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Can you tell me if this is a wound from an arrow/bolt/etc?

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Can you tell me if this is a wound from an arrow/bolt/etc?

Old 11-10-2011, 08:21 PM
  #1  
Spike
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Default Can you tell me if this is a wound from an arrow/bolt/etc?

Hi folks,

I'll try and keep this as short as I can.
Two weeks ago my horse was found with an injury to his shoulder.
It's a 20cm deep puncture mark that runs straight to the humerus bone, which has had a 2cm fragment chipped off it.
The wound runs sort of upwards from the puncture mark, to the bone.
In this photo it was up to 48 hours old and the scabs and hair had just been shaved off.



I'm trying to find what could have caused this injury and I'm suspecting someone may have shot him with an arrow/bolt?

It's not unusual for horses to run into a fence but usually with that sort of injury, there will be a lot of trauma/bruising to the area and you'll get a large haematoma in the chest.
There was nothing to this injury other than the puncture mark.
It looks way to clean and deep for it to be any sort of normal horse occurance that I can think of.

As hunters, is anyone able to provide any comment on this?
Does it look like my horse has been shot? Can you tell me anything at all from this picture?
I would be very very appreciative as this was a competition dressage horse and he's not recovering from this injury. He will be put to sleep in the coming weeks.

Xrays of the humerus bone are here if this helps in any way.
http://img577.imageshack.us/img577/9061/xray1x.jpg
http://img62.imageshack.us/img62/5816/xray2.jpg

Thank you!
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Old 11-10-2011, 11:43 PM
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From the looks of the wound channel (if I'm seeing it, correctly), whatever punctured him doesn't look like any kind of hunting weapon trajectory.

Euthanize him? Why?

There are MANY, MANY ways an animal (we raised cattle, growing up) can be injured. We end up knowing what happened a VERY small percentage of the time.

If it were me, I'd put my energies into learning how to make my horse well.

I wish him luck.
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Old 11-11-2011, 01:04 AM
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Spike
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Originally Posted by GMMAT
Euthanize him? Why?

There are MANY, MANY ways an animal (we raised cattle, growing up) can be injured. We end up knowing what happened a VERY small percentage of the time.
There's a 2cm bone fragment trapped up there that isn't coming out on its own, and the horse is lame.
He needs surgery to remove it but I've decided against it. Weighing up the risks, the costs and the potential outcome, it's the more appropriate option unfortunately.

Agreed I may never know what caused it, but with what it's cost me so far, even without the surgery, I'm interested in checking out a couple of theories.
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Old 11-11-2011, 06:38 AM
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Looks like hes standing up. Doesn't seem lame to me. Thats definitely not an arrow, or bolt.
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Old 11-11-2011, 06:57 AM
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IMO the wound looks too round (other than the hide which was under tension) to be anything that was used for hunting. Could the animal have run into something metal and pointed like a nail on a post, something on a fence post or a small diameter bar in the stall (maybe the latch).
I hope I am right but IMO you can almost rule out a hunting accident or deliberate action by someone with archery equipment. (notice I didn't say hunter - a hunter has more respect for someone's personal property, which includes animals).
I hope you find the cause so that other animals are not similarly injured.
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Old 11-11-2011, 07:46 AM
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With a wound channel that is running up from the entry, I'd be more inclined to think it was something like an electric fence post or rebar that caused it.
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Old 11-11-2011, 11:48 AM
  #7  
Spike
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Originally Posted by ryndisher
Looks like hes standing up. Doesn't seem lame to me.
He was standing on three legs. The fourth leg was dragging. He couldn't move it at all.
Couldn't get down either so not surprising that he looks like he's standing up.

Originally Posted by bronko22000
Could the animal have run into something metal and pointed like a nail on a post, something on a fence post or a small diameter bar in the stall (maybe the latch).
This is the other option we have, yes.
There are a few things that don't seem to fit though.
The wound is 20cm deep and we just don't have anything in the paddocks, fencing included, that's that length and solid to puncture to that depth and then some.
Some have suggested a stick, but it's broken the bone and apparently the humerus is one of the strongest bones in the body?
It doesn't seem logical to me that a thin stick has gone to that depth and then chipped bone.
To me it seems it must have been something more solid than what you'd normally find in a paddock.
Who knows what, but I like to consider all possibilities.

Two days ago a cat was shot through the back with an arrow about an hour's drive from me.
It's not the first time animals have been found shot, so I think we have some sickos in the area unfortunately.

Cheers for the comment!
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Old 11-11-2011, 12:01 PM
  #8  
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There are no bullet fragments on the Xrays and an arrow - the trajectory is all wrong for that. It looks as though something punctured him with great force to cause a fracture in that bone, they are the strongest.

Where do you board your horse? I'd be looking at something in those barns. Any new personnel in those barns, start there....I hate to say this but it looks so similar to an injury a horse suffered at a barn we were boarding at. The owners son came home and was found stabbing a horse with a pitch fork.

Last edited by *twodogs*; 11-11-2011 at 12:05 PM.
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Old 11-11-2011, 02:08 PM
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It looks like a stab wound to me. We had a some kids around here a few years ago that would go around stabbing horses and cows that were out to pasture.
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Old 11-11-2011, 04:00 PM
  #10  
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Just throwing this out there... I too doubt it was from an arrow/bolt/etc, mainly because if it was that deep, I don't think whoever did it would have been able to retrieve it without getting knocked out by the horse.

It does happen though, two kids around my hometown shot someones longhorn last year or the year before. They couldn't go get the arrow so the police matched the arrow to the person.
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