Why do I need to bring my horse slowly into work after an injury?

Following the advice of equine vet Kirstie Pickles, discover why you need to bring your horse slowly back into work after an injury. 

The tendon repair process is slow and fibrous scar tissue forms. This scar tissue doesn't have the same composition as the normal tendon. 

The repaired tissue becomes mechanically strong, but remains stiffer than that of a healthy tendon, increasing the weight placed on the adjacent tendon tissue and a horse's risk of re-injury. 

During the initial healing phase, his lameness will start to decrease, however, the tendon will remain enlarged and soft. This is due to the growth of new blood vessels and fibrous tissue. 

A controlled exercise program helps maintain function and optimists repair of the collagen within the tendon. Serial ultrasound scans should be performed every two to three months and before you increase his exercise level.

The goal is to promote healing but prevent re-injury.