Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Riley's hoof: an update

My job in the Riley bandaging process is twofold. I stand at my horse's head to keep him from chewing through the cross ties, and I prep and hand off scissors, bandages, and saline to the ones doing the real work. My vet has perfected the cocktail of Riley happy juice, though, so as of Monday he's practically dozing off while we work.

How lucky for you!
I can take a moment from my surgical nurse duties and video the progress in his healing. Sorry, don't have the time to shield the squeamish from the gross-out video. The hoof is being flushed with saline solution now, prior to the layers of gauze pad, gauze roll, vetwrap, elastikon, and duct tape (two layers).

Jose (barn manager) and Kelly (owner) have met me faithfully every M/W/F at 6:45am to manage the sedating and bandaging process. After we're done I muck Riley's stall -- as a courtesy, and because it's easier to do while he's dazed and quiet. Then I clean up in the restroom (which has a shower), change, and run off to work. How many days till he's healed? I get different answers, but that's still a sizable hole there, isn't it? It's a long haul, for sure.


  1. Looks pretty good - sounds like you have the routine down - here's hoping for a continued (and quick!) recovery!

  2. Just a FYI to possibly make the flushing of that hoof easier. . .your vet can write you a 'script for individual 10ml sterile saline flushes/syringes that you can fill at most pharmacies that handle IV meds. For some reason veterinarians dont seem to stock them.

    It does a better job of lavaging the dead gunk/tissue out then saline through IV tubing because you can squirt the saline into the hoof quicker and with more force.

  3. Thanks Helen, my local vet just told me to squeeze the IV bag hard :-). I don't know if this way is cheaper but effectivness is king. I'll ask about it at the surgical center when we go on the 9th. They actually didn't suggest the saline, my local vet did.

  4. Looks really good to me. Yes, the hole is big, but you can see tissue filling in. And it looks nice and clean.

    The shoe is a little disorienting. I would be kind of fun to see what Riley's hoofrpints looked like...but of course you can't let him walk unwrapped.

    I would not even hazard a guess as to how long it's going to be before it fully heals, but so far, I'd say it looks like there is definite progress. You are lucky to have such devoted and competent help to do the cleaning and wrapping.

  5. You are headed in the right direction. Healing is slow but at least there is progress.

  6. Looks like you know what you're doing. Lots of tlc. Great Blog.

    All About Horses

  7. It's looking tons better! I'm glad your vet is doing the "sleepy Riley meds" now. That will make it MUCH easier.

    Would adding a large guage (8ish) needle help? I did that with my mare when she decided to tear her chest open. I agree with Helen, the added pressure will definitely help get the gunk out.

    Keep up the great work!


Hi Guys, Your comments are valued and appreciated -- until recently I never rejected a post. Please note that I reserve the right to reject an anonymous post.