Thought 4the day: Sometimes in life you may watch your friend and if your tuned in you will realise that perhaps not all is right. It can be from the slightest thing to the most complicated. Some bare pain and you would never know as their pain thresh hold is immense others can't even cope with the tiniest nick and its like their whole world has ended. Each horse is different as some it takes time to understand and connect with as they can have so many walls up and its like peeling an onion to find those hidden depths. They are worth every second of every day :o) Cherish them :o)
Quote 4the day: Open your ears and your heart and you will hear your friend..
Fact 4the day: Botulism
Botulism is a serious paralytic illness caused by the toxin, botulin. It is normally associated with the ingestion of spoiled food while grazing, and is commonly called forage poisoning or clostridial disease. It takes about four to five days after eating the spoiled forage for symptoms to appear, but once they begin symptoms such as muscle failure or eating, breathing and ...swallowing difficulties are recognizable.
Horses are the most sensitive of the domesticated animals to be affected by botulism, and if left untreated, the disease can be fatal.
Symptoms and Types
The signs for botulism commonly include:
•Food and saliva in the nose
•Head low to the ground
There are seven distinct forms of botulism: designated types A through G. Those associated with horses include:
•Type A: This form has been seen in several horse outbreaks in the northwestern United States (Washington, Idaho, Montana, Oregon)
•Type B: Predominately referred to as forage botulism because of its association with contaminated forage
•Type C: Known as carrion botulism because of the association with the ingestion of feed containing a decomposing carcass (e.g., rodent, cat, dog, bird) or from eating the bones of dead animals
Botulism occurs when a horse eats spoiled forage, or forage which contains the toxin botulin. This toxin is produced by the bacteria Clostridium botulinum and can be found in grass and silage (or livestock feed such as hay) .
Only your veterinarian can diagnose botulism, and it is important for the horse to be seen as early as possible after contamination for any chance of survival. Usually, botulism is confirmed through a number of tests including fecal or stomach content assessments and a complete behavioral history of the horse.
Depending on the extent of the disease, your veterinarian is likely to follow a number of treatment options. Often, nutrients and electrolyte therapy are administered through a tube in the stomach.
In addition, paraffin and charcoal may be used to help absorb the poison and remove any toxins that may still remain in the system.
Living and Management
Very few cases survive botulism, and this is because their respiratory muscles become paralyzed or due to secondary health problems attributed to a weak immune system.
There are few ways to prevent botulism. However, there is a vaccine against the disease that can be sought by interested horse owners.