A Tribute to Bailey
...by Amy S
In April 2016, I was prepared for my horse Bailey to have an expensive, but I felt necessary, surgery at WSU. Luckily when I got there, Drs. Ragle and Souza were able to avoid the surgery and fix his ailment!
Bailey had colicked three times in about a year. The first two resulted in a nephrasplenic displacement. Fortunately both those episodes were fixed with drugs and surgery wasn't necessary. The third colic resolved itself quickly with nothing more than Banamene; however, the worry for a displacement and all the complications it presented, was very stressful. I decided that if Bailey was going to have issues with colic, I should do something to lessen the danger. I hauled him across the state to the vet school at WSU Pullman for a nephrasplenic ablation.
The first thing Dr. Ragle did after hearing that diarrhea had preceded each colic was listen for sand. It turned out there was ALOT of sand in there, a fact confirmed by X-ray. After this, Dr. Ragle recommended we change our plan. We decided to hold off on the surgery and deal with the sand since it seemed the likely culprit causing the colic. Daily for 7 days Bailey received a nasogastric tube with mineral oil and then a pound of Metamucil. I am happy to say this less invasive and less dangerous strategy worked brilliantly. The sand was cleared out. I was able to bring Bailey home one week after arriving at WSU with no restrictions on diet, behavior or turnout. Bailey had a safe journey home and has remained happy and healthy since.
I am so glad I got to work with the staff at WSU. I am thrilled they were up to date on strategies to treat sand - they saved us from an expensive and difficult surgery that wouldn't even have solved the real problem. Even better, everyone involved was attentive, responsive, and extremely kind to both me and Bailey. An event I had been dreading actually turned out to be a very positive experience.