Wednesday, March 13, 2013

A Medical Doctor Treats Sick Horses

Horses were an essential part of the Civil War military. They were responsible for transporting food, supplies and artillery. Sickness among horses could have a devastating effect on the course of a campaign.
Confederate surgeon Herbert M, Nash was treating soldiers with malaria, when the unit's horses began to stumble and tremble.
"While the men were thus suffering with malaria, the horses became affected with blind staggers and many died. Without horses the artillery could not be moved, and they could not be replaced.
"I made autopsies and became convinced that the same or a similar poison was acting on both men and horses, and rode to Richmond, reported the facts to the Surgeon-General and appealed to him for an issue of a dozen ounces of quinine to treat the horses.
"He at first declined to issue the quinine for horses when he could not issue it for the men. I replied very earnestly that this was a most extraordinary condition which should be combated with every possible available means, and that I should be obliged to report to army headquarters the object of my visit and its results.
"Seeing the intensity of my conviction he finally relented and gave me the quinine, with which I speedily returned to the bottoms, to drench each horse as soon as the symptoms appeared with one ounce of quinine to the quart of water.
But one such dose was given to each sick horse. I am glad to relate that not another horse died, and I subsequently had them removed a mile back from the river to the pines, when the cases of staggers ceased to occur."


Post a Comment


Facebook Twitter Delicious Stumbleupon Favorites