The equine hip joint is a very stable, ball and socket joint that is supported by thick, heavy muscle. Therefore this area is rarely injured.
Dislocation requires the rupture of a stout ligament that holds the ball in the socket. Dislocation is far more common in small equines such as foals, ponies, miniature horses and donkeys.
Diagnosis can be a difficult, because full sized equines are generally too large for typical x-ray equipment to penetrate this area.
Treatment involves general anesthesia and replacement of the ball into the socket. This can be difficult or impossible in some cases. It is easier in small horses.
Other Diagnoses Considered
Treatments May Include
Prognosis & Relevant Factors
Fair to good for life for miniature and small horses when the diagnosis is made and the dislocation is resolved. Poor for a riding or performance horse. Arthritis typically develops, causing long term lameness.
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Helpful Terms & Topics in HSVGWritten, Reviewed or Shared by Experts in Equine Health