Symptoms of EPM? Or something else? I'm so stressed.
Bella is our 14 year old Pony mare. She's a vital part of our program, being ridden both as a therapy horse and lesson pony. Up until today, I don't think she's had a lame or sick day in her life. Or atleast not since she was five, when we got her.
I brought her out this morning for our therapy lessons, brushed her, tacked her up, warmed her up, and went to go talk to one of the parents. She was fine at that time, nothing unusual. When I brought the kids over to her, I noticed that she was resting her head on the rail where she was tied up, and she had one foot up on the bar- but I assumed she was just being weird and relaxing.
I untied her, put the kid on her, and off we went. No problems, she went right along with me the whole time without faltering at all. She did try to grab at a few leaves on the trail, and she got one or two...I didn't pay attention to what they were though. They were off of a bush. I pulled the branch out of her mouth, so she could of only gotten one or two at the most, and we continued on. Fast forewards 30 minutes when we're done with our lesson, I bring her back up and take the kid off. The kid's parent offers her a carrot, which she ALWAYS takes, and she doesn't even sniff it. It was a really nasty day outside though, so I figured that the weather (humid and flooded) was just getting to her and brushed it off.
I tie her back up and go to catch Sour, and when I walk by fifteen minutes later, I see Big Cowboy (our shetland) laying on the ground...tacked up. Now he does this sometimes when the kids don't tie him properly, so I untie him and he immediately tries to roll. I force him to get up, untack him, and check for gut sounds. I dont hear very much, so I assume that he's probably colicing. He has a history of colic, and is very sensative, so I brought him up, dosed him with banamine, and handed him over to be walked. I go back to get his saddle, and happen to glance at Bella.
Once again, she has a front foot on the rail, and her head completely slung over the rail with her eyes almost shut. Looking closer though, I notice her hindquarters quivering violently. Both her butt and both back legs were shaking, and her left foreleg was shaking a little to. Ofcourse, that makes me really nervouse. I quickly untacked her and had someone walk her around for me. Its really strange. Its like she's trying as hard as possible not to move any muscles in the back, and she's clenching all of them up. I checked for swelling and didn't feel any at all in any area, including her lymph nodes just in case, but she's really sensative on the inside part of all four legs, but especially the left side.
She almost seems...dizzy- too. When we were holding her, she was constantly shifting to the left, crossing her front right foot over the left one, stumbling, and catching herself with that right foot. She'll walk in a straight line when we're leading her though, but when we turn, she stumbles again. Her eyes are extremely lethargic looking and she keeps resting her head on things like its too heavy. She's still quivering, but she has 'episodes' where it gets worse, then it goes back to just light shivering. She can't be cold, its almost 90 degrees today and she isn't wet or anything. She doesn't have a temperature, I checked- but her pulse is accelerated a little. She's breathing normally unless she trips, and has clear eyes, ears, and nose. No discharge from her vulva or anything either.
I have NO idea whats wrong with her. What are the symptoms of EPM? ERV?
Yes, the vet is coming out. He won't come until tomorrow afternoon though and I'm scared. I called a few other local vets and none can come. The earliest I can get one is late tomorrow morning. What do you guys think it could be? A little extra information is that she has been coughing infrequently this week, just one or two coughs then fine for a few hours. She has allergies though, which I assumed was the reason for this. She's always done that in the spring time as far as I know.
By the way, Big Cowboy seems fine, though a little lethargic as well...he pooped and peed about 45 minutes ago so we went ahead and put him back in his pen. Neither horse are pastured near eachother, and they arent sharing the same food.
Everyone in your life is meant to
be in your journey, but not all of
them are meant to stay till the end.
Last edited by Endiku; 05-13-2012 at 03:11 PM.