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I have a thoroughbred, Frank, who is frequently lame. He has a recurring abscess in one of his front hooves.

The vet and farrier have both lanced the abscess at various times and I inject him with daily antibiotics when the vet prescribes them.

Does anybody have some good advice on how to help prevent the abscess from recurring?

  • 2
    You've seen a vet but they didn't offer any preventative advice? What did they say? – Robert Cartaino Oct 9 '13 at 13:34
  • Does the horse show any signs of laminitis? What are you feeding it? – JohnFx Oct 11 '13 at 20:17
  • @joh no laminitis. Supplementing grazing with Lucerne. – Yvette Colomb Oct 11 '13 at 20:51
  • @rob nothing helpful. Just not to ride and no shoes. I'm looking for some more natural ideas, to do with diet or poultice or cleansing, what areas to keep him of. – Yvette Colomb Oct 11 '13 at 20:54
  • Did the vet make guesses about the underlying cause for the reoccurring abscesses? How it the hoof situation in general? – Lucero Oct 12 '13 at 12:06
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From your description it sounds as if the problem is isolated to this one hoof, so I'm assuming that there is not a general problem with Franks hoofs.

Maybe it would be wise to have an X-ray done on the problematic hoof, to see whether there is some debris (maybe even metallic) or something causing the abscess to come back on that one hoof. Long-time (and repeated) use of antibiotics carries the risk of bacterial resistance, and once you're there things get much more complicated to treat.

Some vets have mobile X-rays, so that the whole procedure is not too complicated or stressful and also affordable.

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What did your farrier say? You said your horse is not shoed, that's basically good. However, be sure that the hooves are trimmed regularly and in the right way. Sometimes irregularities in the hoof can lever or pinch and then abscesses occur.

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