What a perfect way to start the new year – with hope!
Today, we broke through Mama Tess’ outer hoofwall to release what we hope is the pathway to the last area of infection in her hoof.
This afternoon, we three (The Founder Warrior, Mark the Faithful Farrier and I ) were looking at her bare foot and contemplating what to do.
We knew that a new regime of maggots were arriving tomorrow, so we wanted desperately to leave them a clear path to any necrotic tissue.
Previously, TEAM MAGGOT had done a bang-up job in her toe area (you should see the massive, cavernous, honeycombed voids at her toe), but her coronet band abscesses were simply NOT healing…
Why not? Where was the pocket of necrotic tissue hidden in her outer hoofwall?
We decided to try to dig into that area to see if we could expose any dead tissue – even though the outside of her hoof looked fine. There was no obvious place to go hunting…
Well, the Founder Warrior took out her very sharp hoof knife and little by little, hoof shave by tiny slice, she carved away as I held the light and Mark coached.
On blind faith and a hunch, The Founder Warrior kept up the delicate surgery…
I even heard her say to herself, “Heck, the old guys never had a surgery table… they just did this stuff in the field. So can we. Why not?!”
And finally… EUREKA! WE FOUND IT!
She did it.
She found it.
We broke open the path between the outer hoofwall infection/necrotic tissue and the open toe area that had been cleared of infection via Team Maggot.
But it wasn’t easy.
You see, at first when we flushed the hole we had begun carving, the saline water only shot back up at us.
But, after a bit more probing, we went deeper and the saline flush went THROUGH the wound!
So, we cleaned out the area as best we could and prepped it for the maggots to eat away all the dead tissue inside this new cavern.
I am hopeful!
THE GOOD NEWS…
The good news is that she is definitely growing hoof from her coronet band because that hole we dug started many weeks ago at her coronet band and has now grown downward. Yes!
The other bit of good news is that MT seemed to have some pain relief when we flushed the wound. It was as if we opened a pressure capsule. Yes! (Although, to be honest, she wasn’t that ouchy in this area since most of the tissue is necrotic… however, she did walk better once we had finished our work.)
The other bit of good news is that MT’s recent Cushings Test came back in the normal range! So, the double doses of Prescend am/pm shot directly into her mouth, has done the trick! In time, we will back her dose downward. But, for now, we have stopped the cascade. Phew.
TRIMMED HER BACKS.
We finally felt confident and comfortable enough to again trim her backs.
They took off so much sole and toe! What a relief for her, I’m sure. I mean, it isn’t as if she does a whole lot of walking around, but I’m sure her back will feel some relief tomorrow from her shorter rear toes/heels.
A SHORT TRIP OUTSIDE!
After my teammates left, I opened the gate and wondered if Mama Tess would venture outside…
MT wouldn’t walk onto the new rock that Hubby had just added in front of the barn. But, she did step out.
So, I added a bunch of straw over the rock to see if she would walk out further. Instead, she thought she’d eat it. I didn’t let her.
Anyway… MT sat in the sun for a bit and talked with Mother Nature.
All was good.
…Yes, we still cannot rule out infection in her bone. Yes, we still don’t know if she can recover.
But, for today…
I feel hopeful.
LAST DAY TO HELP THE DECEMBER BUCKET FUND HORSES: SHELBY, BETSY ROSE & MOLLIE!