Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Mikey Needs Surgery

The vet was out today and took x-rays, as I said in my last post.

When he got kicked or what have you back in December, it caused a small fracture or something. Long story is there is a new bone chip on the outside of his right hock. It isn't causing him any pain (he's not lame), but it is irritating the soft tissues around the joint (hence the swelling that just won't go away). Eventually his body will start to lay bone around it to "protect" him from a foreign object, which will cause the joint to fuse and Mikey to be permanently lame.

To me, that's not an option for him. He's a hard working horse that genuinely likes to work. He's also only 16. He has another 10-15 years left, and I refuse to let that be as a lame pasture pet. Aside from the fact I can't afford to keep a second horse, he's my buddy. I've had him for 10 years. I set money aside for a rainy day when I was in college, well it's finally raining.

I only have that minimum information, the vet will call me later today to discuss where and when for surgery, go over risks and recovery, etc.

Has anyone had bone chips removed?


  1. Crap! Ugh. Bone chip removal is a pretty common surgery. I don't think you have too much to be worried about, except cost! :) That said, I haven't had a horse of mine go through it while I owned them. I do know it's really common in racehorses on that track. Guinness has a small chip from his right fetlock that ended up about mid canon bone. It doesn't cause a problem there, so we haven't worried about it. Obviously the chips in the bone are often a bigger issue!

    Fingers crossed the surgery is on the affordable side, and the downtime won't be too long for Mikey!

  2. My trainer estimated $2-3k for it (she called since the vet was still poking around). I hope it's on the lower side of that obviously, but the top isn't a problem. I was an actuarial forecasting intern for a summer in NJ, I saved everything from the summer (I made more per hour there than I do now) and stashed it away just in case I couldn't get a job after college or if he colicked and needed surgery. Well he needs surgery! At least it's not colic. I'll have to start tossing money back in for that if it ever happens...

    My only concern is him not coming out of anesthesia well. I knew one horse that broke a shoulder coming out, but I know so many more that came out of it just fine. This is going to sound horrible, but I'd rather lose him because he fails to come out properly than to watch him slowly go lame (I'm sure at that point he'll be in pain) because I was afraid to fix him.

    My trainer seemed to think his recovery would be a couple weeks, also better than I thought. I was expecting to not have him back for several months. I just want my boy back, healthy and happy!

    1. Sounds horrible, sure, but better. Faster. I totally get it. These horses love to move, when their movement is painful, it's horrible for them.