To assess the effect of enteral fluid therapy (EFT) in horses with colic, 78 adult horses with colon impactions and 30 with left dorsal colon displacements received an isotonic electrolyte solution via a nasogastric tube at a rate of 8 to 10 l every two hours until resolution of clinical signs. Clinical progression was monitored closely, and plasma biochemistry was evaluated before, during and after treatment. Volume of fluids, time to resolution, and outcome were also recorded. EFT was well tolerated by 102 of 108 horses and was an effective method to resolve 99 per cent of colon impactions and 83 per cent of displacements. For both groups, the mean (sd) time to resolution was 20.2 (5.2) hours and the volume of fluid administered was 118.6 (34.5) l. No relevant abnormalities were observed in most plasma biochemistry parameters during treatment, except for a mild haemodilution effect in 63 per cent of horses.