Barbaro still going strong!
This article, posted to bloodhorse.com, had this to say about Barbaro:
"Richardson said May 30 that the first nine days have gone incredibly well. "He's actually done far better than we could have ever hoped, so far," Richardson said. "He's perfectly comfortable and all his vital signs are normal. His blood work is good, and basically, at this moment, he could not look any better in terms of his medical condition. His prognosis is much better than it was, but he still has a long way to go."
In an attempt to reduce the risk of laminitis developing in the opposite foot, a special supportive horseshoe designed and patented by the Farrier Service at the University of Pennsylvania's School of Veterinary Medicine, was applied to Barbaro's hoof immediately after the surgery.
New Bolton Center farrier Rob Sigafoos explained that the shoe is designed to reduce the risk of laminitis by supporting the sole of the left hind foot, containing materials that minimize weakening and possible infection of the sole, and extending the length of the left hind foot, compensating for the additional length of the right hind limb created by the cast.
As for Barbaro's mental condition, Richardson said the colt "couldn't look a whole lot better in that regard. He's very active in his stall, and when a horse walks by the outside window, he's peeking out there trying to see who it is. If you were to look at this horse, I believe an objective person would not believe that this horse looks depressed. Michael Matz and (owners) Roy and Gretchen Jackson have been here every day and have looked the horse over, and I think they'd agree that he's bright and happy."
"It is possible for his bones to heal to the point where they're very, very strong. What won't function on him is that he won't have normal mobility. He will never be able to do a dressage test, and he won't be able to gallop strongly or jump. At the very best, he'll have a hitch in his giddy-up. He will not be quite right, but there are lots of horses who can walk, trot, canter, gallop, spin around, and somewhat importantly, mount a mare; those things that you use your hind legs for. Yes, it is possible he'll can be active enough to do all that, but we're not even close to being at that point yet."
Richardson also states that Barbaro's chances of recovery are "now officially 51%."
Note: These are only excerpts of the article. To read the full story (which had lots of other interesting things to say, click on the link at the top.)
And this article, How we failed Barbaro, calls for the sport of Horseracing to take a look at what it can do to reduce the chances of injuries. Can anything be done? I don't know...but it's still an interesting article to read.
And here is an FAQ about Barbaro.
And this article discusses Dr Richardson, the veterinarian who treated Barbaro. He doesn't appear to have been affected by the instant fame he's gained. If I had an injured horse, I would definitely be trying to see Dr Richardson.
Here's what one surgeon had to say about him (in the article):
"He always wonders if he's made the right decision. He comes across as totally confident, but in fact I know that he worries a lot. He struggles. Anybody who doesn't appreciate that about him doesn't get it." ---Surgeon Midge Leitch (she supervised his first internship and has kept in contact with him since.)