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Thread: Grim outlook for Barbaro

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    Elite Member KristiB's Avatar
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    Unhappy Grim outlook for Barbaro

    http://msn.foxsports.com/horseracing...2?FSO1&ATT=HMA

    Barbaro's chances of survival a long shot
    / Associated Press
    Posted: 1 hour ago

    KENNETT SQUARE, Pa. (AP) - He still looks every bit the champion. Only the fiberglass casts on not one but both of Barbaro's hind legs are indicators of something terribly wrong.

    "His ears are up, he's bright, he's looking around," Dr. Dean Richardson said Thursday. "If you look at this horse, it'd be hard to put him down."
    Also...

    That precisely is the heartbreaking task that could be imminent because of a hoof disease so serious Richardson said the Kentucky Derby winner is "a long shot" to survive.

    "It could happen within 24 hours," Richardson said during a news conference at the University of Pennsylvania's New Bolton Center.

    Richardson said Barbaro has a severe case of laminitis in his left hind leg - a painful, often fatal disease caused by uneven weight distribution in the limbs.

    "If he starts acting like he doesn't want to stand on the leg, that's it. That will be when we call it quits," he said.

    Richardson, who has treated Barbaro since the colt suffered catastrophic injuries in the Preakness on May 20, said 80 percent of the horse's left hoof wall was removed Wednesday with the sudden onset of the disease.

    Though he looks just fine, that doesn't reflect the true nature of his condition, termed "poor" by Richardson.

    "I'd be lying if I said anything other than poor," he said. "As long as the horse is not suffering, we are going to continue to try to save him. If we can keep him comfortable, we think it's worth the effort."

    Barbaro is being treated aggressively with pain medication and remains in the same stall he's been in since being brought to the intensive care unit at the George D. Widener Hospital for Large Animals.

    Until his misstep at the Preakness, Barbaro's career was nothing short of brilliant.

    He won his first five starts, including the Florida Derby. His 6 1-2-length victory at the Derby was so convincing he was being hailed as the next likely Triple Crown champion - and first since Affirmed since 1978.

    But seconds after the gates swung open at Pimlico, that career was cut short when the colt broke down, his right hind leg flaring out awkwardly because of three broken bones.

    Race fans at Pimlico wept and within 24 hours the entire nation seemed to be caught up in a "Barbaro watch," waiting for any news of his surgery and condition.

    And for the longest time, it all seemed to be going well.

    Barbaro's first six weeks of recovery were relatively smooth - despite five hours of surgery to insert a titanium plate and 27 screws into his three shattered bones.

    Each day brought more optimism: Barbaro was eyeing the mares, nickering, gobbling up his feed and trying to walk out of his stall. There was great hope Barbaro somehow would overcome the odds and live a life of leisure on the farm, although he'd always have a hitch in his gait.

    Richardson, along with owners Gretchen and Roy Jackson and trainer Michael Matz, all believed the colt had a chance to recover.

    Until last week, when Barbaro's condition steadily worsened.

    The colt underwent three surgical procedures and four cast changes on the injured leg, followed by a hoof wall re-section to remove 80 percent of his left rear hoof.

    "I really thought we were going to make it two weeks ago," Richardson said. "Today I'm not as confident."

    Within hours of the grim update, roses and apples began arriving at the hospital, and hundreds of get-well e-mail messages were posted on a Web site set up by the New Bolton Center.

    The vet didn't mince words: "It's as bad a laminitis as you can have. It's as bad as it gets.

    He said he has discussed the situation closely with the Jacksons, who have stressed that their main concern is for Barbaro to be pain free.

    Several telephone messages left for the Jacksons and Matz were not returned.

    Richardson said Barbaro's injured right hind leg was healing well, but because a horse has to be evenly balanced to carry his weight, laminitis set in on the other foot. Secretariat, the 1973 Triple Crown, was euthanized due to laminitis in 1989.

    "The reason we cut away the hoof wall is because the hoof wall is not connected" to the bone, he said. "If you had a nail that was separated from the end you'd pull it off. It's dead tissue that's in the way of living tissue."

    Richardson said it would take several months for the hoof to grow back, and as long as six months to be completely healed.

    "What we're doing on this horse is absolutely unusual, but it's not unheard of," he said. "It's a devastating problem in horses that nobody has a solution to."

    Barbaro has been fitted with a sling to prevent sudden movements and allow him to shift his weight from side to side. The main goal is comfort.

    "The sling is on only some of the day, when it's off, he can lie down," Richardson said. "We are not torturing this horse."

    Edgar Prado, the jockey credited with saving Barbaro by quickly pulling him up in the Preakness, was devastated by the grim prognosis.

    "It's very upsetting," he said. "Barbaro has shown to everyone what a fighter he is. He showed it on the track and with all the surgeries he's had. It just goes to show what kind of courage he has. He's a true champion, and is fighting every step of the way.

    "All we can do now is hope and pray. We'll need a miracle, but maybe it will happen."

    Barbaro chronology

    May 6: Wins Kentucky Derby by six-and-a-half lengths for sixth straight win.
    May 20: Breaks down at start of Preakness; shatters three bones in right hind leg.
    May 21: Undergoes five-plus hours of surgery at New Bolton Center in Kennett Square, Pa.; titanium plate and 27 screws inserted; surgeon Dean Richardson calls chance of survival a "coin toss."
    May 22: With a fiberglass cast from hock to hoof, settles into stall in intensive care unit.
    May 27: Fitted with special three-part, glue-on horseshoe for left hind hoof, helping reduce risk of laminitis.
    May 29: Stall at Fair Hill in Elkton, Maryland, filled by half-brother, Man in Havana.
    May 30: Jockey Edgar Prado visits; Richardson says recovery still months away.
    June 10: Stood in stall as Jazil won Belmont Stakes.
    June 13: Placed under general anesthesia to have cast changed for first time; Richardson says "his leg looks excellent."
    June 18: A month after injury, colt's recovery is going smoothly. "He's a lively, bright, happy horse. If you asked me a month ago, I would have gladly accepted where we are today," Richardson said.
    July 3: Cast replaced; two bent screws are replaced and three new ones are added across the pastern joint.
    July 5: Cast replaced because of discomfort; receives treatment for small abscess on sole of uninjured left hind hoof.
    July 8: Develops "potentially serious" complications to injured leg; undergoes surgery to treat new infection in leg; Cast replaced, this time with a longer one that provides additional support; doctors replace plate and many of the screws.
    July 10: Cast replaced again, this time with a shorter one. Richardson believes there will be "some tough days ahead."
    July 13: Richardson confirms that Barbaro has developed a severe case of laminitis, a potentially fatal disease caused by uneven weight distribution in the limbs, and calls his chances for survival "a long shot."

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    Zee
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    Default Re: Grim outlook for Barbaro

    Sorry to hear about this developement this is very painful for the horse. Laminitis is always a possiblity with a severly injured horse. Let's hope the hoof resection gives the horse some relief. Hopefully, they can minimize his pain.
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    Hit By Ban Bus! ediebrooks's Avatar
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    Default Re: Grim outlook for Barbaro

    Yesterday I read that Barbaro's vet was a little more optimistic. Poor Barbaro. I wish him all the best.

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    Default Re: Grim outlook for Barbaro

    Let me chime in cynically here. I was talking to my eldest baby who used to work in the world of thoroughbred horses and she says and I agree, that they'll put Barbaro down not when his pain is the greatest to relieve his suffering, but once his expenses start to rack up closer to the amount he's insured for. The owners hold breeders insurance for possible lost stud fees and other insurances on him so when putting him down is more financially feasable than continuing to treat him he'll be put down. It's all about the benjamins.

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    Elite Member LynnieD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Grim outlook for Barbaro

    ^^My first thought was how much they have spent total on his care. And when they would draw the line....
    Will they harvest his sperm?? That would be worth a small fortune I'm sure.

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    Zee
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    Default Re: Grim outlook for Barbaro

    You can't bank semen in the horse industry. Most breeds will only allow semen from a dead stallion to be used until the end of the breeding season.

    The jockey club ( registers of Thoroughbreds) have stricter rules on AI then other breeds. Some breeds will allow embryo transfer, ai with fresh semen, frozen semen, etc.

    Never understood why the jockey club was so strict in this respect.

    I also had to put down an expensive insured horse. We needed to get permission from the insurer to get the policy paid. So, yes it is more than a matter of the horse for people in the industry.
    Drive a car, drive a boat, drive a plane. What does it matter? As long as I'm drunk!
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    Zee
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    Default Re: Grim outlook for Barbaro

    No Problems Noted as Barbaro Remains Stable Friday
    by Blood-Horse Staff
    Date Posted: 7/28/2006 8:50:22 PM
    Last Updated: 7/29/2006 1:30:13 PM

    (from University of Pennsylvania report)
    Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner Barbaro continues to be stable Friday after another comfortable night, according to chief of surgery Dean Richardson. His right hind leg cast was changed late Wednesday.
    "We took new radiographs, and they look good," said Richardson. "No problems were evident." In addition, the modified foot cast on Barbaro's left hind foot, which has laminitis, is changed daily so the foot can be treated and watched for signs of infection.

    "Barbaro has a strong appetite, and he has been enjoying handpicked grass and 'healthy snacks' daily," said Dr. Richardson.

    Barbaro remains in the Intensive Care Unit of the University of Pennsylvania's George D. Widener Hospital.
    Copyright © 2006 The Blood-Horse, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
    www.thebloodhorse.com

    Didn't think the horse would make it this far. Pretty amazing considering the damage to his leg.
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    Default Re: Grim outlook for Barbaro

    August 3, 2006

    KENNETT SQUARE, PA — Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro’s left hind hoof is slowly showing evidence of regrowth after surgery last month to treat laminitis. Laminitis occurs when laminae, the strong connecting tis sues that attach the pedal bone and the inner hoof wall, are inflamed. “The coronary band (the portion of the hoof that is responsible for continued downward growth of the hoof) is beginning to re-establish itself," said Dean Richardson, Chief of Surgery at the George D. Widener Hospital.

    Barbaro’s right hind leg continues to be protected in a cast. “The original fractures have apparently healed well, but the cast is necessary to protect the pastern fusion,” Dr. Richardson said. “This protection is required because he must bear most of his weight on the right hind limb due to the laminitis in the left hind leg.”

    Barbaro remains in the Intensive Care Unit of the University of Pennsylvania’s George D. Widener Hospital.

    The next update will be posted on Tuesday, August 8, unless there is a significant change in Barbaro’s condition. For more information on Barbaro, please see www.vet.upenn.edu.

    Still can't believe this horse is alive. If you are interested, check out the xray on http://www.vet.upenn.edu/newsandeven...BARO7_HRes.jpg
    Drive a car, drive a boat, drive a plane. What does it matter? As long as I'm drunk!
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    Lil
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    Default Re: Grim outlook for Barbaro

    Quote Originally Posted by UndercoverGator View Post
    Let me chime in cynically here. I was talking to my eldest baby who used to work in the world of thoroughbred horses and she says and I agree, that they'll put Barbaro down not when his pain is the greatest to relieve his suffering, but once his expenses start to rack up closer to the amount he's insured for.
    I think you and she are right unfortunately. I am sure he has the best care money can buy, but horses are not designed to be immobile for long periods of time, which is why he's developing other ailments like laminitis (which is incredibly painful - imagine the bones of your foot pushing their way through the soft tissue of your foot). It might have been kinder to put him down right at the beginning.
    A big boy did it and ran away.

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    Default Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro euthanized 8 months after breaking leg

    Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro was euthanized Monday after complications from his gruesome breakdown at last year's Preakness, ending an eight-month ordeal that prompted an outpouring of support across the country.

    "We just reached a point where it was going to be difficult for him to go on without pain," co-owner Roy Jackson said. "It was the right decision, it was the right thing to do. We said all along if there was a situation where it would become more difficult for him then it would be time."
    BlogJam ...
    After eight months of fighting, Barbaro's tale has a sudden and tragic ending. The Kentucky Derby winner's owners had him euthanized Monday morning after a risky surgery over the weekend. His fans have been there all along to wish him well, now it's time to say goodbye.

    A series of ailments, including laminitis in the left rear hoof and a recent abscess in the right rear hoof, proved too much for the gallant colt.

    Barbaro battled in his ICU stall for eight months. The 4-year-old colt underwent several procedures and was fitted with fiberglass casts. He spent time in a sling to ease pressure on his legs, had pins inserted and was fitted at the end with an external brace. These were all extraordinary measures for a horse with such injuries.

    Roy and Gretchen Jackson were with Barbaro on Monday morning, with the owners making the decision in consultation with chief surgeon Dr. Dean Richardson.

    "I would say thank you for everything, and all your thoughts and prayers over the last eight months or so," Jackson said to Barbaro's fans.

    The news that Barbaro had been euthanized first was reported on the Thoroughbred Times Web site.

    On May 20, Barbaro was rushed to the New Bolton Center, about 30 miles from Philadelphia in Kennett Square, hours after shattering his right hind leg just a few strides into the Preakness Stakes. The bay colt underwent a five-hour operation that fused two joints, recovering from an injury most horses never survive. But Barbaro never regained his natural gait.

    "We loved him. He was great," said Peter Brette, Barbaro's exercise rider and assistant trainer for Michael Matz. "He did everything we ever asked of him. He could have been one of the best. What a fighter he was."

    Barbaro suffered a significant setback over the weekend, and surgery was required to insert two steel pins in a bone - one of three shattered in the Preakness but now healthy - to eliminate all weight bearing on the ailing right rear foot.

    The procedure Saturday was a risky one, because it transferred more weight to the leg while the foot rests on the ground bearing no weight.

    The leg was on the mend until the abscess began causing discomfort last week. Until then, the major concern was Barbaro's left rear leg, which developed laminitis in July, and 80 percent of the hoof was removed.

    Richardson said Monday morning that Barbaro did not have a good night.

    "This horse was a hero," said David Switzer, executive director of the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association. "His owners went above and beyond the call of duty to save this horse. It's an unfortunate situation, but I think they did the right thing in putting him down."

    Brilliant on the race track, Barbaro always will be remembered for his brave fight for survival.

    The story of the beloved 4-year-old bay colt's fight for life captured the fancy of millions.

    When Barbaro broke down, his right hind leg flared out awkwardly as jockey Edgar Prado jumped off and tried to steady the ailing horse. Race fans at Pimlico wept. Within 24 hours the entire nation seemed to be caught up in a "Barbaro watch," waiting for any news.

    Well-wishers young and old showed up at the New Bolton Center with cards, flowers, gifts, goodies and even religious medals for the champ, and thousands of e-mails poured into the hospital's Web site just for him.

    "I just can't explain why everyone is so caught up in this horse," Roy Jackson, who owned the colt with his wife, Gretchen, has said time and again. "Everything is so negative now in the world, people love animals and I think they just happen to latch onto him."

    Devoted fans even wrote Christmas carols for him, sent a wreath made of baby organic carrots and gave him a Christmas stocking.

    The biggest gift has been the $1.2 million raised since early June for the Barbaro Fund. The money is put toward needed equipment such as an operating room table, and a raft and sling for the same pool recovery Barbaro used after his surgeries.

    The Jacksons spent tens of thousands of dollars hoping the best horse they ever owned would recover and be able to live a comfortable life on the farm - whether he was able to breed or not.

    The couple, who own about 70 racehorses, broodmares and yearlings, and operate the 190-acre Lael Farm, have been in the horse business for 30 years, and never had a horse like Barbaro.

    As the days passed, it seemed Barbaro would get his happy ending. As late as December, with the broken bones in his right hind leg nearly healed and his laminitis under control, Barbaro was looking good and relishing daily walks outside his intensive care unit.


    Barbaro's battle for survival, which captivated the nation, came to an end Monday as the Kentucky Derby winner was euthanized. ( / Associated Press)

    But after months of upbeat progress reports, including talk that he might be headed home soon, news came Jan. 10 of a serious setback because of the laminitis. Richardson had to remove damaged tissue from Barbaro's left hind hoof, and the colt was placed back in a protective sling.

    On Jan. 13, another section of his left rear hoof was removed. After Barbaro developed a deep abscess in his right hind foot, surgery was performed Saturday to insert two steel pins in a bone.

    This after Richardson warned last December that Barbaro's right hind leg was getting stronger and that the left hind foot was a "more formidable long-term challenge."

    Even before the injury that ended his career, Barbaro had earned his fame for simply being a magnificent racehorse.

    Foaled and raised at Sanborn Chase at Springmint Farm near Nicholasville, Ky., Barbaro always stood out in the crowd. "He was an enormous foal," recalled breeder Bill Sanborn. "He was a tall and leggy horse, and when he grew it was like in two-inch spurts."

    When the Jacksons sent Barbaro to trainer Matz over a year ago, exercise rider Brette climbed aboard and said "I thought he was a 3-year-old."

    A son of Dynaformer, out of the dam Le Ville Rouge, Barbaro started his career on the turf, but Matz knew he would have to try his versatile colt on the dirt. He reasoned that if he had a talented 3-year-old in America, he'd have to find out early if his horse was good enough for the Triple Crown races.

    Barbaro was good enough, all right. He won his first three races on turf with authority, including the Laurel Futurity by eight lengths and the Tropical Park Derby by 3 3/4 lengths.

    That's when Matz drew up an unconventional plan for a dirt campaign that spaced out Barbaro's race to keep him fit for the entire Triple Crown, a grueling ordeal of three races in five weeks at varying distances over different tracks.

    Barbaro won the Holy Bull Stakes at Gulfstream Park on Feb. 4, but his dirt debut was inconclusive since it came over a sloppy track. After an eight-week break, an unusually long time between races, Barbaro came back and won the Florida Derby by a half-length over Sharp Humor despite an outside No. 10 post.

    The deal was sealed - on to the Derby, but not without criticism that Barbaro couldn't win coming off a five-week layoff. After all, it had been 50 years since Needles won the Derby off a similar break. But Matz was unfazed, and stuck to his plan, saying all the time he was doing what was best for the horse.

    Not only did Barbaro win the Derby, he demolished what was supposed to be one of the toughest fields in years. The 6 1/2-length winning margin was the largest since 1946, when Assault won by eight lengths and went on to sweep the Triple Crown.

    The 55-year-old Matz, meanwhile, was living a charmed life. Before turning to thoroughbreds eight years ago, he was an international show jumping star, and a three-time Olympian and silver medal winner who carried the U.S. flag at the closing ceremony at the 1996 Atlanta Games. He also survived a plane crash in Iowa in 1989 and became a hero by saving three children from the burning wreckage. The crash killed 112 of the 296 people on board United Flight 232.

    In Barbaro, Matz truly believed he was training a Triple Crown winner. He often said Barbaro was good enough to be ranked among the greats and join Seattle Slew as the only unbeaten Triple Crown champions.

    But two weeks later after the Derby Barbaro took a horrible misstep and one of the most extraordinary attempts to save a thoroughbred was under way. The injury was considered to be so disastrous that many thought the horse would be euthanized while still at Pimlico Race Track.

    Instead, Barbaro was transported that night to the New Bolton Center's George D. Widener Hospital for Large Animals and was operated on the next day by Richardson.

    The injuries were as serious as everyone feared: Barbaro sustained a broken cannon bone above the ankle, a broken sesamoid bone behind the ankle and a broken long pastern bone below the ankle. The fetlock joint - the ankle - was dislocated. Richardson said the pastern bone was shattered in "20-plus pieces."

    Barbaro, who earned $2,302,200 with his six wins in seven starts, endured the complicated five-hour surgery in which Richardson inserted a titanium plate and 27 screws into the broken bones. After calmly awakening from anesthesia, he "practically jogged back to his stall" looking for something to eat.

    At the time, Richardson stressed Barbaro still had many hurdles to clear, and called chances for a full recovery a "coin toss."

    Afterward, though, things went relatively smoothly. Each day brought more optimism: Barbaro was eyeing the mares, nickering, gobbling up his feed and trying to walk out of his stall. There was great hope Barbaro somehow would overcome the odds and live a life of leisure on the farm.

    But by mid-July, Richardson's greatest fear became reality - laminitis struck Barbaro's left hind leg and 80 percent of the hoof was removed. Richardson recalled recently what it was like when he met with the Jacksons, and Matz, and his wife, D.D., to deliver the news.

    "It was terrible," Richardson said. "I wouldn't have blamed anyone at that point for saying they just couldn't face the prospects of going on."

    But Barbaro responded well to treatment, and his recovery was progressing until a final, fatal turn.

    http://msn.foxsports.com/horseracing...HPHCP&GT1=9012

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    Elite Member Laurent's Avatar
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    I saw this earlier this morning. Maybe I'm hormonal, but it made me very teary.

    I wish he could've made it, but he fought hard.

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    I wish he made it too, so sad. He was a fighter but he just couldn't win this one. He's in horse heaven now where he can run and run and run on four perfect legs.
    Baby, by the time you have kids and they're in school, no one will care about you.

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    The real truth is that he should not have been racing until he was past three when his bones were fully formed. If there is an industry as greedy, corrupt and cruel as thoroughbred horseracing, I've yet to discover it.

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    ^^Greyhound racing, though not by much.
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    Yeah, that's really probably the only other one. I thought of it while I was typing the other, but somehow, horses move me more. What is done to them is so terrible.

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