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Dr. Taus
Dr. Taus, Veterinarian
Category: Veterinary
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Experience:  Veterinarian with experience in equine and small animal medicine.
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We have 2 minature stallions, appx 8 & 9 years old. The older

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We have 2 minature stallions, appx 8 & 9 years old. The older was dominate until maybe 5-6 months ago when we discovered the older was being moved away from his food and had lost weight to the point of looking very unhealthy. We began separating them for feeding and began giving the older one supplements to help him gain weight. It seemed to be working until today. The older one is refusing to remain standing. He rolls onto his side and sometimes all the way onto his back then back to his side or sometimes all the way over to the other side. He appears to have plenty of strength. We keep a roll of fresh hay available to both horses all the time. The younger is unchanged except a little overweight from the excess sweet feed he stole from the older. The older also rolls back his lips and bears his teeth when he is coaxed to get up. Any ideas?
Hi there,

It sounds as if your older horse is colicking. Getting a vet out to see him right away is of utmost importance. Colic means abdominal pain, and it can be due to impaction of the GI tract, twists in the GI tract, or other problems. If not treated, it can become life threatening.

Your vet should come out, do an exam and administer pain medication, and pass a tube to empty his stomach. Horses cannot vomit, and if there is food backing up in his stomach, it can cause rupture of the stomach and death. The vet may also give mineral oil or medications to treat the colic via the tube; it is not possible to give enough oil to make a difference without a tube.

Once the colic episode is under control and the horse is comfortable, you can address the longer-term weight loss (parasites and bad teeth are common culprits). But for now, keep him up and moving until the vet arrives so that he doesn't hurt himself.

If you have Banamine on hand, you can give 5mL in the muscle now. But be sure to tell the vet you gave it.

I hope this is helpful. If so, please rate me positively, and don't hesitate to let me know how I can help further.
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