But, veterinarians warn, cutting corners on preventive care often winds up being more costly in the long run. Most physicals also include body condition scoring and an eye exam, and some include sheath cleaning and hoof evaluations, as well. Some examples include equine influenza, equine herpesvirus-1 and -4, and botulism. Annual equine physicals should also include dental exams and treatment , as needed. Some horses, especially seniors and those with existing oral issues, might warrant more frequent dental exams and treatment.
A fecal egg count measures the number of parasite eggs, including strongyle eggs, that a horse passes in each gram of manure.
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A low count —less than to eggs per gram—indicates that a horse has good natural immunity to strongyles and might not need to be dewormed as frequently , Graves said. Higher egg counts indicate that a horse is a high shedder, likely carrying many adult, egg-laying parasites.
Those horses will likely require more frequent deworming. In some cases, horses receive more grain or concentrate than they need. Finally, owners might be able to take advantage of equine wellness packages offered by some veterinary practices. These packages can include a variety of preventive care options, such as a physical exam; vaccinations; fecal egg counts and parasite control; dental care; and other services tailored to the needs of performance horses, pleasure horses, seniors, and more.
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Some wellness plans offer discounts on farm calls and other fees. Not all vets offer such plans, and costs vary among clinics, so consult your veterinarian to see if his or her practice offers an equine wellness plan.
Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. In her spare time, she enjoys riding her Tennessee Walking Horse, Sonny. Favorite Share:. About The Author.
Pat Raia Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. The Kimzey Leg Saver Splint was designed to immobilize and protect fractures of the distal cannon bone, fetlock and pastern. We have two leg saver splints, one to keep the leg in flexion and one to keep the leg in extension. We have used these splints many times for immobilization after a cast removal and to support a limb following complete lacerations of the flexor and extensor tendons.
Lameness in a horse can start as a very subtle change in performance or behavior. Other lameness can appear suddenly and be very dramatic and obvious. Common causes of lameness include injuries, infections, arthritis, navicular disease, hoof abscesses and laminitis. Whatever the cause of lameness, it should be addressed sooner rather than later for the sake of your horse's comfort and future athletic ability.
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Because there are so many different causes of lameness, it can take a lot of time and diagnostic testing to figure out exactly where the horse hurts. While some lameness cases can be quickly diagnosed and treated some get more involved. We will be happy to provide you with an estimate of the time required and cost of the lameness workup. We recommend bringing horses into the clinic for taking radiographs.
Bringing the animals into the clinic has the benefit of developing the pictures right away so that settings and angles can be re-adjusted as needed for the best possible images. We understand that bringing your horse to our facility is not always possible so we do offer radiography at your farm or barn location.
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Our machine is capable of taking radiographs of most of the horse's anatomy with the exception of lungs, abdomen, and parts of the spine. Therapeutic Joint Injections. Joint injections can be very successful in returning more normal movement to an arthritic hock joint, a sore navicular bone, or an old injury inflamed by activity. Joint injections always carry the inherent risk of joint infection and sterile inflammation and for this reason strict sterility is demanded by our veterinarians and staff.
Joint injections can be done on the farm or at our equine facility. Soft tissue injuries such as a bowed tendon, hematomas, tendon sheath infections and annular ligament fibrosis can only be definitively diagnosed with an ultrasound examination. We offer ultrasound at our equine facility or at your farm or barn location. Athens Veterinary Service W. Services Equine Services Orthopedics.