Originally Posted by hillside farm
I feed all my horses round bales of 2nd crop alfalfa mix hay in the winter and have never owned a horse with heaves, have owned horses for 46 years........
It happens. Just as some people have asthma for no apparent reason - horses can develop allergies too.
It's also not just dust and mold but the pariticles from the round bale that they can breath in when they bury their face in the round bale for the 'good' stuff.
We have two horses with 'breathing issues' as the vet calls them. They receive an albuterol tablet am and pm during non stressful periods. Additional tablet in the afternoon when the weather is humid or very windy.
All hay is fed on the ground. If they are stressed, they recieve IV dexamethasone injections - on a sliding down scale. It is NOT a good idea to give a large dose of Dex and then nothing.
We have a hay chopper so we can chop and wet the hay easier. One of the horses does compete in an indoor arena and does fine. Our indoor is treated with calcium chloride to prevent dust problems.