A Canker story with a Happy Ending!

The blogpost that started the Horse and Man blog was written 10 years ago, about Mama Tess.  She had such a severe case of canker, I was told it was time to put her down.

After several surgeries and plates and… and… nothing was working.  On a lark, a friend of mine told me about a farrier who had a cure, but it wasn’t on the market yet.  He was making it in his sink to help his customers.  He called his cure, “Purple Mush”.

I called him… and the rest is history.

You can read that original post here.


A few weeks ago, I received and email from an owner who had found the original article on the internet.  She emailed me – very frightened about the condition of her mare.  She asked if I felt that the Purple Mush worked, since I had written the article so long ago.

I told her IT DID in 80% of the cases that I knew of – and if she followed the directions, she would have a great chance here.

So she did.

Here is her letter:

Dawn – thank you so much for all your input.  I cannot tell you how much I appreciate the time you’ve put into your replies:  THANK YOU.  I have been busy working on our dairy farm, packing and wrapping my girl’s hoof every 3 days, and working my full-time office job, but I wanted to reply when I had time to do so properly ? 

I really wish my photos would come through – that’s weird.  I’ll try re-sizing, and re-sending, because….

Today was the third “airing” day (taking off the bandage and leaving it to dry for a day).  I had very little hope, because her foot still looked pretty angry and sore last time.  I had already resolved to follow the whole campaign straight through to the end of my two bottles of Purple Mush, to the letter (as outlined in your directions) but I wasn’t very hopeful.  WELL!  Holy crap!!!  I fought the bandage off (which took a while, thanks to your tutorial on making the duct tape bandage ahead of time – it was super strong and stayed on the whole 3 days – I did touch up the toe every night, as she stomps for flies occasionally and wears through the toe) And to my unbelieving eyes:  THE CANKER IS HALF THE SIZE IT WAS.  And not sensitive like before.  I cleaned all the PM packing out, cleaned it up, dried it up, and took a picture.  I also made my doubtful husband come and look at it.  He is…let’s not say pessimistic, let’s say “realist”…and he was amazed by the difference.  And he is not easily amazed.  ? 

Thank you for all the diet info.  I’ve stopped with the carrots and apples, and found some good no-sugar treats at the feed store.  Our hay is tested (we have a large dairy farm and all our feed is monitored closely) and the horse hay (NO alfalfa or oat hay) is very low in starch and sugar.  As we slowly went down the list of possible cures, my vet did blood work this spring on Delilah for IR and Cushings – she tested negative for anything related to that.  

So, if you’re still hanging in there with me, my next question is:  how long would you continue to pack PM and bandage?  I know the instructions say 3 days bandaged, one off for drying/venting, then 3 days again, for 3 weeks, but I’m heading into my 3rd week (which means I have two more rounds of 3-day-bandaging) and I’d like to continue if it looks like it’s working but not fully resolved.  The steroids that the PM manufacturer recommended are a 6 weeks’ course (tapering down in dosage every 2 weeks) so they’ll run into September anyways…what’s your advice?  

I’ve attached the photos again (two of the hoof 4 days apart, showing it going from bleeding and mushy, angry looking to half the size, drier and not sensitive to touch or bleeding – FOUR DAYS!!!)  And a couple to show my gentle giant’s sweetness ? 

Thanks again, 



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