Would a Penicillin Shot help?? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 19 Old 12-30-2009, 02:12 PM Thread Starter
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Unhappy Would a Penicillin Shot help??

My 12 year old Gelding Quarter horse "Rebel" has an abcess on the inside of his right leg but higher up, closer towards his... you know what... Anways, I've tried cleaning it and stuff and it'll go away and I'll think it's gone, then POOF it's back.. I tried letting his own body fight it off, and it goes away, then it's back. I talked to my farrier and he said a shot of Pencillin would help, as an antibiotic to help me fight it off. Would that help? I just wanted to ask, if you don't think it would help I'm going to have a vet come out here this week. Money has been kinda tight, but I can just afford it now. I'd like to avoid it if possible, I sure she's just going to give me some antibotics and tell me to keep cleaning it out. So if I can get some antibiotics from the feed shop then I am pretty sure I could heal it myself. If you know of any other antibiotic I could buy from the store I would appreciate it! I feel so bad for him, like I said it doesn't hurt him I can clean it and spray it and he doesn't flinch but it NEEDS to be taken care of. Please don't chew me out for not taking him to the vet right away, it won't change what has happened. I've been working dillegantly on keeping it clean and antibiotic spray and everything. Thank you.

Riding a horse is not a gentle hobby to be picked up and laid down like a game of solitaire. It is a grand passion. -Emerson
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post #2 of 19 Old 12-30-2009, 02:15 PM
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You cant get a strong enough antibiotic unless you get a perscription so you'll need to talk to the vet either way.

From my experience with it, you need more then once penecillian shot. My vet usually gave me two weeks worth for a horse I had with a lymph infection. Some horses are allergic so I wouldnt do this without supervision.
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post #3 of 19 Old 12-30-2009, 02:23 PM
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Originally Posted by sillybunny11486 View Post
You cant get a strong enough antibiotic unless you get a perscription so you'll need to talk to the vet either way.

From my experience with it, you need more then once penecillian shot. My vet usually gave me two weeks worth for a horse I had with a lymph infection. Some horses are allergic so I wouldnt do this without supervision.


Penecillin shots are usually given for a week but no more then two weeks for an infection. For a major infection, usually a shot is given twice a day for a couple of days and also the injection should be done around the same time each day. I would contact a vet through before doing anything drastic (like giving shots of penecillian)

Also penicillian must be given in the muscle and can kill the horse if it hits the blood stream- so if you arent comfortable with shots I would ask the vet to show you how to properly give one.

I hope you can find what the problem is soon


It's not the will to win, but the will to prepare to win that makes the difference.
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Last edited by Angel_Leaguer; 12-30-2009 at 02:27 PM.
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post #4 of 19 Old 12-30-2009, 02:24 PM
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Originally Posted by sillybunny11486 View Post
You cant get a strong enough antibiotic unless you get a perscription so you'll need to talk to the vet either way.
Seriously? We can purchase PenG at the local farm supply store.

ONE shot of PenG will not be enough. Might tamp down the infection for a bit but it will not get rid of it.

There are also different types of infection that require a particular antibiotics - PenG, SMZ, uniprim, oxytect, etc.

If the infection comes and goes - it may be something more serious deeper in the leg. Probably worth a vet visit.
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post #5 of 19 Old 12-30-2009, 02:51 PM Thread Starter
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Wow, thank you guys! That's very helpfull! I do remember my farrier saying it would take more than one shot now that you mention it. Does anyone know that average price the shots run for, just out of curiosity? Also, do you think it would help to call and ask my vet for advice on the dosing? Is a vet allowed to do that over the phone? Thank you everyone, you are being so helpfull!!

Riding a horse is not a gentle hobby to be picked up and laid down like a game of solitaire. It is a grand passion. -Emerson
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post #6 of 19 Old 12-30-2009, 02:53 PM
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Most nonperscription anitbiotics are over used, which leads to resistence.

My vet gives advice over the phone all the time.
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post #7 of 19 Old 12-30-2009, 03:06 PM Thread Starter
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Most nonperscription anitbiotics are over used, which leads to resistence.

My vet gives advice over the phone all the time.
This is true, and thanks I'm definatly going to call my vet first and get information on dosing or whether I do it or not, so that he doesn't become resistant to it.

Riding a horse is not a gentle hobby to be picked up and laid down like a game of solitaire. It is a grand passion. -Emerson
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post #8 of 19 Old 12-31-2009, 12:26 AM
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Originally Posted by mls View Post

ONE shot of PenG will not be enough. Might tamp down the infection for a bit but it will not get rid of it.

This is exactly why you don't want to give antibiotics without a prescription. If you use the wrong type or dose of antibiotic, you could kill the weaker bacteria and then the strong, resistant ones grow. This is how we get antibiotic resistance and it can make the infection harder to treat if you have a penicillan resistant bug. Also, as has been mentioned wounds that come and go are serious and need to be addressed by the vet. It could be a sequestrum, there are several other threads on the board about these.
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post #9 of 19 Old 12-31-2009, 12:53 AM
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In addition to what was said above about resistance, etc., abscesses usually need to be drained - this will require the vet to do it correctly (it will need to be numbed with lidocaine). In people medicine that is the #1 treatment for most abscesses. True abscesses don't respond well to antibiotics without draining because there is no blood flow to the center of the "pocket of pus". This is also why his body can't fight it off completely. Antibiotics aren't really necessary if the abscess is adequately drained. BTW - in people, penicillins usually aren't a good choice for skin type infections - you would probably need a sulfa drug (tucoprim) or a cephalosporin.

Also, what are you cleaning it with and how often? My patients (the people kind) often cause more problems than they treat with overzealous cleaning. Peroxide and many other antibacterial cleaners can cause more problems because they kill healthy tissue as well as the germs. This can actually cause wounds to take longer to heal, so they shouldn't really be used other than as an initial cleaner, if then. Soap and water once, maybe twice a day is better - and no scrubbing. Plus, keeping hands off is usually the best bet - people tend to introduce more germs when they "mess with" skin infections a bunch.

Of courses, all of this is assuming its actually a true abscess instead of something like cellulitis which really can't be drained. I'm just throwing out ideas here - hopefully some of it is helpful. Call the vet and good luck!

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post #10 of 19 Old 12-31-2009, 01:02 AM
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BTW - it isn't that the horse will become resistant to it, its that the bacteria do. The sad thing is that there are a lot of resistant bacteria out there (because of incorrect use and overuse of antibiotics) and the person or animal won't have necessarily had to ever have taken an antibiotic to be infected with a resistant strain.

Sorry, I don't mean to rant (antibiotic resistance is a huge issue in my work life). I'm really glad you're asking these questions and it sounds like you're trying to take good care of your baby. There's nothing wrong with trying to treat him yourself at first - we do that around here all the time. Again, good luck.

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