Simple Actions Can Help Save Equine Lives When Time Is Of The Essence

The British Horse Society (BHS) welfare conference recently reminded horse owners that they are capable of delivering lifesaving care to their horses while the vet is en route. Nicola Jarvis, a veterinary surgeon, said that the key is knowing the horse, reports Horse & Hound.

Knowing the normal resting respiration rate, heart rate, temperature and gum color is key to determining when an animal is in distress. Spotting the subtle signs that a horse is not well can help stave off a full-blown emergency.

As an injured animal can be unpredictable, Jarvis noted that no one should ever place themselves in danger to get information on their animal; Jarvis recommends approaching any horse in distress as if it was an animal completely unfamiliar to you.

She recommends that people don helmets and gloves, and work with the horse on a long lunge line and not a short shank. A horse that is seizing will not have any control over his body, so staying in a safe area is paramount.

A horse that is seizing should be kept in relative peace and quiet, and he should not stand too early. Bales of hay or straw can be used to support him as he rolls onto his chest, and shavings can offer grip to him when he attempts to stand.

Other equine emergencies Dr. Jarvis addressed included:

  • A trapped horse
    A horse that is trapped will initially try (some violently) to free himself; once he is resigned to the fact that he is trapped, he may calm down and eat. However, the horse’s temperament can change rapidly so wearing safety gear is key.
  • Colic
    Once the call to the vet has been made, hitch the trailer (if applicable) if the horse might need to be referred to a clinic. Gather buckets of warm water for the vet, as well. Taking the sick horse for a stroll is also OK as long as he is not so tired he has to be forced to walk. The horse is allowed to lie down as long as he is in a safe area.
  • Non-weightbearing
    A horse that is completely non-weightbearing could have a broken bone, so don’t attempt to move him. If a foreign object is sticking out of his hoof or lower limb, don’t remove it, but do bandage the opposing limb to offer more support.

Read more at Horse & Hound.

The post Simple Actions Can Help Save Equine Lives When Time Is Of The Essence appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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