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Pigeon Fever

This is a discussion on Pigeon Fever within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category
  • Pigeon fever horses in knee
  • When should pigeon fever be treated with antibiotics

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    12-22-2012, 11:10 AM
Your right horses can die. Generally like most abscesses they drain outward, they can or can not be treated with antibiotics. With Pigeon fever the abscesses can tunnel inward to internal organs, this needs to be treated with antibiotics and can be fatal.

The internal form can be hard to determine. The horse would have to have signs of Pigeon fever but no draining abscesses. Generally needs ultrasound/blood titers for diagnosis. Luckily this kind is rare.

I think many areas are getting more of this disease. Wetter springs and dryer summers. And our flies this year were unusually persistent and biting. It was also so random who contracted it at our barn. My horse that is post EPM and has a weakened immune system did not get it .... most of the horse that go it were average age , one was older. The ones that were infected did not infect the horse next to it.

But as our weather patterns continue to change we may be seeing much more of this.
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    01-03-2013, 07:48 PM
SO its Jan. 3rd.. And my heart horse has pigeon fever.. YAY..

It started showing with a swollen knee (no lameness) a few days ago, and then this morning progressed to her whole leg being swollen (still no lameness) and a giant knot on her neck where it connects to her shoulder..

Vet said I should quaranteen (sp?) her, but shoot all of the horses have been together thus far, and share water and grain buckets..

I have never dealt with this, so should I quaranteen and scrub buckets, or just continue to turn them out together and share buckets?? Her abcess hasnt popped yet, and I plan on keeping her separated when it does to keep it clean and let it heal.. but until then?
    01-03-2013, 08:43 PM
Pepper the general consensus from our vets is they did not need to be quarantined, until the lesions popped. The the horse and draining stuff should be kept separate. Mainly so they were not walking around the barn.

Though those horses who have more movement recovered quicker ! At least the fly population should be down or gone, so not just the draining stuff would put other horses at risk.

Good luck all our horses did well, it was more a pain in the butt , than anything else.


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