I got a call late last week from the barn. My horse was in great distress and one hind leg was swollen up like a balloon from the hip down to the hoof. They'd already called the vet. I left work and hustled to the barn.
They weren't exaggerating. My poor mare was in major pain, breathing hard, sweating, depressed, and shaking. She could barely support herself on a single hind leg and it shook from the stress of all that weight. Gailey is a really good patient, thank goodness. She really just wants sympathy. If she could, she'd crawl in my lap to be comforted.
The diagnosis was cellulitis, an infection under the skin caused by bacteria. That's about all I know about it, other than it can be dangerous and painful.
The pictures below were taken a day later after the swelling had actually gone down (believe it or not). So we started on a regimin of injectable antibiotics, a diuretic, and painkillers, and a some kind of special lotion because her skin was weeping.
Meanwhile at home, I have a sick husband with a screwed up back and a bad cough. So that's how my week has gone. Take care of the horse after work: Give her meds, unwrap and hose her leg, put the lotion on, re-wrap her leg, walk her for 5-10 minutes, then put her away. After that, it's home to take care of the hubbie.
The horse is faring better than the hubby. Her leg is almost back to normal size. Unfortunately, the hubby's cough turned into walking pnuemonia. He woke me up at 1 am this morning because he had trouble breathing. I ran him to emergency, and they ended up admitting him. Here I sit in his hospital room, which is actually a quite nice private room with two chairs and a couch. In a few hours, I'll run to the barn and treat the horse.
Which by the way, I found out that another horse at the barn came down with cellulitis yesterday. I understand that's unusual as it's pretty rare. Is that a strange coincidence or what? What the heck could have caused two horses to come down with an infection in the hind leg within a week of each other? I'll probably never know.
The other good news is that I have major medical insurance on her. Which is wonderful as the vet bills are mounting, and we aren't done yet.
So that's my week. This next week has to be better.