Briefings

Should Foundered Horses Be Vaccinated?

After hearing reports about horses becoming lame within 24 hours of vaccination, Texas A&M University researcher Ilka Wagner compared seven chronically laminitic horses and seven healthy horses. Samples from 70 allergens were injected under the skin and evaluated at 15 minutes, 30 minutes, 4 hours and 24 hours.

When the scores were compared, she discovered all of the horses with chronic laminitis had more significant and prolonged swelling at the injection sites. While she’s not sure whether this hypersensitivity causes laminitis or simply results from it, she believes it developed after the onset of laminitis. This goes along with the idea that laminitis is not just a disease of the hoof, but has systemic effects as well over the long term. She says foundered horses can still be vaccinated, but recommends that the vaccines be spaced out rather than being given all at once.

Give Each Horse What It Needs

Lee Green maintains textbook shoeing doesn’t fit every circumstance. Instead, the veteran farrier from Yucaipa, Calif., says you should give every horse what it needs and nothing else. “Too many shoers do what they want to do instead of doing what is best for the horse,” he says. “As an example, some shoers clip every shoe because they think that’s what clients want. But what is right for one horse won’t be right for another horse.”

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