What is your diagnosis?

Equine Choke Image

So does this horse have a really bad cold and need antibiotics? If you saw this, would you go rummage through your equine med kit and look for the leftover pills from last spring? 

Wait! Maybe its not an infection at all. After all , it came on suddenly, after the horse ate its breakfast. 

The greenish color is the clue. You could also sniff it (Eww)-- does it smell like hay or something nastier, like a sinus infection. 

This horse is actually suffering from choke. This happens when the horse bolts its food down too quickly, and well, chokes. The foam that will come out of the nose will be colored the same as the foodstuff that they were eating. Despite the fact that the horse will likely look VERY unhappy about this situation, it isn't life threatening since the choke happens in the esophagus, not the trachea (windpipe).

So should you call the vet? That depends. If the choke doesn't resolve within a half-hour to 45 minutes, the horse will need veterinary intervention.  

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Aloha, 
Dr. Clabaugh