MIL horse choked!

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MIL horse choked!

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    08-27-2011, 12:39 AM
Unhappy MIL horse choked!

Just thought Id tell everyone the day I had! I've alwasy thought horses can't vomit, but apparently they can gag pretty hard! My mother in law (or MIL) just bought a 12yr old QH gelding last Saturday. He hadnt been cared for very well, so he's kinda skinny (only through the back), and he wasnt wormed, and his feet need trimmmed, and his coat was all tacky sticky and super smelly!

So today I bathed him and he's all shiny and smelly good today! I gave him some grain to reward him, and he only finished half, then started hacking.... and didnt want anymore grain. So I took it away, and showed my MIL. We wasnt sure, so I ran inside and looked it up..... CHOKING! I ran outside and told my MIL that we had to call a vet immediately.

So she did that while I massaged his neck trying to help him swallow. Vet told us to try trotting, jumping, or running up and down a hill....We thought this sounded strange, but we did. We decided to stop when he was dripping sweat and wheezing and whistling...

Call the vet again, and they came out. They pumped his throat out and even had to shove it down into his stomach it was packed so tight in there! She said he would have been dead by morning if they hadnt came out. So poor skinny horse can't eat anything for 2-3 days, then he can have loose hay, then grain again. But I really think we should soak the grain from now on...

But apparently a horse choking is very common!
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    08-27-2011, 12:50 AM
Green Broke
Omg how scary. Glad he is, try to calm down yourself! I would be having a hissy!
    08-27-2011, 01:16 AM
We had a Welsh pony at our barn that wasn't transitioning well from flake hay to cubes. He didn't just choke once, he choked three times. It cost the owners enough in vet bills, that they finally decided to just pay the extra $50 a month in board to keep him on the regular flake alfalfa. It's really quite frightening!
Wheatermay likes this.
    08-27-2011, 01:26 AM
Wow, you are a hero! You knew what was happening, you called the vet. Good on ya! I guess the horse might have been wolfing down the grain. I have heard that with horses that might wolf the grain it's good to give the hay first, and maybe water it, too?
    08-27-2011, 01:27 AM
Originally Posted by Wheatermay    
Vet told us to try trotting, jumping, or running up and down a hill....We thought this sounded strange, but we did.
Wow. I realize you probably don't have too many options for a large animal vet but you need to run from that one. If the vet tells you to do something counterintuitive, don't do it without farther explaination and use some common sence. A horse that's choking needs to remain quite, not asked to exert themselves in any way, be allowed to drop it's neck to a comforable level, kept cool... What you need to be on the lookout for now is pnemonia or other lung/breathing problems from aspirating some of the feed. He might need to be on antibiotics right now.

The main reason this horse choke was probably due to poor teeth. Another vet needs to be out once the horse is over this and they need to be done. Having owned a horse that choked her entire life (it really isn't that common), I have never been advised to withhold food for more than 12 hours. She would be started back with soupy senior feed in small frequent feedings (3# senior/1 gal water). You should be soaking his hay as well. Put a few flakes on a hay bag, fill a garbage can with water and dunk the hay in it. Let it sit about an hour before you feed it. It will also encourage him to eat slower in the hay net.

"She said he would of been dead by morning if they hadn't come out".
Sorry but this makes me spit nails. She was no hero to this horse. If she had done her job and come out when you first called her and given appropriate advice for until she got there, this horse would of been spared alot of damage.
    08-27-2011, 01:31 AM
If he chocked because he is trying to wolf down his food, it will help to put something in his food to slow him down. A large stone (with no sharp edges) or a mineral block will work. They also sell feeders that address that problem, although I haven't tried any so I can't say whether they work or not.
sierrams1123 likes this.
    08-27-2011, 01:56 AM
Originally Posted by Left Hand Percherons    
"She said he would of been dead by morning if they hadn't come out".
Sorry but this makes me spit nails. She was no hero to this horse. If she had done her job and come out when you first called her and given appropriate advice for until she got there, this horse would of been spared alot of damage.
I meant that the OP was a hero, for having the sense to call a vet.

Anyway, I don't know much about choke, so I appreciated your knowledgeable post.
    08-27-2011, 02:07 AM
Yeah, definitely follow the seasoned advice here, not the kooky vet's misinformation. Weird. Bad, bad advice.

Google treatment plans for choke--usually I say consult with your vet, but this is obviously the exception to the rule. Definitely don't withold feed for several days, unless you want to deal with colic on top of everything else!
Alwaysbehind and sierrams1123 like this.
    08-27-2011, 02:17 AM
All the comments I "like" are the ones I agree with --> duh just saying :)

All I would have said are in those comments!

CRAZY VET --> just wanted to add that!!!
    08-27-2011, 03:07 AM
I didnt think the advice to to exert him was a good idea either, but she's a professional, so I did.... My hubby came out of the house and told met o do that, and I asked what in the world that was supposed to do, and he said it might help loosen or work it down. The horse's name is Utah btw, but he usually leads like a gentleman, and he didnt want to lead, and he laid down twice and I made him get back up.

I had to run out (I wouldnt have if I had known the vet was such a (insert mean word here)... I have a green broke horse, and I need to ride her everyday plus Im doctoring a cut on her foot.) But I figured, vet is on it's way, so he'll be fine, and if not they'll call me. I didnt leave him to the vet alone btw, MIL, brother in law, hubby, and Uncle were all out there, so I went to tend to my horse.

They did put him on antibiotics-penicillin shot actually twice a day.

So I ran back when I finished with my horse, and was asking my uncle (who's better with this horse stuff than MIL), what they did and I relayed that to you. I asked both him and MIL about his teeth. Apparently all the vet said that she thinks he's about 14, but she will agree with 12 if that's what the previous owner had told them......... No one pressed to see if it was his teeth? So I asked and the uncle doesnt think that the vet knew how to check the mouths?!?!

Anyway, I guarantee that its his teeth, b/c he isnt a fast eater. He's super super slow to eat.... I am wondering if all that grain was from the bucket I gave him or if it was from him eating the yard grass (maybe getting a dirt clump I didnt see), or if its been accumulating for a day or so... If its from me and the grain, I feel bad, but at the same time, I have to give them grain! He was a good boy!

Im trying to remember anything I left out, but I want to make sure I get this right. Thanks for all the food and grain ideas. I think the inlaws got more work than they anticipated with him, lol... But he's a real sweetie! I knew something wasnt right! They didnt have the money for the vet, so my hubby lended it to them.

Now, I'm hoping he didnt dip into my horse training fund for my gelding, but I think Utah is worth it. Buck (my gelding) may have to wait till winter or fall to get broken, lol....

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