Against the Grain

Slightly more than just jibba jabba

Barbaro Needs Foot Transplant — Seeking Donor

Posted by Patrick on 10 Jan 2007

KENNETT SQUARE, PA. — Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro has suffered a significant setback in his recovery from laminitis in his left hind foot, and owner Gretchen Jackson is desperately soliciting breeders, trainers and veterinary sources for a replacement foot, a source close to the horse said late Tuesday on the condition of anonymity because the source is not allowed to speak to the media.

Barbaro’s chief surgeon Dean Richardson explained to the horse’s owners that a foot transplant or prosthesis will significantly increase Barbaro’s recovery time as well as his ability to “perform” his expected stud duties once his recovery is complete. The transplant would be the first of its kind performed on a horse suffering from laminitis. This statement comes only a week after the horse’s cast was replaced in attempt to realign the bone for healing.

Because Barbaro is still young, and his natural foot will continue to grow towards its full, adult size as he ages, Richardson said that he is unsure how a replacement foot will fair, but that he’s confident in a series of prosthetic replacement feet, which would be developed by Orthotic Prosthetic Associates, Inc.. The prosthetic hooves would be the first of their kind, and would be custom-fit to Barbaro’s proportions and weight to provide maximum range of movement, load bearing ability, and comfort.

In either scenario, Dr. Richardson expressed enthusiasm for the procedure; evidently it’s going to be expensive and he’ll get a fat check from the Jacksons for the attempt regardless of the outcome.

no, not really

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