He is gorgeous, has the best temperament, and is gentle, majestic, and one of the most people-oriented horses I have met. He’s also a big boy and went though 4th level dressage. I love him dearly and told the owner I’d help look for a safe home for him. He would be best suited as a companion horse, as his injury makes his prognosis for future riding unlikely (riding would increase his risk for a re-tear in the future).
He has been stall resting since January, but I take him out for grazing whenever I’m at the barn. His best chance at future soundness and comfort would involve continued stall rest/small paddock with very slow rehab over the next 6 or so months. He would likely have some ongoing lameness if his current tear wasn’t able to fully heal before he went back to regular turnout, etc. He is normally a mellow guy, but after being stall-rested for 6 months, he has some pent-up energy (understandably so) when out to graze (eager to jump around and run if he could).
The owner’s recent shift toward euthanasia is due to his vet’s opinion that he will likely re-tear his partially healed leg in the future, even in a pasture situation. He has not repeated the ultrasound of his soft tissue injury, but had the vet examine him and watch him walk.
I’m conflicted about this situation, as I feel that he is quite happy and comfortable, particularly when he is around people or presumably other quiet horses in a controlled amount of space (right now in the neighboring paddock), and could live out his life in comfort if the right situation was found.
If more diagnostic tests were done (repeat ultrasound), we would see where he is in his healing, but the current owner doesn’t plan on further testing. He does have some new calcification that has formed around the fetlock just below the injury, indicating that he may have some arthritic changes forming since his injury.
Would you be in a position or know of anyone who could take this amazing horse on, knowing that he may need to be in a stall/paddock for some time to see how his healing continues to progress? His prognosis may be unknown until more time has passed and more healing has happened. At the present time, a pasture situation would not be safe for him, as he jumped around in his paddock about a month ago when a neighbor’s sheep got loose and was so lame for two weeks, that walking was very difficult–his leg also blew up at this time (the swelling has since come down). We do know that this particular injury takes between 9-12 months to heal, assuming he doesn’t re-tear it during the healing process.
Any leads or help regarding a place/person who may be a good fit for this special guy would be greatly appreciated. He has so much to offer and bonds very quickly with people.