COPD experiences - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 06-05-2009, 01:12 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Illinois
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COPD experiences

We may have a lead on a new horse. This horse is one whose owners can no longer afford him. He may have COPD. Any experience with this? From the initial information I have, this boy only has problems in very crowded, dusty places. Currently, he's being kept in a barn with 2 or 3 other horses and doesn't have a problem at all.

The good thing about this guy is that he's middle-aged and has a lot of experience and training. Other than the problems with dust, I don't think he's currently got any problems. Any suggestions for us? Would you consider a COPD horse?

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post #2 of 3 Old 06-05-2009, 08:03 AM
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: New Jersey
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where my horse is they actually bought their daughter a horse she was very sweet and BROKE and ran kick @$$ barrel times. Then two weeks after they bought her she started having bad coughing fits thats when they found out is was COPD. They ended up getting meds from the vet(mind you this horse was in her mid-to-late-twenties) and that helped for a while but one day the girls dad was on the tractor in the fields and all of the sudden Brandie went down. He jumped off the tractor and ran over to her and she just kind of looked at him and gave two last big breaths and unfortunately she passed away right there. They were devastated. Even though they only had her for a few months she had become a great member of the family due to her attitude and despite the breathing she still ran breath taking barrel runs even when they tried to hold her back to save her lungs but she just had that drive. So I would consider a COPD horse because they shouldn't be just thrown away because something is wrong. If a horse loves to do something they will do it to their full potential. The medicine really helped Brandie and we found out the thing that took her was a heart attack (due to a combo of her age and the breathing) let us know about your decision.

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post #3 of 3 Old 06-05-2009, 08:24 AM
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Watertown, MN
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I had a COPD horse. He died last year at 27 years old. He was diagnosed when he was about 13 years old or so and lived a pretty long and useful life after that. In my experience/research the best thing for them is to be outside (away from dusty barns). They can be fed hay, but it needs to be not dusty. We would water ours. Another option is to feed cubes or pellets. It depends on how bad they are too. Red's medicine did a great job of controlling his symtoms when they got bad. We were definitely able to ride him. In fact, the vet encouraged us too and said it was good for his lungs. The only thing to watch for was not to ride him when he was having an attack. I've heard that the triggers can differ too. In Red's case, besides normal dust & such he had a really hard time when the corn fields were blooming (pollen in the air) and when it got really hot & muggy. This got much worse as he got older.

All in all, I wouldn't advise against buying the horse as long as you know how bad the symptoms are and are prepared to deal with them. However, IMO if you are looking for a competition horse I wouldn't get a COPD horse... but for a trail horse I think they would be fine.
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