KHP is listing their new "rare" white TB - Page 3 - The Horse Forum

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post #21 of 33 Old 07-27-2011, 10:43 PM
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Faceman, I don't know that I've ever read any statistics about the rate of grays actually dying from melanoma, but it's common enough to be disconcerting. I knew a mare who had it internally, causing horribly diarrhea and weight loss until she had to be euthed. A friend's horse had it so that it cut off her airway, again leading to euthanasia. I've heard of it strangulating the bowel and causing fatal colic, or causing horrific (thus fatal) neurological damage by butting up against the spinal cord. There is a mare in my vet's practice--if she hasn't died yet--who has them all over her body, just subdermal. There's a football-sized lump at her throat. She had to have a permanent tracheotomy. It's horrible. Some of these horses, oddly enough, never displayed the outward signs of lumps and bumps before dying of internal cancer. I really don't know how it works, or what causes it to be harmless in one horse and deadly in another. All I know is that in terms of getting it in the first place, homozygous grays are at an increased risk, as are horses in general who do not possess a copy of the A agouti gene.

With pink-skinned horses, I always thought the dominant cancer to watch out for was squamous cell carcinoma? I may be wrong, but I've seen several cases of that on the eyes and genitals of some Appaloosas I know.

Oh, and Faceman, I believe they've all but given up on using gray horses as models of human melanoma, unless they've recently found some new application. The inheritance and expression of the cancer is quite different between the species, which is not what they'd hoped to find.

LadyDreamer, I believe those are dominant whites.
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post #22 of 33 Old 07-27-2011, 10:48 PM
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^^And that is exactly why Dobe will likely be the last gray horse I ever own. I had 2 melanomas taken off him a couple of years ago and now there are 4 more that need to go (one of which is right in the middle of his back where the bars of my saddle sit). He's only 9 years old so I am hoping, but not counting, on having him until his elder years.
Can anyone show me what melanomas look like in the very, very small stages? I've had 3 grays (two adults, one is still a yearling) and I have yet to see a melanoma, although my Fox Trotter does have two tiny, tiny mole-looking lumps, about 1/2 the size of a pea. One is where the cinch goes and one is on her shoulder. Both are covered with hair (for the most part, the cinch one gets rubbed a bit). Anyway, I don't know if they are melanomas or just benign moles or blemishes.

I showed one to my vet and he didn't think anything of it and said that if she got melanomas they would likely be under her tail, vulva, face or jawline. She has no lumps or skin blemishes in any of those areas. So maybe I am worried for nothing, but hey, it's in my nature to worry! She is 17 years old.

My other adult gray was a 24 yr old Arabian that died of re-occuring colic. If he had any tumors they were internal, because I never saw any blemishes on him either. And I groom my horses pretty thoroughly, so I think I would have noticed even the smallest lump.

Now I did have a Paint gelding in his late 20's that developed cancer in his sheath/penis, but that is a whole 'nother topic I suppose.

So, do melanomas start out small and covered with hair? Smrobs, are Dobe's hair covered? When I Google the subject, I just get all these horrible pictures of tumors under the tail and such.
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post #23 of 33 Old 07-27-2011, 10:51 PM
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Usually I see them depicted, yes, as those dark, hairless nodules around the anus. The subdermal ones I saw on the poor mare I described were all covered with hair, but huge and covering a good percentage of her body (and also obviously not part of the skin). Do you have pictures? Could very well just be sarcoids, though naturally it doesn't hurt to keep an eye on them for growth.
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post #24 of 33 Old 07-27-2011, 11:16 PM
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Usually I see them depicted, yes, as those dark, hairless nodules around the anus. The subdermal ones I saw on the poor mare I described were all covered with hair, but huge and covering a good percentage of her body (and also obviously not part of the skin). Do you have pictures? Could very well just be sarcoids, though naturally it doesn't hurt to keep an eye on them for growth.
Izzy's are a part of her skin. If she wasn't a gray, I would assume the one in the cinch area was a bit of scar tissue from a past cinch sore or something.

The one of the shoulder is normally covered with hair, but one of the last times I rode her it got kind of scabby and then the scabbed sloughed. So I've been putting a little antibiotic ointment on it. I don't have pictures, but if I remember I can get them tomorrow.

They look almost identical to the ones in this post, particularly the photo with the fingernails in the picture.

Mysterious Lump

Actually, I just went back and looked at the above link. They are not that dramatic on Izzy. I will have to try to get photos.

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post #25 of 33 Old 07-27-2011, 11:43 PM
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THR, this is what Dobe's look like. When they are smaller, they appear to have hair on them but don't really. They are just small little lumps that are hard and don't seem to cause any pain.

The smaller ones on his face right now.


And here are the larger ones that he had on his butt a couple of years ago.



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post #26 of 33 Old 07-27-2011, 11:47 PM
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I see the big one below the anus--is that dot on the left side of his rump a tumor as well? Why did your vet advise you to remove them, and what method did you use?
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post #27 of 33 Old 07-27-2011, 11:55 PM
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Yep, the smaller one to the left is a tumor as well. The vet didn't advise it, really, he said he would remove them if I wanted him to or he would leave them, it was up to me. I wanted it done because both were growing quickly (grew to that size in just a few months). Because they were both just on the skin, the surgical removal was relatively easy. Vet just cut through the dermal layer around them in sort-of an elongated diamond pattern and when they were off, he just sewed it up. This was after, just before the stitches were taken out.


And now, other than a small scar where the one on the left was, you can't even tell they were there and I've found no more around the incision area.

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post #28 of 33 Old 07-28-2011, 01:19 AM
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Thanks Smrobs for the photos, they are very helpful. The ones on his face are similar to what Izzy's look like.

Do they ever peel or anything? The one on her shoulder she's had since I bought her (almost 2 years now) and it has never caused an issue but I did a 13 mile trail ride and the lump is under the saddle blanket. Not where the saddle actually sits, but under the corner of the blanket, and so after the long ride it appeared to scab and slough the top layer. That was the first time it's ever done that.

Your vet did a nice job of removing them. If my vet wanted to do that I would be all for it (I've had a couple of moles removed on myself in a similar fashion) but my vet just kind of shrugged it off. Maybe in the spring when he comes out again I can bring it up again and see what he says. Luckily (so far) they don't seem to be growing in a noticeable fashion. Unless the one that scabbed over doesn't heal well or something.

Thank you Bubba13 for all great information too!
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post #29 of 33 Old 07-28-2011, 03:06 AM
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There is a woman in my area who breeds paints and TB'S, and claims she has "rare white tb's"...infact, she had a white stud colt that sold at keenland a while back for somewhere around 900,000 (for accuracy sake, I am basing the amount on memory, can't find it on her website to verify the actual amount.) He wasn't fast enough, and I heard he was sold to a Hollywood animal trainer subsequently.

Anyway, here is her website (it's pretty bad, she is an older lady and my guess maintains her website herself.)

Bubba, out of curiosity, what are you in school for? You are so well written


http://www.painteddesert.net/images/4_whites_bl.jpeg

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post #30 of 33 Old 07-28-2011, 03:13 AM
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Is that so? Well, thank ya kindly for the compliment. I'm a senior pre-vet student.
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