July 15, 2022 3 min read
Colic is something every horse owner fears, and while there are several different types of colic and how they are caused, gas buildup is a common factor when it comes to any abdominal discomfort in horses.
Colic refers to abdominal pain in the horse, and can be categorized into three different types: gas colic, obstructive lesions, and functional obstructions. Gas colic, the simplest and most common type of colic, occurs when there is a buildup of gas within the intestines of the horse.
Colic symptoms can range from mild to severe depending on the situation and can often cause intense pain and discomfort. Horses experiencing abdominal pain will become restless and begin to paw and/or roll repeatedly, stretch out or stretch downward, and bite or kick at their abdomen. A few other key signs of colic are poor appetite and water consumption, lack of manure production or diarrhea, lethargy, a bloated appearance, frantic rolling, and a lack of regular gut sounds.
When dealing with colic, timing and urgency is key. If you suspect your horse is colicing, you should immediately call your vet. Even if the symptoms seem mild, you’ll want your vet to be aware that they may need to make a trip to see your horse.
In the meantime, take immediate action at home. This is where we can help!T.H.E. Equine Edge has developed a product calledColic Rescue that allows you to act fast when colic occurs. This is a great product to have on hand for emergencies when your horse is experiencing discomfort and a vet is not immediately available.
Colic Rescue is easy to administer (remember, urgency is key). Mix 1 scoop with water in the syringe provided and administer every 20 minutes as needed for up to one hour. If the horse is not better in one hour, then it might not be gas-related colic. If administering a drug, always check with your vet if providing our supplement at the same time. We suggest giving Colic Rescue 2-3 hours apart from any drugs in order for both to be fully absorbed into the body.
Colic Rescue is anall-natural colic treatment that helps dissipate gas within your horse’s GI tract, as well as reduce pain and discomfort. It is a first line of defense for relief by increasing blood flow to the intestine area to help stop the cramping, allowing the horse to relax and making it a less stressful event.This is a very good product to have on hand for emergencies, especially if you might not have a veterinarian available immediately.
Colic can happen for many different reasons, but significant changes or stressful events are a notable factor. Changes in diet (hay or grain), routine or exercise, or even drastic weather changes are all factors that can contribute to colic. Other stressful events, like travel, can lead to colic as well. Long periods between forage or feeding, or the ingestion of sand can also cause colic.
Colic can't always be prevented, but implementing strategic management practices can greatly reduce the likelihood of your horse suffering from colic. Reducing stress is key to preventing colic and can be done in many ways, including daily turnout or exercise and free-feeding or a regular feeding schedule that allows your horse to have access to forage for as much of the day as possible. Also, make sure your horse has access to fresh water at all times, avoid feeding on sand or sandy soil, and establish a parasite control program.