Common Horse Health Problems & Prevention

Everyone in the equestrian world will expirience horse health problems sometime in their riding career. Continue reading to find out what some of these issues are and and tips on how to prevent and treat them so your horse can live a long & healthy life.



Grooming your horse on a daily basis is one of the best ways to check your horse for any problems. While you go about your grooming routine, check all over your horses body. You could come across a sore spot, cuts and scrapes, ticks/other insects, etc.  



Colic is actually not just one, but several different digestive problems. Colic can be caused by improper food, foreign objects or other factors. Some signs of colic are inappetence, constipation, signs of pain, teeth clenching, salvation, stretching legs out from the body, and frequent rolling. When you first notice a sign of colic, you must act fast and contact your equine vet as all forms can be fatal. 


Tip- Tidy Up

Ensure that your horses stall is clean and free of anything that could harm him/her. Horses should have access to clean water 24/7. Clean out water buckets often and keep your horse well hydrated. Make sure buckets are always filled and never empty. Stalls are exactly like your room; you wouldn’t want it to be filthy and unsafe! Your horses stall should be cleaned out daily and every few days strip out old bedding and replace it with clean bedding. Check your horses stall of any nails or insect nests. In the summer, stock up on high quality fly spray and use daily. Also consider investing a fly mask or fly sheet. 



Laminitis is an inflammation of certain internal structures of the hoof. This is very painful for horses as they may lay down to relieve the pain. The hoof may feel hot to the touch and the horse may be limping. Another way to tell if a horse is lame is to look at the way they are standing. They may be leaning backwards. There are numerous causes to laminitis. Some being stress, eating too much grain, working a horse on very hard ground (asphalt), reactions to drugs, and more. If laminitis goes untreated, it may result with the horse becoming lame for life. 



An abccess is an infectious pocket within a bodily cavity-in this case, within a hoof. An abccess can occur if a horse steps on a sharp object, such as a nail or sharp stone which penetrates the hoof. This is a very painful thing for your horse so he/she may hold up their leg and not put any weight on that foot due to the pain. Your vet will have to open and drain the abccess. Be sure that you follow up with medication, poultices, soaking or anything other way of healing. 



Your horse spends a lot of time outdoors, therefore, he/she is exposed to insects. There is a large range of insects or parasites that can affect your horses health such as ticks, lice, ringworm, tapeworm, roundworm and lungworm. Most of these internal worms can be controlled by deworming your horse on schedule. As for the external worms, you may have to pick out yourself or use a medicated shampoo or salve to remove these parasites. 



If your horse is in a pasture with tall grass or plants, then he/she may be more likely to pick up ticks. Check for ticks during your grooming routine. One of the places your will most likely find ticks are al through the mane and in the tail, especially at the base and end of the tail bone. You can purchase tick medication drops, where you just put a drop of medication where it says on the instructions. Use lots of fly spray in the summer and warmer months to keep these pests from harming your horse. 


Thank you for reading!


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