HELP! Is my horse colicky?

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Colic is one of those terms that is a bit all encompassing. Ultimately, it means your horse has a belly ache of some sort. Horses can show colic in a variety of ways, but here are some common behaviors:

– Refusing to eat

– Laying down even after you get them up again, or during feeding

– Rolling excessively

– Pawing the ground

– Looking, biting or kicking at their abdomen

– Stretching as if to urinate

– Excessive flehmen response

– Increased heart rate

– Sweating and increased breathing rate

Time is an important factor with colic. If you feel your horse is colicking immediately call us at 303-841-6006. While you wait for us try to walk your horse at a brisk pace, but only if your horse is safe to handle. Some horses can be very violent during a colic episode. If this is the case it is more important that you stay safe. When the vet arrives we will take care of it!

Address:
2565 Gold Creek Drive
Elizabeth, CO 80107

Call or email to make an appointment!
303-841-6006 office
office@cherrycreekequine.com

Address:
2565 Gold Creek Drive
Elizabeth, CO 80107

Call or email to make an appointment!
303-841-6006 office
office@cherrycreekequine.com

HELP! My horse just stepped on a nail!

303-841-6006

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If your horse has stepped on a nail, or other sharp object that has penetrated the hoof capsule or sole, the first thing to remember is to resist the urge to pull it out! The second step, is to call us at 303-841-6006, and have the available veterinarian come out to x-ray your horse’s foot. This critical step allows us to determine where the nail actually went, whether important structures are involved, and what the prognosis may be.

While you wait for the veterinarian to arrive, keep your horse tied up in a clean location. You should also wrap the foot to help keep the environmental contaminants out of the wound. If a rear leg is affected, make sure any manure produced is cleaned quickly!

Address:
2565 Gold Creek Drive
Elizabeth, CO 80107

Call or email to make an appointment!
303-841-6006 office
office@cherrycreekequine.com

Address:
2565 Gold Creek Drive
Elizabeth, CO 80107

Call or email to make an appointment!
303-841-6006 office
office@cherrycreekequine.com

EIA (Coggin’s) Test

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What is a Coggin’s test, and why do I need to get one for my horse?  

New horse owners ask about Coggin’s testing frequently, and not having one when you need it is a real headache.  The test checks for antibodies to a particular virus, the Equine Infectious Anemia (EIA) virus.  It is named for it’s inventor, Dr. Leroy Coggins.  The test is regulated by the federal government, can only be drawn by a licensed and accredited veterinarian, and must be run in a federally accredited laboratory.

There are several important reasons to get an EIA test on your horse.

  • Interstate Travel.  Most states require a negative EIA test within 12 months of entry to their state.  Usually a Certificate of Veterinary Inspection (a “Health Certificate”) is also required, and additional requirements vary from state to state.  We have current information on travel to all states as well as foreign countries.
  • Purchase of a new horse.   Our recommendation is that you get a new EIA test run when you buy a new horse, prior to concluding the purchase.  The federal government has specific regulations for managing positive horses, none of which you want to be involved with.  In addition, all infected horses eventually die from the virus, which likely makes the purchase a poor decision.
  • For Medical Diagnosis.  Horses that are depressed, anemic, running a fever that doesn’t resolve, or have other specific signs suggestive of EIA infection will have an EIA test run for diagnostic purposes.

Where do you run the EIA test, and how long does it take?

Our laboratory is federally accredited to run EIA tests, and has been for a number of years.  It is the only local laboratory in Elbert County.  We routinely run the tests several days a week, and results usually take only a few days.  In cases of an emergency (“I forgot that I needed a new one and I’m leaving this afternoon is the usual emergency!”)  we can get while you wait results for you at an additional expense.

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is what an EIA test report looks like.  

Our lab uses Globalvetlink for reporting.  The report comes to you via email as a PDF which you can open and print whenever you like.

Address:
2565 Gold Creek Drive
Elizabeth, CO 80107

Call or email to make an appointment!
303-841-6006 office
office@cherrycreekequine.com

Address:
2565 Gold Creek Drive
Elizabeth, CO 80107

Call or email to make an appointment!
303-841-6006 office
office@cherrycreekequine.com

Spring Vaccinations keep your horse healthy!

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Spring vaccinations are an important part of keeping your horse healthy. The routine spring vaccine includes protection for:

  • Eastern and Western Equine Encephalomyelitis (also called “Sleeping Sickness”)
  • Influenza (“Flu”)
  • Rhinopneumonitis (also called “Equine Herpes”, EHV)
  • Tetanus
  • West Nile Virus
  • Rabies

These are diseases that are commonly encountered in horses. Here in Colorado, the highest risks of exposure are for West Nile virus and Rabies, as well as the respiratory viruses. We immunize for these in the spring because the encephalitis and West Nile viruses are spread via mosquito bites. Protection persists through the entire mosquito season. If your horse travels to the deep south or the coasts, a second encephalitis booster is recommended in the fall to provide year round protection for these diseases. Rabies vaccine should be boosted once yearly in the horse.

Address:
2565 Gold Creek Drive
Elizabeth, CO 80107

Call or email to make an appointment!
303-841-6006 office
office@cherrycreekequine.com

Address:
2565 Gold Creek Drive
Elizabeth, CO 80107

Call or email to make an appointment!
303-841-6006 office
office@cherrycreekequine.com

Laminitis (Founder)

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“My horse has foundered, what does that mean?”  Laminitis (founder) is a lameness condition that is characterized by the loss of the normal attachment of the hoof to the coffin bone.  There are a variety of causes for this disease including an episode of overeating in the grain room, hormonal causes, and as an after effect of high temperature or severe infection.  Rarely it can be caused by damaged circulation from a wound or other loss of circulation.  When the attachment of the hoof to the bone is damaged, the loss of attachment is usually most severe at the front of the hoof, which results in the most tearing at that point.  On a radiograph from the side of the foot, it appears that the tip of the coffin bone has rotated downward, creating the classic x-ray image of a foundered foot.   Traditionally, severity has been assessed by the number of degrees of difference between the front of the coffin bone and the hoof wall, termed degrees of rotation.  The more rotation, the worse the laminitis episode is thought to be, and the less likely the horse will return to normal.  Occasionally, the damage to the attachment is so severe that the entire hoof becomes detached from the bone, leading to the bone dropping straight downward with no rotation.  These are termed “sinkers”, and the prognosis is much less favorable than a horse with a less severe amount of rotation.

Laminitis can be difficult to prevent.  There are a number of metabolic events that occur when a horse develops laminitis.  In some instances, like the grain overload situation, the horse consumes a large amount of grain and as it passes through his digestive system, the grains ferment, and toxins called endotoxins are released.  These toxins alter blood flow to the foot, cause damage to the lining of the blood vessel in the laminae, and in that way damage the hoof attachment.  Laminitis can also occur after a colic episode, and the endotoxin release from the GI disturbance is thought to have a similar effect.  There are a number of stress related that are involved as well, with cortisone one of the most important.  Horses that have a cresty neck and are obese are at increased risk for laminitis because of a direct adverse effect of insulin on the laminae.  Horses with Equine Metabolic Syndrome have significantly elevated insulin levels continuously, and the effect of increased cortisone in the blood stream makes the insulin level climb higher.  Eventually, a critical level is reached, the laminae are damaged, and a laminitis episode ensues.  Horses that have PPID (Equine Cushings Disease) have persistently elevated cortisone levels in their bloodstream, which causes insulin resistance as well.  Treatment of these conditions involve weight management, dietary changes, and medication to control the PPID if it is present.

 

 

This image demonstrates the loss of normal parallel architecture between the front of the hoof and the front of the coffin bone, termed rotation of the coffin bone.  It also shows a very elongated toe and long heel with a steeper than normal angle of the bottom of the bone compared to the ground.  This is described as an elevated palmar angle.  Both issues must be addressed by corrective hoof trimming when managing a laminitis episode.  

Address:
2565 Gold Creek Drive
Elizabeth, CO 80107

Call or email to make an appointment!
303-841-6006 office
office@cherrycreekequine.com

Address:
2565 Gold Creek Drive
Elizabeth, CO 80107

Call or email to make an appointment!
303-841-6006 office
office@cherrycreekequine.com