puffy fetlocks

Last post 01-19-2008 7:04 AM by PJKam. 4 replies.
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  • 01-07-2008 9:14 PM

    puffy fetlocks

    Has anyone seen this on their horses? My mare had puffy fetlocks today when I went to get her. They looked swollen but didn't seem to hurt her when I touched them. The B/O said it could be the drastic change in temperature or lack of movement. So, after she was exercised and ridden, the swelling went down. Quite strange, I might say. PJ

    " Horse's are a gift from God at any age so each day when you groom,ride or feed yours,count it as a blessing in your life."
  • 01-07-2008 9:24 PM In reply to

    Re: puffy fetlocks

     Sounds as if she was stocked up - can have various causes, drastic weather changes (as mentioned by your BO), more exercise than usual followed by standing in a stall, not enough exercise - usually some movement reduces the swelling. Other than weather conditions over which we have NO control, try to keep your horse on a regular exercise schedule to prevent future stocking up.

  • 01-07-2008 9:43 PM In reply to

    Re: puffy fetlocks

    Did the swelling involve the entire fetlock? Or was the swelling in small spots above, or below, or on the fetlock? If the entire fetlock was swollen I believe it probably is in fact that she was stocked up, especially that the swelling went down with exercise. No lameness though, when she moved? Probably a little stiffness I'm sure. If it is possible ensure that she gets plenty of turnout. It is pretty common to see with horses that are exercised then put into a stall after. Also be sure to provide a good cool down period, and consider doing some leg stretches before and after you ride.

    However, if the swelling is in small soft spots above, below, or on the fetlock that are soft to the touch with little to no marked heat it is possible that they are "wind puffs", also called "wind galls". These are soft "spongy" swellings around the back, front and or side of the fetlock joint.  Internally the joint capsule becomes enlarged with additional joint fluid in an effort to protect it against injury. Typically they are caused by joint concussion, excessive work while the horse is young or out of shape, or general stress & fatigue of a heavy workout on the joints. Unfortunately with wind puffs they never go away, but they don't seem to cause any dramatic lameness as long as the joints aren't continually stressed.

  • 01-13-2008 6:29 PM In reply to

    Re: puffy fetlocks

    This is referred to as stocking up... it is simply an accumulation of fluid in joints when they aren't worked for a period of time (such as when they are in a stall over night, or - for some reason - stand in one area, or walk around a small area, etc...)  Generally this is not something that effects the horse negatively and some horses are more prone to it than others....

    However, if you have had your horse for several months or longer, have not significatly changed the horse's schedule, and have never seen her stock up before - I would keep an eye on it... A horse that does not have a history of stocking up and suddenly starts to may be a sign that something is happening in that joint.

    Keep an eye on it and if happens a few more time, or if your horse shows any sensetivity, I would have your vet check her out.

    Jennifer

  • 01-19-2008 7:04 AM In reply to

    Re: puffy fetlocks

    Thanks Folks!!! You were right in that my mare was stocked up and once I exercised her and rode for awhile, the swelling went completely down. It was so freaky to me as I never saw that happen since I adopted her over three years ago.I always get the answer I need on these forums. Have a good day! PJ

    " Horse's are a gift from God at any age so each day when you groom,ride or feed yours,count it as a blessing in your life."

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