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Sentinel Butte, North Dakota

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Visit to the Equine OB/GYN doc

Kalin and Denny

A week ago, our horses escaped, walking over three snow filled cattle guards to travel about 8 miles or so to a neighbor's place. Three of our four mares had been spayed a couple of  years ago. Kalin was waiting for her turn this spring. She had started to cycle a few days before the equine escape. After being exposed to the neighbor's stud horse, we decided that we better get it done instead of putting it off awhile longer. Kalin is the kindest little horse, except when she is in season. Then she becomes a nasty, ornery, cranky little horse.

Well, now that won't be a problem any more. My brother-in-law is a large animal vet about 100 miles away from us. He was able to do Kalin's spay on Friday. She was to stay over the weekend  and I would pick her up on Monday when I took my mother-in-law to the doctor in Bismarck. Sounded like a great plan and it turned out to be.

After getting the cows fed, I met my friend, Sandy, at the interstate so she could ride along with me. Both of us seem to have a hard time with being on time in the past few years, this time was no different for either of us. An hour later than we planned, we took off east. Of course by now it was past noon,so we had to stop at McDonald's and also make a stop for welding supplies for one of Sandy's sons. The roads were good and the trip when fast.

As soon as we arrived, I unloaded Denny, who had also made the trip. He had a knot in his throat that I wanted my brother-in-law to check out. Thankfully it was nothing serious. Denny went back to the trailer and it was Kalin's turn. My brother-in-law had decided to do the procedure on Kalin with her standing rather than laying down. He feels it is much easier to spay a horse using this method.

Kalin was sedated, led into the chute and tied. As she became relaxed and sleepy my sister-in-law clipped the surgery field and then it was washed repeatedly. With a few surgery site injections Kalin's ob/gyn doc, aka my brother-in-law, made the incision and went to work. The hardest part about doing a standing equine spay is when they won't stand still. Kalin didn't give any problems, although she did have her upper lip twitched as a distraction. It didn't take more than 20 minutes most of which was the prep time for the surgery.

Making the incision

Yep, these are Kalin's ovaries.
 After the surgery, Kalin was given antibiotics and put in the barn where she spent the night. She spent the next two days at my brother-in-law's place recovering. She spent most of the day outside and was brought in at night. He told me that she had been a picky eater, she would eat their grass hay but didn't care for the afalfa they offered her. She did well in her recovery there.

My brother-in-law's clinic/ranch enterance sign, made by thesame man who made our sign here at home.

We picked Kalin up yesterday afternoon. She was in a pen outdoors and looked pretty good, but maybe a little sore. She came to me when I called her and basically loaded herself for the trip home. She is in with some calves at home now, so she doesn't get rough with the other horses and tear her sutures out. By the time the snow melts for good in about 6 weeks, I'll be riding her again. She is looked a little sore at home this morning when this was taken.


Sarah said...

It still amazes me every time, that they can do these procedures with the animals standing and oonly sedated a bit. Think what an ordeal this type surgery is for people! If we could only be as resiliant as animals! The vet told me when I was watching the amputation a few weeks ago, that the dog would be back up and running around in a day or two, not even know he was missing a leg.

Shirley said...

Not very many people spay their mares, but it sure is a good option. How handy is that having a vet for a brother in law!

DayPhoto said...

That was VERY interesting. Thanks for posting.


Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Wow! Thanks for sharing this. I've heard of mares being spayed for health reasons, but I've never actually known anyone who's had it done, or even knew how the surgery was completed. I'm amazed at how simple the surgery seems to be and how the horse is able to stand up and not be anesthetized. I'm assuming the location is numbed, though, right?
I wonder how much a surgery like this costs and if the mare tends to be much like a gelding in personality, after the surgery is completed?
Thanks for sharing the photos, too. I think I expected the ovaries to be larger. Fascinating!


Crystal said...

That was kinda neat, I have never seen that done either, cool its quick and easy.