Horse colic (or Equine Colic), really means ’gut’ pain. More accurately this means pain anywhere in the horse’s abdomen (the body area found behind the chest, before the hind legs and underneath the back).
Horses get a lot of Colic but mostly it is not serious and individuals recover quickly. Colic is feared in horses because mild signs can occasionally become very painful and dangerous. When dangerous, Colic can kill a horse quite quickly and surgery may be needed.
Tell tale signs of Mild Colic:
Off food, fewer droppings, lethargy and stomach pain seen as kicking at the belly, looking round at the flanks and pawing the ground.
Serious signs of Horse Colic: lying down or rolling, shallow breathing, sweating, spasm of severe pain with groaning and rolling. Swelling of the abdomen.
What to do:
If your horse shows anything more than mild colic for a few minutes it is best to call your local vet. If you can get advice by phone from the clinic before the vet arrives, follow this advice.