Horse Health Glossary

Not sure what that veterinary word means? Look it up below!

Reprinted with permission from the University of California, Davis, The Book of Horses edited by Mordecai Siegal.

WALKING DISEASE:
Older name for pyrrolizidine alkaloid intoxication.
WAVE MOUTH:
Abnormality of older horses characterized by a wavelike or stair-step configuration of the premolars and molars from front to back; also called step mouth.
WEAVING:
A stable vice characterized by a repetitive rocking motion made by rhythmically swinging the head and neck from side to side while transferring the weight back and forth from one foreleg to the other.
WHEAL:
A discrete, well-circumscribed, reddened skin swelling with a flat top and steep-walled margins, produced by edema in the dermis; often associated with allergic reactions, i.e., urticaria; also called a "hive."
WHITE MUSCLE DISEASE:
Muscle abnormality resulting from inadequate intake of selenium or vitamin E.
WINDPUFFS:
Chronic swelling of the fetlock joint.
WIND-SUCKING:
A stable vice in which the horse flexes its neck while forcibly swallowing air; also, aspiration of air and debris into the vagina (pneumovagina).
WITHERS:
Ridge between the shoulder blades.
WOBBLER SYNDROME:
A common cause of incoordination in young horses, particularly Thoroughbreds; results from spinal cord compression caused by a narrowing of the vertebral canal, malalignment of neck vertebrae, or excessive growth of the surrounding soft tissue; also called wobbles.
WOLF TOOTH:
A vestigial first premolar tooth, sometimes present.

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