Puncture wounds in the foot qualify as medical **emergencies

A little #WednesdayWisdom for you: Puncture wounds in the foot qualify as medical **emergencies,** due to the amount of vital structures just beneath the sole that can be physically damaged and/or contaminated with bacteria when they are penetrated by a sharp object.
If your horse steps on a nail or other sharp object and it remains embedded in the hoof, resist the temptation to pull the nail out and consult with your veterinarian first. Leaving the nail in place will allow the vet to take x-rays of the foot before removal, which helps to identify exactly what structures have been penetrated, and to plan the most appropriate strategy for dealing with the situation. 
Penetrating hoof wounds can be extremely serious and shouldn’t be underestimated. The prognosis for successful recovery depends on quick action to identify the path of the nail, treatment of potential infection and mechanical damage to the foot, and proper aftercare. 
As always, our favorite piece of advice is to consult your horse doctor directly for more information!