Vicious kicker - need advise!

Discussion in 'Problem Horses' started by Kayla6304, Mar 7, 2013.

  1. Kayla6304

    Kayla6304 New Member

    Ok so i have a yearling mare whom has managed to injure her off side back leg 3 times now and she has gotten worse each time. She had to be taken to the vets to get a lump of proud flesh cut off the last time and she was sedated twice plus had someone holding up a front leg and she was still kicking. Unfortunatly its taking a long time to heal and needs to be re-wrapped daily to which is never a simple task. If we can get it done in a hour.. thats good time! Iv tried everything from nicey nicey, to tieing that leg to her neck, front leg, halter and tieing up the front leg to tieing up all 4 legs together and even then she kicks or would die trying. Has anyone had a horse like this and over come it? or know of any tricks?
  2. JustJam

    JustJam Well-known Member

    Silly girl to have injured herself 3 times! Poor baby! :( :rolleyes:

    I gather she isn't really a vicious kicker by nature... more of a 'learned behaviour' because she is obviously sore and a bit over it all?

    Can we get a bit more info on the injury? What exactly was the injury, how long ago did she do it and why does it need to be re-wrapped daily?

    Pics of the injury would help, if you have any.

    Believe it or not, this info may help solving your baby's kicking issues :)

    There are heaps of people who have gone through some dreadful injuries with their horses and will have some brilliant info and advice for you :)
  3. EVP

    EVP Gold Member

    Everything you have done so far has really only made her what she is.
    A scared and frightened youngster who has a painful injury that hurts more when you stuff with it. Her reaction is to kick out.

    The only way you are going to get her healed (which should be the focus here at the moment), is to either get her to the vet each bandage change so that she can be properly sedated for the procedure, OR, get the vet out. Or, if your vet prescribes it you can get some paste sedative.

    Now is NOT the time for education. It's time for doctoring. The longer the wound needs to heal the longer she is at risk of further complications (proud flesh, infection).

    Obviously you do not have the skills to handle this filly, so you are going to need to rely on a vet. Not even a few horsey friends are going to sugar coat what she needs to endure to get better. The more you stuff with her, the more you are sending her mad with panic. Why would she stand for you when it hurts? She knows it hurts and now she knows if she protests that she can draw the whole exercise out, or get out of it altogether.
    The more people you have grabbing, holding and fighting her, the more anxious and dangerous she becomes.

    Sedation. She will be calm and tractable for vet and you. Safer for herself and emotionally she will fare better without all the fighting. Vet will needle her in the vein and she will be sleepy and happy to let bandaging or further needles for local anesthetic.

    No one wins when you fight with a young horse.
  4. wattle6180

    wattle6180 Gold Member

    I can't understand her needing daily bandage changes. If that is what she needs, agist her at the Vets.

    Totally agree with EVP
  5. Kayla6304

    Kayla6304 New Member

    Hi wattle and justjam thanks for your response. I think i have wrote this a little wrong haha she actually needs re-bandaging every week not day. And its not just myself dealing with this horse, it is myself and my auntie who is more then a compatent horse women. Now everything we have done has been under vet instruction and we also live out in west dale which is over an hour away from our vet which is the equine surgery in oakford, so its not finacially do-able to take her to the vets every week. The vet who initially cut off the lump of proud flesh knew what she was like and didnt prescribe any sedatives, she pretty much said she also has no feeling left in where she has cut so i cant say she can use pain as an excuse for kicking. Also the vet said if shes to difficult dont wrap it but soon as we left it for a day it swelled up so we have no option but to keep wrapping it along with putting on pregnaderm given by the vet. Its also been almost 2 months since being taken to the vets so its not a fresh fresh wound. But she just fights and fights, iv even tried the nice way for about an hour and she dosnt give in... so im looking for other options as iv run out of ideas
  6. kp

    kp Well-known Member

    Stop being nice to her!!! An hour of being nice to them to get something done is not on. Make it super uncomfortable for everytime she kicks when you try to do something with her.

    I would use something as an extension of my arm so I could keep a safe distance. Touch her with it. If she kicks, chase her up. And hard, make her think about. Once she accepts being touched with it, quit. And come back the next day. All my young horses figure out very quickly that kicking simply is unacceptable.
  7. Just imagine you have to deal with the issue without the vets help.:)
    You need to attend to an injured hind leg , which is obviously sore:eek:, so how would you do it?:}
    Remember if a horse stands on an injured leg, it can't kick out with it.**)
    So all you have to do to is push the weight on that leg, you can put a belt on the front one as well to stop it from moving around.
    it is easier done in a crush, you'd need 2 people to dress the wound.
    Or twitch it.
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2013
  8. myyky

    myyky Well-known Member

    With one of the nutty TB's we used to have to dress her hind leg sometimes.. We'd tie her up (assuming this filly knows how to tie properly) and someone would hold the same side FRONT leg up (bent close into her body as if she was jumping). Much, much harder to kick out when you have no leg to stand on, on that side. And it's much easier to hang on to a front leg than a hind one LOL
  9. Kayla6304

    Kayla6304 New Member

    The nicey nicey has definitley reduced! At the start we tried with that cause it was obviously sore but now its been 2 months so theres no excuse anymore plus she was fine with her back legs before she continuously cut it. Iv been using a whip thats like a long dressage type whip with just a small curved bit of leather at the end that i use to rub up and down her leg and soon as she kicked i would give her a wack on the bum, chase her round, the whole lot and kept at that for ages and again wouldnt quit! We ended up putting her in a cow crush, which is metal and she dented from kicking it so hard and we still had to tie one rope forward off that leg then another rope off the same hobble under her belly to the other side of the crush so she couldnt cow kick... we got it done but she was still trying to kick till the very end. And that pretty much took up the whole day.
  10. Kayla6304

    Kayla6304 New Member

    Myyky we tried that abd believe me she still kicks with full force :/ at the vets she was given 2 strong sedatives that had her that drowsy she couldnt hold her head up but she was still kicking and we also were holding her front leg up aswell. The vet almost had to knock her out just to perform a simple procedure.
  11. kiraSpark

    kiraSpark Gold Member

    Ive seen stockmen fix a bad kicker by tying the horse up on the inside of a round yard, getting a set of hobbles, putting one cuff on ONE hind leg and the other cuff of the hobble attached to a good strong rope tied to the other side of the round yard, so its laying on the ground, with just enough tension that when they move their leg about they feel the pressure, they can kick until the cows come home but they wont get any benefit from it.

    They are tied up all day, for a few days straight. Eat, drink and poo in the round yard. In that spot. Tough love. But they quit kicking.

    Ive also seen the same stockman put an old rug on a kicker, and tie a chaff bag with two inches of sand inside, to the back of the rug, where the leg straps clip to. (Kind of like a massive tailbag without the tail being inside). Leave the horse in the roundyard, loose. They will kick the daylights out of the bag - until eventually they give it up, then anything can touch their back legs and its all old hat by then. ;)
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2013
  12. Deb2

    Deb2 Guest

    If you are only changing the bandage once a week, then I would assume it is pretty smelly when you take it off. If so, I would not leave it any longer then three days as this could be the reason why healing is delayed.

    I suspect the vet has said weekly due to the difficulties bandaging her, but this does not seem in her best interest.

    As you have been 'at this' for a long time, and made little to no progress, would you not consider it in the horses best interests to send her to a trainer, so they can work on this issue, AND treat the leg more frequently.

    I feel, the best thing that you can do for her, is to admit that this is too big an issue for you to handle on your own, and if you persist with out making improvements to her behaviour, you may well be setting her up to be labled a problem horse in the future, or worse still, she might actually hurt someone.

    I am sure you dont want all of that for her, so please consider getting her some professional help.
  13. equislave

    equislave Well-known Member

    I agree with Deb2, for both your sakes send her to a trainer or call someone and see if they will come out. I have heard of trainers working with this sort of problem before and it does not take long to fix, it is just having someone with the specific know how.
  14. Arnie

    Arnie Gold Member

    I had best results when I left my bandages up to a week. In that case that is your opinion :).

    The leg will swell when the bandage first comes off especially if its been a long period of time and with the kicking I'd hazard a guess that the bandage isn't as neatly applied as you wish.
    If the injury is ok to un bandage then do so and wait for her leg to adjust to it.

    Goodluck :)
  15. Sugar's Mum

    Sugar's Mum Gold Member

    what a heck of a place to be. I know it exactly. I had a filly a bit older who I had to doctor her leg without help and I could not get a bandage on her for love nor money. She had massive handling issues and I couldn't push through the issue at the time as she was too mentally damaged.

    Instead of fighting her all the time (So much potential for that to go pear shaped and have you end up with a vicious horse) I decided that she would have to put up with a scar bigger then I would like.

    The wound was treated with proud aide put on in a layer that was thick enough to keep the flies from worrying it to death and it was left alone without a bandage.

    Yes it did swell up without the bandage however over time that swelling has subsided, the wound healed and the horse is now mentally and physically sound. The scar is a little larger then it would have been ahd it been able to be bandaged but it is all good.

    My biggest concern with long term injuries is the mental health of the horse afterward. I have seen some horses ruined mentally and turned vicious from treating such wounds and I think it takes the right horse and the right training to get horses through issues like this especially when they are babies.

    Think you have been given excellent advice re getting a professional trainer to help you with the issues you have. Timing is so so important in dealing with something like this and not something you can learn from words on a computer screen.

    Good luck
  16. JustJam

    JustJam Well-known Member

    EVP and wattle... I was trying to be subtle and 'nice' - you both said what I wanted to! :lol:

    Really good advice has been given by everyone! **)

    Kayla6304, my advice: leave the bandages off, rinse dirt off as required (with a strong force hose!) and just apply honey for now. You can deal with any proud flesh as required - either by use of Proud Aid or the vet cutting it off. The fact that it swells a bit if of no consequence - it is the body's way of sending healing fluids to the area. As long as there is no heat in the wound, then it is all good!

    The issue of the kicking should be dealt with exactly the same as any other kicking issue. In this case it sounds like you need a professional trainer (absolutely no shame in admitting when a horsey issue has you stumped!) - there really aren't any excuses to allow this kind of behaviour ;)
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2013
  17. EVP

    EVP Gold Member

    If this wound still needs bandaging after 2 months, and the horse hasn't been seen by a vet for 2 months. Then its time for a vet visit.

    No feeling where she has cut? I totally can't understand this.....if it bleeds, needs bandaging, and needs time to heal - then there is going to be pain!!!
    All these things are signs of nerve endings which transmit pain.

    You've been given logical options for how to handle this injured yearling. Surely after all this time of being handled by yourself and your aunt you can see that the horse is STILL difficult to handle for bandage changes. When the things you are doing are not working, then you have to go to the next level.....there is no magic technique that anyone on here can give you to miraculously make this filly stand for bandage changes. You say your aunt is compentant - well don't you think if there was a way to improve things then she would have found it by now?

    Either send her to the vet facility to recover, or send her to a training facility where she can either be visited by the vet or be SAFELY trained to stand for doctoring.

    The end result of bad or incomplete wound management is as bad as the injury itself.
  18. Lokenzo

    Lokenzo Gold Member

    Well said EVP and Wattle.

    In regards to the regularity of bandage changes, I have always been told to leave it on as long as possible before changing it as its actually better and worked for mine ;)

    In relation to pain, the proud flesh itself doesn't have any nerves in it hence that doesn't cause pain but around the wound is likely to still cause pain with changes or she still has the memory of the pain. I have one that cut its back leg as a baby and required treatment. Still to this day over 3 years later it hates boots on its back legs, it will tolerate it but if you leave it standing around it starts stomping! Tried leaving them on all day etc, it never got over it. Horses have looonnnggg memories!
  19. Kayla6304

    Kayla6304 New Member

    Evp it actually dosnt bleed and purely needs bandaging to have pressure on the wound (which is no longer open) to stop it growing another proud flesh lump. It is very hard to explain what it looks like so i will try put a picture up when possible. We also have re-contacted the vet and sent her pictures and she said that she didnt expect it to look any better at this time and it will take another several months till its better and theres nothing more she can do. As far as people saying she needs sedatives.. the vet gave her 2 strong sedatives within 10 mins of each other and they didnt work, the only other option would be to completley knock her out. As we live over an hour away from any vets it isnt feasible to take her every week to get re-bandaged for the next 2-4 months along with having to pay for the drugs for her to be knocked out every time.. which i wouldnt consider a good option anyway. Iv also spoken to several horse trainers and everything they said they would do i have already done. And finally as for there being no pain, i was told that by a qualified vet so i do not question her judgement!
  20. JustJam

    JustJam Well-known Member

    Why not just use Proud Aid then? Much simpler than bandaging! **) I'm not sure that bandaging prevents Proud Flesh anyway - happy to be corrected though :)

    And you still need to address the kicking issue regardless of whether you bandage or use an alternative method.

    Kayla, (just in case it has crossed your mind), I don't believe anyone is having a go at you with any malicious intent... I believe everyone is just concerned for you and your horses welfare. **)

    Unfortunately, the limited information you provided (as with any initial 'forum' post on a topic) has rung a few alarm bells with some people. So hang in there... Stockies are primarily pretty decent people with a LOAD of experience and advice! :hug:
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2013

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