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[RC] Mystery problem - Lif Strand

I just got a phone call from my (foster) daughter Amber, who lives in the St. Augustine area of Florida. She's got a 17 year old Arabian mare who's never been sick in her life, who has suddenly developed swelling in her legs below the knees and hocks. The swelling is not hot, and it does yield to pressure. There is no heat in her hooves. Amber says she looks like a horse that had been ridden hard 100 miles the day before, not walked afterwards, and had gotten stocked up.

The mare is standing squarely, possibly shifting a little on front feet, but that could be from flies. Amber the mare doesn't move around much anyway, but the mare doesn't seem reluctant to move.

She is routinely fed coastal Bermuda grass, although she did get some alfalfa cubes this week - last ate them 5 days ago, so I don't think the swelling could be a reaction to that. She is eating well, has active gut sounds and her hydration is good.

It's possible she's got a low temperature (it's just under 100F) but it's an old child's electronic thermometer and it might not work right with horses. The mare is shivering a bit but she's wet from the rain (she's in a covered pen, but must have just come in from the rain).

Amber is several months behind in vaccinations, but what she last gave was everything recommended for horses in Florida. She says as far as she knows, there are no horses in the area that are sick.

I'm stumped. Was the mare bit by a snake? An insect? Anyone got any ideas I can send to Amber? Thanks!

Lif C. Strand
Local Economic Development
Catron County, New Mexico USA

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