Equine Normals
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The mucous membranes should be pink and moist. The oral mucous membranes are easy to evaluate in the horse.

To test an animal's capillary refill time use your thumb to press on the animal's gums, after you withdraw your thumb the color of the gums should return to normal within 1- 2 seconds.
Jugular Vein
  • The veins should be evaluated for distensibility, refill, thrombosis and estimated venous pressure. Jugular pulsations are normally seen in the ventral third of the neck (distal 10 cm) and are reflections of right atrial pressure changes.
  • The evaluation of jugular venous refill is another indication of perfusion and hydration status.
  • The jugular veins are collapsed and should fill rapidly (within several seconds) when held off (Valsalva maneuver).
  • The evaluation of the saphenous vein refill is a good indication of hind limb perfusion.
    The saphenous veins are visible and somewhat filled. Each saphenous vein should be held off and the blood within stripped back towards the pelvis. The vein should then be released and should fill within several seconds.

Saphenous Vein

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