This Week in Horse Health News Presented by Absorbine

Do you know which vaccines are right for your horse? Photo by Kim Honan Do you know which vaccines are right for your horse? Photo by Kim Honan

These days, hearing about the number of different equine-related disease outbreaks that are happening in the world can be just a little scary. There are just so many — Encephalitis, West Nile, Potomac Horse Fever, Equine Herpesvirus, Influenza. I could keep going, because the list just seem to go on and on (and on). Really.

I start to get a little confused when I’m reading up on health news, and I see a number of acronyms assigned to equine diseases as well. While the use of acronyms makes the diseases sound (slightly) less menacing in my mind, it is just a little difficult to sort them all in my mind, and recognize just what each it.

Since spring is approaching (finally!), that means that vaccination season is coming up as well. I find that navigating the murky waters of vaccinating my horses is made much easier with the advice of my vet. While I try to be aware of equine health concerns that are relevant to the area that I live, I depend on my vet to advise on which vaccines are appropriate each of my horses.

So what vaccinations are right for your horse? Head over to Practical Horseman to check out their article that discusses selecting vaccinations based on weighing side effects versus the risk of disease to your horse. You can check it out here.

And then check out some of the other headlines from this week in Horse Health News, Presented by Absorbine:

Surprise Findings Related to Cresty Necks: A recent study conducted by British researchers has discovered that crest in a horse’s neck tends to be bigger at the end of the winter season compared to the size of it at the end of the summer season. Cresty necks have been associated with metabolic disorders. [Horsetalk]

Exercising Arrhythmias in Sport Horses: Superstar equine athletes that take part at the highest levels of competition are a picture of fitness. Though they have been conditioned for success, these athletes can face their own set of problems — and one big concern is the possibility of a sudden cardiac episode caused by arrhythmias. [The Horse]

Common Antibiotics Trigger Changes in Gut Bacteria: Even just a short course of antibiotics can drastically alter the makeup of the bacteria in your horse’s gut. The most notable difference in the bacteria levels of the equine intestinal tract are after the 5th day of being administered antibiotics. It takes approximately 25 days for the levels to return to a normal state. [Horsetalk]

Nutrition & Equine Dental Care: Buying your horse high quality feed can be great — however, if they have unable to eat and digest the feed, you horse does not receive the benefit of said feed. While not something that seems obvious, your horse’s nutrition is strongly tied to their dental health and care, because what they eat depends on what they are actually able to eat. [The Horse]

First Ever CT Scanner for Horses: The first ever CT Scanner that has been designed for horses has been created by Epica Medical Innovations, an American company. It was designed to be a mobile machine that can be moved around a veterinary practice, and it will provide definite advances in the diagnostic, interventional, and intraoperative imaging for horses. [Horsetalk]