Lameness In Horses

My pony was lame last year. She has never been ill before and I don't know why she got lame. Is there anything I can do to prevent this happening again?

Laminitis is a very complicated disease and something which vets are only now beginning to understand properly. It most commonly occurs from over-indulgence in carbohydrates, from too much grain or very lush grass. It can also be seen in some mares following foaling and in animals who suffer from colic. The risk is certainly greater in unfit or unhealthy animals. It seems likely that your pony developed Laminitis when the grass it was grazing on became more lush in the spring.

If your pony made a complete recovery, you are very lucky and you should do everything you can to prevent a repeat. You should keep him very fit and active throughout spring and early summer and prevent him becoming overweight. You should also consider grazing him on a less well-grown paddock or locking him inside for several hours during each day to prevent carbohydrate overload. It is very important that if you suspect a repeat of Laminitis that you call out your vet immediately. There may have been hidden damage last year and any repeat could have very serious consequences.