Archived News

Equine Demos--and a Canine Pavilion--at Horse Expo

June 23, 2010

Visitors to the annual Sacramento Horse Expo June 12 and 13 met several faculty members and learned about some of the equine and small animal services of the William R. Pritchard Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital.


Dr. Sarah le Jeune, Assistant Professor of Clinical Equine Surgical Emergency and Critical Care, demonstrated an acupuncture treatment on a horse and discussed indications for acupuncture in horses. These include many musculoskeletal conditions, such as back pain and different types of lameness, and medical conditions such as chronic colic, reproductive problems or other disorders.

Dr. Julie Dechant, Assistant Professor of Clinical Equine Surgical Emergency and Critical Care, presented an overview of how to prepare for equine emergencies.  Points that were reviewed included being prepared by knowing the horse's normal behavior and attitude, having a veterinarian's phone number posted on or near the stall, planning for transportation to an equine hospital, and thinking about any treatment limitations ahead of an emergency situation.  Dr. Dechant also reviewed how to do a physical examination on a horse, specifically being able to monitor temperature, heart rate, breathing rate, intestinal sounds, and gum color.  Audience questions ranged from medication cautions, first aid kit when trail riding, and alternate locations to measure pulse rate.  Wallet cards that listed colic signs and normal limits for temperature, heart rate, and breathing rate were handed out to members of the audience of about 30 people.

Emergency Response

The Veterinary Emergency Response Team, a group of faculty, staff and student volunteers from the School of Veterinary Medicine, presented three demonstrations during the event to show how to rescue and/or move an injured horse safely. This volunteer team assisted in the airlift of a horse from the American River Canyon in 2009. The VERT student organization has conducted training of veterinary students in basic emergency response methods. The training sessions, developed by the Internatioanal Animal Welfare Training Institute, cover "down horse" emergency approach, vertical lifting methods with the Large Animal Lift and UC Davis Anderson Sling, rolling the down horse, tail ties and knots needed in emergencies, cow sling application, and safety training around the equine emergency patient.

New Canine Pavilion

This year, the Small Animal Clinic was pleased to be among the first to host a booth in the new Canine Pavilion. Hospital representatives greeted visitors and heard several stories about how our hospital saved their pets. The staff also distributed wallet cards and brochures for the convenience of future clients. The hospital group also connected with several other agencies interested in inviting members of the teaching hospital to their events.