Case control study to identify risk factors for simple colonic obstruction and distension colic in horses

Authors

  • M. H. HILLYER,

    Corresponding author
    1. Equine Centre, Department of Clinical Veterinary Science, University of Bristol, Langford House, Langford, Somerset BS40 5DU, UK
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      Reynolds House Referrals, Greenwood, Ellis and Partners, 166 High Street, Newmarket, Suffolk CB8 9WS, UK

  • F. G. R. TAYLOR,

    1. Equine Centre, Department of Clinical Veterinary Science, University of Bristol, Langford House, Langford, Somerset BS40 5DU, UK
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      Reynolds House Referrals, Greenwood, Ellis and Partners, 166 High Street, Newmarket, Suffolk CB8 9WS, UK

  • C. J. PROUDMAN,

    1. Department of Veterinary Clinical Science and Animal Husbandry, Faculty of Veterinary Science, University of Liverpool, Leahurst, Neston, South Wirral CH64 7TE, UK
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      Reynolds House Referrals, Greenwood, Ellis and Partners, 166 High Street, Newmarket, Suffolk CB8 9WS, UK

  • G. B. EDWARDS,

    1. Department of Veterinary Clinical Science and Animal Husbandry, Faculty of Veterinary Science, University of Liverpool, Leahurst, Neston, South Wirral CH64 7TE, UK
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      Reynolds House Referrals, Greenwood, Ellis and Partners, 166 High Street, Newmarket, Suffolk CB8 9WS, UK

  • J. E. SMITH,

    1. Department of Veterinary Clinical Science and Animal Husbandry, Faculty of Veterinary Science, University of Liverpool, Leahurst, Neston, South Wirral CH64 7TE, UK
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      Reynolds House Referrals, Greenwood, Ellis and Partners, 166 High Street, Newmarket, Suffolk CB8 9WS, UK

  • N. P. FRENCH

    1. Department of Veterinary Clinical Science and Animal Husbandry, Faculty of Veterinary Science, University of Liverpool, Leahurst, Neston, South Wirral CH64 7TE, UK
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      Reynolds House Referrals, Greenwood, Ellis and Partners, 166 High Street, Newmarket, Suffolk CB8 9WS, UK


Equine Centre, Department of Clinical Veterinary Science, University of Bristol, Langford House, Langford, Somerset BS40 5DU, UK

Summary

A case control study was performed to identify risk factors for colic caused by simple colonic obstruction and distension (SCOD) in the horse. Case horses were recruited from 2 veterinary school clinics. Control horses were population based and matched by time of year. A number of risk factors were considered in the following areas: general carer and premises information; exercise information; husbandry information (housing- and pasture-related); feeding information; breeding information; behavioural information; travel information; preventive medicine information and pevious medical information. All variables with a P value of <0.2 in the univariable analysis were considered for possible inclusion in a multivariable model. A final model, produced by a forward stepwise method, identified crib-biting or windsucking, an increasing number of hours spent in a stable, a recent change in a regular exercise programme, the absence of administration of an ivermectin or moxidectin anthelmintic in the previous 12 months and a history of travel in the previous 24 h as associated with a significantly increased risk of SCOD. An alternative final model, produced by a backwards elimination method, identified the same variables as the forward model with, in addition, a history of residing on the current establishment for less than 6 months, a history of a previous colic episode and the fewer times per year the teeth were checked/treated as associated with a significantly increased risk of SCOD. Three of the risk factors in this model were associated with a large increase in risk: stabling for 24 h/day, crib-biting/windsucking and travel in the previous 24 h.

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