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Nasal discharge from one nostril

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  • Nasal discharge from one nostril

    Yesterday morning our pony had a light-colored (whitish/maybe light greenish/light yellowish) discharge coming from one nostril. Otherwise seemed fine.

    This morning, I could tell it was there also though not as noticeable as yesterday but I think she had just managed to wipe it off today.

    I didn't notice a terrible smell but to be honest, I didn't try to smell it yesterday. Today I did wipe her nose with paper towel and tried to smell, didn't notice anything but there wasn't as much to wipe today.
    Her temp this morning was normal. Everything else seems normal with her.

    We just have her and a horse at home, no other horses in the vicinity and they haven't been off the property. She's never had allergies before (but I know my seasonal allergies are bad right now and there was alot of smoke in the air yesterday, but there has been on other days recently also).

    I read maybe it could be a tooth problem? In the past, she usually had a float more than once a year by a dentist, but we moved, so the most recent was last September by a vet.

    Is this something to just watch for a certain amount of time, or rather, if I see any signs of it tomorrow morning, then definitely call the vet's office, but as a regular appt, not emergency?

  • #2
    We had a prelim horse come up with something like this. He a tooth pulled and packed as they thought it was the tooth. Didn't totally clear up... anyway ended up being bad sinus infection. Hopefully your guys doesn't have this as he eventually had to have a hole drilled into his sinus cavity, yes through the front of his head, and we had to flush fluids through it for weeks (and is smelled awful at this point). And this was a VERY social touchy horse so he was highly disappointed when no one would let him cuddle lol. They said it would probably be a continual problem for him, but he has since moved to TX and seemingly hasn't had any problems with it there.
    Custom Painted Brushes: spcustombrushes@gmail.com


    • #3
      This happened to one of my mares several years ago.
      It turned out to be a guttural pouch infection, which required isolation from other horses and antibiotics. Better have the vet check it out.


      • #4
        Call the vet, but not necessarily an emergency.

        The one horse we had with discharge from one nostril did not have a good outcome. His turned out to be a tumor. That is unlikely to be the case here, but it is worth a call to the vet. Your vet will know how to figure out the cause of the problem.
        "Passion without knowledge is a runaway horse."


        • #5
          a) could be gutteral pouch infection (had that).

          b) could be an abcessed tooth (had that, too). Mare was given long treatment with metronidozol (sp) and it cleared up and has not returned - been about three years now.
          Removing a tooth is quite a job, so this was preferable for me, and she does not seem to have any problems eating, etc.
          Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique


          • Original Poster

            Yikes, none of these sound good. Guess I was hoping it would be like my dog with the runny eye for a day or two, then it went away. We don't even have facilities to isolate her from the horse so I have no idea what we would do in that case.
            I will definitely call the vet's office in the morning. Unfortunately, we have limited relationship with the vets here since we haven't lived here that long, and have already had a bad experience with one. I don't have alot of faith that these vets are very good (they are not equine vets exclusively), but hopefully they will be able to make an accurate diagnosis. Thanks!


            • #7
              Could be the things mentioned above or could just be nothing/allergies. Definitely worth getting checked out to rule out the serious issues.

              I have a mare that had discharge from one nostril that got to the point it included blood. Only happened the first 5 minutes of work. Had her head x-rayed and they scoped her and could not find the source. This went on for quite some time than disappeared as suddenly as it started. Recurred a couple times months later. Then wasn't a problem for a long time. Really weird.


              • #8
                I have a horse who does this about every other Spring. It resolves with some dietary addition. Meaning, it's never anything serious.

                However, as with my usual protocol, I give things about 3 days. If things worsen in the meantime, or aren't better after that, I call the vet.
                The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


                • #9
                  Check with your vet if it is not gone in a day or so. We have been treating one with a nasal discharge since Oct 2008. He just had surgery on Thursday to remove two teeth. They had to go in thru the sinus cavity. I am currently waiting for a call from the vet clinic that is 3 hours away to see if he can come home today. We are hoping it was the teeth but all the x-rays and scoping didn't really give a clear answer. Hopefully you have a quick and simple resolve for your pony.


                  • Original Poster

                    Thanks, I sure hope it is easy also. This morning I could see both nostrils affected. So that is 3 days that I am aware of, though the only day it was really obvious was Saturday, so it's entirely possible there was something going on prior to Sat and DH just didn't notice since he usually puts them out. You could not miss it on Saturday. Otherwise seems perfectly healthy.

                    Lucked out and a vet can make it here today. I'll be meeting her for the first time. Our pony can be a bit difficult with strangers/vets and we've noticed she's done better with females, so hopefully the vet will be patient; she is not the type that does well with anything forceful. And since it's been a year on her float, she can check on that as well.

                    My Two Cents: Forgot to say good luck on your call today - I hope everything is clean and he can come home!
                    Last edited by Gryhnd; Sep. 14, 2009, 03:55 PM. Reason: to add sentence


                    • #11
                      Good luck with the vet and hope all goes well.

                      My horse had mega problems Nov 07-May 08 that started with a single sided nasal discharge. Gutteral pouches were clean, and there was sooo much mucus that x-rays were not definitive. He'd clear up on antibiotics (and we went through a lot - Metronidazole, SMZs, Baytril, Terramycin, etc.) and then symptoms would re-appear 3-5 days after discontinuing medication. We were about to bring him to New Bolton for a CT scan (3rd or 4th round of x-rays revealed some sort of mass in his sinus) but he cleared up (one last round of Baytril and a sinus flush).

                      He will still present with nasal discharge if he gets too cold, or hasn't worked consistently.


                      • #12
                        Gryhnd - Thanks for your thoughts. My horse did get to come home today. It's the first time since mid Oct 2008 that I didn't have to dodge snot on his nose. What he didn't wipe on his leg, he wiped on me. Guarded optimistic that we finally have this under control. Hoping the dental wax that is filling the large hole between his sinus's and his mouth holds. Sure hoping your vet appointment came with good news.


                        • Original Poster

                          That's great that your horse came home today!

                          Well, the vet didn't seem to think it was anything severe. Her nostrils were spotless this afternoon. We have only seen the discharge in the morning. Vet felt that it could either be allergies or just a little virus that is running around.

                          How would one figure out if it is a gutteral pouch infection?

                          I did mention the possibility of an abscessed tooth and she said that smells pretty bad, and there is no smell whatsoever, and also that would be one nostril, which this started as, but both were wet and had shavings stuck this morning.

                          She did float her teeth.

                          She said we could give her meds but I opted not to right now, and said if it does get worse, then I'd just go to their office and pick them up. She also thought that considering the worst I saw was on Saturday, and less on Sun and less on Monday (though it had moved to both nostrils Monday), she thought it could possibly be a little virus that is already on its way out.


                          • #14
                            I had one who was having occasional discharge from one side, white and no odor. Had him scoped and saw discharge below the sinus opening, but nothing above. X-rayed and saw some possible fluid in the sinus, so we did a course of Doxy. No discharge since then, he seems to feel better. There was one tooth in the middle of the upper arcade that was getting squished and the roots were starting to look questionable, something to keep an eye on. But the anitibiotic seems to have cleared up the discharge.
                            "One person's cowboy is another person's blooming idiot" -- katarine

                            Spay and neuter. Please.