Wound management

Discussion in 'Horse Management' started by Diesel91, Aug 9, 2012.

  1. Diesel91

    Diesel91 Well-known Member

    Just looking around at ideas and what other people have done...
    We are now managing the wound as an open wound. Have been cleaning everyday with betadine, then prednaderm ( almost finished the jar now) and bell boots to keep as much dirt off it as possible. It has formed a nice layer over the top... not a scab but its not flesh anymore ... if that makes sense? I feel like everytime i clean it and scrape the top of it off were starting all over again. He was due to go out on spell and agistment had arranged somebody to come into his paddock so he is now alternating between being on their back lawn and stabled at night...
    Im not trying to push him out on spell and i want him to be recovered before i put him out. Im just unsure of when i need to stop cleaning everyday etc
    Im back at the vets nect week so will obviously check things over with her but just looking for opinions on what they have done or photos to show their progress with different methods??

    Thanks so much :)
  2. EVP

    EVP Gold Member

    You'll get dozens of opinions - some will be from experience and some will just be "opinions"........at the end of the day you should do what your vet tells you because you are paying for that advise.
    When you pay for advise you are more likely to accept what you hear and agree with it. The stuff you will get here is 'free' and usually people don't like it.

    Wait until you see your vet with the horse, or if you need treatment plans before then make a phone call and send them pictures.
  3. Blackbat

    Blackbat Well-known Member

    You are.

    The pink spongy tissue is likely to be granulation tissue, full of lovely blood vessels, and prone to overproduction if the next stage of wound healing is delayed. Which is epithelialisation, where baby skin cells swim from the wound edges over the granulation tissue, healing it from the edges in. Skin cells can swim better in a moist environment (covered wound).

    Daily cleaning removes these cells, and a dry open wound makes it harder for the cells to migrate over the surface.

    I can't advise you on your horse's wound care, but thought it might be helpful to know how skin heals so you can understand why it is so slow. I know it's hard if the wound is getting mud on it all the time, but if it's not oozing, it's granulated.
  4. EVP

    EVP Gold Member

    BB wish there was a "love" button.
  5. Hi Diesel:)
    Wounds heal from inside out. Healing process (granulation) takes time and "doesnt like to be disturbed". Even when you can keep it bandaged it is better not to change it (disturb the wound) very often. If you can't keep it covered then wash it off with a warm water, spray with betadene and fly repellent and walk away. When the granulation gets OVER skin edges, I start putting stuff for proud flesh on it. I let the wound getting covered with a scab first and then you'll see new layers of sking closing over a scab. I prefer to put creme on it to prevent scarring. When it dries out too quick it leaves more scarring tissue. I stop putting creme on the closed wound only when I see a new hair regrowth appearing.
    Sorry if I couldnt be of more help, it is rather hard to advice on a would without seeing it. Good luck!


    and here she is going strong.
  6. Kiwigirl

    Kiwigirl Well-known Member

    I dealt with this by washing once or twice a week around the wound to get the "juices" off the skin which can burn the skin and slapping honey on it. I also poured baby oil below the wound to protect his skin from the "juices"
    I didn't bandage it at all, and didn't confine him at all, and he saved me the job of hosing the leg with cold water by doing this
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2012
  7. Nattyh

    Nattyh Guest

    Diesel, I generally prefer to take a 'less is more' approach to wound management :))
    Obviously you have to use your common sense and assess any injury on its individual merits, but nature really can take care of healing most wounds - even pretty gory ones - all on its own. That suits me fine because I am not concerned about scars or lump and bumps.
    If you consider paddock geldings, for example, that's a pretty big 'wound', and for many horses there's no aftercare at all. Obviously it's done with a sterile scalpel, but there is still a large wound left to heal and it does so all on its own.
    A major disclaimer would be regarding deep/puncture wounds though - always keep your tetanus vaccinations up to date :))
  8. EVP

    EVP Gold Member

    A good percentage of 'geldings' actually end up with complications. Usually associated with not keeping the wound free draining or secondary infections from dirt or flies. Choosing the right time of year to geld is a must and so is adequate after care and attention. Simply allowing Mother Nature to do her thing is most times not enough - she needs a helping hand. Even the smallest wound can turn septic, andit takes 2 minutes to give a gentle hose and a spray of antibacterial spray. Others will heal quicker if bandaged.

    I would never allow Mother Nature to cure every wound.....I like the idea of "an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure".....especially foals!
  9. Nattyh

    Nattyh Guest

    I've never had a problem with paddock geldings - although ive only had 3 done in the past 18 months, so perhaps not enough to make a judgement about that. However the good drainage is created by the good vet I have and picking up manure means I don't have a fly problem so maybe thats why I've never had a problem with dirt or infection of a wound or post-gelding.

    Maybe talk to your vet about your pasture management if you keep having 'complications' post-gelding or keep getting secondary infections. That sounds very worrying to me.
    Good luck though :))

    A vet creates good drainage. Good lord.

    I would expect with all those good percentage of paddock geldings developing complications that vets Over there would have stopped choosing to to do paddock geldings along time ago. How tragic for all those poor horses that these vets are all so thick and keep doing paddock geldings. I think with all your evidence of post-gelding complications, you have an obligation to take this up with the ethics committee in NSW. I suspect the vets in WA are far more clever as we don't have all the problems you have. Or maybe its the horse owners who are far more clever. Yes, that is it. Definitely.
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 12, 2012
  10. EVP

    EVP Gold Member

    I had to re-read my reply. Yup, I never wrote that we had ever had serious comps from castrations, however........(for the purpose of education).
    It's a well known fact that nearly all castrations require management post procedure.

    A vet doesn't create any drainage-that is done when the testes leave a cavity.
    If this cavity isn't allowed to remain open (gentle hosing) then it will heal over trapping serus fluids and
    causing swelling. It's this that can be avoided with a few days of monitoring and care.
    After all it is a large wound with some risk of either surgical complications or bleeding from too much exertion.
    Not to mention the risks of anesthetic.
    I much prefer to circumvent any issues by being proactive and using common sense.
    Anyone who anticipates gelding a horse should do some basic reading about the procedure. While it may be a common thing, any surgery carries risks.
    Complacency has no place in animal husbandry in my book.

    Generally speaking choosing to geld a horse in the cooler months makes better sense.
    Obviously having only gelded 3 horses might explain a lot- but every wound from pin prick to gash will attract flies. Hence the common sense approach to wound management applies.

    Not sure what picking up poop has to do with castration, but luckily our lush dairy pastures provide
    plenty of ground cover and no bare dirt yards to have to collect manure.
    I didn't know that WA was a fly free state or maybe they've been trained not to be the opportunistic buggers they are everywhere else in the world....lol. Go WA!
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2012
  11. wattle6180

    wattle6180 Gold Member

    I've never had a post-procedure complication ';' My boys are always paddock gelded. Start with a healthy, inoculated young man :)

    Flies in our area are strictly planned for October & November - that's just when they're here en masse, not before, not after. I usually geld in May. It's cool, wet, and non-contaminant.
  12. BugEye

    BugEye Active Member

    Here are some of the best tricks for treating injuries to our equine friends (sourced from friends and ourselves)

    For a leg wound, I'd go with the honey and bandaging.

    Keeping the wound moist and not letting it dry helps the wound heal and grow from the edges. I've found scaring to always be at the minimum by wrapping.

    I always bandage the legs for wounds,( with honey only now). It helps with keeping it moist and keeping pressure on the wound. I keep the bandage on for a while even after the wound has healed, but a polo fleece bandage with wrap. Just to keep that pressure on it and I find the wound just heals better and faster with minimum scaring. And I dont get as much proud flesh on major wounds. Keeps it from drying out.

    Leaving a bandage on for 4-5 days also helps the wound grow from the edges in. Changing too often inhibits this growth and peels away the cells that are forming.

    Changing it so little was so hard to fathom years ago,when we were all so strict about hygiene of a wound and cleaning it daily. Burns unit, puts plastic type of covering on wounds with a burns gel and leave it till it looks disgusting. But it really works, and its the same for bandaging wounds, keep the enviroment moist and advantageous for skin cells to form. Those amazing cells that have to travel across the wound to build the scaffold for the skin cells to grow on need a moist environment to move around in. From memory they take about 4 - 6 days to install themselves - hence the advice to leave initial bandages on for 4 days

    Minor wounds on legs will heal fine without bandaging, but any that involves deep flesh wounds benefits from bandaging.

    For deep chest wounds either honey or sugar that cant be bandaged

    Clean the wound with water and just pack the wound with white sugar or honey. Pack with sugar/honey every day for the following weeks - be sure to give tetanus and antibiotics at the beginning. In weeks you will be amazed and all that should be left is a tiny fine scarl. Good way to pack a wound that can't be bandaged - amazing.

    Apply an insecticide like REPELX to the lower legs to prevent ant's if you find they are a problem
  13. corporate pride

    corporate pride Well-known Member

    That green goo from the vet is great!! I was really unluckily last year and my 18yo got barbed wire about his leg and then the worlds worst abscess that came outta his heal and had a huge open sore. I had to confine Ozzie with the abscess but the leg wound wasnt healing right in the muddy paddock either. I used copper sulphate on his proud flesh and dermacleanse to clean the wound. His abscess well that was months or confinement and a lot in vets. Ended with his leg swelling up to the shoulder due to infection (had the vet out already twice) and then got X-rays and antibiotics.
    Ozzie has a scar from the barbed wire but it doesn't matter. I left his leg wound open and kept the abscess wound covered til the hole closed then left it open putting natures botanicals on it. Had to brib him with food to keep him still to treat it lol was sick of being sick.

    Good luck
  14. EVP

    EVP Gold Member

    Yes, any procedure should only be done on an animal that is well (no obvious cold or temp). Though being inoculated (assume you mean Tet) isn't a requirement. Vets will usually give antibiotics as well (proof that the procedure is considered to be at risk of infection). The healthiest animal is at risk of infection when ANY procedure is done in paddock conditions...just like they are at risk when done in sterile environments....lolol.

    I have never heard of being able to plan for flies...';' How amazing that you can order them to only come in October and November. Seeing as it only takes one fly to contaminate the smallest wound, being able to order them on request must be a god-send!!
  15. wattle6180

    wattle6180 Gold Member

    It is a God-send :D Just the way it is here...the flies are gone by December, for the last 20yrs that I've been involved in this suburb's horsey industries :)**)

    ETA: Completely agree with Bugeye regarding moist wound environments. Jelonet is another god-send :)
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2012
  16. Sugar's Mum

    Sugar's Mum Gold Member

    Hey Lena I remember seeing pics of your mare before but cant remember how long it took for her to heal?

    A friend and I have been discussing the ethics of rehabing horses from injuries that take a long time to heal and I was wondering how she coped mentally and would you do it again with the experience you had with her?

    My friend has had a horse with extensive injury that she rehabed and the mental outcome for the horse has not been great so she would chose to not treat but euthanase instead if it was to be a long treatment.
  17. EVP

    EVP Gold Member

    Are you saying that you won't get a single fly (common house fly or other) after November?

    I would never assume even in winter, that a fly won't contaminate a wound of any sort or size. I always err on the side of caution where welfare is concerned.
    I find it better to beat a problem rather than race one.....I couldn't sleep at night knowing I hadn't been pro-active and pre-emptive in ANY nursing care.
    It takes 2 minutes to spray up a nick or graze.....and I have 2 minutes for my horses.
  18. Hi SM:)
    it took nearly a year to heal the wound. It took a lot of dedication, commitment and $$$ on our part, she was good as gold before the doosey, during the healing and 5 years later she is still the same - nice and easy. I would do it all over again with no hesitation, I am a sucker for giving animals a second chance, a helping hand and we can afford it.
    It is cheaper and easier for owners to euthanise than to treat, that's why more than likely Bunny would be put in the hole if she were owned by someone else. We were prepared to give her a go and she lived and still is in a good order.:))) The only different treatment she gets from all the rest of mares - we shoe her on the bad foot in summer. She had 2 foals for us, doesnt owe us a cent, so she can be a paddock ornament untill we see she is in pain, then we'll deal with it accordingly.
    Thanks for asking:)
  19. Sugar's Mum

    Sugar's Mum Gold Member

    so good to hear that it did not change her temperment.

    The trouble for my friends horse is complicated. The foal was only young and not halter trained when it went through a fence. That healed then the tendon contracted and foal was taken to Murdoch.

    It had just been weaned but had never been in a float so mum was returned for the float trip and foal left at murdoch. They didn't want the mum there so she was returned home

    surgery was done and foal came back dangerous so was sent to a trainer.

    was broken in around 4 years old but was not a happy camper and is still a handful for her. We are playing around trying to get him happy so he can find a home. He seems to love travelling out of the paddock so he is happy then but a real grump in the paddock and yards.

    So she has decided that she would not rehab such a nasty injury again. Think the age, length of time to heal and guilt all added up to the unhappy outcome.

    So glad you could help her. My horses are part of the family and I would spend money to heal them as long as they have a good outlook afterward.

    I am lucky I have had the same vet for over a decade and I know that he is OK for me to pay off a big account if I need to. I checked on that before I returned to horse ownership because I dont ever want to be in the position of having to put down a family friend simply cos the bill is too much.
  20. SM, it is always easier to blame a horse for your own inadequacy.;)
    An injured foal still should be treated as a horse not as a sick child, people let foals get away with murder and then are surprised how come their not so little any more baby puts them in a hospital.:}

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