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Rain Rot -- how long do you treat?

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    03-06-2012, 06:17 PM
  #21
Weanling
I have to agree with the deficiency thought as well. I will admit I did not believe a word of it when my guy got it. He was on a crappy grain and poor quality hay. I tried everything under the moon for months to fix the problem and nothing worked. I finally stopped topical treatments, and switched him onto a good quality grain, flax seed, mineral block, and good hay. Within a week, the rain rot was almost completely gone and have not come back, even though the weather here has been quite wet lately.
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    03-06-2012, 09:33 PM
  #22
Super Moderator
Vitamin A absolutely WILL fix existing rain rot. It is the only way I have treated incoming cases for about 40 years now. I have had it clear up horses that were so bad you could not touch their sore backs and rumps. They were nearly one big bloody scab. It started clearing up within days with absolutely no topicals.

You just have to give them a couple of big doses of injectable Vitamin A made for cattle. GIVE IT ORALLY - not inject it. Start them on a good mineral or feed with plenty of Vitamin A in it and it will be gone in no time without Listerine, MTG or Betadine.
     
    03-07-2012, 09:54 AM
  #23
Banned
Information about vitamin A and overdose of vitamin A

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cherie    
Vitamin A absolutely WILL fix existing rain rot. It is the only way I have treated incoming cases for about 40 years now. I have had it clear up horses that were so bad you could not touch their sore backs and rumps. They were nearly one big bloody scab. It started clearing up within days with absolutely no topicals.

You just have to give them a couple of big doses of injectable Vitamin A made for cattle. GIVE IT ORALLY - not inject it. Start them on a good mineral or feed with plenty of Vitamin A in it and it will be gone in no time without Listerine, MTG or Betadine.
There you go again.

Earlier you said rain rot was caused by a deficiency in vitamin A and then asserted it could be treated by feeding supplemental vitamin A.

I was most concerned to see what I consider to be misinformation erring on the side of "dangerous and incorrect advice"

But I gave you the benefit of the doubt and asked you to

Cite the evidence for your statement re root cause and also that it's clinically effective in treatment.

Because you made mention about vitamin A deficiency and immuno compromise I aslo asked you how you were checking the immune status and vitamin A levels for your horse

You never answered any of the questions posed.

However I feel somewhat obligated to ensure that there's a strong awareness and specifically a correction and caution issued with regard to your "advice" to slam in injections of vitamin A.

Horse owners need to know that giving vitamin A when it's not required is risky and specifically with risks of toxidity.

Vitamins are divided into 2 categories: fat soluble and water soluble. Vitamin A (E, D & K) are all in the former category. Fat soluble vitamins with the exception of vitamin E are more likely to be stored in large amounts in the body and are more likely to be toxic when fed in excessive amounts.

The liver can store a 3-6 month supply of vitamin A and it's quite unusual for a horse to be deficient in vitamin A because of this ability.

If green forage, yellow/orange grains and/or carrots are fed at all then the horse will be getting it's recommended daily requirement which for a working horse is 1400 IU/kg feed.

Signs of deficiency are night blindness, corneal cloudiness, impaired growth, reproductive problems, poor conception rate, abortion, testicular degeneration, ataxia, convulsions.

Toxicity or overdose of vitamin A shows up as bone fragility, peeling or scabby skin, ataxia and a low red blood cell count.

And you can't compare a cow's nutritional requirements for vitamin A with a horse's. It is indeed quite common to inject cattle with vitamin A in the winter when they're totally off all green forage and eating only straw or cattle cake. But not at all appropriate for horses. Indeed IMO most dangerous advice!
     
    03-08-2012, 02:50 PM
  #24
Yearling
How do you account for all.the amounts of vit A a horse gets via green grass in the summer eating all he wants vs the winter only getting what is provided to him in a fortified feed since we know hay loosed its Vit A in a few months of harvest? Commons sense.tells US that horses are clearly getting WAY less in the winter via the lack of green grass and.clearly become deficinant since those on less then stellar diets come up with rain rot this time of year until the green grass comes up again. Common sense goes a long way here with simple deductioun. I have been supplementing for several years now and no longer have skin issues of any kind. That speaks loudly to the truth of this.
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    03-08-2012, 03:05 PM
  #25
Banned
And I don't supplement and in decades of keeping countless horses have never had one with rain rot.

I also know though that the plural of anecdote is not data!
     
    03-08-2012, 04:33 PM
  #26
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by hoopla    
Signs of deficiency are night blindness, corneal cloudiness, impaired growth, reproductive problems, poor conception rate, abortion, testicular degeneration, ataxia, convulsions.

Toxicity or overdose of vitamin A shows up as bone fragility, peeling or scabby skin, ataxia and a low red blood cell count.

Don't forget to add depressed immune system to signs of deficiency. Horses are not efficient at processing Vit A so even though you are feeding x amount of it that does not mean they are actually absorbing all of it.

As to the amount "recommended" in most textbooks, most of the vets I speak to as well as my old nutrition professor feel that this is not adequate and the amount needs to be changed. They have seen too many times the effect of higher A being good for the horse.

When a horse is deficient in nutrients they will not have a strong immune system. When the immune system is compromised infection happens. I have discussed this in detail with numerous vets before and they all say that it is very hard to overdose on A. More than likely if a horse is given too much it will simply excrete it through the urinary tract.

Since I started a vit/min supplement with higher doses people won't stop asking me how I go that kind of shine on the horses in the middle of winter. I have no skin issues, no goopy eyes, nothing.



Questions: If all of us supplementing vit A are treating our horses "dangerously" and overdosing our animals then why are our horses shiny, happy, healthy with no skin issues?

Shouldn't they be getting sick?

And why do so many vets say to supplement it?

Why does the addition of it to the diet clear up the skin issues if we are (according to you) basically ODing our animals on it?
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    03-08-2012, 05:18 PM
  #27
Super Moderator
I started using added Vitamin A over 40 years ago. I started using it on the recommendation of a Nutritionist with a PhD. He worked for Moorman's Minerals -- a company that was decades ahead of other in the recognition of mineral deficiencies.

I got acquainted with him through a client with horses that I trained for. This man had the biggest dairy in western Colorado at that time. I was complaining about lice and fungus in the spring and what a pain it was to treat when it was cold. He told me that he had no more lice or fungus problems after he got together with the Moorman Nutritionist.

So, I worked with him and took his recommendations of making sure horses get 100,000 Units/day in the winter and early spring when hay was old and there was not any green grass.

He worked with several big horse breeders from Texas to California. He worked with them mostly to help with reducing the number of foals born with crooked and week legs. They had found how much Calcium was needed if grass and grass hay were the main forages. They also found that when 100,000 units/day of Vitamin A was supplied they assimilated the Calcium better and miraculously, none of the horses got rain rot or lice and goopy runny eyes dried up as did scruffy dry skin.

They also found out that broodmares will breed easier, foal with fewer problems and will drop their placentas just minutes after foaling if they are receiving enough Vitamin A. They breed back much more quickly after foaling just like cattle do.

It is possible to give over-doses of some sources of synthesized Vitamin A but only by giving massive doses. You cannot get too much of the precursor, Beta Carotene. Animals that are grazing lush pasture get far more Beta Carotene than they need. The portion of it that is needed is stored in the liver and the balance is stored in body fat. The fat on grass fat cattle often has a yellow color instead of being white because of the beta carotene. This is one of the reason that grass-fattened beef has not gained alot of popularity. [We have butchered grass fattened steer that had yellow fat.] The only way I have heard of any livestock receiving toxic levels has been to give them massive doses in a study program at a university. It has a very wide range of safety unless massive amount are given. Vitamin E, another fat soluble Vitamin, can reach toxic levels much more quickly.

I have worked with Nutritionists and feed mills for over 40 years now. I have been a paid consultant for many feed companies. My interest in this field started back then with the first Moorman Nutritionist.

I have supplemented it now for over 40 years. During that time I have told literally hundreds of people how to get rid of it with no topical treatment what so ever. Husband and I owned a feed company and a feed store for many years. It is hard telling how many people I sold Minerals, feeds, supplements and injectable Vitamin A to and without exception, they all saw the same results I have. In all of those years I have not seen a single horse with a toxicity problem. Like I said, the only toxicity problems I have even seen documented were induced in University settings. It would be completely impossible to use the injectable once a week and to feed a supplement and have a horse reach anywhere near toxic levels.

Some horses are very susceptible to Vitamin A deficiencies while others are not. Horses that are kept out and have a little age on them seem to be most susceptible. The better a horse's diet is, the less likely it is to get symptoms of Vitamin A deficiency. But, horses that do not get enough in their diet, will be the same ones every year that fight rain rot, lice and eye problems. Their skin and hair will look rough, they will get bald patches and horrible scabs on the top of them. The best news is that it is not contagious to horses getting healthy levels of Vitamin A.

Like I have said many times, I never treat it (other than with Vitamin A), never bathe the horses, never disinfect the brushes or other equipment and never have had it spread. It always clears up very shortly after initiating the Vitamin A treatment. Very quickly the horses start losing the scabs and get healthy hair coming in under them. A curry comb will curry off the loose scabs and they can be ridden in couple weeks of starting the Vitamin A.
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    03-08-2012, 06:45 PM
  #28
Foal
Sorry - British person here! Is this the same as mud fever?
     
    03-08-2012, 07:34 PM
  #29
Banned
Yes it is
     
    03-08-2012, 08:48 PM
  #30
Yearling
Thanks cherie.....again ;)

Anecdotal evidence can still be very relevant when gathered from many sources, proved over time and through experiance and crunched with the common sense god gave ya. Jmo. I think cherie is spot on and I trust her years of experiance considering the source far more than many others.
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