Road Rash

No skinny horses allowed

Properly caring for a hind leg fetlock wound can be tricky, because of it’s location, and especially if the horse somehow keeps taking the vet wrap off.  Dirt in an open wound is never a good thing.

I promised last week was going to be a better week.

It wasn’t.  Kids sick.  Me, still managing to stay sick for an entire 17 days.  Something about walking pneumonia.  Oppressing heat.  Thursday was a particularly straining riding day – 99 F, in the afternoon.  Something with the moon too – waxing or waning, don’t know, but I’m sure it made everything worse, whatever it was doing.

If you’re at all squeamish, best to end it here.  A little wound pic coming up.

As Cooper is just getting used to being in full work and is still very young and green, I’ve made it a point to do very different workouts with him each day.  Thursday we had the opportunity to do a long walk down the road in company of an older and mature mare.  We ended up having a freak accident, proving once again how easy these horses will hurt themselves.

Luckily, nothing serious, but it could have been, and Cooper is out of commission for a while.

On the walk we had to go past the old, sweet three-legged dog who guards the sheep and goats in a large pasture.  Seen him before, but this time he was laying awkwardly and very close all the way up by the fence.  Cooper stopped, froze, and instantly turned all muscles into a steel hard coat of armor.  Some snorting and blowing, I figured we’d walk by the very next second.

I talked to the dog, to make him move a bit, to show he was just a regular dog, not a horse eating polar bear monster.  He only needed to make two awkward, bedraggled gimps with his remaining three legs and Cooper decided He Was Out Of There. 

Here’s where riding lots of spooky horses comes in handy – the reflexes are there, and usually you just swing with the horse and then continue on.  Cooper though, in some sort of fluke twist and turn managed to drag his fetlock hard across the asphalt while slipping with his shod front feet.

He felt OK,  and we didn’t see anything on him, so continued on with the walk, in total just another 2.5 miles.  Almost back in the barn he stiffened and then we could see his scrapes.

Fetlock wound on hindleg

This was taken on day two, after rinsing and wrapping overnight.  Not too big, and I was happy to see there was no major swelling around it.  Some heat on the inside leg still, but it was less than 24 hrs after the incident.  He also had standing leg wraps on both legs over night, so maybe the leg was a bit warm from that.

So bummed for him – although he appears to be on the mend just fine there’s no need to push it.  Rest day today as well.  He looks disappointed.

All wrapped up:

vet wrap on fetlock wound

Not one to shut down all outside adventures and only ride in the arena fully padded – stuff can happen there too, we all know that.  However, for Cooper, we’ll stay off any asphalt for a very long time to keep that equine skin intact…

I don’t know, what would you do?

4 thoughts on “Road Rash

  1. Hopefully you iced it before wrapping it, correct? I would continue to ice it regularly for a few days. Do you think stitches would be indicated? Can’t tell from the picture.
    As for your continued illness I would recommend daily doses of Juice Plus. Works for me, I haven’t been sick for several years.


    1. Christine! I’ve been thinking about you!
      I iced on day two – there was no ice there the day it happened. Of course. I should keep a bigger bag in the freezer. I’ll do it again tomorrow in the morning. Nope, no stitches – this is pretty superficial, at least for a horse wound. Also still on full turnout privilege. I’ll do an update tomorrow.
      Hey, swing by if you just want to hang with the horses – you can try Cooper 🙂 When he’s back in work!


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