Previously foundered mini?

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PurraPony

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Hello everyone. I'm considering buying a 16-year-old mini that sounds like he would be perfect for what I'm looking for (a pet/walking/hiking companion). When I asked the seller if the little guy had ever foundered, I was told that he had foundered once and they caught it right away. It was from being on grass, so now she only lets him graze for a couple of hours a day. I'm wondering if I should give this little guy a chance, or keep looking? If I did buy him, he will be my first mini (but not my first horse) and my first time dealing with a horse with a known history of foundering. I would greatly appreciate any thoughts, opinions, and/or advice. Thank you!
 

candycar

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If you can afford it, have a pre purchase exam done by a vet. Include xrays of front feet. Then you will know if he actually had rotation.
Other than that, if you get him, just watch his diet and limit grass especially when sugars are high.
They can recover from founder and be normal if managed right.
 

Taz

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If he's managed properly he should be fine. Restricted grass(grazing muzzle,track etc.), watch his weight and a good farrier who understands to trim to the foot not try to make the foot 'look pretty' to get full attachment again if he doesn't have it. Having you want to go walking etc. with him is perfect.
 

Willow Flats

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I was told one of mine had a mild case so I use a grazing muzzle with her and reduce her time in the pasture when the grass is green in the spring and she has been just fine.

If you have a dry lot it is really easy to manage when the grass is green. It gets hot here though, so our grass doesn't stay green for long.
 

LostandFound

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Do you have a set up that you can keep him on a dry lot? If you intended to keep him on pasture you might want to keep looking. Also, talking to your vet and maybe doing a pre-purchase exam might be good in this case. I tend to assume that older horses and all minis will need grass intake monitored and it wouldn't stop me from buying unless there were obvious changes in his feet or lameness. But I can just dry lot. I don't have to struggle with trying to catch someone who would rather be out eating or ripped their grazing muzzle off for the 3rd time today.
 

Cayuse

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It would be a hard no from me. I'm dealing with chronic laminitis right now as is a friend (whose mini has had previous laminitic events) and it is heartbreaking. Yes, some never founder again after the first episode, but many go on to have chronic issues. If you do go forward, I'd definitely be checking x-rays and checking for metabolic issues (cushing's and insulin resistance) as mid teens is the time those problems usually show up and can contribute to laminitis problems in a big way.
 
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Abby P

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Do you know how long ago it was that he had laminitis? Does he currently have any evidence of a problem such as a cresty neck, odd fat pads, or visible ridges/angle changes in his hooves? Does he seem to be shedding out normally? If the laminitis was mild and several years ago and he looks good now while being on a couple hours a day of grass, this is not a situation that would trouble me too much provided you aren't intending on throwing him out on full pasture. If you have the ability to dry lot and manage diet going forward (and are willing to do so), and he is healthy now and doesn't have signs (as Cayuse says, have the vet workup include testing for Cushing's and IR so you know where you're at - IR numbers can go to normal with the right diet, Cushing's needs to be medicated), then it can be very manageable. But of course some cases can be more complicated and it can also worsen with age so that's something you would want to have in the back of your mind.

Every horse and situation is different so it just depends, and it also depends on your tolerance level for what you want to manage or have the ability to manage with your setup, if he did end up needing more than just limitation on grass intake. Are you in the part of WA state where grass grows out of the pavement? From your description it sounds like this is a pretty simple case that dry-lotting would take care of but you can't know for sure until you see bloodwork. These horses DO need owners who are willing to do what is needed for them. So I encourage you because I wouldn't hesitate to take on a horse with this history, assuming I was in a position to provide the living conditions he needed, but I can completely see the other side of it too.
 

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