Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Near Miss

The last few days has seemed to just fly by... I mean, after she show, I took a day off from horses. I raked the front yard, and spread leaves around the fence line. Exciting, i know... But after 40 bags, I was about done with that.
Then on to Monday...
I rode. Great. RC got some really adorable changes, and London was even willing to put effort into it. It was a good and productive morning. I came home, dropped off the dogs, ate lunch, then headed back out with the trailer to get Opie and RC for the Katy Cowgirls practice... Practice went well, yadda yadda yadda. The evening ended early and I though that we would be done in record time, before 10p, but it was not to be. Nearly as soon as we served dinner to everyone, London started acting weird. He was making a coughing/retching sound and hunching his back so that every line of his body radiated discomfort. His breathing was making a very wet sound, like liquid was rushing through tubes... Never good. But he wasn't kicking at his belly... yet. It was not normal at all, so I walked him around for a minute before I had Waller Equine on the phone, and London in the trailer for an emergency visit. We made it to the vet in 20 minutes, so we actually beat the vet there. I unloaded London, then put him in the stocks in the exam room. The tech took his temperature, cap refill time, breathing rate, heart rate, etc as we waited for the vet. As the tech was taking readings, London started retching violently and shuddering. Until then, i hadn't been concerned for the worst, but as his stance got more and more painful my mind as suddenly racing to What if's and worst case scenarios. Was it colic? Did he twist something when rolling after a dip in the pond? Would it be worth the risk to surgery to save him? Would the cost be justifiable to operate on a 17 year old horse? Was I going to cry in front of witnesses?
As my mind was racing, London started couching out mucus and dissolved Sr chow. There was probably a quart of discharge, which fortunately didn't come out of his nose (nose leads to lungs and water in lungs=bad). After that massive discharge i could see him relax, and his eyes became less glazed. He started looking around and was standing more normally... In the end, he resolved the choke himself before the vet even arrived. We still flushed his esophagus and pumped his stomach, just in case and now he's on a course of banamine and antibiotics to keep the inflammation down and suppress any secondary infections such as pneumonia.

And today he was happy as a clam, eating his mush (no solid food for a week) and pouting about his lack of hay. All's well that ends well, right?

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