Worms... Help.. - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 14 Old 05-21-2010, 09:29 PM Thread Starter
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Worms... Help..

I have a 2 year old stud colt called Ole Man Reflection, I got him about 3 months ago, the owners before said they had just wormed him about 2 weeks before I bought him.
Last week he looked awesome not too fat but also not to skinny..
About 3 days ago he started rapidly loosing weight.. Now his hips and shoulders are caving in and his back bone is sticking out.. I've had horses have worms before and loose weight but never this fast.. could it be worse than worms??
I wormed him last night with ivermectrin.. but he's really got me worried..
Any suggestions??

Treat you as good as my horse….I DONT THINK SO !
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post #2 of 14 Old 05-21-2010, 09:54 PM
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I don't think this is worms. I would call your vet ASAP.
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post #3 of 14 Old 05-21-2010, 10:20 PM
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I would not suspect worms were causing this kind of weight loss. You should contact your vet and get a full exam on this horse.

Cindy D.
Licensed Veterinary Technician
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post #4 of 14 Old 05-21-2010, 11:17 PM Thread Starter
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well we don't have grass in the lot we keep them in.. I let them out almost everyday so they can eat grass.. I've had a horse that did this before but not this rapidly... he's also been getting aggressive towards my boyfriends mom.. he bit her the the other day.. and he has 3 younger siblings.. and he's been throwing his head and pushing everyone with his head.. but the thing is how much would a exam cost?? And we feed them a whole coffee can.. and the 2 of the other horses are losing weight too but not as fast.. I've wormed all of them and my other horse stormy has already been acting better..

Treat you as good as my horse….I DONT THINK SO !
And on the 8th day, God went riding.
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post #5 of 14 Old 05-21-2010, 11:34 PM
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It sounds to me like you have two semi-related problems. One can be solved by feeding more hay/forage/grass and definitely less grain (depending on the work your horses do, they probably need only half of that coffee can in grain) The other should improve with more 'natural' food (or natural to him at least) and a couple of good lessons in manners and respect.

In Florida, a simple physical costs in the neighborhood of 200 dollars. But that does not include the trip charge. However, most vets will take payment plans, and I'd rather be out a few dollars than bury my horse, you know?
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post #6 of 14 Old 05-22-2010, 12:03 AM
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Um...feed him? You said the lot doesn't have grass - how much hay do they get? When all your horses start losing weight, you obviously have a flaw in your feeding program.

Drop the grain and start stuffing them with high quality hay.

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post #7 of 14 Old 05-22-2010, 12:14 AM
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Wow, sam. A physical here costs 60, and a barn trip 50. I'm lucky, tho, we have so many horses our vet does barn calls. Not too many around here will anymore.

Get a vet out there. A horse dropping weight that fast is -bad-. He's possibly acting up because he feels crappy.

My understanding is that horses should almost always have fresh forage (hay, grass, etc) available. They're built to eat constantly, and not having something going in regularly can muck up their digestive tract.

"Sit tall in the saddle, hold your head up high. Keep your eyes fixed where the trail meets the sky. And live like you ain't afraid to die...don't be scared, jut enjoy the ride." - Chris LeDoux
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post #8 of 14 Old 05-22-2010, 12:46 AM Thread Starter
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well the thing is that all the horses are use to not having grass all the time.. and we feed coastal hay.. and we let them out all day every day.. so he's getting enough to eat I know that.. but no one around texas is selling hay for a affordable price right now.. so all we have right now is feed and grass.. and with the colt I don't work him out very much because when I got him he had been left in a small lot so he didnt grow that much.. so he's a pretty small 2 year old.. the most I do is ride him down the road fr about a hour..but as of lately I stopped wrking with him and the 2 others that are losing weight so they could keep the weight on.. but I still go out there and do basic ground work with duke.. ( like backing up keeping distance and stop headbutting! Picking up his feet, etc.)

Treat you as good as my horse….I DONT THINK SO !
And on the 8th day, God went riding.
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post #9 of 14 Old 05-22-2010, 12:58 AM
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You won't get very far substituting hard feed for forage, and that's probably why they are dropping weight so rapidly While he may be getting "enough" to eat, he's not getting enough of the right stuff. Its like being hungry, but only being fed things that give you heartburn. Instead of wasting 20 dollars on a bag of feed per week or whatnot, stop buying the feed and buy more hay. You can never ever go wrong with more hay. It doesn't matter if your horses are "used" to getting grass all of the time, its what their bodies are engineered for, so if you can give them grass or some derivative of grass (like hay) please do, even if it means sacrificing their hard feed. They'll be ok.

I know all about getting hay at a not so affordable price (T&A sells for 12.50 for a 60 lb bale around here) but they are your animals and so you are responsible for taking care of them. I would still get out the vet, because a horse who drops weight dramatically has something more serious going on than just possibly malnutrition.
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post #10 of 14 Old 05-22-2010, 10:58 AM
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Whatever the price, you need to supply them with more forage/hay. If you can't afford to feed them, you really need to think about cutting down the numbers that you own. (Sorry, it's the simple truth.) Horses don't get "used to" not having forage in front of them all the time. Their body doesn't just produce stomach acid when they eat, they produce it all the time and they are designed to eat at least 14 HOURS a day. Horses need to have a minimum of 1% of their body weight in forage a day and that's really not sufficient to maintain most horses with hay. (1% of the "average 1000lb horse's" body eight is 10 lbs) If you are trying to put on weight, you want to go up to close to 30 lbs in hay a day! They are simply designed to need that much forage a day to meet their nutritional needs and maintain body weight.

The attititude may be disrespect but it may also be due to developing gastric ulcers from the lack of forage. Because of the continual acid production, horses that don't get fed appropriate amounts of forage tend to develop gastric ulcers and can show lots of attitude changes like getting irritable.

Cindy D.
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