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Choke - Cvm, Or Anyone Else, I Have A Question, Please


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#1 This Is It

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    stupid should hurt

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 10:24 AM

My gelding choked last week, and, before I got there the barn owner and one of the guys there pulled him out of the stall and started treating him. Now, I am grateful that they were willing and able to get to him that fast, cause it was a good 45 minutes before I got there. BUT, they treated him without talking to me, and that I DO NOT LIKE at all. They said, when they saw him in his stall, not 5 min after he choked, that his eyes were rolling back in his head and he couldn't breath, that his airway was blocked, too. Is that even possible??? And, the way they treated him really made me mad. When I was 10 min out, I called to check in and let them know how far out I was and the guy that I talked to calmly told me that he "seemed to be a little better and that they got 4 tubes of warm water down his throat and a tube of mineral oil" I about drove off the side of the road at that point and told him they were not to put ANYTHING down his throat, that he could aspirate on it and get pneumonia. When I got there they handed him off and dissapeared, so I know I made them mad. Oh well... Well, they are still trying to justify their treatment of shooting water and oil down his throat, saying that he couldn't breathe, and that it was only that water that made him relax, and the mucus didn't start coming out of his mouth and nose until about 10 minutes after that. I can't say too much because I don't want to piss them off and get kicked out of the barn, but it really made me mad. I can't believe that none of them can see that the mucus and crud coming out was because of the water they pushed down his throat...

So, my question - IS it possible that his airway was compromised? Or did they just see him in the middle of a seize (neck clenched, trying to dislodge the impaction)??

And, if he were yours, what is the FIRST thing you do for a choke?

My vet was pretty mad when she found out what they did. First that they were playing vet without talking to me first, and second because they could have really caused some damage by A-massaging his throat when they had no clue what they were doing and B by shooting water down his throat when they again had no clue...

Now, the BO claims that she dislodges a 3 day old choke by doing this very thing. But, the horse in question was trying to eat and drink the entire 3 days. He had the gunk coming out of his nose like my gelding, but there was no coughing, stressing, neck clenching, etc.

Thankfully he was able to dislodge it himself before my vet got there, which saved me LOTS of money, but as a precaution, she gave him a good dose of Gentoun, particularly because of the water shot down his throat. She was worried about pneumonia, as was I. I've babied him the last couple of days, watching for signs, and he's a week post choke, so we are out of the woods. Put him back to work yesterday and he did great.

Sarah

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Tell me it can't be done, and I will do it.
Tell me the goal is too high, and I will reach it.
Place an obstacle in front of me, and I will leap over it.
Challenge me, dare me or even defy me.
But do not underestimate me.
For on the back of my American Quarter Horse, anything is possible.

 


#2 cvm2002

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 11:07 AM

Giving anything by mouth until the choke is cleared is a major no-no. A couple of syringe-fulls of water will do nothing (don't even get me started on the fools that shove garden hoses into the mouth.....) to clear the choke and if he aspirated the mineral oil, you've got a REAL problem. Even if there WERE a tracheal obstruction, how in the HECK is dumping WATER down the throat going to make a difference? Guess we need to forget about the Heimlich maneuver from here on out and just take a drink of water when we're choking.....But I digress.....

I personally would not worry about getting kicked out of this barn. If they're going to (inappropriately) treat serious conditions on their own before calling a vet, is that really the place you want to be? Their comment of "the mucus didn't start coming out of his mouth and nose until about 10 minutes after that." is gross evidence of their wrong doing. There wouldn't have been stuff coming out his nose if they hadn't PUT IT THERE! Discharge out of the mouth & nose in a choke situation is because it can't go anywhere else and the horse either clears it that way or dumps the contents into the lungs.

I'll never say never, but I can't say I've ever seen a tracheal obstruction in a horse. Choke is an esophageal problem. As far as what SHOULD be done in the immediate timeframe until a vet gets there, I personally advise owners to get the horse out and moving. Throw the horse in a round pen or on a lungeline and get them trotting to help "jostle" things loose. More often than not, in the time it takes to gather equipment, the horse clears the choke on its own. NOTHING goes by mouth--water or otherwise--until the horse clears it himself or the vet passes a tube.

Dina Wild, DVM
Veterinarian by day...and some nights...and most weekends...and every other holiday.
Wanna-be photographer the rest of the time.

http://www.wildsidearabians.com


#3 This Is It

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    stupid should hurt

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 11:32 AM

Honestly, if there was ANYWHERE else in this area decent enough, I would have left just because of that. I'm hoping that my friend and her BF get their place together soon so I have somewhere else to move my horses. This barn has indoor, outdoor, trails, heated and cooled lounge, pasture and daily turn out. Nowhere else in this area has half of that for the price I pay here... I've had to drill it in their head that under NO circumstance, other than colic (which is a no-brainer) cast or bleeding, are they to treat my horses for ANYTHING unless they call me first. And, if they can't get ahold of me, they are to call my vet and get instructions from her first. She and I have a really great relationship, and she knows both of my horses well.

I didn't think it was possible that he could have his airway compromised as well as his esophagus. If I didn't have a child who loved riding with all of the other kids at this barn, I would have left a LONG time ago. The pure ignorance just astounds me... Just when something happens to make me happy to be there, they turn around and do something to prove that they really are the idiots people around here think they are...

Now, have you EVER had a horse that was choked try to eat and drink WHILE they were choked? If he wasn't truly choked, what do you think it was? He had green mucus coming out of his nose, and they said that every time he ate or drank it came back up through his nose. He's perfectly fine now, healthy and fat. She swears she cleared it by shooting warm water down his throat.

Sarah

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Tell me it can't be done, and I will do it.
Tell me the goal is too high, and I will reach it.
Place an obstacle in front of me, and I will leap over it.
Challenge me, dare me or even defy me.
But do not underestimate me.
For on the back of my American Quarter Horse, anything is possible.

 


#4 cvm2002

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 12:38 PM

Yes, I've seen horses with confirmed, not-gonna-move-with-a-stomach-tube choke that are still interested in eating. They don't get far with it, but the desire can still be there. After 3 days of a choke sitting in the esophagus (which is an awesome way to set up an esophageal stricture and/or rupture) the mass of food or whatever was likely soggy wet from all of the saliva the horse was still producing and attempting to swallow and the bolus just slid down and cleared naturally. THAT is how horses clear choke. Everything gets so soggy, it falls apart and degrades. The water shot down the throat was likely coincidental.

Dina Wild, DVM
Veterinarian by day...and some nights...and most weekends...and every other holiday.
Wanna-be photographer the rest of the time.

http://www.wildsidearabians.com


#5 Skipatardy

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 01:00 PM

:twitch: SO glad your horse is okay but why in the world would ANYONE do such a thing? Maybe call your Vet but to pretend to treat your horse????? WOW - glad it all worked out but that's scary! They should have your permission BEFORE touching your horse!

Edited by Skipatardy, 27 February 2012 - 01:01 PM.


#6 This Is It

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 01:16 PM

My vet had to put down a mare that was choked for 3 days. She said it was like concrete in her throat, and no matter what she did it just didn't want to move. Poor mare was so dehydrated and there was nothing else she could do about it. It was awful.

I told her it was pure luck that he didn't aspirate anything and that she was able to clear it like that. But, because it worked that ONE time (or so she thinks...), she thinks she's an expert on choke... After this incident and a couple of the barn members still hanging around when my vet was there, and happened to hear her gasp when I told her about them putting the water down his throat, they have (thankfully) come to me and ask what the proper procedure is for choke. I explained what happens in a horse when they are choked and why nothing should go down the throat. At least they got educated, so one good thing came out of it.

I still think the old guy saw him mid-seize and took that to mean he couldn't breath. Scary, but normal. Course, he's the one that started squeezing and massaging his throat, too, which again is a no-no unless you know what your doing.

This is the second time he's choked on the same thing. He's an absolute PIG when it comes to grain, beet pulp, oats, or anything in his bucket. So, I started him on Equipride and he's getting about a bale of hay a day. He doesn't need anything else, and he's a good weight right now. If he looks like he's dropping weight then I'll have to figure out something to add to his feed regiment. As of right now no one else will feed him anything in his bucket except his little baggie of stuff which includes a handful of oats, a half cup of flax seed, minerals, salt and equipride.

Sarah

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Tell me it can't be done, and I will do it.
Tell me the goal is too high, and I will reach it.
Place an obstacle in front of me, and I will leap over it.
Challenge me, dare me or even defy me.
But do not underestimate me.
For on the back of my American Quarter Horse, anything is possible.

 


#7 Floridacracker

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 02:44 PM

Hi, If you have given specific instructions for emergency situations and this has not been followed, Can you really rely on their judgement for any emergency? Can you put your vets name & number on your STALL DOOR and tell them to call her first. Let them speak with your vet first, and the vet can evaluate the situation.She can also get them started in the right direction.

I'am sure your vet will tell them to call you if there is a need. If they can't follow these simple directions, you have a real problem with communication at that barn.That's scary when it comes to horse care.

This horse has choked twice, have you tried to soak the feed? This would at least moisten it if he starts to choke. Make sure his teeth are good, if he isn't chewing right, he can also be prone to choke.

#8 This Is It

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 03:19 PM

He's on a regular schedule for floatation with a certified equine dentist. She comes every April. He's bolting his feed. I have put instructions on his door to put plenty of water over his feed (after the 1st time), but there are about 6 different people that feed and every one of them does it different. This last time one of the kids fed him and did put water over his food, but not near enough and he was able to bolt half of it down dry before he got to the water.

After this situation, I'm hoping its upset them enough that they will not treat him without my permission. They should know better than that. I don't want ANYONE playing vet with my horses, and if I make a decision for one of them, there is a reason behind it. I'll probably have to spell it out plainly, and I'm sure that will upset them again. But, if they want my business, they will deal with it. If not, oh well, I guess I'll start looking for another barn...

Sarah

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Tell me it can't be done, and I will do it.
Tell me the goal is too high, and I will reach it.
Place an obstacle in front of me, and I will leap over it.
Challenge me, dare me or even defy me.
But do not underestimate me.
For on the back of my American Quarter Horse, anything is possible.