2015 Student Research Conference:
28th Annual Student Research Conference

Objective Assessment of Back Pain in Horses
Shannon M. Heibeck
Dr. Kelly Walter, Faculty Mentor

Eighteen university-owned horses were used to develop a procedure for objectively assessing back pain in horses. Horses remained in regular, light work for the entire 44 day study. Evaluation was standardized by dividing each horses back into four equal quadrants lengthwise, beginning at the highest point of the withers and ending at the sacroiliac joint, and extending widthwise from the centerline of the spine down 7 inches. The third quadrant was selected as the area of interest for this study. The third quadrant was clipped in order to maintain consistency over time, and 9 data points were selected (corners and their mid-points) for weekly evaluation using a Force Gage pressure meter. A negative pain response was classified as no reaction to the application of 13 pounds of pressure. It was hypothesized that this would allow for detection of changes in back pain over a 44 day period.

Keywords: Horses, Back pain, Pain Assessment

Topic(s):Agricultural Science

Presentation Type: Poster

Session: 1-1
Location: GEO-SUB
Time: 3:30

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