Windgalls are a common condition in horses that can cause discomfort and swelling. They are caused by physical trauma to the tendons and ligaments, and can be difficult to identify and treat. In this article, we will discuss how to identify windgalls and the best treatments for them.
Windgalls are swellings that form on a horse’s legs, usually near the fetlocks and tendons. They are usually firm to the touch and can range from the size of a pea to the size of a grapefruit. They may appear to be filled with fluid, and can be painful to the horse when touched. The horse may also be reluctant to move due to the pain.
In order to diagnose a windgall, a veterinarian will likely conduct a physical exam and take X-rays to ensure that the swelling is not caused by a more serious condition such as a bone fracture or infection.
The primary treatment for windgalls is rest and protection of the affected area. The horse should be kept in a stall or in a paddock with minimal movement. This will allow the windgall to heal without further damage.
Your veterinarian may also recommend cold or warm compresses to reduce inflammation and swelling. If the horse is very uncomfortable, your veterinarian may prescribe anti-inflammatory medications or painkillers.
In some cases, surgery may be necessary to remove the windgall and repair the damaged tissue. This should only be done in extreme cases, as it can be a lengthy and expensive procedure.
Keeping your horse fit and healthy is the best way to prevent windgalls. Regular exercise and a balanced diet will help keep your horse’s muscles and tendons strong and healthy, reducing the risk of injury. Additionally, be sure to check your horse’s legs regularly for any signs of swelling or discomfort.
Windgalls can be a painful and uncomfortable condition for your horse. However, with proper care and treatment, most horses can make a full recovery. If you suspect your horse has a windgall, it is important to contact your veterinarian for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.