18 year old TWH lost eye, changed gait? 

 Ohio18 year old T.Walker ridden in a T.walker smooth chain bit with big horn cordura in 
 round pen and pasture by  intermediate rider

Question: As some know,I have a horsey who had to have his  left eye removed from cancer.We rode him for the first time since his surgery last week.At that time I noticed he was landing his  right rear leg kinda funny.He still gaits.It isn't a limp,it's almost as if he is now crossing this leg behind the other.I found no injury or,heat,swelling,or actual lameness.I took him to the farrier today & let him observe this strange new occurrance.He felt it was because he was turnig his head to see now,causing the strange placement of the opposite leg in regards to having his eye removed.He checked him,found no reason in his leg  or hoof for this.Has anyone else had a one eyed horse?If so did you notice a change in leg placement?He does this mostly with a rider,only noted occassionaly in pasture.It has only been a few months since he had his eye removed(Nov.99).Any ideas??It makes sense to me,but I don't want to ride him if I could cause him harm.He is barefoot.

From Panelists  Laura
I think it may just take some time for your horse to get used to his new, one 
eyed condition.  Since your horse is 18 yrs old, he has had a fairly long 
time being able to see in both eyes and it may just take longer for him to 
adjust to the blind eye than a younger horse.

I don't think it will hurt him to ride him as long as you are careful about 
the riding conditions.  You might want to only ride in areas he is very 
familiar with.  Ride when the light conditions are good and there aren't a 
lot of shadows from trees.  I wouldn't ride him in the evening when it gets 
harder to see.  

Does he hitch that rear leg when you lead him?  If not, you might want to 
reintroduce him to where you want to ride by leading him first to help his 
confidence level.  Also, for safety, be careful about horses approaching him 
on his blind side while you are riding (or leading).  He might start kicking 
at the horse just because he can't see him.  Be careful & good luck with him.



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