What counts as "prone to colic"?
   

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What counts as "prone to colic"?

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  • Horses who are horses prone to colic
  • Feed for horses prone to colic

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  • 1 Post By loosie

 
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    06-21-2012, 03:21 AM
  #1
Weanling
What counts as "prone to colic"?

Just wondering how often a horse has to colic to be considered "prone to colic"? My mare has colicked 4 times in 6 years, so almost once a year. She'll be 24 in September.
     
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    06-21-2012, 05:08 AM
  #2
Trained
Whether it's her that's 'prone' or it's something about the feed or management she gets occasionally, I'd say anything more than once in a blue moon is 'prone'.
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    06-21-2012, 07:28 AM
  #3
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by loosie    
Whether it's her that's 'prone' or it's something about the feed or management she gets occasionally, I'd say anything more than once in a blue moon is 'prone'.
Ditto that.

My 25 yr old colicked twice between March and May this year. In the 22+ years he's been with me, he'd never had a tummy twinge.

He was diagnosed with hind gut ulcers.

Horses have to be scoped to definitely rule out stomach ulcers but the test for hind gut ulcers is simple these days. All it requires is a fecal sample and for the vet or lab to have the appropriate kit to do the checking

"Succeed" makes the kit.

If you can't afford to do any of that, you might try putting her grand self on Brewer's Yeast. Diamond V YC is sold by the 50 lb bag and is not expensive. My vet's recommendation is to feed two tablespoons twice daily.

I did put my other three horses on Diamond V but the Fella with the hind gut ulcers is on EquiOtic because I am now paranoid
     
    06-21-2012, 08:23 AM
  #4
Weanling
We've owned our 20 yr old OTTB for 11 years...no colic ever. My little racking horse we've had for 7 and when he came to us it was colic, bellyache, colic, twingy gut, colic... I thought I'd lose my mind. Then we discovered he was chewing poke weed through the fence while he was in the dry lot to lose weight. Most horses won't TOUCH the stuff, but Big is a pig...and he did.

One bout...ok. It happens. Find out why. Two bouts....What is going ON??? Three bouts... OMG...I've got a horse with a problem. Whether it's the horse or the management of that horse, you can figure they are prone to colic and go from there.
     
    06-21-2012, 08:41 AM
  #5
Showing
Prone, I'm thinking means more than once and that one needs to be more observant regarding signs, which means paranoia if the horse lies down, looks at it's belly, kicks at a fly. From research I read oats are the only thing that will help heal hind gut ulcers.
     
    06-21-2012, 09:01 AM
  #6
Weanling
Each time she's colicked it was when she was in a new pasture and overgrazed, so since I realised the link I've only allowed her in new pastures for an hour or so at a time. She's a greedy guts.

I probably didn't word my question very well, I was sort of wondering if some horses can overgraze and not be affected at all, like they have strong stomachs, whereas horses like Misty would be considered prone to colic because they're more sensitive. I'm probably not making sense lol, I'm not very good at getting across what I want to say sorry! It makes sense in my head but then I type it out and it is hopeless
     
    06-21-2012, 09:26 AM
  #7
Foal
My mare has been in situations where she was not introduced to new, more lush grass slowly and she has never had a problem. However, since that's something that is known to be a risk factor for colic (I think?!), I wouldn't say yours is prone to it. Maybe just prone to it when put on new, lush grass
     
    06-22-2012, 02:21 AM
  #8
Trained
Yes, it's pretty clear that some horses are more sensitive than others, on subjects of colic, insulin resistance, laminitis, etc. 'New pasture' can be problematic because it may be rich & high in sugar, causing hind gut acidosis, but even as in your case, if the pasture is overgrazed, or grass is otherwise stressed, it can be problematic because stressed grass can be much higher in sugar. So only allowing her restricted grazing is a good move IMO, even when it's overgrazed.

Re eating of pokeweed because the horse was in a 'diet yard', not saying this is the case for yours Hagon, just some info for those who don't know... Regardless of whether the horse needs to lose weight or not, it's still vital that they get free choice or little & often forage(horses still need at least 1.5%bwt daily). It could have been periods of hunger, not some weed(I don't know what pokeweed is) that caused the tummy probs. Feeding hay that's been soaked & drained to leach out a lot of the sugars, &/or using a 'slow feeder' such as a small holed hay net, to allow the horse constant access to feed but he needs to work for it, can't gorge, are options to 'diet' a horse without them going hungry.
     
    06-22-2012, 11:13 AM
  #9
Weanling
I've known horses who would colic over anything and everything, and ones that could eat anything and not have a problem with it, so yes, I do believe some horses are prone to colic. I used to own a horse that coliced 6 times in less than 5 years. Feed him a handful of hay that's too old, he'd colic, give him a tiny bit too much grain, colic again. Heck, even if the type of hay changed he would colic. If we wanted to change his feed (which we tried thinking it would help). It had to be done soooo slowely, and even then he would start to get an upset stomach(and I'm talking about taking 4 weeks to change it over).
Then, you get horses that break into the feed shed and eat a whole bag, or overgraze, or suddenly switch their food, and they don't even get a bellyache.
Funny how that works... Then again, I guess they're just like people.
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    06-22-2012, 11:25 PM
  #10
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by loosie    
Yes, it's pretty clear that some horses are more sensitive than others, on subjects of colic, insulin resistance, laminitis, etc. 'New pasture' can be problematic because it may be rich & high in sugar, causing hind gut acidosis, but even as in your case, if the pasture is overgrazed, or grass is otherwise stressed, it can be problematic because stressed grass can be much higher in sugar. So only allowing her restricted grazing is a good move IMO, even when it's overgrazed.

Re eating of pokeweed because the horse was in a 'diet yard', not saying this is the case for yours Hagon, just some info for those who don't know... Regardless of whether the horse needs to lose weight or not, it's still vital that they get free choice or little & often forage(horses still need at least 1.5%bwt daily). It could have been periods of hunger, not some weed(I don't know what pokeweed is) that caused the tummy probs. Feeding hay that's been soaked & drained to leach out a lot of the sugars, &/or using a 'slow feeder' such as a small holed hay net, to allow the horse constant access to feed but he needs to work for it, can't gorge, are options to 'diet' a horse without them going hungry.
Loosie, pokeweed is a weed common in the Southern part of the US. The early spring leaves are often used in a salad (Poke salad) that folk medicine says is sort of a "tonic." It can produce a mild bellyache that results in diaharrhea and it will clean you out. Spring cleaning for your body? Personally, you couldnt' PAY me to eat it and most horses will avoid it like the plague. That's why you see it growing up around fence posts, etc. It doesn't get eaten! Except for my pig. He has hay available to him (We go through this every Spring when the Spring grass comes in), he just wants GREEN! I battle his weight every Spring when the grass comes in. In the Fall, he adores all the acorns that fall from the oak trees in his pasture. It's not only pigs that will fatten on acorns --both of my horses love them! We rake and rake and rake... Oak trees are everywhere around here and so far we've had no problems...except for my horse's weight. I can tell you from personal experience that acorns are not poisonous.

As soon as we figured out what was going on, we declared war on the pokeweed and eliminated it. Since then, there have been no more bellyaches or colic. Big likes to chew. I'm just grateful he isn't a cribber and leaves the wooden fences alone. I have an OTTB that's a really hard keeper that we've had for 11 years, and then my horse that is an air fern. Life would be MUCH simpler if they were both the same...one or the other, easy or hard, I wouldn't care. It would be even nicer if I just plain had normal horses!!!
     

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