Fetlocks

Thermal therapy, i.e. using either hot or cold blankets, is one of the time-tested and most accessible remedies to cure horse injuries. Cold therapy is often used for fresh injuries – if the injury occurred in two to seven days. This treatment is effective from 24 to 48 hours after injuries like strains or sprains. Heat therapy is the most common cure for chronic injuries. It must not be used for acute inflammation that has increased for over seven days after surgery or injury. This therapy helps increase local circulation and wound healing.
But before discussing which horse injuries treatment to consider for your house, you need to know what injuries a horse can suffer from.

Injuries Horses may suffer from:

In horses, most injuries are related to joints. They face ligament and tendon injuries. Such injuries occur commonly in horses doing more hard work like jumping, running, 
etc. during races or crossing fences.
Here are the common injuries in horses: 
  • Strains and tears in posterior gluteal
  • Caudal pectoral strains and tears
  • Desmitis
  • Fetlock issues
  • Lateral triceps tears
  • Carpal problems
  • Stifle problems
  • The Tarsus (or Hock Disorders)

How to Treat the Injuries of Horses?

You need to consider therapy blankets for faster healing from injuries in horses. Given below are different hot and cold therapy treatments to cure horse injuries.

Cold Therapy

An icing or cold therapy blanket is beneficial if the injury is only less than 36 hours old.
It is used if the injury is fresh. During this time, the damaged blood vessels under the skin may face haemorrhage, leading to bruising and inflammation. The injury site is tender at this stage and shows diffuse swelling. During this time, cold therapy is beneficial to decrease the permeability of blood vessels, keeping undamaged tissues from drowning excess fluids and reducing leaks.

Water is one of the easiest options for cooling off an injury site. Or you can rely on a cold therapy blanket, which is more effective than any other cooling system.

Schedule: You need to apply cold therapy on horse injury for 10 to 20 minutes. Let it remain on the site for at least 30 minutes between treatments for preventing tissue damage. Also, repeat the cycle as frequently as possible. However, you will require four or more sessions every day to see visible results. You have to continue this therapy unless the area is no longer swollen.

Alternate Hot & Cold Therapy

Whenever an injury is not painful at touching and there is less swelling on the injured area, you can alternate hot and cold therapy.

The alternating hot and cold treatment helps the body to naturally clean up natural chemicals and white blood cells. It can even destroy dead cells, as well as physiological debris. With heat therapy application, there will be better blood circulation to the affected area, whereas cold therapy restricts blood circulation.

By alternating the two therapies using a therapy blanket for horses, pumping action is accelerated to speed up healing. However, excessive hot therapy may cause haemorrhaging. So, hold this therapy for at least a day or two if the wound status is not clear.

Schedule: You need to start by applying heat for 10 to 20 minutes at a time for a few days. After every heat therapy session, you need to apply cold therapy for 20 minutes. Repeat this alternating hot and cold treatment up to four times a day until there’s no swelling around the injured area.

Heat Therapy

If there is no pain in the injured area and there is only minor swelling, you can apply a hot therapy blanket for treatment.

Heat is helpful in the final phase of healing when the body of the horse replaces cells actively and also repairs tissues via the bloodstream. With hot therapy, there is increased blood circulation in the area to speed up the cleaning process.

Schedule: Use hot therapy for at least 20 minutes at one time. Also, consider 20 minutes of rest in-between the treatment. But don’t apply anything uncomfortably hot on the skin of your horse.

Conclusion

Now that you know how to treat horse injuries with hot and cold therapy, you can consider applying them to cure your ailing horse.

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