Hi everyone, the day of Salty’s colic was a roller coaster of emotions for me but it sparked an interest in me to do some research. Ironically shortly after that day, in the online course I am taking from Guelph University (don’t know if I have mentioned that or not yet) we started talking about colic which sparked more research on the subject. So in, this blog I want to talk about Salty’s story and about some info I have learned recently about colic! I am just telling you this so you can be more informed. This does not replace a vet’s opinion and if you do think your horse is colicing that is the first person you should call! But first lets talk about that cold morning when this whole thing started!
That Cool Morning
About a month ago one of our horses was found on a cold morning rolling, on the ground. It was Salty (if you want to know more about him click the link to see his story)! My heart sank as soon I saw him, I knew something was wrong. He couldn’t get up, was very uncomfortable and looked like he was having gut issues. The first thing my mind went to was colic which at his age is never good. But he had never coliced before so why now? He was his same sparky self when I checked him the night before. Anyway I didn’t know what to do and called my Dad in a full state of panic. He called our local vet who came right away. If you ever watch a horse in pain it’s never fun. I felt useless just watching him but I wasn’t going to leave him. When the vet got here, she gave him banamine and warm water with Epsom salts and waited to see if that would help. Luckily, he came around and I am happy to report is doing great now (this is the short version as I don’t think you want to know every little detail). This event got me thinking on how or why this could have happened so I started asking vets their opinions.
Chatting with Vets about Colic
I started asking around to find out more about colic and if there was any triggers/signs that I should watch for! As I started digging, I found that a common reason for why this could have occurred was the weather. The night before Salty went down, the temperature dropped significantly after a warm spell. I found out that when this happens horses tend to drink less water which can increase the risk of colic. Mix that with Salty’s age and it’s not a good combination. One vet told me that as soon as the temperature drops in a short amount of time, he gets a large amount of calls of horses colicing. He says he prepares for it now when it gets cold.
My Research and What I have changed . . .
After what I found out I changed a few things in Salty’s routine to keep him as healthy and happy as possible (so that hopefully we can avoid this from happening in the future). First, he comes into the barn on cold nights to keep his temperature from dropping. Also, I should say that he is turned out all day and night if its warm enough. He gets fed senior feed but now its in smaller quantities and twice a day. This is to try to mimic how they would eat in the wild. If you would like to read more on this topic click here! In his feed I mix a little bit of loose salt to keep him drinking. He also has a mineral tub 24/7. He has the option of hay all day in a sheltered area out of the wind. His feed is also in the far corner of the pen so it encourages him to walk for water and grain which keeps him moving. I feed him grain right beside his water to encourage him to drink.
I Want to Here from You!
If anyone else has any suggestions or ideas I am more than happy to hear them. I always like to hear what others do. If I can improve my horses or client’s horses care by even 1% its worth it to me! Also, I only included a couple tips I found in my research. If you would like to read or learn more about it, I will put some links down below! I hope you enjoyed hearing all about Salty and I am happy to say him and Kasey are doing great! By the way if you want to know when my blogs are coming out or what’s new in my world sign up for my newsletter! Well bye for now horse lover friends!