Thursday, January 22, 2015

The Fatal Horse Navicular Disease

By Janine Hughes

It is also known as the navicular syndrome and it is an illness that mainly affects horses. It is the inflammation of the navicular bone on the front feet of a horse and its surrounding tissues. In extreme cases it can lead to disability or lameness of the animal. It is therefore very necessary to treat navicular disease as soon as the symptoms start showing.

The two factors that largely contribute to the development of this disease is tension and compression of the bone and its surrounding structures. Compression causes the cartilage to perform functions poorly. It causes degradation that leads to the exposure of the bone beneath it. The exposed bone becomes more prone to other external forces. This whole process causes a lot of pain to the animal.

Tension of the ligaments that support the navicular bone is also another factor. Tension at the ligaments reduces the flow of blood and causes strain and inflammation at the foot. This tension is also accompanied with high blood pressure inside the bone that causes some minerals to be absorbed from the center. Very high tension gives a canoe shape to the foot.

The symptoms of these disease are very hard to ignore. If you interact with your horse often you will notice the soreness of the foot affected by the ailment. The horse will once in a while stumble due to the immense pain it is experiencing. Several months later, you will notice that the foot will even change in shape. It will be narrower and upright.

Since the condition is a result of some processes it cannot be said to have a specific cause. This has made it very hard to have a particular treatment. The disease can only be managed or controlled by trying to relief the pain at the hoof. It is unfortunate that the changes that occur cannot be reversed by any type of medication.

Trimming is a great foot care that improves the foot form. Most of the horses that have long toes and underrun heels are mainly affected by the syndrome. Trimming will help in improving the biomechanical and the neurological balance of the foot. It will also expose the foot to proper stimulus that will improve the form of the hoof.

One should also consider shoeing their horses. Shoes help a lot in managing the problems that affect the feet. Since there are so many types of shoes one should be very careful while choosing the type of shoe you want for your horse. Each type is known for its own special advantages.

Just like any other disease, exercise of the body is very important. One can take them for a slow long distance walk to help them relax their muscles. Swimming is also a great exercise. One should avoid making them run at high speed or on surfaces that cause strain. Jumping is also not good for the horse during this treatment.

The illness can only be fatal when it is not noted and controlled. It can be easily managed through a number of ways. One should always seek professional advice from a local vet.

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