WCVM large animal medicine specialist Dr. Tiago Afonso (left) and WCVM resident Dr. Nicole van der Vossen examine a member of the college’s teaching herd. Photo: Christina Weese.

February 2022

Mites are microscopic parasites that cause mange. Although dogs and cats are most susceptible to these highly contagious organisms, mites can infect people, horses and other domestic animals.

Cardiac conditions in horses

Cardiac diseases are rare in horses and clinical signs usually present later in life once the horse’s heart can’t compensate for the malfunction. By the time a horse shows signs of a cardiac condition, it’s been living with the condition for a while.

Difficulty exercising, respiratory issues, increased pulse and an abnormal heartbeat are signs of cardiac issues, and if your horse is experiencing these symptoms, contact your veterinarian. Besides listening to your horse’s heart, your clinician will conduct an electrocardiogram as well as an exercise test. Another option is an echocardiogram (ultrasound exam of the heart) to evaluate how well the heart is pumping blood. 

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