Conditions or ailments that are the cause of a problem that you see - your observation.

Your vet may diagnose

Lameness, Conditions Causing, Generally


There are thousands of potential causes of equine lameness. Start with a limb with dozens of bones, many joints and even more joint pouches and capsules, tendons, tendon sheaths, check ligaments, sesamoids, bursae, muscles, ligaments, nerves and vessels.

Add to that a unique, intricate and dynamic live hoof. Mechanically, consider the dozens of levers, pulleys, and struts that make up this unique biomechanical device. Envision them all interrelated, connected to the spine through tendon and ligament and muscle, and the spine linked to both front and hind limb. Now add the limb, which is enveloped in massive muscle and is extremely difficult to penetrate with our imaging methods.

The equine limb is a miracle of engineering and is very complex.

Lameness as a science is thus very complicated. The practice of lameness evaluation is a lifelong pursuit and is an art as much as a science. Sometimes vets can reach a precise diagnosis, sometimes we cannot. Even when we do, there may be other factors that complicate the situation that we may or may not be aware of.

my role


I might observe

You might make these observations when a horse has this condition.

Very Common
Less Common
more observations

Author: Doug Thal DVM Dipl. ABVP