Eyes - red mucous membranes

Stroppy Mare

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One of my horses has an eye with bright red MM surrounding it. Other eye is usual pale pink if slightly on the whiteish side, similar to gums.

Can still see out of it fine, doesnt appear to be scratched or anything that i can see... any ideas?

Calling vet tomorrow morning for advice.
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Box_Of_Frogs

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You've done the right thing pl88. Eyes are fragile and very precious. Inflammation may indicate a scratch to the cornea or a foreign body still in the eye or conjunctivitis or ulceration from some other source. I'd get the vet out straight away so they can put fluoroscene into the eye to test for ulceration and take it from there. Untreated conjunctivitis can lead to much more serious eye problems. The vet will also look into the internal structures of the eye to spot uveitis or other nasty auto immune conditions. Until the vet comes, I'd stable the horse (the llight may be hurting his eye) and don't be tempted to put anything at all in the eye eg human eye drops, golden eye ointment. Some products could make the situation worse.
 

Tnavas

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BAth his eye with a used tea bag. Pour boiling water into a clean plastc container and then tip the water away. Put in a few tea bags and then pour on boiling water. Put lid on. When cold bathe the eye with the tea bag and water. Use each tea bag only once - don't put back in the pot when used. Bathe the good eye first and then the sore eye.

Tea bags are very soothing and won't do any damage - if still red tomorrow then call in the vet.
 

kellyeaton

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call vet and in mean time just flush out with sterile water just incase there is a bit of grit or dust in there!
 

Box_Of_Frogs

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Sorry Tnavas but I'm paranoid about eyes after the 6 month (failed) battle to save my horse's eye. I would always urge people to stick to the old adage for home treatments which is first, do no harm. I would further urge people to think very very carefully re eyes and ask themselves: if you had a very sore and inflamed eye, would you hold off going to the doctor and put cold tea in your own eye? Tea contains tannin and I would say again, NEVER put anything other than - if you must - plain cooled boiled water in your horse's eye. It's too risky if an auto immune disease is brewing. The other thing to consider is the very act of putting anything close enough to the horse's eye to get it IN the eye. One jerk from an agitated horse and you can scratch or even penetrate the cornea and turn a simple problem into a major disaster. And a less than careful attempt to flush the eye can actually push material round the eye INTO it, again causing major problems.
 

joey1999

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PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE GET THE VET OUT! I noticed my beautiful bay TB eventer's left eye was red at the bottom a couple of weeks ago and got the vet out. He took a biopsy and has got the first results and waiting for the next lot. He is worried that it is lymphoma (tumour). I am praying to God that it's not. Vet has only seen one other case like this in 20 years and couldn't save the horse despite removing it's eye. My boy looks fit and well in himself but I am ill with worry and keep bursting into tears. Horse is only 12 by the way.
 

Lucy_Nottingham

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red mucous membranes at this time of year can be common in some animals due to all the pollen, heat and everything nature has to offer blowing round.
May be an allergy, might be just aggrevated, may be conjunctivitis (my pup has got this at the moment), could be an ulcer (if it is, the fact you cannot see it is a good thing, as deep ulcers are obvious!)

Id maybe stable overnight, if it looks like its weeping clean with cotton wool (preferably a cotton wool pad, so no fibres can get in the eye and aggrevate it further) and cool boiled water.

Don't do anything else until vet gets out, as you obv need them to see the presenting complaint. And they will let you know whats what.

Most likely outcome is conjunctivitis, most common problem in eyes in any species...... and its relatively easy to treat!

Let us know the outcome tomorrow
 

Box_Of_Frogs

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Conjunctivitis is relatively easy to treat but only if you do it properly and until all traces of the infection are gone. Poorly controlled, chronic conjunctivits is a recognised precursor to superficial keratitis, an auto-immune disease that my horse developed after his previous owners couldn't be *rsed to do anything other than VERY occasionally SAY they had washed the eye with cold tea. 3 weeks after I bought him, and had my local vet out to specifically give his extremely gungy eyes a check over, Sunny's "simple" conjunctivits flipped into superficial keratitis. Over £4,000 later, we were sadly losing the battle and Sunny had to have the eye removed. Never assume conjunctivitis is something minor that will practically clear up on it's own.
 

Lucy_Nottingham

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Im not saying conjunctivitis is always mild, but it generally is! Like a lot of things it depends on the underlying cause!
if its just a staphylococcal infection, often animals can sort themselves out, virus' are another matter.......
It does require a vet out to do tests to find out whats what, but just because your horse had it don't start jumping to the assumption every horse with conjunctivitis will get keratitis! (not being rude, just trying to prevent lots of stress on the eye front)

I don't think its ok tho that ur horses old owner cudnt be bothered to treat, thats just poor management and its a shame you boys eye was lost as a result!

Ponylover 88 - any vet feedback yet?
 

Tnavas

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BoxofFrogs - I can understand your concern - however cold tea has been an eye treatment of many decades - even the doctor will tell you to use it. I certainly use it on my own eyes. It will do no harm and is good at relieving inflammation.

In summer the wind/dust/dry weather can make a horses eyes a little red. I'd be much more concerned if the horse had it's eye closed as this would indicate more serious damage. The I would call the vet immediately. For a slight change in membrane colour using the cold tea would be fine.
 

Stroppy Mare

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Sorry guys, its the first chance ive had to get online. The vet came out monday afternoon to have a look at his eye.

Theres a slight scratch there which was picked up after he put dye in his eye and is now on fucithalmic eye drops (for dogs, cats and rabbits according to the pack!!!) which appear to have cleared it up.

Hes been really good bless him and let us do the eye drops twice a day, even just stood in the field! The mucous membrane has now returned to normal colour, matching the other one. We got given 2 tubes, just finished 1 tube and onto the second now, were told to just do it for a week and see how it goes but since weve got some left over were going to finish the 2nd tube off to make sure its fully cleared up.

Thanks for the advice guys though. Eddie says thanks too!
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