Equine Services at Our Practice
Horses can encounter health issues just as any other type of pet can. Fortunately, the great majority of these issues can be prevented through regular wellness care and proper home care, or they can be treated by a veterinarian with proper training and expertise in equine health. Horse owners will be pleased to know that our practice can provide the necessary care for their entire menagerie.
Vaccinations, Dental Care and More for Your Horses
Just as dogs and cats require core vaccinations from a young age, so must horses receive certain essential vaccines to protect them against serious illnesses. Rabies, a universal and deadly threat to mammals, can cause neurological damage, behavioral changes and eventually death. This frightening ailment is transferred through the bite of a rabid animal, making it imperative that you vaccinate your horse annually to maintain protection. Other core vaccinations for horses include those for tetanus, Easter/Western equine encephalomyelitis and West Nile virus in the Spring, and a Flu/Rhino vaccination in the Fall. Annual vaccinations are required to maintain currency. Risk based vaccines for diseases such as Strangles and Botulism can also be administered. Horses also need annual testing for equine infectious anemia, otherwise known as “Coggins Testing”. This is usually done in conjunction with a wellness examination.
Horses’ teeth and hooves also require regular evaluation and care. Horses’ teeth require a procedure called “floating” to remove sharp points, and any abnormalities which can lead to behaviorial issues, pain, chewing difficulties and digestive problems.
Hooves also tend to overgrow and must be trimmed properly. Uneven or neglected hooves can suffer a serious form of inflammation called laminitis, in which the lamina of the hoof loosens from the bone. If laminitis does develop, it must be treated promptly to prevent crippling lameness. Other ailments that can produce lameness including arthritis, infections and traumatic injury to a joint. Diagnosis is usually through palpation, local nerve blocks, radiography, or ultrasound of the affected limb. Moist and wet conditions can also cause Thrush, a disease associated with decay to the bottom of the sole and frog region hooves.
Horses are vulnerable to skin diseases caused by parasites, fungi, bacteria, or other allergens which can result in skin lesions and/or hair loss. We can evaluate your horse’s skin issue and prescribe the appropriate treatment.
Annual fecal examinations using a McMasters egg count is the gold standard for evaluating the presence of parasite eggs. We perform these tests during an annual wellness check and advise you of any other preventative procedures that may need to be performed. We encourage horse owners seeking a high standard of professional care for their beloved equines to contact our office for an initial consultation.