View Full Version : It's nice to know some Race Horses aren't "thrown away"

03-03-2002, 04:20 PM

Seattle Slew undergoes successful vertebrae surgery

Triple Crown winner and prominent Central Kentucky sire Seattle Slew underwent successful surgery to fuse the joint between two vertebrae in his neck on Saturday morning at Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital in Lexington.
The 28-year-old son of Bold Reasoning, who had started the season at Three Chimneys Farm near Midway before being removed from service on February 25, had to be operated on for the second time in three years after a recurrence of neurological problems resurfaced.

A surgical team led by Dr. Barrie Grant from San Luis Rey Equine Hospital in California performed the surgery. Three Chimneys veterinarian Jim Morehead said the surgery, anesthesia, and recovery time "went well" and that Seattle Slew was moved from the surgery barn at Rood and Riddle to the hospital barn.

"Currently he’s standing comfortably and eating hay," Morehead said. "Everything seems to be positive at this point in his recovery."

Seattle Slew is expected to remain at the equine clinic for as many as ten days then will return to Three Chimneys.

Whether Seattle Slew returns to the breeding shed in 2002 or beyond has not been determined, but he is expected to miss at least six to eight weeks while he recovers from the latest surgery.

"We’re taking everything one step at a time," said Mickey Taylor, the stallion’s syndicate manager. "As with any surgery and recuperation, there are many hurdles. But he’s a very intelligent and resilient horse, and I learned a long time ago to never, ever be surprised by what he can do."

Seattle Slew underwent surgery on his back in April 2000 to ease discomfort on his vertebrae. A Bagby Basket, a device used to relieve spinal cord compression caused by arthritic changes, was inserted during both surgical procedures.

Dr. George Bagby, a human orthopedic surgeon who invented the basket, traveled from his home in Spokane, Washington, for Saturday’s surgery.

The only living and only undefeated winner of the Triple Crown, Seattle Slew is regarded as one of the world’s most prolific stallions and has sired seven champions, 59 group/graded winners, and 100 individual stakes winners from his first 20 crops. He is the sire of champions Slew o’ Gold, A.P. Indy, Surfside, Swale, Capote, Landaluce, and Digression.

Seattle Slew, who has lifetime progeny earnings of $75,405,177 through Saturday, is also the sire of major stakes winners Slew City Slew, Flute, Event of the Year, Life At the Top, Lakeway, Tsunami Slew, Honest Lady, Slewpy, and Taiki Blizzard.—Tom Law

03-03-2002, 09:36 PM
horses like seattle slew are never "thrown away"...they are worth far too much!!! even if their get suck...everyone makes big bucks on them...so they are worth keeping around...its' the ones that don't make money that we should worry about

03-04-2002, 03:09 PM
Maybe he's got some more sireing to do:D :D

Edwina's Secretary
03-04-2002, 05:10 PM
The article says that Slew will "...miss at least six to eight weeks..." while he is away from the breeding shed. My, my. Life can be tough.

03-04-2002, 06:31 PM
I think it is a blessing, Tonya. Thank you so much for sharing that story. He was such an inspiration to us all!! The next "Secretariat", who has been dead some years, I think.

03-04-2002, 06:49 PM
Horses like Seattle Slew only come along once in a lifetime. It's great that he's being taken care of in 'old age.'

Deli, I agree that the 'great legends' are worth their weight in hay(! :) ) but also, there are some owners of 'legends' who are only in it for the $$. I remember watching Animal Planet and they saved a hoss from the meat pen/sale ring. He turned out to be a good racin' horse--pocketed quite a big amount for his owner. They rescued him at about 8 yrs old! :( It just doesn't seem fair that the hoss are 'rewarded'' with this type of 'retirement!'

My fav. racin' hoss (that I can remember watching) has always been Sunday Silence! He's now at stud in Japan.