Sand Colic

Sand Colic

Recently we have seen a number of cases of severe sand colic. Most horses have presented with colic signs but some horse present with diarrhea. This is because the sand impaction allows liquid manure content to flow past the impaction.

Ultrasound and x-ray of the abdomen are important diagnostic tools in establishing a diagnosis of sand impaction when horses are not passing sand in their manure. The ingested sand drops to the bottom of the intestinal tract, mainly the large colon and can be seen on x-ray and ultrasound.

Most sand colics can be treated medically with analgesia, oral fluids, magnesium sulphate and psyllium. However, some of the more severe cases require surgery to relieve the impaction.

Prevention of sand colic is best approached by avoiding sandy paddocks. If this is not possible then feeding horses from feed bins and hay bags above the ground is advisable. The addition of psyllium to the diet is also recommended. We think that psyllium helps with intestinal movement, and agglutinates with the sand and allows it to pass through the gut as a gel. Psyllium is best fed daily for 5 to 7 days and then repeated every month until the horse has been removed from sandy paddocks. Psyllium administration should continue for 2 months after removal from sandy pasture.

“Thank you so much for helping our big mate Woody!! All the staff did an excellent job from referral to op to aftercare. Very friendly and answered all questions – even when they’re exhausted from being fabulous at fixing our equine friends. My family and I are exceptionally thankful for all your help!!! Wish I could give you 10 stars!!!”
Louise - Facebook Review

“I just wanted to say a massive thank you to everyone at SEEH – especially Gareth and Jess who ultimately saved my pride and joy horse after she cut her hind leg to the bone quite horrifically. 5 months on and two leg casts she’s now recovering and I have the SEEH team to thank for all their help and answering of any questions I’ve had.”
Samantha - Facebook Review

Request a Booking

Our team will reply to confirm your appointment.

Preferred Day of Booking

Preferred Time of Booking

South Eastern Equine Hospital

(03) 8790 4922

Clinic Hours

Mon - Fri: 8:30am - 5:30pm
Sat-Sun: Emergencies only

Available 24/7 for Emergencies

Follow our Facebook Page



359 Belgrave-Hallam Road
Narre Warren North
VIC 3804