One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A disorder of a horse's hock.
- ‘Like osteoarthritis in people, the cause of spavin is not very well understood.’
- ‘Bone spavin is arthritis between the little joints in the hocks, which don't have much movement anyways.’
- ‘Among all the sports medicine problems faced by the horse, bone spavin is probably the most common.’
- ‘Bog spavins can be large and highly visible, and make horse-owners very nervous, but they're just lumps - not lamenesses.’
- ‘Although bone spavin usually causes lameness, this may be obscured if the lesions are bilateral.’
Late Middle English: shortening of Old French espavin, variant of esparvain, of Germanic origin.
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