simply means a reduction in red blood cells in the horse's blood.
As one main function of the red blood cells in a horse or pony is to deliver oxygen throughout its body, maintaining good levels of red blood cells is critical to a horse's ability to perform. This is especially true for disciplines that require stamina and endurance and stamina.
Equine anaemia is one of the most commonly misdiagnosed problems in horses, not because the anemia is difficult to diagnose, but because of many possible causes.
The diagnosis of anemia in horses is based on the clinical signs that indicate that reduced amounts of oxygen iare being transported to tissues in the horse's body.
Symptoms of anaemia in a horse or pony include pale gums, eyelid linings or other mucous membranes. Heart having to work harder to get oxygen around the body; it beats faster than normal. Lack of best performance and reduction in stamina.
Causes of anaemiain a horse or pony include a shortage of red blood cells or haemoglobin through haemorrhage (bleeding), infection, weakness in the immune system, redworms, bots, liver or kidney damage, tumours, poor diet (a diet lacking iron or B12 causing a deficiency) or diseases such as equine infectious anaemia.
Firstly the cause of the anaemia shoud be diagnosed by a vet.
If the horse's anaemia is caused by an infection or illness the vet must treat this.
When a horse or pony has been suffering from an infection for a long while, there are some conflicting effects.
The low levels of iron in the horse's body cause anaemia, but this also slows down the rate of growth of bacteria in the infection.
So as well as treating the anaemia, the horse's immune and digestive systems needs to be built up to fight the infection.
Try feeding a horse that is suffering from anaemia with immune boosting equine dietary supplements added to their feed.
Other popular supplements to feed an anaemic horse are multi-mineral supplements, fenugreek, nettles and seaweed, the latter being rich in iron.
Prevention of anaemia in a horse or pony:
It is important to maintain a regular worming program to control redworms and bots.
Try growing deep-rooting herbs in the paddock or feed Russian comfrey as a herbal preventative.
Feed an equine mineral supplement.