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Re: [RC] Vaccinations - Heidi Smith

I have always given the spring 5 way shot in the neck and never had any
problems until last year with a new horse.  He became severely swollen
and very sick.  He could barely lift his head.

So, fast forward to this year and I decided to take them to the vet to
have it done to rule out anything I might have done wrong.  I told the
vet what happened last year to the new guy and asked him to give them in
the butt(down the back a little bit).  He did and the horses got WNV in
one side and the 5-way in the other side.  To make a long story short
both of the horses could hardly walk about 1 1/2 days after the shots on
the WNV side.  I did give bute and they were fine in 2-3 days.  So, I
will probably go back to giving shots myself and stick with the neck.

Reactions can and do occur in ANY site.  That said--it seems to me that the
whole point of using the pecs was brought home in this comparison--a horse
uncomfortable in the pecs may have a hard time walking, but a horse with a
stiff neck may go without feed and water because it hurts too much to
bother.  Give me the "can't walk" reaction any day.  Never mind the
difference in sites if one should be so unfortunate as to have an abcess....
It only took looking at one horse on the pathology floor with an abcess that
had migrated down the fascial planes in the neck into the thoracic cavity
and died as a result to cure me of vaccinating in the neck.  I've treated a
couple of abcesses in the pecs over the years, and they are relatively
simple matters of opening the abcess up to allow ventral drainage and
flushing it out.  I've likewise treated more than a handful in the neck--and
they are FAR more frustrating to treat, sometimes ending up like SuG's
example, with a big divot of missing muscle.  Likewise managed to save one
that the owner had given an injection in the croup which subsequently
abcessed--scooped out 5 gallons of pus and dead muscle tissue, and the horse
lived, but it was certainly never an athlete again.


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[RC] Vaccinations, Lynda K Thompson