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Horses/horse with growth plate problems


QUESTION: Hi my name is Tammy I have a3yr. old horse that has a limp with right front leg.I called a vet out he said he had growth plate problems. He advised me to call a farrier to have corrective shoeing done. I have done that left leg seems to be better but right leg still weak he stumbles and limps. Is there anything else I can do to help him? Some say to put him down I do not want to do that I want to try wraps along with corrective shoeing just not sure what to do Please Help.

ANSWER: Hello Tammy,

I do feel such sympathy for you with this poor horse. A stumbler, for whatever reason, is a danger to any rider.  

I am not  a vet, so I cannot give you any advice about whether or not he will grow out of this, but in my experience, stumblers keep on stumbling, resulting in falls and being thrown for the rider.  If the problem is in the growth plate of the leg, I don't see how corrective shoeing will help, but then, I am neither a farrier nor a vet.  As a rider and trainer and coach, I recommend finding him a home where he can be a buddy horse, or just be ridden at a walk. Whether or not he is in pain...the vet will have to answer this.

Have you had X-rays? Have you gotten a second opinion from another vet?  I'd start there, and then make your decision.


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Dorothy,          I have not had any x-rays done at this time. I will take your advice and get a second opinion and x-rays. Do you think that wraping the leg would help or hurt? Do you know any vets that I can email and talk to about my horse funny money? Thank you so much for taking time to email me back.          Thank You     

Tammy, it would be much wiser to get the other vet, get the xrays, have the vet see the horse move and then allow him to diagnose.  If there is a University Vet hospital near you, that would be the place to take the horse. The best diagnosis would be there.  But if you cannot afford that, just get the vet in your area with the best reputation, just as long as it is a second vet.  Keep me posted on the results? I would like to see what you find out.



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Dorothy K Morris


I now live in Tucson, AZ. My expertise is in training and rehabilitating horses, and training riders for combined training for over 40 years, in Virginia and California. This includes dressage, cross country obstacles and show jumping. In my many years of experience and endless study of Classical theory, and my hands-on retraining horses,I have accummulated much knowledge of the different personalities of horses and how to approach their rehabilitation. At my age, I do not ride as much as I used to, but I don't see why I have to waste the experience I have. I can answer certain questions about starting young horses in English riding: dressage, jumping, cross country obstacles and basic equitation. I can help with rehabilitation of spoiled or difficult horses; however, many problems require sustained riding instruction/training and I cannot do this online. Some issues need to be observed to come to a correct diagnosis. If your problem is of this type, please find a qualified instructor/trainer. I cannot give riding lessons via email.


Experience in the area: Over 40 years of English riding experience, including Fox Hunting in Virginia where I earned my colors with the Blue Ridge Hunt, training young horses for hunting and/or eventing. Coached a rider from her beginning at Training Level Combined tests through her competition at two Junior International competition Three Day Events. She rode my horse that I also started and trained her to ride. This combination competed in the World Championship Three Day in Lexington, KY in 1978. I trained another horse (TB) through 3rd Level Dressage and jumping. He eventually competed at Advanced level Three Day. I have reschooled several horses with difficulties ranging from running away to running backward, to not allowing a bridle to be put on, to kicking out at the farrier, being "too much on the muscle over jumps", barn sour, etc

National Society Daughters of the Revolution (DAR)

Six novels (I am also a novelist)

Some college. Endless study of Classical Theory and training methods.

Awards and Honors
Who's Who of American Women, Who'w Who in America, Past Board of Directors FDIC-NACM

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