Zoom back to 2007: One day in late September, when little Zil was five months old, we were watching her zip around. As usual, it was a delightful sight. But something was wrong with her hock.
We got closer, and examined it. There appeared to be two small wounds close together oon one side, and one on the other side. We couldn’t figure out what it was, but we settled on it being a dog bite. It was odd because though we also had a penchant for rescuing dogs and one may have nipped at heels, we didn’t have any dogs at the time who would take a bite out of anyone like that. Sooo, may or may not have been one of ours, or a dog at all. The cause could not be established as fact.
We flushed the wounds as best we could with water and dilute iodine, and gave her a tetanus booster and penicillin. The next day there was some swelling, and we continued to treat her.
Soon the wounds healed, but the hock remained swollen. Zil exhibited no sign of lameness, though. She was as energetic and full of the dickens as ever, hating being confined.
A couple weeks after the bite, my husband was examining her hock, squeezing the one tiny opening for signs of infection. There was no pus. Yay! And as he messed with her, she kicked at the panel and got a cut on her coronet. Blood ran. Wonder Dust®, help!!
I wish that I had kept better records of Zil’s life back then. . .taken pictures. . . written notes about communications with our vet. . . but that’s all the data I have on Zil’s injury until a couple of weeks after that. Apparently the swelling hadn’t gone down, and she had gone to the vet, because the vet prescribed Tucoprim, an antibiotic, for the leg. Perhaps it was at that time that the leg was x-rayed and she was getting antibotics in preparation for surgery.
She was diagnosed with a bone chip fracture . . . and on October 20, she had surgery! Amazingly I can recall and picture the day, some time after, when we had her huge leg bandage changed. I remember the blue and yellow colors of the veterinary wrap. But I cannot remember how she looked on the day we picked her up from the vet after her surgery. I bet she was droopy and worried-looking. Her expressive Arabian eyes were and are very good communicators. All I have as a keepsake of the big event is the vet clinic invoice. Grrr. . . (bang self on head)!
She was adorable with the bandage on. It extended from the bottom of her leg up over her hock and was quite thick, to preclude motion of the leg. I remember we kept her in a small pen with her mother to restrict her from gallivanting around. I cannot find a single picture anywhere of her wearing her “cast.” It makes me sad. We weren’t good at record-keeping back then, or picture-taking, or movie-taking of the family horses in those days, because we used up all our energy chronicling the progress of the rescue horses instead. In hindsight, were they really more important than the family horses? Equally, I should say. We were blessed and charged by God to be good stewards of them ALL.
The whole Zil surgery experience cost us $435, a lot of money to us then, but worth it for the future soundness of our beloved baby! Our exquisite little one recovered fully, and the injury has never hampered her since, thanks to the great work of our local veterinarians.