Our second chiro visit with Carlos. After his work with Midnight on our first meeting, hopes were high that he would work a miracle with Bo Jangles, a new horse, severely lame and in need of help.
Bo Jangles took a sharp turn south after he was here for a week. He could not handle even the minor turnout and little hill climbing, and was walking like a crab, sideways, spinning stiffly, nearly falling….it was awful. Since his previous owner said it was a stifle injury, but that he was sound for a rider at walk/trot, we felt he would be great with a small herd and easy field. I think that former owner was honest, but that Bo had been living in a small private paddock that was ‘masking’ the severity of his injury. Basically I believe that she did her best with him, and we picked up from there, treating him as a basically sound horse with an old stifle injury. That is what I’ve been sharing, but we were wrong. Instead of thriving in turnout, he was the most lame horse here for a week, much worse then Midnight or Jed. We pulled him out of the herd of course, and set up an impromptu private area for him. He improved a tiny bit there, but was clearly in a lot of pain, and I had no clue how to help him. We were just waiting for Carlos and a miracle. He did not disappoint!
Carlos was here on Sunday and Bo was the first horse we had him see. ‘Tough case” he said, and watched and began examining him. I love watching how he deduces calmly and logically what it may or may not be. He found a digital pulse in both of his hind feet, which there should not be; but using a pincher, he could not find foot pain. He said that was ‘very strange’ and guessed he might have broken a bone in his foot, but still unclear. To relieve pressure, he used a needle and poked a hole in his coronet band in the middle of his left hind, on an acupressure point, to let some pressure bleed out of his foot. I walked him and there was improvement, so Bo would be better able to shift his weight and withstand further treatment on his other areas. Then he got to work on his hip.
He tested and prodded, and observed that Bo’s pain was not in the stifle, but that instead, it appeared to be an old untreated hip injury, and a massively pulled muscle. By compensating for the muscle, Bo was moving as if it was a stifle injury, but that was not where there was any pain. This is huge, because a severe stifle injury can end a horses’ life. A hip muscle is serious but not nearly so life threatening.
We are still unsure what injury came first, but Carlos suspects there was a major hip muscle injury, perhaps a fall, that went untreated. He began working with B12 shots anywhere there was pain. Usually he uses 4 shots for a horse in the hip area, but he needed to use double that on Bo. Then I walked him again. The difference was astounding, both hips moving up and down as he walked, just like a normal horse! Yes, I started to tear up. His muscles are flattened on the left side from non-use, so it will take him awhile to fully recover, but Carlos wants him to exercise! On hills! Not out with the herd, because we don’t want Bo moved forcibly. But out and moving to build back muscle. I am very excited.
Carlos wasn’t done, and began working on areas on his topline that were ‘out’, including his poll and his c7….there were lots of other terms that Carlos used but I could not keep up with it all, to be honest. If you have not watched an equine chiro at work, it is quite a treat. I equate watching Carlos to what it must have been like to watch Picasso; there is such an element of intuition, intermixed with anatomical knowledge, history of other horses, and careful observation of the horse in front of you. And healing this horse was very tricky with the compounded issues. Of course, he ‘could’ be wrong, and the proof will be in the horse, who is moving more comfortably then I have seen him. He is starting to shift his weight to his left leg, finally giving that poor right leg a break. He is perking up. From watching Midnight last time, I know that some effects are immediate and others take a few days to really show but I am thrilled with hope for him.
We are to watch him, exercise him, and see. He said that we will get the topline squared away, and if he is still lame then we will find it in his foot. But he said, ‘we will find it’.
How awesome is he? Priceless.