Crested neck, Is there anything I can do? - Page 2

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Crested neck, Is there anything I can do?

This is a discussion on Crested neck, Is there anything I can do? within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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    08-28-2012, 05:00 PM
I'm not concerned about her size I don't want a trim horse I already have one of those. I am getting her checked by the vet.

I was just curious if working her, watching her feed or anything else could help. She is a 7 or 8 on the bcs as I have mentioned before the pictures do not show what I would like to be seen. I know that you will not be able to see ribs on a draft but if you put pressure you should be able to feel the ribs and with her if I had an egg it would not be able to roll off of her rump. I know that clydes are bred to be big but I have seen quite a few in better flesh than her.
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    08-28-2012, 05:09 PM
Super Moderator
weight watching

My son works our mini clyde quite hard and she still looks very chunky - though its muscle rather than flab.
We watch her grazing - she is never out on acres of lush grass and spends a good part of the day in the stable to keep her off it altogether. She wouldn't settle on a dirt patch and either paces up and down or jumps out so stabling works best for her
I feed a non molassed complete feed that I adjust as per work and add hay stretcher pellets, bran & non mollassed sugar beet again to suit what amount of work she is doing. She gets hay in the stable but not 'ad lib' as she would literally keep eating until she burst.
You'll develop an eye for how she should look so you'll notice when she loses and gains weight. Our one has enough energy for 3 horses but if she's the type that needs a boost that's something you can fix by adjusting her feed levels - sugar beet is a good safe form of energy release and approved by laminitis research
aducato1211 likes this.
    08-28-2012, 05:14 PM
She will trim down if worked regularly. All that fat will convert into muscle.
What I might do is once she's on my place, get her a slowfeeder haynet and start working her. Maybe taping her once a month to see if she's losing or gaining. I'd stay away from sweetfeeds, but I definitely wouldn't sacrifice the 24/7 hay.
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loosie and Army wife like this.
    08-28-2012, 09:03 PM
Agree with others, that while pics aren't the best, she doesn't look too badly overweight to me, and that big necks are one of the traits of heavy horses. BUT clydies are frequently long term overweight & cresty necked due to IR & this is a very serious consideration. If she's already IR(I'd have a blood test for that too while the vet's out) I'm not sure if it is actually cureable, but it can be a non-issue with good management & keeping her on the lighter side. As Cherie has pointed out, this will predispose her to be much more likely to suffer laminitis, so worth checking feet too.

If her cresty neck is due to metabolic probs, this can be very hard to shift even if the horse becomes skinny. However, evidence suggests extra magnesium supplementation & deep massage works.
    08-29-2012, 05:10 AM
I know nothing about Clydesdales. But would a neck sweat help during workout?
    08-29-2012, 09:12 AM
Super Moderator
laminitis, Metabolic syndrome & IRS

Been up since 5am doing horse stuff so this may not all make sense!!!!
Yes a sweat neck cover will help reduce crest - one good way to test if the crest is just breed related is if its 'floppy' its generally OK but if its rigid its a warning sign
The 'Dick' Vet School (Edinburgh UK) has been doing a lot of research in IRS comparing horses and humans as its similar to diet controlled diabetes. There are a lot of indications that all diet related cases of laminitis are rooted in insulin resistance - hormone inbalances in hormones that are components of the blood stream.
I think it was Loosie who pointed out that breeds like drafts are prone to it - a genetic pre-disposition that UK native breeds, Morgans, TW's & several other breeds also have. The draft breeds were bred to work hard all day, on farms or hauling heavy carts, they would probably have had a feed when they had a break during the day and were often stabled at night for convenience just being turned out on rest days. We buy these horses and keep them on good grass, throw in extra feed and maybe work them a from maybe a couple of hours a day to just few days a week and it all goes wrong
When IRS sets in its as if the metabolism has 'crashed' from having to deal with too much sugar and the whole process of insulin production goes wrong as the body produces too much insulin that for some reason isn't effective. Blood sugar levels rocket and the glucose needed to maintain healthy celss and normal function doesn't get processed properly
I read an article about one IRS pony that was monitored as it was put on a regime of diet and exercise. Over a 7 month period his crested neck went from hard to floppy and his glucose levels improved & his laminitis had recovered enough for him to go back to normal work
Feeding a supplement of Magnesium and Chromium (like Quiessence) seems to give good results along with a strict diet
I'm going to try to put a link here that I found that has some good pics of what warning signs to look for
loosie likes this.
    08-29-2012, 11:07 AM
I agree. I also think that horsekeeping has become too artificial now. Processed everything, pastures are seeded for high yield, herbs have disappeared, soil is lacking major nutrients, which we have to add to the diet then by again processed supplements.
The UK native breeds, and others, like Haflingers, Fjords, the drafts and also Arabs are easy keepers, coming from a rather hostile environment. We in turn stuff them with the richest feedstuffs available, keep them in stalls most of the day to be there ready and clean for us to use.
If you look at wild horses, they fluctuate in weight during the year. Spring its the lush green grass, high in proteins, just right for foaling time. Over the summer they get an extra layer of fat which they use up during the winter with little and meager food. But they rarely get laminitis. They graze very selective, eating certain plants at certain times.
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loosie and jaydee like this.
    08-29-2012, 11:10 AM
Phone is not very cooperative, sorry...

Anyway, as I was thinking about my situation here in CA...oathay and alfalfa. Sprayed for weeds, super variation at all. So I was looking for a general herbal supplement to add what a good, old, pasture would have. Nothing. Even the herbal supplements are "specialized. Pretty sad....
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    08-29-2012, 01:43 PM
We have several IR horses in our barn on very restricted diets! is a great website for info on IR. We visit it often, and are now using the treats that are recommended by the site(BEET-E-BITES) because they are tested and low carb, low sugar. I have to give my guys a few treats! They LOVE them. We also feed only tested hay and triple crow lite and have been sucessful at reducing the fat overall, and therefore the laminitis risk
    08-29-2012, 04:25 PM
Wasn't aware that triple crown had a ration balancer too. Thanks
So how exactly do you restrict their diet?
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