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Fractures in Horses: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

After Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro underwent surgical repair of a severe fracture many equine veterinarians were hearing the same statement “I didn’t think you could fix a broken leg in a horse”. The truth is some you can and some you cannot.

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Control of Estrus In Mares

Veterinarians are frequently called upon to help horse owners control the estrus behavior (“heat”) in mares used as performance horses or as show animals. When some mares come in heat, the hormonal and behavioral shifts that takes place distracts from their ability to perform their sport. Before deciding to manipulate your mare’s hormones, you should consult with your veterinarian. Sometimes a mare’s history can be suggestive of a hormonal problem. For example, a mare with a Granulosa thecal cell tumor of one of her ovaries often displays stallion like behavior.

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Enteroliths: A Rock and a Hard Place

Enteroliths are one of the leading causes of severe colic in the state of California. The word enterolith is derived from the Greek terms “entero” meaning intestinal and “lith” meaning stone (Figure 1). The high incidence of enterolith formation in California is presumably due to the mineral content of our hay and water. Commonly referred to as stones, enteroliths are composed of struvite crystals which coalesce around some central object like a pebble or a small piece of wire ingested by the horse.

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Colic in Horses: What You Should Know

The word “colic” comes from the Greeks and means “abdominal pain”. Horses are notorious for colic and are predisposed to it when compared to other species. Signs of colic include but are not limited to: being “off feed”, depressed, looking/biting at the flanks, stretching as if to urinate, kicking at the abdomen, and rolling in pain. There are many factors that predispose horses to colic.

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