b'INSIDEI\x1ef\x1crm\x19\x18i\x1c\x16Horses can give us plenty of cues2 Diarrheawhen theyre dealing with early illness.Monitoring Any change in poop production The problem is they dont; horses dontTechnology is worth monitoring, as well address in like to show that theyre sick.more detail on page 18. But diarrhea, Theyre a prey species, so hiding anyNew technology is helping humansin particular, deserves special attention, evidence of illness is a survival tech- pick up subtle clues by monitoringsays Bevevino. Diarrhea can go from nique, says Elizabeth Davis, DVM, PhD,horse behavior as well as vital signs.not-too-bad to very bad in a very short Dipl. ACVIM, professor and head of theFarm Jenny, for instance, produces aperiod of time, and early intervention department of clinical sciences at Kansassensor you can attach to your horsesis beneficial to both the horse and the State Universitys Veterinary Health Cen- halter or bridle to monitor his daily ac- veterinarian treating him, she says.ter, in Manhattan. tivity. Through a solar-powered networkAn infectious diseasewhich canBut they do give subtle signs, like Sa- and an easy-to-use app you can gathercause severe illness or death and can brinas uncharacteristic affection or herand store 24/7 data about your horsesalso spread to other horsesis the most standing quietly in the barn or not eatingbehavior and movement and receivealarming possible cause, Bevevino says. hay. To help you recognize them andalerts if somethings wrong. Salmonella and Clostridium bacteria,intervene accordingly, weve put togetherThis is just one of many apps andfor instance, cause diarrhea-relatedthis 10-point list of warning signs.sensors on the market to help youinfections with varying levels ofmonitor equine activity and detectclinical signs. 1 Diminished or absent appetite illness early. Some horses remain bright and Has your horse suddenly becomeThe Horse staff alert while others develop very severe picky about or even completely unin- disease, she says. Rapid treatment can terested in his food? Thats a significantease discomfort, improve chances for sign of brewing illness, our sources say.Appetite changes could indicaterecovery, and help the veterinarian and A change in appetite, whether forgastrointestinal upsets such as colic. Inhorse owner control disease spread.grain or hay or both, is a big indicator tofact, waning interest in food can signal aOther causes of diarrhea include sand me that something isnt quite right, sayswide variety of internal illnesses beyondaccumulation in the colon, inflammatory Davis. Whereas he used to take 15 min- the GI system, says Kari Bevevino, DVM,bowel disease, and, less commonly, can-utes to clean up his bucket of concen- internal medicine resident at Texas A&Mcer, she adds. Regardless of the cause, trates, now it might take 45 minutes withUniversity, in College Station.diarrhea can lead to rapid dehydration some breaks to walk around a bit. Or heThis is among the most importantand electrolyte losses, sometimes requir-wont eat hay as vigorously and will getsigns of disease in various systems of theing pretty intensive therapy, Bevevino picky about it.body, she says.says.A horse thats lethargic and stays separate from the group might be showing early signs of sickness.ISTOCK.COM16August 2019The Horse | TheHorse.com'