Welcome to my blog - a diary about living with donkeys, notes about care, my training sessions and the absolute pleasure of donkey companionship.

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Monday, May 3, 2010

Hoof Abscess

How to convince a rather nervous donkey with a sore foot to stand in a tub of warm water!  I made plenty of mistakes but thank goodness for clicker training!  After trying to work with him in his stall, I felt a bit confined and the possibility of getting hurt has he would try to squish me against the wall - I re-assessed my options and chose a spot in the breezeway where Ringo could stand against a rail and facing a wall.

The soaking part was hard, so I created stacks of maxi pads, the plastic backing removed and attached a strip of duct tape to the outside of the bottom layer with tabs for attaching.  As soon as he lifted his hoof, I wrapped the pads, which had been soaking in the solution, around his foot and clicked and treated him on a high rate of reinforcement, for standing still.

He was so good and trying hard, and by the last day, he could lower his hoof into a large feed tub and I slowly added warm water.  not sure we managed 20 minutes though, But eventually he was weight bearing on both front feet and seemd okay again.  Gave him Hepar Sulphur too - 3 times a day for a few days
to deal with any residual infection.

Next time anybody is lame, I'll go straight to foot soaking, since abscess is much more likely in donkeys than any kind of joint injury.  Donkeys don't tend to do goofy things to hurt themselves like horses do!

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