Submitted by: Anna Persson
Laminitis cripples thousands of horses every year. According to the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture), “Laminitis (sometimes called founder) is a specific condition of the foot that can produce lameness. Laminitis is characterized by inflammation and destruction of the cellular bond between the sensitive and insensitive laminae of the hoof.”
Barbaro, a Kentucky Derby winner, is probably the most well-known horse to fall victim to Laminitis. He did not die in vain, as his passing has brought great attention to this dreaded disease. As a result, research funding flooded in.
There are many different causes of Laminitis. A horse’s diet plays a big role. Grazing on lush green spring grass, for instance, can increase the risk of Laminitis.
How about hay? Yes, the consumption of hay, especially fine (non-coarse) hay can bring about Laminitis.
Getting into the feed room and gorging on too much feed, or eating lawn clippings, may also be a cause of this condition.
Would you think that excessive walking on asphalt could cause Laminitis? Yes, it most definitely could. Walking on concrete should be avoided as much as possible. Get creative and find alternate routes.
If a horse retains some membranes after giving birth to a foal it could lead to the development of Laminitis in a mare.
Changes in your horse s diet should be made slowly, since dietary variations can be a cause of Laminitis, as well.
Generally, ponies and thick crested horses are more vulnerable to Laminitis than other horses. You may wish to only acquire horses that are less susceptible to this illness.
Well, we now know that there are several factors that can cause Laminitis in a horse. As one might imagine, the best remedy for this condition is prevention. Fortunately, there are some preventative steps you can take to help reduce the odds that your horse contracts this hoof disease.
Good stable and dietary management will help prevent Laminitis. When lush spring grass comes in, and your horse looks longingly at it, let them in to graze but, limit the time they spend wolfing it down. Gradually let them eat for longer periods each day, for a two-week period. Then, break it off for a spell (say, two weeks).
Look into horse food called, “Happy Hoof”. Our horses had a serious hoof disease. One of the things that helped them overcome this illness was Happy Hoof. It’s apparent that they enjoy the taste, too.
Good all-around horse management is the prime key to preventing Laminitis in our four-legged friends. Some methods to bring this about were covered in this article. By constantly applying the preventative measures mentioned here, the chances of catching this dreadful disease can be mitigated.
If you think your horse is suffering from this disease, do not rely on the above listed steps, alone. As has been stated, Laminitis is a serious problem. The survival of a horse who has it is not guaranteed, even after the best of care. So, try as many solutions as possible.
See a horse veterinarian, promptly. Try to find a specialist. Ask the horse veterinarians you contact who they recommend to defeat Laminitis. You might also ask folks in online horse forums what vet they used to fight this affliction.
About the Author: Anna Persson is a syndicated horse columnist. She is the editor of “Happy Horse News”, a newsletter catering to horse lovers. Subscribe for free and discover horse tips, sayings, jokes, pictures, freebies, and tack.