Greetings: I saw your web site and thought maybe you could help me. I have a six-year-old Morgan western pleasure mare with a professional trainer near Erie PA. Unfortunately, she has developed lameness in her right rear leg, which, of course, the vets cannot diagnose.
The lameness occurs only on the right lead at the lope and only when she is being ridden, leading me to believe that she may have compression on a nerve root with resulting sciatica, activated by specific pressure on her back. The vets think I'm crazy but as a Workers' Comp. attorney who regularly takes the testimony of chiropractors, orthopedists and neurologists, I think I have something.Recently, a friend of mine, who is an equine massage therapist, went over my mare in detail and came to the same conclusion. I did not relate my suspicions to her until afterwards. (This mare had an accident two years ago whereby she ran afoul of a swarm of wasps causing her to decamp at great speed and lose her footing and fall on the road outside.I would like to find a good equine chiropractor to evaluate my mare and to treat her as necessary. Unfortunately, I am not from the Erie, PA, area and don't know whom to contact. The trainers are interested and agreeable but, not having dealt with this before, don't have any suggestions. If you know of anyone, or have any other suggestions, I would greatly appreciate your input. If necessary, I would ship her to Cornell for an MRI.Thanks so much,PhyllisDear Phyllis,I think you may be right on the money. I was certified in animal chiropractic in '99 and have recently left traditional veterinary medicine to do only chiropractic. I have seen several animals that had front limb lameness that appeared to be related to a problem in their necks. The pain was most likely radiating down. I have also seen animals that I believe may have had a form of, what is called in human medicine, sciatica. I don't know if it is recognized as such in the veterinary world yet but as more people begin to understand complementary therapies, I think we will also begin to understand the disease processes from a different light.I would recommend that you visit www.avcadoctors.com. That is the website of the American Veterinary Chiropractic Association. You can click on the option to find a doctor in your area" and you will see a list of AVCA certified practitioners. Allow the doctor to see the horse at least twice, probably about 1-2 weeks apart. If the problem has not gone away at that point, you can always opt for the MRI at that point.I would put that off to the last if possible since it requires general anesthesia and of course, quite a bit of money.Good luck and let us know what happens,Dr. Evelyn OrenbuchCertified by the AVCA
Phyllis,If you are going to Cornell, see Kevin Haussler, DVM, DC, PhD (607-253-3807). He is one of the best. Otherwise, check the listings of the American Veterinary Chiropractic Assoc.Kimberly Henneman, DVMKaren,I am a licensed Missouri Fox Trotter Judge, trainer, lessons, etc. and ranch manager at a boarding and training facility in Snowmass, Colorado.I recently took a level I course in myofascial release work from Jock and Dr. Ivanna Ruddock called Equine Touch. I will continue with the Level II and Certification process. I now notice that others are teaching this work also. Any input? I am thinking that a course in Acupressure would also be extremely valuable. Any info from you on where best to go for continuing education? Or would other courses be of more value? I await your reply.Thank you so much.Cheryl Eaglin
Cheryl,There is a group in Parker, CO, that does a very good course in Equine Acupressure. It is good to get a few different modalities down, because you need a well-rounded base. Call 888-841-7211.Also, our publication lists a few different types of massage schools.Good Luck,Karen
Category: Ask the Expert
Your best source for equine therapy, horse disease, horse therapy, equine nutrition and holistic veterinarian based information.
Holistic HorsePO Box 353Silverdale, PA 18962Phone: 215-249-1965