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Signs of trouble

Of course, your horse will show different signs of distress and illness depending on what the problem is but, in general, you should call your vet if you notice the following signs.

  • Mucus in your horse’s nostrils
  • Sticky eyes
  • Standing with a bowed head, even when there’s an exciting environment that would normally interest the horse
  • Standing alone and not joining in with other horses
  • Sweating for no good reason (e.g. a very hot day or having run for a time)
  • Lying down more than usual
  • Any signs of abdominal pain, such as looking around at the flanks, rolling, getting up and down restlessly or pawing the ground
  • A change in behaviour, e.g. sudden aggression
  • A change in bowel habits, e.g. runny manure, no manure, urine that has a strange odour or colour
  • Hair standing on end when it’s not cold
  • Changes in feeding


Pay attention to a change from the norm and err on the side of caution when it comes to calling your vet when your horse exhibits unusual behavior.