Monday, September 2, 2019

High Desert Veterinary Service Fall 2019 News and Notes

High Desert Veterinary Service 

Chrysann Collatos VMD, PhD, DACVIM LA
775-969-3495 (Office)           742-2823 (Cell)
Building Healthy Partners
Fall 2019 News & Notes:
Ø Clinic Schedule
Ø Frustrating Summer Sores
Ø Beware of Harmful Dentistry

Late summer greetings to you,
     Once it got here, we enjoyed a gorgeous  summer with our horses this year.  Cold weather is ahead, and there are IMPORTANT steps to take in preparation for your horse’s transition to winter. Your Fall Clinic appointment is the perfect opportunity to ensure you are up to date with your horses’s preventive health care.  See you in September!
Dr. Chrysann

Fall Clinic Schedule
Routine Fall exam includes flu/rhino vaccination, deworming or fecal examination, annual dentistry consult, and sheath cleaning.  Also consider Microchipping!
To reserve an appointment, call 775 969 3495 with:
  • Your Name, Phone # and Clinic Date
  • Number of Animals, and Services wanted
Your call won’t be returned until three days before your clinic when we will give an estimated time of arrival at your address.  Please be sure horses are caught and haltered 30 minutes beforehand!
Location                                                    Date
Rancho Haven/Sierra Ranchos1       Fri Sept 6
Rancho Haven/Sierra Ranchos2       Sat Sept 14
Red Rock North/Silver Knolls 1         Fri Sept 6
Red Rock North/Silver Knolls 2         Sat Sept 14
Span Springs/Palomino Valley 1        Fri Sept 13
Span Springs/Palomino Valley 2        Sat Sept 21
Antelope/Golden/Lemmon Valley 1   Sat Sept 7
Antelope/Golden/Lemmon Valley 2   Fri Sept 20  
South & West Reno 1                        Fri Sept 20
South & West Reno                            Sat Sept 7
Discounted prices ONLY AVAILABLE Clinic Day
Farm Call (per location)              $14.00
Wellness Exam (mandatory)     $17.00
West Nile                                        $33.00
FluRhino                                          $30.00
Strangles Intranasal                     $34.00
Rabies                                              $23.00
Tetanus/ Encephalitis                 $19.00
Ivermectin Deworm                    $16.00
Coggins Test                                 $32.00
Sheath Clean w/sedation           $45.00
Fecal parasite exam                    $19.00
Pre-registered microchip            $39.00

Summer Sores

What are they?

Your horse’s eyes are red, swollen and itchy, or there is an odd sore at the corner of her mouth, or a wound on her pastern that is getting larger and lumpier….all common presentations of Habronemiasis, or Summer Sore. If left untreated, this common problem can become an extremely challenging condition to resolve.

Summer sores are caused by stomach worm larvae deposited in wounds by stable or house flies.  Larvae licked up and swallowed by horses complete their life cycle in the intestinal tract (where they do little harm), but when stranded in broken skin they cannot mature and cause severe, chronic inflammation.  The result is a non-healing, expanding wound.

Treatment involves immune-suppressive medication (steroids), destruction of larvae (dewormer) and surgical removal of the larvae, proud flesh and granular inflammatory deposits from the lesion.  I surgically excised the summer sore from this horse’s lip, sutured the wound closed, and applied Alu-shield spray to the wound and SWAT around the area.  The horse also received a carefully calculated dose of steroid, short-term antibiotics, and Ivermectin deworming.

Unfortunately, summer sores often are not recognized as something other than an uncomplicated wound until the disease process is quite advanced.  At this point successful treatment can take weeks, incur high veterinary costs, and require intensive wound management.

Habronemiasis has become a common problem in our area, and is often seasonally recurrent.  Preventive measures include frequent deworming, fly masks, and aggressive fly control.
Beware of Harmful Dentistry
I took this picture several weeks after this horse underwent aggressive motorized dentistry. This is NOT how your horse’s teeth should look after dentistry. Notice how the edges of the teeth are curved, the biting surface is smooth, and the front of the first premolar has been removed. In the short term, this procedure causes thermal damage and impairs the teeth’s ability to break down fiber, reducing the intestinal digestive enzymes nutrient processing.  And long term, it removes surface enamel from the tooth that CAN NEVER BE RESTORED.  Year after year of this procedure will reduce the life of your horses’ teeth, but the damage may not be show until it is too late to change the outcome.
            This is what your horse’s teeth should look like after correct dentistry, whether performed with hand tools or motorized tools.  Our understanding of equine oral health has come so far in the past decade, there is NO EXCUSE for “over-floating”.
       Annual dentistry is a vital part of LONG TERM health care. Don’t let your horse’s condition in later years be compromised by poor management today.  Foot care, nutrition, deworming, and DENTISTRY are the 4 corners of your horse’s longevity.  Ask me any questions at your fall clinic appointment.  An important part of my role in your horse’s life is to answer your questions and keep you informed.
Call today to schedule your  
Fall Clinic appointment!

Building Healthy Partners

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Dr. Chrysann's Spring Clinics 2019 - Call Today to Schedule!

High Desert Veterinary Service

Chrysann Collatos VMD,PhD,DipACVIMLA
                                                                                775-969-3495 (Office)       742-2823 (Cell)
Building Healthy Partners

Spring 2018 News & Notes:
Ø Clinic Schedule – Sign up!
Ø Impaction Colic:Winter Hazard
Ø Client Communication:My Role
Hello All –
Are you loving February this year? The weather has been a real challenge for horses and owners.  From freezing cold to weird warm storms, heavy snow, windy rain, ice to floods all increase risks of colic, foot abscesses, traumatic injuries, and loss of condition. 
              Your Spring Clinic appointment is a great opportunity to bring your concerns to my attention and have an important end-of-winter exam performed on your horses.  Schedule today!  
Dr. Chrysann
Spring Clinic Schedule
Routine Spring exams include vaccination,  deworming or fecal examination, dentistry consult, and sheath cleaning. 
To schedule, call 775 969 3495 with:
  • Your Name, Phone # and Clinic Date
  • Number of Animals, and Services
We will return your call three days before your clinic with an estimated time of arrival.
 Have horses caught 30 minutes beforehand!
Location                                                    Date
Rancho Haven/Sierra Ranchos1          Sat Mar 2 
Rancho Haven/Sierra Ranchos2          Fri Mar 23
Red Rock North/Silver Knolls 1            Sun Mar 3
Red Rock North/Silver Knolls 2            Fri Mar 22
Span Springs/Palomino Valley 1          Sat Mar 9
Span Springs/Palomino Valley 2          Fri Mar 15
Antelope/Golden/Lemmon Valley 1   Fri Mar8
Antelope/Golden/Lemmon Valley 2   Sun Mar 17   
South and West Reno                             Fri Mar 1 
South & West Reno                                Sat Mar 16
Discounted prices ONLY AVAILABLE Clinic Day
Farm Call (per location)             $10.00
Wellness Exam (mandatory)     $16.00
West Nile                                        $33.00
FluRhino                                          $30.00
Strangles Intranasal                     $34.00
Rabies                                              $23.00
Tetanus/ Encephalitis                 $19.00
Ivermectin Deworm                    $16.00
Coggins Test                                 $29.00
Sheath Clean w/sedation           $45.00
Fecal parasite exam                    $19.00
Pre-registered microchip            $39.00

Client Communication: My Role
We all have strong emotional ties to our horses.  At the same time, we know that the cost of veterinary care can be a limiting factor in our decisions for our equine partners.  When our horses are sick or injured their welfare is our priority but worry about associated costs also is a painful reality.

My job as your veterinarian is to communicate with you using compassionate yet straightforward language.  By clearly explaining your horse’s problem, the treatment options and their costs, and the prognosis for recovery, I should help you balance your emotional response, and equip you to make informed decisions that are in your horse's best interest while also financially responsible.  

Let’s consider Flash and Mary. Flash lives in a show barn. Mary is a very involved, experienced owner who juggles a heavy schedule, and often is unavailable for my visits with Flash.  She values a complete and prompt report from me to keep her on top of developments and allow her to make appropriate decisions for Flash’s welfare.  I appreciate these qualities because they reflect her concern for her horse and allow us to have an open, productive relationship.

Fulfilling Mary’s expectations was simple after suturing a facial laceration Flash sustained last year.  I left clear, written instructions with Flash’s trainer followed by a phone call to Mary as I departed the barn, assuring her that Flash should recover uneventfully. More recently, Flash developed a lameness that is proving difficult to diagnose.  Now client communication is a critical part of my obligation to Mary. 

After my initial exam I explained the possible causes of Flash's lameness to Mary without overwhelming or confusing her, and then focused on laying out a specific, structured plan explaining how I would use diagnostic nerve blocks and imaging to narrow down these possibilities.  This included a time line, and it addressed Flash's care during that time.  I told Mary that should the diagnosis not become clear once this plan was completed, then we should consider a referral setting where more advanced diagnostics such as MRI, and a board-certified lameness expert, would take the evaluation to the next level.  We reviewed the cost of my work-up, and the costs associated with referral and advanced diagnostics, and discussed the risk-benefit of early referral vs following an initial diagnostic plan at home.

At this point, I asked Mary if she had any questions, and how she wanted to proceed. Mary expressed her confidence that her horse was safe and that with our well-defined time line she was comfortable moving forward with the diagnostic plan at home.  Currently we still have no specific diagnosis for Flash.  I am consulting with a colleague who is an American College of Veterinary Surgery diplomate while Mary continues to balance the value of more advanced diagnostics against the cost, and Flash patiently waits as Mary and I navigate the course of his care together.

Impaction Colic: Winter Hazard
Spring may be around the corner, but right now late winter is slamming us hard, and impaction colic is a real concern.  Impactions are abnormal buildups of food that block transit through the intestinal tract.  The most common location is the large colon, which is 12-15 feet in length and holds 12-16 gallons. The colon varies in size and folds on itself several times.  The pelvic flexure is a sharp turn where the left ventral colon diameter shrinks from 8” to 3”, making it a common site of impaction.

The colon is a large fermentation vat where food material is processed by bacteria and protozoa.  It has a complex electrical system that operates its mixing and moving functions, and state-of-the-art plumbing. The intricacy of the horse’s healthy colon function is amazing, but its complexity also makes it one of the horse’s weakest links.

What can we do to promote a healthy colon? The balance of water and fiber in the colon are the primary determinants of colonic health.
First and foremost, feed a diet consisting of at least 75% high quality hay.  An average #1000-pound horse should eat 15-20 pounds of hay daily. High fiber diets increase colonic water by 30% over high grain diets.  However, the colon has two independently managed phases: solid and liquid.  Over mature, poor quality hay can create a sluggish solid phase which can form an impaction while the mobile liquid phase passes on through.  
Second, provide CLEAN fresh water.  There is evidence that horses prefer lukewarm water.  Researchers have shown that ponies drank 38-41% less water when it was near frozen compared to when it was 66°F.
Third, promote exercise during cold winter months. Exercise provides multiple benefits by increasing metabolism and improving intestinal motility.  Fiber digestibility increases by up to 20% in exercised horses, promoting greater retention of the fluid part of the diet and shortened retention of the more formed, particulate part of the feed.

Wind, cold, rain, snow, ice…huge temperature surges. Don’t act like Mother Nature in your horse management.  Be consistent and sensible. And remember: Educated choices are economical choices.

I am here with gratitude, for you and your horses,
Dr. Chrysann

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