Sand can be cause symptoms of colic
Sand colic is a form of digestive disturbance that results from chronic accumulation of dirt and sand in the horse’s intestines and this condition can affect any horse that inhabits loose, sandy-soiled areas.
Horses can pick up sand easily as they feed from the ground or feed on short grass found in pastures. The granules of dirt and sand can settle at the bottom of the horse’s intestines – the colon specifically, where these particles can irritate the lining of the intestines.
Mild form of sand colic is often accompanied by diarrhea and this form is usually transient. But if enough sand continues to accumulate inside the intestines, the condition may become severe and cause further discomfort, or worse – the intestines can get displaced or twisted and eventually rupture.
The Mason jar test, also fecal floatation test, is one method used to determine just how much sand your horse has ingested. The test involves taking six samples of fresh fecal balls, preferably on the middle part of the fecal pile to make sure you get uncontaminated sample. Place the sample in one quart of water and stir the contents carefully. Let the concoction stand for 15 minutes, and then check if you can see sand particles settling at the bottom of the container.
How to check if your horse is in danger of too much sand?
If you check that the sand collected at the bottom of the jar amounts to more than one teaspoon, your horse could be ingesting a dangerous amount of sand. However, observing no sand particles during the test does not guarantee your horse is colic-free either. It could be that the sand has settled and is just sitting in his gut. If you see mild symptoms of colic in horses, consult your veterinarian regardless of what you see or don’t see at the bottom of the container.
Removing sand particles from the intestines may be difficult but laxatives usually work. However, prevention is way better; avoid feeding your horse with hay directly on the ground or use mats if you need to feed on the ground. Manage your pastures properly to make sure they are not overgrazed.
Colic problems in your horse can be caused by various factors including sand and equine parasites. For trouble with internal parasites in your horse, act now and target the worms using the affordable and effective equine dewormers from Abler. Order from Abler now!