Horses

Forums
Equine Hypothermia
 By Saferaphus   •   21st Jan 2017   •   142 views   •   0 comments


A recent video of the rescue of a draft mare being pulled out of a frozen creek has gone somewhat viral. Seems the poor animal fell through the ice and couldnít get out. A young man came across her after a neighbour reported the horse missing. The horse was in the water for over three hours, and by the time she was pulled out after a hard struggle for both humans and horses, was in bad shape.

News stories like this arenít uncommon. Horses can slip into ponds because the banks are icy, walk onto barely frozen water because it looks like a solid surface, or snow hides the thin ice beneath. And, the temperatures donít have to be frigid to be a danger. Being submerged in cold water or mud even though the temperatures are above freezing can bring on hypothermia. Prolonged exposure to cold rain can bring on hypothermia. And, if the air temperatures are really cold, you donít even need to add water.

But there is no doubt that a wet outer surface will conduct heat away much faster than dry. Which is why a horse can survive sub-freezing temperatures as long as they are dry, but are in danger at the same temperatures when wet.

Hypothermia occurs when the body temperature dips below the normal internal temperature of a horse. A horseís normal temperature is between 99.5-100.4į F (37.5 to 38C). Any temperature below 99.F C is considered to be hypothermia.

When hypothermia occurs, the horseís circulation slows down. The horse will shiver as the body tries to rewarm. Frostbite can occur in thinly haired areas like the ears and nostrils. Organ failure can occur as the circulation becomes slower. The heart rate and breathing will slow, and if not rewarded, the animal can go into a coma.

When we get cold, often our instinct is to try to warm our hands and feet. Rubbing, or putting warm pads or clothes on in an effort to restore circulation seems to make sense, as that is where we feel the cold the most. And itís likely weíll do the same for an animal, trying to warm their legs by rubbing and wrapping. But, what really needs to be done is to warm the animalís core. Warming the extremities first can be counterproductive because it can pull warmth away from the horseís core. So first-aid for a horse in danger of hypothermia involves warming them from the inside out. A horse can feel warm and dry on the outside, but their core temperature may still be too low.

Warming a horse from the inside out must be done by a veterinarian. Rewarming requires warm intravenous fluids, nasogastric tubing of warm fluids into the stomach and warm enemas. This has to be done very carefully, as rewarming too quickly can put the horse in danger. The horse must be kept warm externally too, as the body temperature can dip if the warming is not maintained. The horse must be monitored for at least twenty-four hours after the rewarming process has begun, and in more severe cases, it may take several days for the horse to fully recover.

Of course, very young, senior, malnutritioned horses and those with existing health problems are most susceptible to hypothermia, and may be less likely to recover well.

The mare that was pulled from the creek s thought to be recovering well. Letís hope that the efforts of the rescue team have been successful, and she is now happily munching hay with her herd mates.
Horse News More In This Category:  General      Horse News More From This Author:  Saferaphus
 More News by Saferaphus
Fake Horse News
18th Feb 2017   |   General   |   Saferaphus
Seems like we are inundated with fake news these days. The good advice seems to be to check your sources and make sure you arenít reading satire, outright fake news, shoddy, biased reporting or rehashed urban legends. Itís not eas ...
Women Horse Jockeys
14th Feb 2017   |   General   |   Saferaphus
In most equine sports, there is a fairly equal number of men and women who compete. In fact, if you attend many horse shows, you may feel that there are far more women than men. In polo, jumping, dressage and most other sports, me ...
Tame That Mane
12th Feb 2017   |   General   |   Saferaphus
There is no way to completely change the type of mane your horse has. Proper feeding and grooming can make the most of what it does have, but that wonít make a thin mane thick, or a thick mane completely obedient. But, with some e ...
Protect Your Horse Against Illness and Disease
9th Feb 2017   |   General   |   Saferaphus
In the last few weeks, the Equine Disease Communication Center in the United States has been posting warnings about strangles, equine herpesvirus and Equine Infectious Anemia. Itís not possible to protect our horses completely fro ...
Saving the Marwari
6th Feb 2017   |   General   |   Saferaphus
At the apex of their history, itís said that there were enough of these horses to mount a calvary of 50,000. But, after the British came to India, other breeds were introduced and the Marwari became a victim of colonialism. Carele ...
Traditional Horse Festivals
4th Feb 2017   |   General   |   Saferaphus
Cultural events celebrate traditions and customs, and in many places, the horse is the center of many customs. Here is a look at just a few horse cultural celebrations held around the world. ...
Equine Cushings Disease
2nd Feb 2017   |   General   |   Saferaphus
Cushingís can be caused by two things. A horse may develop a non-cancerous tumor in the area of the pituitary gland that can affect the glandís function. Or, the neurons, the nerves that send messages, into the hypothalamus start ...
Where Horses Get Hurt
31st Jan 2017   |   General   |   Saferaphus
If you watch the news feeds like I do, youíll notice that one of the most common accidents people have with horses is along roadsides. Horses are usually legally allowed on roads - either ridden or driven. But, most people sharing ...
  View All News by Saferaphus
 
Active News Discussions
Pony Party Cruelty
1
comments
Pony Party Cruelty
Race Horses With the Longest Careers
1
comments
Race Horses With the Longest Careers
What You Need to Know Before Giving Your Horse Away
2
comments
What You Need to Know Before Giving Your Horse Away
Horses Are Better Than Cats
1
comments
Horses Are Better Than Cats
Horse Show Riders Dismounted Based on Weight
6
comments
Horse Show Riders Dismounted Based on Weight
Horse Grooming - Beyond the Basics
1
comments
Horse Grooming - Beyond the Basics
How to Decorate Your Horse
2
comments
How to Decorate Your Horse
The Problems with Kitty Cats
1
comments
The Problems with Kitty Cats
BLM Blocks Media From Horrific Experiment on 200 Horses
4
comments
BLM Blocks Media From Horrific Experiment on 200 Horses
If Horses Were Feminists
12
comments
If Horses Were Feminists
 
©2002 - 2017   PonyBox LLC Create Account Terms & Conditions Privacy Contact Us
402 Members Online 236,317 Registered Members 2,234 News Articles 8,761,760 Unique News Article Views 189,034,719 Website Views