Paynter Battling For His Life

Haskell battling colitis and laminitis

The winner of the Haskell Invitational and runner-up in the Belmont Stakes, Paynter, is fighting for his life after it was revealed that the colt had laminitis. This diagnosis comes on the heals of his suffering through colitis. Paynter became ill after his Haskell victory and hasn't been able to rebound, and in fact has gotten worse.

Laminitis is one of the most dreaded diseases in the throughbred industry. This disease is very painful and often times proves fatal. It causes a deterioration in the tissues around the hoof and foot. The disease makes it difficult for a horse to stand, let alone walk and unfortunately, Paynter has the disease in three of his four legs. The colitis coupled with the laminitis has left Paynter very weak and owner Ahmad Zayat didn't seem very optimistic in his latest comments on Twitter account; "My deep concern is that he if is a healthy horse, he can fight laminitis since it is the beginning [of the disease], but to be a sick horse and fight all these issues all at once, it is asking for too much.”

Paynter didn't begin his racing career until February of this year when he won his maiden race at Santa Anita. The Bob Baffert trained colt placed second in his third race, the Grade III Derby Trial and Churchill Downs and took home a win at Pimlico in an allowance contest. His next start came in the third leg of the Triple Crown and Paynter emerged as a thoroughbred to be taken seriously as he finished second by just a neck to Union Rags. Paynter and jockey Rafael Bejarno had a sensational showing in the Grade I, $1 million Haskell Invitational, taking the race by four lengths, giving Baffert his sixth win in this prestigous race.

The 2012 season has been difficult on the three-year-old division and while the other top horses have had to retire or shelved for awhile, Paynter may have not get the benefit of being used for breeding. A throughbred's life is on the line every time one takes to the track. Most assuredly, Paynter is being given the best medical attention that is possible, and only time can tell if the veternarian and training staff can save his life.

Comments 5 comments

Ann1Az2 profile image

Ann1Az2 4 years ago from Orange, Texas

How sad. Isn't laminitis the disease that Secretariat had and had to be put down for when he was only about 15?

An interesting hub about a champion horse.


Derby Deals profile image

Derby Deals 4 years ago from Jeffersonville, Indiana Author

Yes, that's right Ann. Looks like Paynter is recovering and may actually race again.


Ann1Az2 profile image

Ann1Az2 4 years ago from Orange, Texas

That's wonderful news! They can do so much today that they couldn't do years ago. Secretariat, sadly, was a horse before his time. Perhaps today, they could have saved him.


Derby Deals profile image

Derby Deals 4 years ago from Jeffersonville, Indiana Author

Laminitis can still be a killer, but like you said, the advances in medicine has literally been a life saver for many horses.


Ann1Az2 profile image

Ann1Az2 4 years ago from Orange, Texas

Texas A&M has even been able to save a horse's leg after a break from what I understand - still not good enough to run or ride again, but good enough for breeding purposes and to prolong a horse's life.

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