Colic in Pregnant Mares? Is this a common thing?

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jmejemima

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My mare, Dixie, is possibly bred. Earliest due date is late December. When I bought her in July she was running with a little stud, so she could possibly go anywhere from December to first part of July.

Right now, she doesn't look really big and fat pregnant. I posted a couple of pictures of her last week and a couple forum members said that they thought she "looked" pregnant.

My question is this: Twice now, she has gas colicked. The first time was 2 weeks after I bought her. I took her feed to her and she didn't want it (this horse is typically a CHOW hound to the extreme). In fact, she didn't want it and then layed down next to her bowl. Very unusual for her. No rolling, just layed down. I got her up, haltered her, and led her around outside. Not always forcing her to walk, mainly just letting her meander as she wanted. Gut sounds normal on both sides. She nibbled some at grass but didn't really eat, just let it fall back out of her mouth. Talked to my vet (my boss! It's great to work for a vet!!) He suggested to try walking her, sounded like gas colic. After about 30 minutes of this, she got really interested in the grass and I put her back in her stall, and she began to look for the grain that I'd already taken out. I checked on her a couple of times during the night, giving her 1 bite of grain each time (mainly to see if she was interested or not, which she was, every time).

Tonight, she did it again. I put her up and fed her at 5:30, she walked in her stall and started eating her grain, I left, that's our routine. At 7:30, my friend, Sheila, went to the barn to feed her two horses (full size) and called to tell me that Dixie was laying down (not like her). She had ate her grain, but not her hay. She had drank water and passed manure. When I got up there like 10 minutes later, she was laying down and I could tell that she had rolled. Got her up, walked her outside, called the vet. Gut sounds normal, both sides. M/M and CRT both normal. She seemed a little worse this time, more pawing and a time or two even tried to lay down while I had her on the lead. Doc suggested running over to the clinic and getting some Banamine (I had none) and giving her some to see if it would be enough to make her comfortable. She wasn't in distress or anything, just uncomfortable, you know? So I ran to the clinic and back with a couple syringes of Banamine.

Attempted to go IV. I know how to do IV shots, I learned how in school. Granted it's been a few months....I think I found out tonight that Dixie has probably NEVER had any shots. The IV stick freaked her out and she jumped, the needle come out, and well, that was the end of that. She wouldn't let me try again....(I'm by myself doing all this of course!) So I go IM, she wouldn't let me to the chest, so I went to the butt. Ended up having to pin her against the wall, do a lot of thump, thump, thumps with my fist, then jab and give and get out of the way of flying hooves. She kicked the hay rack pretty hard, but didn't hurt herself.

Immediately passed manure and ALOT of gas (as in, thought the wall was going to come down). Unclipped her lead, she immediately walked to her bowl looking for grain and then looking for hay. So I watched her for about 10 minutes then left her. I'll go back in a few minutes to check her.

So is gas colic common in pregnant minis? We've raised several full sized foals and never had a problem with the mares with them. I hope that this is all that's going on. After losing Chico to colic last year, I will NOT keep a horse that is going to colic every other month. If its just a pregnancy thing, I'll think about waiting it out.....

Here's her recent photos....



 
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Anne

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unless the folks you bought her from will tell you there is a "history" of these problems I would tend to think it's more likely something she is eating causing the problem.

Sometimes for a repeated "mild" colic like this I will go to psyllium for five days to clear any possible sand.

Could her teeth need attention and things aren't being chewed and so digested quite right?

I wouldn't though assume that this mare just chronically colics, there must be "something",

I suppose also though that the pregnancy could be putting some pressure on a section of bowel and allowing pressure to build in her intesstines.

Just some things I was thinking as I read your post.
 

ChrystalPaths

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First, she's a cute a bugs ear. I hope you have a nice conversatioanl relationship with the seller. I am always available to my past buyers. How old is she? Is this her first baby? Where are you located?

Depending on how far along she is she could be experiencing the baby moving and be baffled, the baby could be pushing on her intestines and she gets a bit of gas build up.

What type of hay are you feeding? Sometimes alfalfa is gassy, you may want to feed something softer and easier for her. The grasses are changing with the onset of fall.

When was she wormed last? Working for a vet I'm sure you have thought of everything in the book but I remember with Glacia I had so much gas I thought I'd die from the cramps sometimes. With my son...nothing.

What is her foaling history? Colts/fillies? You never know with these kids I swear. What type of feed does she get? What "was" she fed at the other farm?

Hoping she gets through this A OK>sounds like something is up but not enough to do serious harm but enough to make you crazy. Keep your banamine handy. If all else fails..take the needle off the syringe and squirt it in her mouth. It will work but takes a bit longer. Tastes AWFUL! so have a swet treat there to make it all better.

Prayers.
 

Miniv

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Dimi gave you excellent advice....not much to add......but I will stress about the banamine. The liquid Banamine CAN be given orally! 1cc per 100 lbs.

Good luck with her.

MA
 

rabbitsfizz

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She certainly is pretty- I like her a lot but No, this is not normal for pregnant mares- Good Gravy I'd never get any sleep!!! I would be looking at worms- did you do the Fenbendazole five day?? If she had a worm burden when you bought her she may not have cleared with routine worming. The other thing is- I am OK with IV but I willnot give routine pain meds this way- they are slower getting to the problem orally, true, but they stay in the system longer- if it is not imperative to get pain relief immediately I would always go for oral. I would also get some bloods done- I am assuming you get a special rate
 

Hosscrazy

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She is absolutely adorable! When I went through a slew of colics several years ago, I ended up reworking my feed program to try to figure out what could have been causing the colic (also gas colic).

You may want to try removing the grain for now and keeping her on hay, just to see if perhaps it's the grain that is causing her to be gassy. If she stay colic-free for a while, you can then slowly reintroduce it to her and see how she does.

Ditto on the banamine - I use banamine paste (oral).

Best wishes - she's a cutie!

Liz R.
 

jmejemima

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She's supposed to be a 4 year old. No info to back that up, just going by teeth.

This is her first baby that anyone knows about.

Her teeth look good, so I don't think that's a problem...she's not dropping feed or anything.

I'm located in Upstate, South Carolina.

I have her on a 10% pellet/sweet feed and coastal bermuda hay. Both of which she's been on since July.

I dewormed her about 6 to 7 weeks ago with ProMectin E (ivermectin). I haven't done the "big guns" deworming because well...I was afraid to with the first go round, not really knowing her deworming history, so I wanted to do a more gentle (I guess you'd say) deworming. Not have something major happen all at once you know? It made sense to me. And my full sized horses are going to be due this fall for their big deworming (going after tapes and all).

My vets suggestion today was to deworm her...focusing on tapeworms. But he's not a mini vet, in fact he sees very few. So he's leary (as am I) as to what to give her.

At the clinic, on hand, we have Quest Plus (gel) and we have Panacur. Which is the safest, but most effective as well? Which of those two would you use? Or something else, I don't have a problem either asking them to order it, or buying it somewhere is.

Thanks for all your suggestions! Dixie is doing well today, no problems.

Edited to say....

I don't want to use Quest, I've never used it, but I don't trust it....Never heard any good things about it either.

I did a search in the forum on tapeworms and the majority of posters seem to like Equimax...I think that I'll check into that one right now....but please suggest something else if you want!
 
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rabbitsfizz

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OK Jamie

DO NOT USE QUEST- EVER!!!


OK??? It is Moxidectin, and the safety margin on this product is minimal and you could kill your horse- no joking.

Ivermectin is far harsher that Fenbendazole- Panacur- and you used it as a first wormer- chances are you guessed her weight?? Chances are you have under rated and so, in effect, she has not been wormed. Chances are this is why she is colicking!!

Panacur- Fenbendazole- for five days, at double her weight dosage Use the Guard version, which is liquid, if you have it, if not use the paste - in both cases, over estimate her weight rather than under, as with Fenbendazole, in order to actually harm the horse, you would have to drown it in the stuff!! It is really safe and really gentle and the five day course will get the encysted small strongyles that are most probably the cause of the colic.

Ten days after the end of the five day course, give Ivermectin+ Praziquantel (tape wormer) Zimectrin Gold has both in one tube.

Eight weeks after that worming, worm again with Ivermectin, and so on thought the winter. You need to worm the five day course, followed by the Tape wormer, in Autumn and Spring, ideally April and October, and there is no need to rotate wormers, there is no known resistance to Ivermectin.

I think you also need to have a follow up worm count done- You could probably do this yourself as you have the equipment at your disposal


This should leave you with a worm free horse- the encysted small strongyles hatch at this time of year and then migrate through the liver and other organs, which is what can and does cause colic.
 

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