I Think He Has Ulcers... What To Do For Now - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 09-07-2012, 10:29 PM Thread Starter
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Arrow I Think He Has Ulcers... What To Do For Now

Hello HorseForum ...

I hate posting here - because it's usually when something is wrong :(
We think that Cowboy has an ulcer. He is showing a few symptoms - grinding teeth, sour mood, super-slow eating, discomfort, sensitivity ... and plus he's a TB. AND he has been in a pretty good workout lately. I've never had this problem before. I don't know what to do :(

I've heard to give them no grain, and lots of forage. So hes stocked up on only hay for the night. Should I just leave him out in the pasture for the weekend? Keep him out of the stall? But I feel like that's not enough. I know no Bute - Another reason I think he's got one. He was a little sore after our last show (last Saturday) so we gave him Bute on Sunday. So that might have something to do with it. Do you give Banamine to a horse with Ulcers? I'm going for no - sounds like giving the wrong medication for the wrong problem. But I think he needs something.

We are obviously going to get a vet. But the parents are leaving for New Orleans tommorow, which is a heck of a long way from here. And they refuse to get the vet while they aren't here. So it's Tuesday at the earliest that the vet could come. Knowing them, it will be more like Saturday ... they don't share concerns about my horses. They'd rather sell 'em. But I want to know what I need to do in the meantime. What do I look for that would tell me he needs a vet NOW! as in an emergency. I know he needs a vet asap, but asap seems pretty far away x.x

Thank You for your help :/ I know it seems hanous not getting him a vet - but I don't make the rules... I just want to do what I can.
-C

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post #2 of 12 Old 09-07-2012, 10:39 PM
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My TB seems gets ulcers at least once a year- we don't take him to the vet though. We just give him Ulcer Guard for a week or two untill he stops showing signs. He usually cribs a lot when he has them. Also, our chiropractor can tell when he has them, but I have no idea how- that lady is like magic! LOTS of hay and grass- I don't give treats, but that's becasue I give my horses people food. No granola bars or licorice or potato chips or Cheerios becasue they are all acidic. Lower the grain becasue that's acidic too. Some horses are prone to ulcers. If he is in a stall most of the day and is eating a lot of food- that can stress him out and give him ulcers. Take it easy on him with the work untill your sure he is back to normal. Don't worry too much- he is a TB after all, and they get them a lot!

EDIT: Seeif your vet will give you Prevacox. It is like Bute, but it doesn't upset their stomach. Bute is most likely why he has an ulcer- it's not nice to their stomachs! Turn him out with a buddy that wont pick on him. Don't worry so much about the vet or you might give your self an ulcer! He will be fine.

Last edited by Ashsunnyeventer; 09-07-2012 at 10:43 PM.
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post #3 of 12 Old 09-07-2012, 10:43 PM Thread Starter
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Thank You SO much :))
It does relieve me that this is a fairly calm, easy proccess. Does Ultra Gaurd tell you how much to use, how to use it, etc.? Any tips of advice other than whats mentioned? (Thank you so much for that :)
He is only in his stall at night. Can I keep him in for nights, or should he just be out 24/7? He isn't fat by any means, and could use the all night forage. The only thing that worries me is dewey/wet grass and colic...

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post #4 of 12 Old 09-07-2012, 10:47 PM
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I just edited my last post with some more answers. Ulcer Guard looks like a dewormer kind of. Each tube has 4 doses and it should tell you how to use it. Unfortunatly, it is VERY expensive. Here is an article with FAQ's and then there is also a tab about how to use it...

Frequently asked questions and answers | preventing equine stomach ulcers | ULCERGARD® (omeprazole)
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post #5 of 12 Old 09-07-2012, 10:52 PM
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You can get it at your tack suppy store. I've never heard of someone calling a vet for ulcers unless they were buying a horse that might have ulcers. The Bute is what triggered it, so it isn't that big of a deal. You might find that he goes through cycles with a few months good, and then a week that he shows signs. It depends on the horse. If you really want to see a vet, you can use ulcer guard untill you can get out there. If it isn't gone in 2 weeks, it might be something else, or you might want to try a stronger/different medicine
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post #6 of 12 Old 09-07-2012, 10:58 PM
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If you have alfalfa give him a flake before each grain meal, about 20 minutes ahead. Alfalfa acts as a buffer for the stomach acids. Don't leave him without hay or turnout on pasture 24/7.
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post #7 of 12 Old 09-07-2012, 11:00 PM
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Just saw what you replied....if he's used to grass there is nothing to worry about. Millions of horses eat the grass with dew on it
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post #8 of 12 Old 09-07-2012, 11:29 PM Thread Starter
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Thank You all again :) We will definatly be getting some UlcerGard. So just keep him in at night with his hay? Sounds good to me! :) I'll likely be ordering the UlcerGard from Dover - it's a lot easier (and usually quicker) than driving up to the nearest tack store - which is a good ways away.

How many tubes of Gard should I get? He's 1k lbs, so with 4 doses per tube, how many tubes will it take before the ulcer is gone? And you give it to him daily, correct? Should I start with 3? More?

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post #9 of 12 Old 09-07-2012, 11:48 PM
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I would get 3-5 tubes. It probably wont take too long for the ulcer to go away since it sound like you are catching it pretty early, but it can't hurt to have extra. You will probably use 2 tubes, but it really depends on your horse. He would get 1 dose per day. When you get the tube you will see how to give just one dose at a time. There is a little plastic piece on the outside that you move to one dose and then just inject it to the bacl of the mouth like a dewormer.
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post #10 of 12 Old 09-08-2012, 04:36 PM
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For ulcer prone horses, the key is to change long-term management to prevent the ulcers to begin with.

24x7 turnout is ideal, but impractical for many people. Give as much turnout as you can, and when the horse is in, keep a small mesh hay net full of hay. The horse's digestive tract is meant to always have small amounts of food moving through it, since (unlike humans) horses' stomachs don't stop producing acid between meals. Keeping food moving through keeps the stomach from getting too acidic.

Next is to keep non-hay meals small, and low NSC. (Read more about grain and ulcers here: Gastric Ulcers in Horses) If you can avoid grain altogether, do so; you should still feed a ration balancer or vit/min supplement for nutrition, and you can feed other non-grain hard feeds like rice bran, beet pulp, or alfalfa pellets for added calories as needed.

There are a number of digestive support supplements out there, both commercially with products like U-Gard, Succeed, or Neigh Lox, or herbal remedies like Marshmallow root, aloe vera juice, etc. You may find your horse responds well to having these as a regular part of his diet, or may just need them in times of added stress (e.g. a few days before a show until a day or two after he comes back home)

You also want to make sure your horse's stomach is protected before you take him out riding- if he hasn't had hay in front of him, give him a pound or so of hay (or hay pellets) before exercising him so his stomach is buffered. The last thing you want is unbuffered stomach acid sloshing up on the unprotected portion of the stomach!
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colic , digestion , gas , ulcers , waiting for vet

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