Evolution vets provide a 24 hour a day, 365 day a year emergency service.
Colic can be a deeply distressing experience for both the horse and owner. There are many different types of colic; ranging from mild gas or spasmodic colic to more severe colic caused by intestinal twisting or entrapment. The vast majority of colic cases can be resolved with medical treatment, however in more severe cases surgical intervention may be required.
On the rare occasion that a horse does require surgery or further medical care for ongoing colic cases we work closely with leading colic surgeons and medicine specialists at referral centres in the South West.
Choke is a relatively common equine emergency and occurs when food becomes trapped in a horse’s oesophagus. The most common culprit is inadequately soaked feed, particularly sugar beet and similar feedstuffs. A build up of saliva often occurs behind the blockage resulting in a perfuse nasal discharge containing pieces of food. In some occasions choke will resolve by itself, but other cases require further medical management.
Wounds can often be repaired stable side with use of appropriate sedation and local anaesthetic. Techniques for stitching and repairing flesh wounds vary depending on the size of the wound. We attend these visits ASAP but can provide first aid advice over the phone whilst we are on route. On arrival our vets establish the best course of action for wound management. In some severe cases referral to a hospital may be required.
The majority of foaling’s pass without incidence, however there are always going to be those rare cases which require a helping hand. Foaling is commonly split into three stages:
- Stage 1: During this stage uterine contractions begin and start moving the foal into position for delivery. Foals are delivered in a typical diving presentation, with the forelegs followed by the head. As the contractions become stronger the foal is moved into the birth canal. This stage typically lasts between 1 and 4 hours.
- Stage 2: This stage begins when the mare’s water breaks and ends when the foal has been delivered. This should take approximately 15-20 minutes. The feet and head of the foal should start to emerge, with one foot slightly ahead of the other. The foal is encased in a thin white membrane called the amniotic sac. If this sack has not ruptured it should be torn and pulled back from the foals face to allow it to breath. If progress in this stage is delayed or you see a velvety red membrane, then please call us straight away.
- Stage 3: This stage involves the expulsion of the placenta and might take between 1 and 3 hours. If the placenta has not passed within 3 hours, then it should be considered retained and you should contact us.
The most common fractures seen in horses are those sustained in the leg. Sometimes injuries can be catastrophic, however in some occasions minor fractures can be repaired. It is therefore essential to keep your horse as still as possible until a vet arrives at the scene.
If you suspect your horse has a fracture, then please call and speak to one of our vets.
Problems with the equine eye are relatively common due to their somewhat unprotected location on the side of the head. Unfortunately, injuries to the eye can deteriorate quickly, particularly if the eyeball is involved. If you believe that your horse has injured its eyeball then please remove the horse from any area where it could cause further injury and call one of our vets.