Septicemia in the Mini Foal

Septicemia is the major cause of death in foals less than 7 days old. Early recognition of sepsis is
desirable for a number of reasons. First, delay in treatment is an independent risk factor for poor
survival. Second, the costs associated with treatment of septic foals are higher than those of
other critically ill foals and early recognition can aid in making economic decisions regarding
treatment. Third, the decision to institute antimicrobial therapy or the choice of the antimicrobial
agent is clearly influenced by whether the foal is septic.

The signs of sepsis in a mini foal can be very subtle, depending on the bacterial involved and if your
foal was able to get colostrum, “early milk” from its mother which confers immunity to many

If you see these symptoms in your mini foal during his first 7 days of life you’re your veterinarian.
    1. depression
    2. decreased or absent suck reflex
    3. fever
    4. low temperature
    5. not wanting to stand
    6. lack of weight gain
    7. increased respiratory rate
    8. shivering
    9. lameness

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