A rapid thready or weak pulse may indicate a patient going into hypovolemic shock.  High pulse rates due to sympathetic stimulation from pain alone will be strong and bounding.  The degree of increase in rate is a good indication of the severity of the horse’s condition.  Evaluating the pulse may be a more valuable assessment of cardiovascular status than taking the heart rate directly via a stethoscope over the heart.  



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Copyright 1999-2001
New Bolton Center Field Service Department
Students:  Keith Javic - Class of 2003, C. Nikki Conroy - Class of 2003