Lameness and pre-purchase exams commonly include a flexion test of the forelegs.
A study in France looked at 401 foals from 3 breeds on 21 farms for the incidence of developmental orthopedic disease or osteochondrosis.
Many horses lead healthy and useful lives well into their twenties or even longer. However, health problems tend to crop up in horses that have been around for several decades. When a number of maladies hit at the same time, owners are faced with finding diagnoses and making management changes to keep their equine pals on the right track. Here is a summary of one senior horse's situation and how his owner sought advice to solve her horse's problems.
For a horse owner, almost nothing is more frightening to think about...and most horse enthusiasts have encountered this situation from time to time, either with their own horses or someone else's. It seems that no amount of thought or precautionary management can completely protect horses from the danger, and owners from the worry, resulting from an escape.
Older horses don't have to become underweight horses. If senior equines begin to lose weight, there is usually a reason for the change such as dental inadequacy, gastrointestinal inefficiency, immune dysfunction, or the stresses associated with pain.
Although the causative bacteria are naturally found in the soil and exposure is an everyday occurrence, most owners will never need to treat their horses for pigeon fever, botulism, or anthrax. These infections are not common, but they can have serious consequences. In some cases, an owner's awareness of the signs of illness might save a horse's life.
The white line is the narrow light-colored band visible on the underside of a freshly trimmed hoof at the junction of the hoof wall and the sole. White line disease, an infection that causes separation of the wall, may be seen first at the white line but actually affects the zone of contact between the hard outer wall and the middle layer of hoof tissue. It occurs most commonly in front feet but can occur in any foot.
Colic is a fact of life for horse owners. Chances are very good that anyone who keeps several horses for several years will encounter colic at some time. Mild episodes may resolve on their own before a veterinarian can arrive, and more serious equine abdominal discomfort can often be managed with medication.
Equine diseases, conditions, or problems are frequently referred to by their initials. Full names, a brief explanation of each condition, and management tips, if applicable, are given below.
A horse that lacks the ability to produce sweat in normal quantities has a condition known as anhidrosis. Such an animal is sometimes called a nonsweater or a drycoated horse. Horses that sweat lightly or only in patches such as under the mane, in the saddle area, and on the chest are known as shy sweaters.
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