Maybe Wishes ARE Horses

Poor Barbaro. After sustaining horrific injuries in the Preakness—his right hind cannon bone, sesamoid and pastern were all fractured, and the fetlock joint was dislocated—he's laid up at U. Penn's state-of-the-art New Bolton Hospital for the foreseeable future. Right now most reports indicate that his condition is pretty stable, but so many things can go wrong during equine rehabilitation. (How do I know? Well, I'm a horse geek and former vet tech. Plus it's in all the papers.) No one wants to see a talented, beautiful—not to mention outrageously expensive—animal perish, but sadly, the odds are not in Barbaro's favor. Horses can't lie down for extended periods of time—they can suffer internal injuries from being in the prone position for too long—and they also aren't made to stand around. Uneven pressure on those long, delicate legs can cause laminitis, a deadly ailment in which the cannon bone pulls away from the hoof wall. They're also susceptible to salmonella and other weird infections when their systems are stressed. And when every fiber of your being is urging you to go outside and run around, being cooped up is pretty darned stressful. Which may explain why I've chewed the caps on all the pens in my cubicle. Anyway, horse lovers and Barbaro investors everywhere are keeping fingers crossed that the cutting-edge veterinary technology at New Bolton will lead to the Derby champ's full recovery. We're pulling for you, buddy. Here's to a happy future full of grassy pastures and willing mares. —Megan Miller

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