Without a doubt, one of the animals that generates the most passions is the horse. Like anyone who takes care of other animals at home, those who have horses suffer greatly when the animal suffers from a health problem, which in the case of equines are diseases unknown to most people, since unfortunately it is not easy nor cheap to access these animals. For that reason we will tell you in this article what are the most common diseases and ailments in horses.
As with people, equine flu is a virus that attacks the upper respiratory tract, although depending on its aggressiveness it could also attack the lower respiratory tract (the lungs and bronchi).
Its infection is airborne, as in humans, through the mucosa. The symptoms are, as in the flu we all know, a cough, a runny nose or loss of appetite. Fever can also appear and lead to other more severe ailments, such as bronchitis, if it becomes complicated.
It is a set of ailments that affect the horse’s abdomen, causing great pain. There is no single origin of this problem and it is for this reason that the treatments also vary in each case. The equine that suffers from colic, will also suffer sweating, abundant nervousness and lack of control due to pain, as well as problems with feces and even dehydration. The postures you acquire are also a sign of colic, as you may vary them to relieve pain.
Tetanus in horses is caused by a bacterium found in the soil with the scientific name Clostridium tetani. The richer the soil in organic matter, the more likely it is that the disease is present. They slip into the body of horses through the usual scratches or small wounds on the animal’s legs.
The most common symptoms are involuntary and constant muscle contractions, called tetanic. In addition, the horse will suffer from jaw and muscle problems throughout its body, including facial ones, because the bacteria affect the animal’s nervous system. If the horse is correctly vaccinated in a preventive way and the open wounds are healed correctly, the disease can be avoided.
Equine encephalitis is usually caused by mosquito bites and causes brain inflammation. If it occurs in a very aggressive way, it can even cause seizures and paralysis, so we are talking about one of the most dangerous pathologies for horses, and with a worse prognosis for their life expectancy. That is why prevention through vaccination is key.
Babesiosis is caused by the protozoan “Babesia equi”, and transmitted by ticks. It is a very common disease in other domestic mammals such as cows or dogs, and it attacks the horse’s red blood cells causing fever, anemia or weight loss. It is a very harmful disease, so it is advisable to go quickly to a specialized veterinarian in case of detecting similar symptoms or ticks in the horse.
Also like humans, the horse is an animal that can also suffer from this disease. In the case of equines, it is very well detected, since it is easy to observe the inflammation of the animal’s lymph nodes in the same area of the jaw. It is a very contagious disease, so you must act very quickly.
In the event of any symptoms described above, it is important to go to a horse veterinarian as soon as possible to try to stop the effects of the animal’s disease, and may even avoid its death.