Summer 2021 proved to be another busy one for the horses and team at Fredericksburg. Due to the high costs associated with Walker’s hoof treatment, new intakes were put on hold so that we could appropriately manage his care along with the other horses in our custody.
In July, we thought we had reached the end of the road with Walker’s treatment as we were unable to get him weight bearing at all on his hind leg and if he was still in pain and unable to bear weight then there was nothing else we were going to be able to do. After multiple consultations with different surgeons, we were beginning to believe that he may be septic. We made the calls, we scheduled his euthanasia and we cried.
What we did not expect to happen was on the day of our 11th Birthday Party event, we saw what we never thought we would. He walked. With his heel down. I stared at him and watched trying to decide if what I was seeing was what I so desperately wanted to see or if he really was putting weight on his heel. I took a video. I sent it to Dr Moga and to Cindy with the caption “do you see that? Does he LOOK better?” We finally decided that whether we were only seeing what we wanted to see or he was truly better, we were going to give him one last Hail Mary and proceed with the OsPhos injection that we had discussed. He had two months to show improvement or we would be back to square one.
Today marks the 2 month deadline that we had set back in July and the amount of improvement we have seen since then is nothing short of a true miracle. Walker has gone from being isolated to a stall in order to protect his hoof from further injury and infection to being turned out in a pasture with a herd of his own.
Walker has the ability to walk, pace and canter around the field without causing injury to his hoof. He has put on a significant amount of weight and the muscle that he had begun to lose in his hip is finally starting to come back.
Walker has had 3 full hoof debridements to remove the false souls and open up the cavities where infection has built up. While we think we may have finally gotten it all with this last one, we will still be monitoring his improvement closely to ensure that another false soul doesn’t develop.
We are very pleased with the way that Walker has been progressing. There have been some set backs along the way but we, and he, have taken them all in stride and we have continued to pray and fight for his recovery. Walker is still in need of sponsorships to help support his care at the rescue. His current wish list items consist of:
- Gauze pads
Walker receives regular shoeing every 4 – 5 weeks and with all of his new activity he goes through metal plates and bolts. He will also be receiving another OsPhos injection towards the end of the year to help with his joint healing.