I deal with hoof abscesses often. I soothe my clients that their horse will be alright. Their horse will heal despite how miserable he feels at the moment and that it is only an abscess.
So, I have to share this little story about me and my mare.
Lilly was lame and and each day was getting worse. She started swelling on the inside of her left leg. My friend and boarder, a professional horse-woman, was also getting very concerned.
Lilly is a very stoic mare, so seeing her so uncomfortable alarmed me. We were sure she had some grave injury. After three days, I called the vet.
The first thing he said when he got out of his car was "Did you check for an abscess? " He reached down, poked her coronary band and the ick started oozing. He looked up and said, "Like this one?"
His next question was "How many professionals does it take to find an abscess?"
He is very kind and doesn't give Stef and I too much grief for missing this in my mare. It is funny how easy it is too keep things in perspective when it isn't your horse in pain.
Don't feel bad if you want someone to hold your hand. The pain a horse feels when they have an abscess brewing is intense.