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Doctor.A, Veterinarian
Category: Horse Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 311
Experience:  I am licensed to practice Veterinary Medicine in multiple states, as well as Board Certified In Equine Surgery.
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Foamy discharge from mouth and nostrils, which, after

Customer Question

Foamy discharge from mouth and nostrils, which, after investigating seems to be "equine esophagal choke". Fits perfectly since "Jake" about 30 years old, got out and ate some dried grass. His teeth have been floated to the point they cannot be floated again. So, I am pretty sure he's choked on that dried grass he ate last evening after getting out a grazing on our natural desert here in Catalina, AZ. Did not eat this morning, head is down.
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. The Veterinarian will know if the horse will be able to digest that. What is the horse's name?
Customer: "Jake
JA: Huh?
Customer: "Jake" a paso fino breed. We do have a local vet that is already coming out tomorrow for a check up
JA: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about the horse?
Customer: I am treating a habronema, which currently is healing nicely after a week.
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Veterinarian about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Horse Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Loretta replied 1 year ago.

Good Morning and welcome! I am Dr. Loretta, a licensed veterinarian and I am happy to answer your question.

You are correct...this does sound like a "choke" and the treatment for this is a dose of an anesthesia to keep Jake's head down . This way , the fluids produced in the esophagus will saturate the bolus of hay that is stuck. This can take awhile so contacting your vet if Jake will not keep his head down is important because this is a critical to dissolving this mass. Some may attempt to pass a stomach tube but in my experience, this can cause serious damage to the esophageal wall and this you will want to avoid.

Give this time to resolve itself. If it does not, then further treatments such as IV fluids and possible addiction of mineral oil via stomach tube only to where the mass is blocking the esophagus sometimes can add the lubrication so the mass will resolve.

In serious cases, these have been removed surgically but at Jake's age, this is risky.

Does that make sense to you?

Please let me know if you have ANY other questions. My goal is to give you 100% satisfaction and if you are not yet satisfied, please REPLY so I can clarify for you.

Sincerely, ***** *****

Expert:  Doctor.A replied 1 year ago.

The above are NOT the current standard of care recommendation for a horse with Choke.

Administration of mineral oil to a horse with choke can be fatal if aspirated (breathed in) which happens Often during an esophageal choke.

No matter how many times you have done it successfully, it is still dangerous and ill advised. DO NOT follow these recommendations.

If your horse is still choked, you need to have your veterinarian come out before tomorrow in order to correct it. The idea of keeping their head down is ok, but the administration of sedation by an owner without experience is also dangerous, and should also not be recommended unless it is under the supervision of a you need your vet out first in order to teach you how to do it. They will give more than just sedation (muscle relaxants for example) to help the stuck bolus pass safely. Tubing is part of it, and when done correctly, significantly safer than waiting, or giving something that will kill your horse.

The prior set of instructions are a shocking round of recommendations.