Tazzy spent the entire weekend standing in a tub of ice water. His fever never returned, and he even began to nibble on some hay, and drink of his own accord. Finally, Monday May 4th arrived – the day we had scheduled to do his radiography. After spending four days in a tub of ice water and under constant supervision, we allowed Taz to hang out in his stall for a few hours to rest, while wearing ice boots.
He went down, and stayed down for 6 hours. Clearly, he was exhausted.
After several frantic phone calls to the vet, she assured us this was normal for a foundered horse, and encouraged us to allow him to rest. Unfortunately, He began moaning and groaning and clearly looked uncomfortable. We considered what the xrays could say, and the quality of life he may have due to it. Euthanasia was beginning to look like the solution and we were heartbroken.
Unfortunately, along with exhaustion, came moaning and groaning. He. would. not. get. up. We decided that we would wait for the Xrays, but it was unfair and selfish to keep him around in this much pain. As he laid there, we all walked in one by one and sat with him, crying and saying our goodbyes. This was the end to his legacy. Once we all left his stall, drying our eyes and putting on a brave face, Tazzy did, as tazzy usually does, and made us all stop in our tracks. He stood up, walked to the end of the barn with minimal coaxing, made it back to his stall where he pooped, peed, pooped again, drank some water and than proceeded to spend some time enjoying his grain. To quote one of Tazzy’s biggest supporters, “Well, we can’t kill him while he’s enjoying his dinner..”
When the vet arrived, we pulled blood and we’re finally able to get a decent fecal done. Hopefully this was shed some light on what caused the sudden onset of diarrhea and fever. This time, Tazzy proved to be much easier to xray than originally. He was willing to lift his foot with a bit of coaxing and stood perfectly still. Unfortunately, the worst case scenario came to light – Taz was definitely foundering. To add insult to injury, he was not rotating, but rather he was a “sinker.” In layman’s term, his entire bone was losing the support it needed and was dropping into his hoof. This would be the most difficult founder to treat.
The vet fitted him with foam pads which were duct-taped to his feet after removing his regular old steel shoes.These would provide some comfort as he rested in his stall. We were to once again have xrays done in a week or so, to check on progress. If he continued to sink, I was going to have to make a very difficult decision (again..)
We continued to administer all of his medication through his catheter. Our goal was to keep him as comfortable as possible, as we waited on his body to recover and fight.