Laminitis is a disease of domestication.

The following are conditions and situations in which laminitis is known to occur. The relevance of this list of causes will have a different significance to each individual owner, farrier or veterinary surgeon.

The highlighted causes are the ones that are most relevant to me in my practice, whereas other vets, for instance in the equine hospital situation or in other countries, may see the other causes more commonly.

Over-eating simple sugars in lush grass fructans in grass and starch in grain
Following a variety of infectious conditions, most commonly metritis also some conditions affecting the intestines e.g. colic
Potomac fever
Occurring with Cushings Disease (hyperAdrenocorticism)
With "Metabolic Syndrome" (also called Peripheral Cushings or Insulin Resistance)
Dependant leg laminitis
Following administration of drugs, in particular corticosteroids
Ingestion of Black Walnut shavings.

I have put these into three groups which I believe are relevant in their pathogenesis (see pathogenesis)

Often there will be a combination of circumstances and causes that set off the laminitis, for instance the overweight pony, whose feet have not been trimmed when they should have, which for some reason isn’t being exercised enough and is turned out on too much grass.

Some of the causes should be easily preventable, whereas others we may have very little control over. (See Prevention)

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