March 10, 2015
My Friesian, Rutger, Resumes His Usual Routine
As you you may recall from previous blogs, Rutger has been dealing with a few sinus and dental ailments. Last year, he had a tooth extracted after his veterinarian discovered one of his molars was cracked and impacted with food. The procedure went smoothly; however, during the months that followed, Betsy noticed that Rutger had developed an odorous nasal discharge, usually indicating sinusitis. Rutger was again monitored very closely, and when it didn’t go away, doctors decided he needed to undergo a surgical procedure to correct the problem.
Last month, Rutger was taken to Fairfield Equine Associates, a globally renowned equine medical facility in nearby Newtown, Connecticut. There, he was thoroughly examined, x-rayed and sedated before veterinary specialist, Dr. Ryland Edwards III led his surgical team in removing a buildup of fluid, fungus and infection from his nasal cavity. The procedure took a couple of hours, but all his doctors were pleased with the outcome. Rutger recovered well, and remained there overnight as a precaution. Once home, my large animal veterinarian, Dr. Elizabeth Kilgallon, placed Rutger under limited turnout for at least five days to ensure everything healed properly.
This past weekend, the stitches were removed, and Rutger resumed his normal activities - no one was more happy about that, than Rutger!
Enjoy the photos!
1 Founded in 1989, Fairfield Equine Associates is known as one of the world's leading equine medical facilities. It is located in nearby Newtown, Connecticut.
2 As the veterinarian indicated on Rutger's x-ray, he had an infection and some fluid in his sinus, which had to be removed.
3 When doctors first looked at the lining of Rutger's sinus, it appeared normal with no sign of infection within the sinus itself.
4 When doctors examined Rutger's nasal passages, they found the sinus opening blocked with whitish material and black streaks indicating the site of infection.
5 Here, Rutger is recovering after the procedure. Fairfield Equine Associates kept him overnight to make sure there were no complications. Rutger was an excellent patient.
6 Dr. Ryland Edwards III from Fairfield Equine Associates was the lead surgeon on this procedure.
7 There were three incisions made - two under Rutger's right eye and one next to it. These incisions allowed the surgical team to accurately locate and then thoroughly flush out the infected areas.
8 Here is Rutger soon after he returned home to the farm. He was very happy to stretch his legs.
9 In fact, Rutger was overjoyed to get back home to familiar surroundings. It was not long before he started rolling around in the snow.
10 Rolling is a natural horse behavior and in this instance, a very healthy one - Rutger was having a very good time!
11 For the first five to six days after the procedure, Rutger was on limited turnout until his veterinarian, Dr. Kilgallon, was sure the incisions closed properly.
12 As you can see, Rutger continued to heal very well every day.
13 This is Dr. Elizabeth Kilgallon, my large animal veterinarian. Rutger knows her well, and is always very relaxed and well-behaved when she and Betsy are with him.
14 This past weekend marked nearly two weeks since the procedure - Rutger's stitches were ready to be removed.
15 Removing stitches is relatively painless and was done as part of a followup farm visit by Dr. Kilgallon.
16 One by one, each stitch was carefully cut, and the thread gently pulled out. Rutger didn't seem to mind this at all.
17 I'm sure Rutger was relieved to get rid of his stitches. The area was beginning to itch him, which generally means the wound had healed.
18 You can see a little bit of scarring left from the incisions and the stitches, but this will fade as the fur grows back.