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This is a discussion on HYPP within the Horse Breeds forums, part of the Horse Breeds, Breeding, and Genetics category

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    03-04-2008, 12:54 PM
Green Broke

So I've been offered a QH that is H/N for HYPP. Has anyone here had to deal with that? I've heard it can be regulated with special feed (low potassium- no alfalfa, sweet feed, etc). I wouldn't even consider a H/H QH, but a N/H? What are your thoughts?
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    03-04-2008, 01:06 PM
Green Broke
Eh, so I've pretty much made up my mind. :) I just looked up some more info and I don't really think it's worth it to take on that kind of risk. But I"m still curious about what you guys think and your experiences with it!
    03-04-2008, 01:47 PM
My mare is N/H. She hasn't shown any symptoms and I haven't changed her feed, mainly because her body is used to it and a change in feed might cause an attack.
I do everything with her and it hasn't gotten in the way of anything. Except buying treats, but she's happy with her carrots and apples.

If you are interested in the horse, i'd definitely ask what feed he's on now, and if he's ever had an attack. And get the vet records too! Some owners might lie about attacks, but generally speaking, N/H horses don't have nearly the amount of attacks that H/H horses do.

I didn't know she had HyPP before I bought her. Her first owner (who bred Vega's mom to a Impress Me Shanon) never had her tested because she never showed any signs. And then the barn where I got her from never even mentioned it to me. When I joined here, I found out about it and then found out she had it.

It is a lot to take on. Keep Caro Syrup on hand. If the horse starts having an attack, give them a syringe of that and it could help.

Bringinglighttohypp.org is a great site. I've learned a lot of information there.
    03-04-2008, 03:51 PM
It really depends on whether or not you want to breed or whatever, I guess. Like, yeah, you can regulate it and it also depends on whether or not the horse is actually affected by it. I would ask the owner if she has ever had symptoms or a spasm of some sort.
    03-11-2008, 08:28 PM
I am very familiar with HYPP and have had meny world champions that were N/H or H/H. It is not a terrible problem if you know what you are dealing with and have a knowledge of how to treat the horse if the do have a severe attack. Mild attack can often go unnoticed but severe ones can kill them if the potassium levels in your horse gets too high. There are a lot of remedies that you can keep onhand in your barn if you do have a positive horse - corn syrup, potasium pills etc.... I found this article that explains HYPP in lamens terms so that everyone can understand what it is. People should also be very careful about saying bad things about HYPP horses because 9 times out of 10, the people putting them down have never had any first hand experience with a positive horse and are talking soley from what they have read on the internet.

Names: HYPP, Hyperkalemic Periodic Paralysis, Impressive Syndrome

Causes: HYPP is a genetic disorder seen in some horses with Quarter Horse breeding. Any horse whose pedigree traces back to the sire "Impressive" should be tested for HYPP. Theses horses have an inabilty to regulate electorlytes such as sodium, chloride and pottasium. The electrolyte imbalance in the blood causes impaired nerve function that can lead to muscle termors and eventually paralysis.

Symptoms: Weakness, especially in the hindquarters, trembling, abnormal perspiring, unusual appearance of the third eyelid (nictitating membrane), collapse, distorted vocalizations. During an attack the horse remains alert. Attacks can occur at rest and during work. The horse appears normal after an attack.

Effects: An attack can range from mild to severe. During a mild attack a horse may tremble, have muscle cramping, and respiratory distress. Death can occur if the potassium levels become too elevated.

Prevention: Horses with HYPP can be maintained on a low potassium diet, moderate outdoor daily exercise, and strict feeding schedule. The only way to eliminate HYPP is to not breed horses that carry the HYPP gene. Genetic testing should be done on any horse suspected of having Quarter Horse bloodlines tracing back to the sire "Impressive".

Treatment: A mild attack can be dealt with by exercising the horse very lightly and feeding a low potassium/ high carbohydrate feed to drive the potassium levels in the blood down. More severe attacks require veterinary care.
    03-11-2008, 08:55 PM
Green Broke
Thanks so much for your input! I do have to admit, I have no experience with HYPP! But I agree, the internet tends to be a little dramatic at times about certain things. So I have a few questions...

1. How sellable is a horse with HYPP? Every horse I own is for sale so I can only afford to take on something that I know I can sell.

2. How do you define "moderate daily exercise"? I ride hunters and jumpers, both disciplines are fairly strenuous. Too strenuous? And if I know i'm going to be gone for a few days, do I need to make sure that someone will be able to exercise him while i'm gone?

3. What do you feed your horses?

    03-11-2008, 09:08 PM
1. How sellable is a horse with hypp? Every horse I own is for sale so I can only afford to take on something that I know I can sell.
I'm Vega's 3rd owner. 2nd really. Her first owner was her breeder and sold her unbroke for $3,000 I believe. Then she came to NJ where a boarding stable owned her. She was for sale and I got her for $4500. At the time I got her, no one knew she had hypp, so I can't really comment on that. But they are really no different than any other type of horse.

2. How do you define "moderate daily exercise"? I ride hunters and jumpers, both disciplines are fairly strenuous. Too strenuous? And if I know i'm going to be gone for a few days, do I need to make sure that someone will be able to exercise him while i'm gone?
I cannot get up to see Vega as much as I like, but she's turned out daily, and when I am up there, she gets exercise anywhere from 30 min to 1 hour, but she's always wanting to do more. The times when i'm not up there, she does fine (as in I have yet to receive any sort of phone call about her having an attack) I even had to go down to georgia for a few days and she was fine when I came back.

3. What do you feed your horses?
Vega is on the same feed she's been on for the last year and half. I'm not sure what its a mix of, but whatever it is, it works. Even though its suggested to change their food, the change in feed my actually trigger an attack, and I was told from people who had experience with hypp horses, to just keep her feed the same.

I know I didn't answer your questions 100%, I just hope I helped out a bit.
    03-11-2008, 09:10 PM
As a hunter jumper, I would advise against a HYPP positive horse. What tends to provoke an attack is hot weather coupled with high heart rate in my experience.

My positive horses are fed Compete by Nutrina and medow hay. It is not to high in potassium but is high in energy. ALL the positive horses that I have had were HALTER horses. They would spend about 2 hours a day on the hot walker, about 3 hours tied to the wall of their stable and the rest of the time resting in their box. As they were all show horses, they rarely got free time in the field if at all.

I have not tried to show a positive horse under saddle and would advise against it if you are competing at a high level but I do know people that do and the horses are fine (these are all N/H and have NEVER shown any signs of fitting). If the horse has had fits in the past- THEY WILL HAVE FITS AGAIN, and they don't get less severe with time, they get worse.

H/H & N/H horses can be a valuable asset to your farm, but you need to make sure that you are using them for the purpose that they were bred for :)
    03-11-2008, 09:30 PM
Green Broke
Originally Posted by I Love Lane
As a hunter jumper, I would advise against a hypp positive horse. What tends to provoke an attack is hot weather coupled with high heart rate in my experience.
Ah, exactly the kind of info I was looking for.... seeing how it gets over 100 for months at a time here in blazing hot OK, I'm thinking I may not be the best home for this horse. Thanks I Love Lane!
    03-11-2008, 09:41 PM
No worries.

I do want to make it very clear though that I am all for having Hypp positive horses. Just maybe not for the purpose that you have in mind :)................. they make wonderful halter horses

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