Mine That Bird doing well after minor surgery

Mine That Bird doing well after minor surgery

Aug 19, 2009
By dvm360.com staff
Elmont, N.Y. -- Surgery to repair Mine That Bird’s entrapped epiglottis “went perfectly” Tuesday, according to Leonard Blach, DVM, co-owner of the horse that won this year’s Kentucky Derby.

The brief procedure to clear the cartilage, or flap, that forms over the epiglottis, preventing obstruction of the horse’s airway, was performed by Dr. Patricia Hogan at the Ruffian Equine Medical Center near Belmont Park.

“She told me it went very smoothly, couldn’t have been better,” Blach said, adding that trainer Chip Woolley returned the horse to Saratoga Park later Tuesday. The throat obstruction was discovered at Saratoga on Monday during a routine scope after a workout.

“He went to eating, and acting as normal as can be. I’m real happy,” Woolley said after the surgery.

Although Woolley was hopeful that Mine That Bird, a 3-year-old gelding, would still compete in the $1 million Travers Stakes at Saratoga on Aug. 29, Blach says that he and co-owner Mark Allen “are 95 percent sure he won’t run at that time. It’s probably too soon. We don’t think it’s worth the risk. It’s not about money, it’s about the horse. He’s too good a horse to take the risk,” Blach says.

Blach owns an equine breeding farm in Roswell, N.M. He and Allen acquired Mine That Bird last year in Canada for $400,000.