Help! Senior horse -- cough and white mucus -- vet

Merry Christmas eve!

I have a senior horse, age 31, who presented with a bad deep cough. When he didn’t get better we had the vet out who said he has fluid in his lungs. We put him on antibiotics and also did two steroid shots. This morning he had white thick mucus out of one side of his nose. Is this cause for additional concern and another call to the vet? Today is his third day on antibiotics.


Are you checking his temp? Off his feed at all?
Given his age I would definitely give the vet a call.

I’d call for sure, but I would not be totally panicked about the discharge. That fluid in his lungs has to go somewhere. The fact it’s breaking up can he’s coughing/snotting it up and out is likely a good thing, and a sign the drugs are working? I would think?

Let us know what the vet says!

Haven’t checked his temp but I believe the vet did Monday (I had to work so had a family member here for me). He’s eating just fine despite having to eat soaked hay. No new mucus since this morning.

I’m thinking I’ll wait until Friday and see how he’s doing. If more mucus or not improving will call again.

Take his temp immediately.

Take his temp immediately.[/QUOTE]

Also what’s the consistency of the discharge, and does it smell?

It was thick and white. Didn’t notice an odor.

He may have developed RAO which, of course, no amount of antibiotics will help. Just a thought.

He may have developed RAO which, of course, no amount of antibiotics will help. Just a thought.[/QUOTE]

What is an RAO? Too tired to figure out acronyms this evening?

To the OP, good luck with your old fellow. Wish I had words of wisdom for you.

What is RAO? I’m usually good with acronyms but, like the above poster, I am too tired to apply my brain to it tonight. :slight_smile: I am interested in mucus in the senior horse, having had a bout of it.

Any one of these:

Recurrent Airway Obstruction, I am guessing.

I would be taking his temp. 3 times a day, minimum. Pretty surprised your vet didn’t order that.


Any one of these:

Recurrent Airway Obstruction, I am guessing.[/QUOTE]

Here’s some information that might be helpful.

Keep an eye on this temperature and eating habits. JMO, but it be may time to have his teeth checked. I’ve found with my horses it is a sure sign of something going on in the mouth, especially if temps are normal and its putting down all its feed and hay.

Take this horse’s temp A LOT. At least three times a day. Temps spike and subside. You need to stay on top of the temp.

check his teeth and sinus… but if there is no smell, it may not come from there. My mare has a chronic sinus problem caused by a track between the gap of a tooth that was removed and the sinus. At times, she has a discharge from the left nostril, but it smells. Then it goes away…
Good luck for you and your senior citizen.