Why there is applesauce on my ceiling & horse opthalmics

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Yesterday I had what seems to be my annual rendezvous with my vet.  And no, I don’t mean a tussle in the hay, it just means “regular meeting place”.  Precisely; my house, Christmas time, every year to fork over a Ben Frank or two to stitch, medicate, wrap or doctor a horse.

I’ve got this huge plastic syringe for squirting Bute (horse aspirin) into the horses mouth.  The tube is the thickness of a mans thumb and it has a plunger on the end to hold in the medicine.  If you’ve got kids you’ve seen a small version.   So I had this great idea to put applesauce into it with the medicine.  Not just any applesauce.  No, no! I had to use home made chunky applesauce (it’s all I had, really).  Interestingly chunky applesauce doesn’t squirt easily and while attempting to push the air gently out of the syringe that gooey apple gunk popped loose inside the medicine tube and squirted my cheek then flew 12 feet in the air to decorate my ceiling.

Fun fun!  Who’se gonna clean that up I wonder?

My vet cracks me up.  Our phone conversation went as follows.

ME: “Nicole, this is Jessie up on the hill.”

VET: “Hey Jess, how’s it goin?”

ME: “Oh pretty good, only I’m dealing with a poked eye today.”

VET: “Don’t tell me it’s one of the children. I only doctor animals you know.”

ME: “Hahaha!  I can’t believe you had to ask, but no, its that little pony.”

VET: “Ah ha, well you’d be surprised what kinds of calls I get.”

ME:  “Really?  Well I guess that’s the sort of redneck thing I’d do.  No not really!”  Nervous chuckle!

VET: “Well, what’s going on with her?”

ME: “I don’t know when it happened but she appears to have poked her eye. I’m not sure but she may be blind, it is gray and cloudy.  My son came running in and said ‘Mom there’s green blood coming from Hayley’s eye.'”

VET:  “Well, the mucus could be trying to rid the eye of a foreign object. Let me come out and take a look.  We’ll have to sedate her and dye the eye to check for any scratch or tear.”

ME: “Okay I’ll see you in a bit.  This is becoming a regular occurence.  What has it been?  Three years in a row!”

VET:  “Seems like it. I’ll be there as soon as I can.”


The next pictures are icky.

The first one is her swollen eye with green mucus excreting.

This is how Thing One found her…

Once she was sedated we could see into her eye but didn’t need any dye to see that the cornea is sliced and scraped.  Her cornea is approximately 1/2 the appropriate thickness.  I have no idea how she did it.  The vet maintains that horses are suicidal.  It was dark while she was out but after antibiotic ointment and Bute, Hayley is feeling better.   Here are pictures of the actual corneal laceration.

We are in for a long healing process.  I’m praying she continues to allow me to manually medicate.  If not Nicole will be inserting a tube that allows me to medicate without touching her eye.  If we have to go that route she will be out, yet again to sedate and insert the contraption.  Can you see me in the eye?

Poor girl, she is really hurting!  All three boys prayed for her last night.  Judging from the look on Nicole’s face she is going to need it.  There is still a strong likelihood that it will become infected or rupture.  At this moment in time she can still see out of it despite my initial concern.  Hopefully it stays that way.

Antibiotic ointment three times a day.  Good thing I’ve got a couple of great helpers!


Filed under Farm Friends

11 responses to “Why there is applesauce on my ceiling & horse opthalmics

  1. thelumberjackswife

    Gross!!! But, poor horsey. 😦

    • Kendyll

      What kind of medication did you use?

      • Its been a long time but as I recall, she had an oral antibiotic and a medicated ophthalmic ointment (which I believe also had antibiotics in it). Goopy junk! I did get one thing of liquid drops from the vet but they didn’t last as long or leave a good barrier so I used them only when necessary.

  2. Aric Hartley

    You know what’s crazy – our mutual friend from PBC, Trina, had her littlest boy (Bubba’s age) get a toy plane in the eye and has had emerg surgery etc and now has an infection. They are back I forth from the children’s hospital every few days. He will have a permanent astigmatism due to the fact that the Iris is sealing the vitrious fluid from seeping out – poor kid! I hope Hayley does well.

  3. Aric Hartley

    ps – if it wasn’t for the goop – that’s would make a great photo of you in her eye!

  4. poor thing! how is she doing now?

  5. Mary

    This just recently happened to my horse. And, she is not liking me having to put the medication in her eye. Did you have to put the medication under the bottom eyelid too? Do you have any tips for doctoring the eye?

    • Bute- then wait about 20 min for it to work.

      Return with help if possible – If one person faces the horse and wraps arms around her nose she is less likely to bump you with her head. You can always use a distraction.

      Provide Distraction -I don’t know how you feel about it but some people squeeze the ear, squeeze a fist full of skin at the neck or put a chain up under the top lip (between gums and lip) DON’t pull just place it there and give a slight amount of pressure. I’m not a fan of such things but I’ve been putting in goop for weeks and need extra assistance from time to time. I try to do something different each time I need so that the horse doesn’t get head shy. But they are big animals and need to respect us as the “leader of the heard” so I don’t think a little “bite” is out of line -within reason. 🙂

      Putting it in the eye – Once the horse starts to get wise to you I found it easiest to put the cream on my middle finger and do the “surprise attack” (but carefully) My horses’ eye is sliced nearly half through so the vet was adamant that I not put pressure or use anything that could cause her eye to burst. My finger is easy to gague.

      Rotate if possible – If the vet agrees you can get drops to use some of the time. THe drops do not stay as long or work as well but if you are in this for weeks there will be days you just need something easier. I’ve done drops a time or two. You have to do it more often.

      Hope this helps. Come back and let me know how it goes!

  6. Pingback: 2010 in review « Blog Schmog

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