The Horse Forum banner

1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,020 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
The boys were inside all day and when I went out to feed them I noticed that TC's sheath was swollen. So low and behold it is also warm to the touch.

I put in a call to the vet but she's out on an emergency right now so I won't be able to talk to her for a bit.

It's not too painful as far as I can tell. When I touch it he twitches that area a bit like he would to get rid of a fly but that's about it.

I can't find any insect bites, stings, etc on it anywhere. And he is peeing normal, drops halfway with a nice easy stream no spray. He just had his sheath cleaned in November and he's usually a once a year thorough summertime maintenance kind of horse when it comes to his sheath.

He had his Spring shots last Wednesday and that night he had a reaction to the shots where the muscles he got the shots in were sore and he didn't want to walk so I took him to the vet. A few days of bute and muscle massage and everything is back to normal now.

I gave him 2 grams of bute tonight, is there anything else I can do for the poor boy while waiting for the vet's call? Cold hose, cold compress, warm compress, anything?
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,812 Posts
I don't want to freak you out. But a friend lost her horse 6 months ago to Pigeon Fever and it started out looking just like that.

I'd get the vet out as soon as possible. After seeing how fast that horse died, I don't screw around with swollen sheaths.

Of course I've also had the same exact look from a hornet sting on geldings. I'm just paranoid now.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,020 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Oh my god!

Okay, so I know you didn't mean to but I'm most definitely freaked out now!

I'm hoping it's just like a spider bite or something because it warmed up for a bit and I did see some spiders running around.

He's acting completely normal other than the swelling.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
264 Posts
On the other side of that, my geldings sheath swelled a little the day after I thoroughly cleaned it out, but after two days it went back to normal and he's still doing perfectly. I never really knew why it did that. It did not swell as much as your boy's though. Sorry I'm not more much help than that
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,020 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Definitely get the vet out.

And um, that isn't what a stallion looks like either :)

She hasn't called back yet and I just checked him again and he's okay so I think I'm just going to call first thing in the morning.

Haha I'm well aware, just thought it was worth a little giggle. The angle I noticed it at made it look like he had some manly bits going on and I was like "I KNOW for a fact you are a gelding!" which is what led me to investigate.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,358 Posts
Yeah get the vet out if it's not a whole lot better by morning. If it is something minor it should go away within a day.

Does he have a fever? Pigeon fever comes with a fever, lethargy and unwillingness to eat in most cases. It's also generally carried by flies and it's not fly season yet. Not that it can't be Pigeon fever, but it may just as easily be some kind of infection or a bite of some kind.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,020 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Yeah get the vet out if it's not a whole lot better by morning. If it is something minor it should go away within a day.

Does he have a fever? Pigeon fever comes with a fever, lethargy and unwillingness to eat in most cases. It's also generally carried by flies and it's not fly season yet. Not that it can't be Pigeon fever, but it may just as easily be some kind of infection or a bite of some kind.
Nope, he doesn't have a fever. I forgot to mention in the first post that all vitals are normal; temp, gut sounds, cap refill, breathing, skin pinch, etc. He DOVE into his grain with his usual gusto and showed the same enthusiasm for his hay. He was acting completely normal other than the swelling.

I was looking on the internet and it mentioned stocking up can cause it but it's usually accompanied by their legs stocking up as well and they're not.

I gave him 2 grams of bute and I'm hoping it's down a bit by morning. I would be more concerned if he wasn't urinating but that's not the case. Oh and he can still drop and retract to pee. I'm hoping it's just a bug bite or allergic reaction. A few years ago he reacted to some fly bites in PA where he got hives but that's the only allergic reaction I've ever known him to have. But with all of this warming up the bugs have been coming out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,020 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Okay, so the swelling didn't go down by this morning but it didn't get worse either. I called the vet and was able to get her out early this afternoon. She didn't seem very concerned because everything was normal and he even peed in the stall after she was done examining him and everything went normally.

She thinks it may be due to either the fact that he has been in regular work the last few weeks and turned out 24/7 and then I locked him in the stall for 24 hours or he got bit by some type of bug that reacted badly to him but she said she would expect more irritation if that was the case. And she checked for a bean and found nothing. A little peeling smegma right on the inside of his sheath and on the outside of his penis but nothing that would cause swelling. So she said to just go ahead and give him a good cleaning as long as he's okay with me doing it.

He's on 1 gram of bute morning and night for three days, cold hosing twice a day and to be lunged at least twice a day or ridden once a day to keep him moving to see if we can make the swelling go down. She said that if I don't start seeing a decrease in swelling by Thursday morning to call her because she'll be in my area and can stop by to see him again. And if it worsens to call her as soon as possible. Her assistant said they've been seeing a lot of this lately and it's the same symptoms. They can't help but wonder if it's the weather because it went up to nearly 80 degrees and then dropped back down to the 30s/40s within a few days.

As bad as it looks I'm really surprised it doesn't bother him. And he's not a stoic horse he's one that if something hurts he let's you know in an exaggerated way. Like acting like his leg is broken (held up and dangling) and terrifying me when all he's got is a stone bruise.

I'll post if anything changes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,927 Posts
Many years ago I had this same problem. The horse was overweight, and the vet just advised taking some weight off. It did go away in a few weeks with no other treatment or recurrence.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
I had a horse do that a few months ago, after being kept in for a whole day when he was used to 24/7 freedom. His swelling went down in a few days and he was good to go.

Hope your boy is the same and it's not serious!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,020 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Just an update to anyone interested.

He's been getting a gram of bute in the morning and evening as well as being lunged last night, 24 hour turnout, and ridden today. I am happy to report that the swelling has decreased significantly! It still needs to go down a little bit more but I'm pretty happy.

Here's an up to date picture. On the left is from Monday evening and on the right is from this evening.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
14,153 Posts
Often a sheath will swell up from inactivity as you have found out. High protein foods add to the problem as well. Get them out, get them moving and the swelling usually goes down quickly.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Phantomcolt18

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,020 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
I was always looking for stocked legs, never a stocked sheath haha. The only other time his sheath swelled was when we went to an area heavily infested with greenheads and they all bit the heck out of him before I could get the fly spray. He got so many hives and his sheath swelled that day poor boy. Luckily where we were staying the closest vet was literally 5 minutes up the road.

He had a good lunging session today as I didn't have the time to ride. Also, they've been turned out as much as possible with hay dropped in multiple piles around the fields to promote movement. Swelling only seems just barely there now. I'm just glad it wasn't anything serious.
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top