Welcome to the
Colville Animal Hospital
Our goal is to provide the community with a full-service, large and small animal facility that recognizes
and nurtures the special bond that exists between people and their animals.
We are dedicated to sustaining that bond through compassionate care for companion
animals that increases the quality and length of their lives. In our large animal practice we strive
to assist clients in maximizing the health of their food production animals and the athletic
potential of their equine performers. We hope to develop long-term relationships with
our clients and their animals through compassionte concern for and understanding of their needs.
Winterize your Horses!
Horses, like most animals, have their own natural instincts that kick in when the seasons change. The best way to keep your horse safe and comfortable through the winter is to work with their instincts, rather than against them.
Let’s start with feed. Recent nutritional experts have questioned the “heat” produced by grains, such as corn, but have shown that roughage – such as hay, works well to generate internal warmth for the horse. Generally, high-quality grass or alfalfa hay will help your horse during the cold winter months more than any grain supplement will.
Although hay can provide some warmth to your horse, their own hair-coat is even more important. Many animals grow a heavier coat in the beginning of winter, preparing them for the long, cold days and nights. It’s important to nurture this natural response, rather than overcompensate with too many blankets. Blankets not only prevent the growth of an adequate winter coat, but can prevent the hair from rising, therefore reducing the natural insulating effect.
As the temperature drops, the likelihood of water freezing rises. Because of this, horses naturally drink less water, even before their source of water freezes over. But dehydration and colic can occur with decreased water consumption. It is very important to not only provide a clean source of water that remains unfrozen, but also to watch your horses very carefully for any signs of dehydration, such as a poor appetite, abdominal discomfort, etc.
Every horse owner has seen their horse shivering during the winter in NE Washington, even if all the steps above have been taken. Shivering is not a bad thing. Shivering is how our horses maintain their internal body temperature. Shivering, however, burns up a lot of calories, and this can result in a need for more nutrients. That being said, shivering may be a red flag that it’s time your horse had a dental exam.
There are two vitally important ways to increase nutrient intake – increasing the volume of food given to your horse, and by making sure your horse has the ability to chew his or her feed completely and without pain. A horse whose teeth aren’t in equilibrium and/or whose teeth dig into his or her cheeks will not be able to get all the nutrition from the food eaten. So, at best, this is a waste of money, and at worst, your horse may be starving, even with plenty of food in front of them.
Even more so, recent studies have shown that regular, consistent dental work done by a veterinarian can actually slow down the rate of eruption of the horse’s teeth. What does this mean? Unlike human teeth, and dog teeth, a horse’s teeth grow constantly. This constant growth is what creates the sharp points and ridges on their teeth, as some places wear evenly during chewing, and some don’t wear quite as evenly. Also, since their teeth grow constantly, there is a point in every horse’s life when they simply run out of tooth. So, if we can slow this process of growth down with simple dental work, this can result in years added to the life of your horse’s teeth, and maybe to your horse!
Something fun for
the kids to do!
Check this out..
Image courtesy of Tina Phillips / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
We are an AAHA Accredited Hospital
What is AAHA? American Animal Hospital Association accredited hospitals adhere to rigorous standards
to ensure that your pet receives the highest quality care available. They are inspected regularly to make
sure they meet AAHA's high standards for hospitals and veterinary care.