the calcaneal tuberosity. This usually results from repeated trauma (e.g. kicking or leaning on stable walls) and is not usually associated with lameness.
For horse hock OA, your vet’s usual approach is to inject anti-inflammatory drugs such as corticosteroids directly into the hock (intra-articular injections). . Your horse needs to rest for a few days afterwards and then slowly get used to the work again.
In most cases, a capped ankle is just a cosmetic defect. The swelling is usually fluctuating (soft) initially, but can eventually become quite firm with time/chronicity. In many cases, the swelling becomes permanent unless successfully treated at the acute stage.
Your vet will likely clip and disinfect the skin over the swelling, tap (insert a needle into your horse’s bursa and draw fluid), and then inject a small amount of anti-inflammatory medication. He or she may also inject an astringent medication to help dry out the tissue.
Proceed with exercise little by little.
ONLY stand still for 24 hours after injection. Voting is allowed after 24 hours. We recommend not moving/riding the horse on the day of treatment and one day after treatment (i.e. two days in total).
Swelling is a fluid-filled joint sac that can develop due to exertion from jumping, dressage or reining when a young or untrained horse is asked to exercise beyond its fitness level. A curb or curby hocks is a condition that results from an enlargement of the plantar ligament that runs along the back of the ankle.
Wear gloves and apply a light layer of sweat down the leg, from just below the knee/ankle to the bottom of the ankle. Apply in the direction of the hair, do not rub up and down. Roll a few layers of cling film around the leg and then place a regular standing bandage over it.
Common signs of ankle pain
Other common signs include sudden laziness, refusal to attach, refusal to perform movements such as a flying lead change, and trouble engaging the hindquarters. The horse may also suddenly exhibit general grumpy behavior when it is normally fairly calm and content.
Hock injections can be effective anywhere from 6-12 months. If your hock injections only last 8-10 weeks, your horse may be a candidate for laser arthrodesis (surgical fusion).
Horses born with sickle, straight, or cow hens are more prone to arthritis and injury due to the altered function of the joints. No breed is more prone to hock paralysis. Ankle lameness can also be caused by arthritis, injury, inflammation, developmental problems, or bone problems.
Common causes of elbow caps include trauma from lying on poorly bedded hard floors, being kicked, iron shoes sticking out over the heels which then damage the elbows while the horse is lying down, prolonged lying down, and horses hitting their own elbows while trotting.
A poultice, also known as a cataplasm, is a paste made from herbs, plants and other substances with healing properties. The paste is applied to a warm, damp cloth and applied to the body to reduce inflammation and promote healing.