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Nose Bleed

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  • Nose Bleed

    We took the horses out for a light trail ride yesterday. Maybe 4 miles total on a very flat, easy trail. Both are out of shape from sitting this winter, so it was a walking trail ride. Right before we finished, one of the geldings started a mild nose bleed out of the right side of his nose. It was minor and stopped after a few minutes. This morning when I went to feed, there was no blood present. When I went out for the evening feeding, he has some light blood present on the other side. His heart-rate was normal and he is showing no signs of distress. Since he is gray, it looks worse. I'm calling my vet tomorrow to get their thoughts.

    Up-date: Nothing was found and vet said horse more than likely bumped his head on the way to the trail. He hasn't bled since and we're taking the boys for another ride this weekend, so we shall see!
    Last edited by LockeMeadows; May. 30, 2013, 01:08 PM. Reason: Up-date!

  • #2
    I have had this happen to one of my TBs. The bleeding on two occasions was extreme, his paddock looked like an animal was slaughtered. A couple of times minor.

    I had him scoped and they found nothing. The bleeding stopped when I stopped feeding alfalfa, I think the stems were being inhaled.

    Hope it is OK.


    • #3
      Kudos for contacting the vet sooner rather than later. Nosebleeds can be nothing, or can be sign of very serious issues (gutteral pouches, tumors).
      HAS provides hospital care to 340,000 people in Haiti's Artibonite Valley 24/7/365/earthquake/cholera/whatever.
      www.hashaiti.org blog:http://hashaiti.org/blog


      • Original Poster

        He is out in a 30/acre pasture, so I'm not sure if he is inhaling anything? The first nose bleed was at the end of the trail ride, so I know nothing stuck him for him to bleed.


        • #5
          I would scope 100% of the time. At best it is nothing, at worst it is almost 100% fatal. I need to know which.
          McDowell Racing Stables

          Home Away From Home


          • Original Poster

            Laurierace, what would be fatal?


            • #7
              Gutteral pouch mycosis would be fatal. It's a fungal infection of the gutteral pouch, very difficult to treat, and the fungus can erode through the wall of the pouch into the carotid artery. Not a pretty sight.


              • #8
                Ya, know I wasn't going to go there so quickly....


                • #9
                  Jeez! I didn't know about that guttural pouch fungal thingy! Yuck!
                  My three year old pony got clocked on the head by a pasure mate (I assume)...had a patch of fur missing on his forehead below the eyes. He had a teeny nosebleed in one nostril which I attributed to the blow. since he was behaving completely normally I just kept an eye on him and didn't have the vet out. That was last week and he still seems fine...was I neglectful? Now I wonder if he had a little fracture, but what would a vet about that anyway?


                  • #10
                    Have her 'scoped. The peace of mind you'll get will be worth the cost.

                    My mare developed periodic nosebleeds from one nostril at about 15 years of age. At times they were profuse, at others, just a few drops. They occurred mostly during dry weather or allergy season. We had her 'scoped at the onset and the Vet found a small patch about "the size of a half-dollar", which he wasn't overly concerned about. She lived to be 22 and was put down for non-related reasons.
                    The inherent vice of Capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessings. The inherent virtue of Socialism is the equal sharing of miseries.
                    Winston Churchill


                    • #11
                      My TB gelding had a small nose bleed once. I'm talking, barely noticeable, had to wipe the inside of the nose to make sure it was blood, nosebleed. He was fine.

                      I would probably put a call into the vet and see what they say, I would imagine at this stage it would be a watch and see type scenario.
                      come what may

                      Rest in peace great mare, 1987-2013


                      • #12
                        Yep after losing one to gutural pouch mycosis I will never write off a nosebleed again. FWIW my filly had two minor nosebleeds and one major one before the last one. Prior to losing her I had never heard of gpm


                        • #13
                          A few years ago Murphy had a bad nosebleed. The vet came out and scoped him but didn't find anything. The nosebleed continued for several more days so the vet had me bring him into the clinic where he had more sophisticated equipment. He was looking for a gutteral pouch infection. He didn't find anything (but it was very interesting to watch!) and finally determined that Murphy probably just had a stick get poked up his nostril. Never had a problem with nosebleeds since then.

                          It's probably nothing major, but a scope wouldn't hurt and it would give you peace of mind. Better safe than sorry. A friend's yearling died from a gutteral pouch mycosis a few years ago. Very sad.
                          Crayola Posse - Pine Green
                          Whinnie Pine (June 4, 1977 - April 29, 2008)
                          Autumn Caper (April 27, 1989 - May 24, 2015)
                          Murphy (April 28, 1994 - May 5, 2017)


                          • #14
                            My jumper would occasionally get small nosebleeds during hard workouts. Had him scoped and the vet thought he just kept bursting tiny blood vessels in his nose. It was really never more than a trickle. Would continue on and off for a day or 2 until it healed up. It wasn't a big deal at all with him.
                            Fils Du Reverdy (Revy)- 1993 Selle Francais Gelding
                            My equine soulmate
                            Mischief Managed (Tully)- JC Priceless Jewel 2002 TB Gelding


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by arlosmine View Post
                              Jeez! I didn't know about that guttural pouch fungal thingy! Yuck!
                              My three year old pony got clocked on the head by a pasure mate (I assume)...had a patch of fur missing on his forehead below the eyes. He had a teeny nosebleed in one nostril which I attributed to the blow. since he was behaving completely normally I just kept an eye on him and didn't have the vet out. That was last week and he still seems fine...was I neglectful? Now I wonder if he had a little fracture, but what would a vet about that anyway?
                              Depends on the fracture. A hairline....probably nothing could be done. My old QH mare got "clocked" between the eyes and, while she didn't have a visible scrape on her, she was definitely NQR and then her head puffed up. She actually had a hole in her skull (sinus cavity). My vet had to pull the pieces out and screw them together like a jigsaw puzzle. He let me watch and it was really cool. I even posted pictures of it here on COTH when it happened.

                              If your pony is acting fine, he probably is. I could tell something was wrong with my mare but didn't know what since her TPR and gut sounds were all normal. It wasn't until the next day when her head blew up (from air escaping from the sinus cavity) that I called the vet.
                              Crayola Posse - Pine Green
                              Whinnie Pine (June 4, 1977 - April 29, 2008)
                              Autumn Caper (April 27, 1989 - May 24, 2015)
                              Murphy (April 28, 1994 - May 5, 2017)


                              • #16
                                We lost one to GPM. We had no warning shots. It looked like a massacre had happened in the stall. I get really jumpy about nose bleeds now. Odds are it's really nothing but I would definitely have it checked out. I would have done whatever I could have to have changed the outcome if I could have. Good luck. Keep us updated on what you learn from your vet.


                                • #17
                                  LockeMeadows, Remain Calm

                                  Originally posted by Donkaloosa View Post
                                  Gutteral pouch mycosis would be fatal. It's a fungal infection of the gutteral pouch, very difficult to treat, and the fungus can erode through the wall of the pouch into the carotid artery. Not a pretty sight.
                                  Whoa whoa whoa everybody. Guttural pouch mycosis (fungal infection of the guttural pouch, a pocket off of the horse's respiratory tract) can *potentially* be fatal. If not diagnosed, the fungal infection can cause hemorrhaging through the internal carotid artery. Unless your horse is on a surgical table when that happens, that is going to be fatal and "not pretty," for sure.

                                  If diagnosed PRIOR to the fatal hemorrhage, surgery can be done to cut off the blood supply, that is basically to kill off, the branch(es) of the internal carotid artery that run along the guttural pouch. You can do this without harming the horse, because there are additional arterial branches that supply blood in the same direction.

                                  My mare was diagnosed with guttural pouch mycosis at age 11, in 2002. I took her from Massachusetts to Ohio State, where she was the 23rd horse ever anywhere to have this surgery done: They inject horsey's bloodstream with dye. They insert a tiny scope into the carotid artery through an incision on the horse's neck. Watching a video screen cued to the dye, they thread the scope up through the artery and leave little metal coils in the branches on either side of the guttural pouch. The coils actually cause blood clots. Which sounds bad, except that kills off those arterial branches that might hemorrhage. And remember there are other branches still moving the blood around. In 2002 this cost $1600, and I hauled the horse 16 hours home two days later, with thirteen staples in the side of her neck that we had to be sure she couldn't put her head over a stall door or something and disturb them, but no other ill effects.

                                  Horsey, now 22, is fat and shiny was happily doing walk trot lessons last week. No recurrence. I believe this procedure has now become quite standard.

                                  I offer all my sympathies to those who lost horses. It is a terrible event and though there are often warning bleeds, they can be tiny, hard to notice, or there may be nothing. My mare never had a nosebleed. The only reason I had her scoped was because she'd had a history of sinus infections, so everyday first thing at the barn I checked her nose boogers. One day, the boogers seemed different, and I called the vet. So the sinus infections, which were totally unrelated, which I had bitched and moaned about, probably ended up saving her life.

                                  Sorry to write such a book. Points are, 1. good to have the vet right out, and 2. do not despair if you get the mycosis diagnosis, but get on it to treat ASAP.

                                  Good luck.

                                  I can ride my horses without a sharps container.


                                  • #18

                                    Get it scoped. I am with the above poster--had a horse develop it in 1997 and was saved through surgery at Ohio State University. We are so blessed to have them close by. Timing is key here--get it scoped quickly.