W. J. (William J.) Miles.

Modern practical farriery : a complete system of the veterinary art as at present practised at the Royal Veterinary College, London online

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grate ; and death ensues earlier or later, as the disease has
been more or less rapid ; occurring sometimes as early as the
second or third day, but more often between the third and
seventh, being also sometimes prolonged to the fourteenth
or fifteenth.

The terminations of pneumonia are more varied tlian In
most other complaints. Resolution is that most to be
desired ; in which the symptoms gradually subside, either
spontaneously, or aided by the curative treatment. Con-
gestion Is the termination to be dreaded ; which sometimes
suff'ocates the patient on the fourth or fifth day, by filling
up the air cells with thickened blood. In the epidemic
pneumonia, where a considerable degree of malignance Is
occasionally present, instead of blood, the air cells often
become choked with serum.

Gangrene is not a frequent termination of true pneu-
monia. The Irritation or the congestion usually destroys
the animal before the tissues are completely broken up.
Suppuration sometimes follows pneumonia ; in which
case there Is a deceitful remission of the symptoms, but
not so great as In hydrothorax. It Is further marked by
an irritating cough, a purulent discharge from the nose,
with a hard, hurried, and an Irregular pulse. In these
cases a speedy termination follows by suffocation, or a more
protracted one. In which the animal dies emaciated. Hepa-
tization (Gr. hepar, the liver), or degeneration into a liver-
like substance. Is also not an uncommon termination ; In
which the substance of the lungs becomes so blocked up
and solidified as to make them, contrary to the usual state,
sink In water. When the condensation Is only partial, the
affections called thick wind and broken wind are the con-
sequence ; or an Increased Irritability of the lungs them-
selves, or of the mucous membranes of the bronchii and
trachea, may be left, which subjects the horse to a long-
continued or permanent cough. It Is also the parent of
tubercles, which end In phthisis or glanders.

On the subject of symptoms, it remains to guard against
mistaking pneumonia or Inflammation of the lungs for such
other affections as it may be confounded with ; as with
influenza, bronchitis, or other diseases of the mucous mem-
branes. In influenza, the extremities do not continue in-
variably cold ; the distress of countenance Is not so great ;
sore throat is commonly present ; the breathing, though
quickened is less laborious, and the pulse seldom oppressed.
The cough In influenza Is generally deep, sonorous, and very
painful : a weakness, not corresponding with the violence of
the symptoms. Is very early seen in influenza ; and though
the lining of the nostrils may be Inflamed In influenza, it is
seldom so much so as to present a purple hue. The princi-
pal necessity which exists for making a careful distinction
between the two diseases, arises from its not being found



286



THE PRACTICE OF VETERINARY MEDICINE.



prudent to push the treatment so far in influenza as in
pneumonia ; for if the two should be confounded, and the
milder be treated as the severer case ought to be, then it is
a thousand to one but disease of the chest supervenes,
hydrothorax sets in, and brings the mistaken disorder to a
termination. Inflammation of the lungs has also been mis-
taken for Colic, from the horse sometimes expressing con-
siderable uneasiness, and often looking round to his sides ;
but in colic the horse evinces acute pain, by kicking at his
belly with his hinder legs. By turns, he lies down and rolls,
and then suddenly rises, appearing quite well for a certain
space, during which he will fall to eating ; while, on the
contrary, in pneumonia, he never lies down, but stands
stupidly quiet ; except now and then, when he may look at
his ribs, but without any of the impatient indications of
pain, or intervals of perfect ease. It may also be added,
that in inflammation of the lungs the pulse announces
danger from the beginning, while in colic it is, at the com-
mencement, of a healthy character.

The Treatment must be prompt. The old practice was
to extract blood immediately upon entering the stable.
The first blood-letting was to the amount of two gallons at
least, the second of one gallon, and two, or even more,
subsequent withdrawals of half or three-quarters of a gallon
each ; thus, at all events, four gallons of blood, or more,
were taken away. A full-sized horse has but eight gallons
of blood in his body, and one moderately fat has not that
amount. Here, however, the veterinary surgeon withdraws
half the blood from the poor horse's body, under the impres-
sion that the animal's disease announced it had too much
of that fluid, to regulate the quantity of which is the care
of the whole system. After this, he used to look upon the
subsequent signs of excessive debility as natural results.

The antiquated notion about a horse having too much
blood, is now exploded ; many excellent practitioners do not
bleed at all ; but if you resolve to take any, watch the
animal ; never mind the pulse at this time ; and at the first
sign of change, though it be ever so slight, pin up the vein,
and on no account repeat the experiment.

Blaine's practice in pneumonia cannot, we think, be
bettered ; we therefore extract it in his own words : — " The
next point to be considered is counter-irritation, and most
practitioners blister both the sides largely, choosing for
their agent cantharides, which is uncertain and slow in its
action. One of the signs of improvement in inflammation
of the lungs, is the animal lying down, which during health
it always does upon its sides. The rendering of these parts
sore seems to be opposing an obstacle to the animal resum-
ing the recumbent attitude. The better plan would be to
reject cantharides, and spare the sides. A more active
vesicatory, and a safer place for its action, can be found. We
proceed to have the hair clipped from off' the entire length
of the back', ihen we take liquor ammonia, diluted with
four times its amount of cold water, and with this we
thoroughly saturate the place from which the hair has been



cut. We next cover the part with cloths several times
folded, to prevent the ammonia from evaporating. This
needs to be watched, but will often raise a blister in ten
minutes, whereas, cantharides rarely has any eflfect before
the next day. The ammonia is likewise more certain than
the Spanish fly, and is altogether to be preferred, as in
inflammation of the lungs in the horse there is no time to
be lost before remedial measures are adopted. While this
is doing, we procure four men if possible, and place one at
each leg, to rub the part with their hands as hard and as
long as they can. Four thick woollen bandages are then
produced, and one wound gently, not tightly, round each
leg. A hood is then put upon the animal's head, but the
whole of the body left uncovered.

" The next thing is to procure a cool loose box, not a
cold one, but a cool loose box, and to have the horse gently
led into it ; and then to look about and observe that no
draughts blow directly upon his body ; this being ascertained,
provided the weather be favourable, the door and windows
may be left open throughout the day.

" All this accomplished, order the following drink to be
prepared and administered : —



Sulphuric ether


1 ounce.


Laudanum


1 ounce.


Extract of belladonna


1 drachm.


Tincture of aconite .


2 drachms.


Cold water


1^ pint.



" Rub down the belladonna in a little of the water. Then
mix with the other ingredients. The aconite (wolfsbane)
should be of the strength of a drachm to an ounce. If
stronger or weaker, make the due allowance, so as to have
but the virtue of the fourth of a drachm in the drink.

"Should the foregoing be rejected, either of the following
may be employed : —

Tartar emetic (in the form of the antimonial

wine of the Dublin Pharmacopoeia) . 1 drachm.

Digitalis, made into a decoction . . 1 drachm.

Nitre ...... 2 drachms.

Cream of tartar ... .3 drachms.

"Mingle with a pint of warm water and give; or the
annexed may be tried : —



Powdered white hellebore
Powdered ipecacuanha



10 grains.
J drachm.



"Make the last prescription into a drink, with half a
pint of thick gruel Either of the above drinks is to be
given four times daily at the commencement, and to be
gradually lessened as the disease abates.

" Great caution is required, in giving a horse with in-
flammation of the lungs anything in the shape of a drink.
Time and patience accomplish wonders. Lower the horse's
head the moment it begins to cough. This last direction
is most important, and should not be neglected, or the
horse may fall dead from the fluid having fallen upon the
lungs, which the examination after death is certain to



DISEASES OF THE AIR PASSAGES.— HYDROTHORAX.— CATARRH, &c.



287



disclose. The best plan is to proceed with firmness and yet
gentleness, dividing the drink into four portions if necessary,
and allowing the animal to take its time over each.

" All food should be removed. No trouble should be
expressed because the horse does not eat. The animal, with
inflammation of the lungs, generally has no disposition to
feed, or if the inclination remain it should not be gratified.
Starvation is one of the most active means of cure, and one
of the surest agents in cutting short the complaint. The
horse will lose more flesh in one day from the wasting
efl^ects of the disorder, than he can in seven days from
actual abstinence. Warm mashes, not hot, however, may
be placed in the manger, because in inflammation of the
lungs it is dangerous to give any physic, lest the bowels
sympathize, and the animal perish. Two ounces of Epsom
salts may be dissolved in every pail of water, which should
be repeatedly changed, and placed continually before the
horse. Enemas of simple soap and water, in conjunction
with backraking, may also be tried, in order to excite the
bowels into action.

" If debility should appear, tartar emetic should be
withheld. If, in spite of this, the weakness increase, the
horse may have linseed tea made thick placed before it, with
two quarts of stout per day. The aconite, likewise, should
be withdrawn, and attention paid to the legs, rubbing them
whenever they are cold. In extreme cases, brandy and
ammonia are admissible.

" When the disease abates, which it generally does in
forty-eight hours, the care must not lessen ; for the attack
is likely to recur, or remain in a chronic stage as thick or
broken wind, or even to degenerate into glanders. It is
apt to involve other structures in its progress, as the
pleurae, when the symptoms will be somewhat confused,
being between pleurisy and pneumonia. In such a case,
the terminations may be either those of inflammation of
the lungs, or of the pleura.

" It is a bad sign when the flanks heave, and the horse's
head is put out of the window ; and a much worse one
when the head is withdrawn and the eye becomes amaurotic.
When the animal keeps walking round and round his box ;
and breaking into partial swea's, sometimes raises its head
and neighs, proving he is delirious, and in imagination
answering the call of his species. In this last case be
certain that death is not far off"

HYDROTHORAX (WATER IN THE CHEST).

This is a result of pleurisy — or pleuro-pneumonia as the
double disease of both pleura and lungs is called — it is
generally fatal. The only chance is by the operation called
" tapping," which is effected by introducing a trocar (a
cutting instrument with a canula four inches in length and
a quarter of an inch in diameter), when the fluid contained
in the cavity punctured escapes. Percivall* recommends

* See Hippopathology, vol. ii., pp. 112, 122, where operations and
successful cases are detailed.



aloes, calomel, digitalis, and tartarised antimony to be pei
sisted in ; and after the tapping the following : —

Blue vitriol ..... 1 drachm.
Digitalis ..... ^ drachm.

Tartarised antimony . . .2 di-achms.

Turpentine . . . . . 9. «. for a ball

Mayhew, who gives drawings of the trocar and its stylet,
with the operation of drawing off the fluid, advises, after the
process, carefully boiled oats and beans, and the following
night and morning.

Iodide of iron .... 1 drachm.

Strychnine . . . . • h grain.

Sulphate of zinc .... J drachm.

Extract of gentian and quassia (powdered) suflBcient to mix the ball.

CATARRH, COUGH, COMMON COLD, SORE-THROAT.

Common cold is an inflammation of the mucous membrane
lining the nostrils and throat. It may attack the neigh
bouring parts, or be confined to one only ; it may be so slight
as to ask no treatment, or become so severe as to threaten
suffocation. We have already noticed influenza or catarrhal
fever. In the simple attack on the Schneiderian membrane,
which shows itself by a thin watery secretion from the nose,
or perhaps the eyes, wc have the first symptoms of common
cold. In a few days the lymphatic glands become inflamed,
swelled, and tender, and symptomatic fever is present, and
the tendency of mucous membrane to form pus without
ulceration begins to shew itself Some cough is not unusually
present. The discharge thickens, then ceases, and the horse
is over the attack.

The Treatment is very simple. Extra clothing, &c.,
warmer dwelling, with a mild purgative ball, bran mashes
with nitre (six drachms) ; a drink of linseed meal or tea,
with an ounce of ipecacuanha wine mixed in, should the
cough be annoying, will sufiice. If there be much fever
(A) or (C) Febrifuges, p 235. When the discharge is con-
siderable, infuse bran or hay in boiling water, and steam the
horse's nostrils with a suspended nosebag. Read's patent
Vapour Inhaler is a most convenient and effective apparatus
where available.

Professor Spooner recommends sulphate of iron, two
drachms ; ginger, one drachm ; and gentian, two drachms ;
in treacle, as a tonic ball, once a day, when the discharge
from the nose in catarrh seems obstinate.

In Sore-throat, where the region of the gullet and fauces
is hot, and the salivary glands swollen and tender, a good
addition to the practice is a blister or mustard poultice to
the throat, with a fever ball, containing half a drachm of
tartar emetic and a drachm of nitre, night and morning.
Purgatives to be omitted, the food scalded, and the water
chilled.



288



THE PRACTICE OF VETERINARY MEDICINE.



CHRONIC DISEASES OF THE AIB PASSAGES : — ROARING, CHRONIC
COUGH, THICK WIND, BROKEN WIND.

The artificial life of the domesticated horse occasions
numerous diseases and changes of structure in his respira-
tory organs. Not only do the great lobes of the lungs suffer,
but the passages to them are altered in dimension, and
more or less obstructed, so that the sound produced by the
passage of air is modulated, and " wheezing," " whistling,"
" roaring," &c., become familiar terms among horsemen.
Thus, a horse " wheezes " when any obstruction exists in the
nostrils ; " whistles " when the obstruction is situated farther
back, and near the opening to the larynx ; and " roars "
when the larynx is malformed, or the hindrance to the
passage of air lies within the windpipe.

Roaring. — The causes of roaring are of two classes, acute
and chronic. The acute are from obstructions accidentally
formed, as cicatrices from wounds or injury, foreign sub-
stances lodged in the windpipe, extravasation of fluid or
coagulable lymph, which, once organised, forms a permanent
obstruction : when this extends up to the glottis, it produces
whistling. Whoever has handled the throats of many old
horses must have observed a hardened state of the larynx,
which almost resisted all attempts to what is termed
" cough them." This ossification is not an uncommon
cause ; and a similar state in the cartilages of the trachea
is productive of it also. A cause, also, of roaring is a band
of lymph stretched across the tracheal tube ; at others, an
internal ring of the same matter simply diminishes its
diameter. The obstruction is sometimes so considerable as
to excite the sound upon the slightest exertion ; in general
cases, however, roaring is only exerted when forcible in-
spirations and expirations are made. Mechanical obstruc-
tions to free respiration may eventually be productive of
roaring : the custom of tightly reining in our carriage-
horses, especially such as run in pairs or double harness,
there is reason to think, produces it ; the practice of using
tight throat-lashes or neck-straps may likewise induce it.
In furtherance of which last opinion it may be recollected
that horsemen have a very general supposition that crib-
biting ends in roaring, in thick wind, or in broken wind.
May not the tight collar, strapped around the throat, here
tend to the former of these affections ? The custom of
" coughing " horses, and so frequently as it is practised in
fairs, may be readily supposed as a cause. A horse passes
from fair to fair, having his unfortunate throat brutally
pinched thirty or forty times each day. Is it to be
wondered at if inflammation takes place, and adhesive
deposit follow ?

Treatment. This must be regulated by circumstances.
When it is acute, and depends upon the diseased state of
neighbouring parts, the inflammation of those parts must be
relieved. When it can be discovered to be the consequence
of recent inflammation of the laryngeal or tracheal carti-
lages, a physic ball may be given, and the seat of the disease



blistered, while, from day to day, some sedative medicine is
administered. In every case of roaring, however, excepting
the acute, the cure depends quite as much upon chance as
upon skill.

Chronic Cough. — Coughing is a spasmodic effort of the
diaphragm, intercostal, and abdominal muscles, producing
a forcible expulsion of the air from the chest with such
violence as is calculated to remove any extraneous body
that may intercept the free passage of the air. Whenever
it accompanies a general affection of the constitution, it is
regarded as simply " symptomatic," and the original disease
is attended to for its removal. Thus catarrh is accom-
panied by a cough, but we attend principally to the general
affection, as the best means of subduing it. A " chronic
cough " is often symptomatic of some affection of the air-
passages ; it is also an attendant upon the state called
broken wind. It likewise accompanies glanders ; and ap-
pears when worms are in the stomach and bowels. But
besides these cases, there exist at times, without any
attendant difiiculty of breathing (the horse at the same
time eating well and thriving), a permanent cough, usually
more considerable in the morning and evening, after meals,
particularly after drinking, or on first going out to exercise;
and it will remain in this state, without otherwise affecting
the horse, for years ; sometimes it will even be continued
with no obvious injury for his whole life.

The Treatment of " chronic cough " must depend on our
view of its causes and consequences. When it appears to
arise from a want of mucous secretion, give expectorants
which excite such secretion (A) or (C) Expectorants, p. 235.
When a redundancy of the mucous secretion is apparent,
tonics are required. See Tonics and Stimulants in List.
When the secretion is acrid, try a Demulcent, p. 232. The
cough, which is the effect of an irritable state of the parts,
is sometimes relieved by stimulating the throat externallyi
and by giving internally opium with bitter tonics.

When worms in any large numbers are present in the
stomach, or intestines, a continued cough generally exists,
with irregular appetite and unthrifty coat, stools fetid and
slimy, at one time loose and at another hard and dry ; for
which turn to the head under which those parasites are
specially treated of In all chronic coughs the best effects
sometimes follow from feeding with carrots. Turnips, pars-
neps, beet, and potatoes, may be beneficially used where
carrots cannot be got ; and a mash with bran and linseed,
or malt, may be occasionally given. Try the following every
morning, made into a ball with honey : —

Powdered ipecaxjuanha . . • i drachm.

Camphor .... 2 drachms.

Extract of belladonna . . .1 scrapie.

Thick Wind. — This is also a consequence of either acute or
chronic pulmonary inflammation. In some instances, it is
the immediate consequence of violent or long-continued
exercise, and particularly if the exercise be taken upon a
distended stomach and bowels, or after full drinking ; or it



DISEASES OF THE AIR PASSAGES.— BROKEN WIND.



289



may be brought on by the application of cold. It is often
connected with a plethoric state, and is therefore very com-
mon among pampered animals and gross feeders ; and more
particularlj in low-bred and thick-set horses. The post-
mortem examinations of such cases exhibit, in some instances,
a slight hepatization of lung, the consequence of repeated
congestions ; in others, the minute bronchial cells are filled
with adhesive matter, or the general substance may be per-
vaded with minute granulations of a bluish colour.

The Symptoms of thick wind are sufficiently known to any
one at all conversant with horses. The capacity of the air-
cells being diminished, renders it necessary for the air to be
more frequently taken in, because, being acted on by a less
surface, the blood is not thoroughly oxygenated ; and a suf-
ficient number of air-cells not being expanded, the animal
makes hasty inspirations to remedy the default. The force
with which these are eifected occasions the sound so well
known as the distinguishing mark of thick wind. In this
affection, the obstruction to both being equal, the inspira-
tions and expirations are alike, which serves to distinguish
it from broken wind. Thick is however very apt to de-
generate into broken wind.

The Treatment of thick wind can seldom be more than
palliative, for, once established, it remains permanent. The
remedial means are more in the hands of the proprietor than
of the surgeon. The food must be moderate in quantity,
and of such a kind as will occupy the least possible space.
No hay should be allowed ; and as thick-winded horses are
gross feeders, the muzzle ought to be put on as soon as the
manger has been emptied.

Broken Wind. — This peculiar aSection has long excited
the attention of veterinarians. The older writers indulged
in the most extravagant notions respecting it. On the Con-
tinent it has occupied, in later times, the research of many
eminent veterinarians, but with little satisfactory issue. It
has been attributed to external and internal causes ; to a
defect, and to a superabundance, of vital energy ; to altered
structure of the heart, of the lungs, of the diaphragm, the
stomach, the liver, &c. It is injury with some, nervousness
with others, and simple distension with a third. Among
our own writers the discrepancj' is equally great : Gibson
attributed it to an enlargement of the pulmonary mass
generally ; Dr. Lower to a rupture of the phrenic nerve ;
but in later times it has been mostly attributed to structural
change.

The cause of broken wind is hereditary or constitutional
predisposition. A certain form of body is unquestionably
favourable to its production, and it is from this circum-
stance that it proves hereditary The narrow confined
chest, and the pendent belly, which mark low-bred horses
and gross feeders, predispose towards the affection. It
may be the subjecting horses to a long-continued un-
healthy course of feeding on dry food, as chaff, bran, bar-
ley meal, &c. &c. that brings it on ; as also working in
mills, where much dust is necessarily inhaled. It is seldom
o o



the immediate consequence of pneumonia ; but frequently
it results from those states of disordered respiration which
succeed to it, as thick wind, chronic cough, &c. We are
much in the dark about its origin : we see that it gradually
steals on a horse, occupying months, and even years, with
a slight occasional cough, which, ripening into a state of
impeded respiration, at last ends in broken wind. We see
it also follow one hard gallop ; and we may leave a horse
well one day and find him broken-winded the next.

It is not by any means uncommon to meet with broken-
winded horses whose lungs after death are neither emphy-
sematous or otherwise structurally deranged ; and which,
with the exception of their lighter colour, and greater bulk
than natural, cannot well be distinguished from the sound
lung, although they crepitate or crackle when pressed by
the hand. It appears likely that rupture of the air-cells is



Online LibraryW. J. (William J.) MilesModern practical farriery : a complete system of the veterinary art as at present practised at the Royal Veterinary College, London → online text (page 72 of 160)