I'm worried about our TBs. - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 76 Old 04-01-2012, 08:53 PM
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I know this is off-topic, but I think I just fell in love with her colt...

I'm sorry I can't add anything productive, but I wish you luck and God bless you for caring for these guys.
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post #12 of 76 Old 04-01-2012, 09:09 PM
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I wish I was closer I would take her and the orphan filly home.
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post #13 of 76 Old 04-02-2012, 01:31 AM
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Endiku, I wanted to commend you on taking these guys in! That's a really wonderful thing you are doing for them and as a fellow horse person I'm very grateful to you. It's a tough spot your in with your work load and lack of volunteers. The little girl is adorable! of course not exactly cowboy sized though is she? LOL
Good to hear that she's got pasture mates and it really sounds like you've got her in a really good situation. It's sad to know she just isn't responding.
Do you know what happened to this mare before you got her? She looks like she's carrying some sort of deep stress and that she's really "checked out." Might not have needed to be much. You know how it is, some horses can take a lot while others are much more sensitive. I don't know what training she has, if any but if she were with me I would start with hand walking her. Asking her for little things along the way, a stop here, back up there, etc. I'd see if she responded to treats or whatever was her thing and then heap plenty of it on her for reward. I would do this every day with consistancy gradually upping the tasks in frequency and duration. I understand you have a serious labor shortage there so this might not be something you can even consider. It's just that looking at her and, baring any as yet undiagnosed issue, I think her problem is in her head. She needs someone to bond with her and get her to trust people again. I don't know.. maybe assign her to someone and have them take her around with them on chores. She really looks like there's a fantastic horse under there!... if you can get her to come out. (wish I was closer too, I'd make her my project.)
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post #14 of 76 Old 04-02-2012, 01:52 AM
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Hmm, have you tried alfalfa pellets with the mare? I don't know how they might affect her if she does have ulcers (I don't have any experience with those), but it might be an easy way to add some protein to her diet and most horses I know like them. I also recommend a blood panel just to check for any kind of abnormality. Poor old girl, she looks like such a sweetie and her colt is stunning.

As for the filly, I really wouldn't worry about her so long as she keeps acting healthy. When I got Taz at about 4 months, he was very dinky and undernourished due to having a really crappy momma. For a long time, there, I wasn't sure he would grow up to look like anything other than a cross between a cow and a donkey, but he did finally start growing up and filling out like a young horse should. Just keep feeding her well and give her some time, she'll be okay.

Always remember that feeling of looking at a big, open country over the ears of a good horse, seeing a new trail unwind ahead of you, and that ever-spectacular view from the top of the ridge!!! Follow my training blog: http://robertsontraining.blogspot.com/
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post #15 of 76 Old 04-02-2012, 01:32 PM Thread Starter
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Soenjer- he sure is a looker, isn't he? I couldn't believe that he was only 3 months old when we got him. If only you lived in Texas, I'd be begging you to take him in! He's such a friendly boy with tons of potential, and he's already topping 14hh at 7 (not six, my mistake earlier) months old! I can easily see him reaching 17 hands. I just wish I knew who his sire was. Here's a few more pictures of him as a three month old, just for you ;) Peppin' I really need to get some more pictures of him. He's very flashy in his liver chestnut 'big boy' coat now!

cmarie- ahhhh, and I wish you were too <3 these guys are in such a need for one on one attention, and it just breaks my heart knowing that there's no way that they're going to get it here, much as we love them.

GreenBackJack- If only she was, right? She's such a gentle hearted little girl, and Bree just loves children. If we can ever get her over this hump, I could very easily see her as a childrens mount once she's had some formal training.

You're exactly right when you say that she looks like she's carrying a lot of stress. She and the other five have had a very tough past, and I can only imagine the hell that they all went through.

I don't know the entire story, but we were told that the six- along with three other horses (first-year stud colts) were owned by a back yard breeder in the area who bred, trained, and raced her own horses. Supposively she made just enough to keep her operation afloat, but after a hard divorce she went bankrupt. And instead if selling the animals off, she let them suffer along with her.

She'd had all of the broodies in a large pasture, but when she ran out of money she couldn't keep it anymore and had no where to put the horses. So she sold the stud colts who were racing at the time and put all six of the other horses-a gelding and a mare (Regal) who was still racing, Sierra and her newborn filly Kenzie, Bree and Peppin- into two of these 10x10 stalls and shut them in so that people couldn't see them.

As you can imagine, none of the horses had room to move, and I don't really even know how Kenzie and Peppin didn't get trampled, but somehow all six of them survived off of the straw and old hay that was tossed to them and a few handfulls of feed for about a month. Thats when someone called on this lady because they heard one of the horses 'going crazy' in it's stall. Once they were discovered, the horses were removed and through a series of events they came to live here at our farm to recooperate and find homes.

When we got them, Bree's legs were stocked up and she had a few bite marks/scrapes, rain rot, and abcessed feet from not being shod in quite a while. Then, as stated- she had the ulcers and sharp teeth. The teeth are fixed but I'm definately wondering about those ulcers now.

Bree both leads well and will back/give to pressure so doing something like you said shouldn't be too hard. I might be able to squeeze in a short walk with her once every other day or so, until I can find someone else to work with her- but I'm afraid that's the best I can do right now. Theres also the possibility of getting one of our cowboys to pony her while riding around the property to check fences if it would help at all.

Smrobs- We haven't tried them yet, but we give them to Delriah so I have the available if I wanted to try that. Should I wait until the ulcers are under control though, before I try? I'd hate to cause her more discomfort. And I'll definately see about getting that blood panel done on her as soon as possible.

And a cow x donkey cross.... XD poor Taz! He's such a hansome boy now though, maybe there is hope for Kenzie! lol. She does seem to have really weak/funky looking pasterns so I'm not sure about her overall soundness later on, but as long as she can make a trail or pleasure mount I'll call it good. ;D

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be in your journey, but not all of
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post #16 of 76 Old 04-02-2012, 06:58 PM
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Further to the ulcers, I know that I have had two horses here with ulcers or a history of ulcers. The one with ulcers I medicated with slippery elm bark and aloe vera juice from the natural food store and saw results within 2 weeks. No kidding. The one with a history of ulcers, I absolutely could not give whole grain to -- she would act like a complete idiot if she got even a handful of oats. But on just hay, no other feed supplements she did fine and gained her weight back.

I can't tell you if the slippery elm bark and aloe vera juice will react with the current ulcer meds your mare is getting. I can tell you that in all likelihood the vet will tell you it's a waste of time, like mine did. But my vet had to eat her words when she saw the results. I did not buy any formulated ulcer medications. If it were my choice, I would check what is in the Omeleen, and if in doubt of the ingredients drop it altogether. The beet pulp and rice bran is OK. If you still don't see improvement I would drop the ulcer meds and try the slippery elm and aloe. Who knows... maybe she is sensitive to the meds?

As for something for her to have as a job, that's tough. If you have any adults around that maybe aren't as mobile as they'd like to be, you could perhaps have them sit in an enclosed area with the mare while holding something scarey. Not too scarey, just something new. The person could read a book in the sun and when the mare approaches, she gets a treat or petted. If there is a concern about contact, perhaps the person could sit just outside the fence, but in clear view. This would give the mare some attention and something to learn, offer up an opportunity for someone that is not too mobile to get out and have a purpose and everyone wins. I dunno... just grabbed that out of my hat.
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post #17 of 76 Old 04-02-2012, 07:09 PM
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Getting some bloodwork sounds like a good idea. Dull winter coat that isn't shedding might indicate insulin resistance. At the very least, she's probably got a mineral imbalance of some sort.
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post #18 of 76 Old 04-02-2012, 07:34 PM
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A dull winter coat on an underweight horse would not likely be insulin resistance. On an older, or overweight horse, yes. On this one it's likely that she is just in poor health.

I would say do a blood panel and see if that pulls anything up. After that Maybe try even fencing off 1 acre of your grazing field just for her and let her out there if that is what she will eat. I also second feeding alfalfa cubes, but try soaking them to various degrees and see if it is the consistency of the hay she is not liking. My horse goes bonkers for soaked alfalfa cubes. Then, even without getting an ingredient list for the Omelene, I would switch her to a "whole food" diet and cut out as much of the processed "complete feeds" as you can as this has been shown to help horses with digestive issues. Beet bulp, rice bran and oil will all be good to feed her, and try to find a probiotic and loose mineral to top dress with. Hopefully she will like some combination of those foods.

After that I personally believe in the healing powers of a good RMT (registered massage therapist). With a horse who is a bit psychologically distraught, getting them back to focusing on the body with some acu-pressure, fascia and craniosacral work can be very beneficial. A good RMT will also be able to pinpoint any aches and pains and let you know about her pain level from the ulcers, and help relieve that too. So it's something to think about.

After that you've really done all you can do and if the blood work comes back looking normal, if she still wont eat and if another professional can't find anything you might start a conversation with the rescue about what is best for her and if she is realistically going to recover.

Good luck!!!

They say money doesn't buy happiness -- well happiness doesn't buy horses!
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post #19 of 76 Old 04-03-2012, 06:04 PM Thread Starter
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Thats very interesting, NorthernMama! As of right now she's on a fairly high dose of Omeprazole Tablets. It's pretty expensive though, and doesn't seem to be helping. I'm tempted to talk to the BO about just taking her off of it and try the aloe and bark. I'm meeting with him today to talk about my 'charges' and I suppose I'll talk to him about putting her on a foraging diet with the rice bran and possibly alfalfa cubes. If possible I'd like to stay away from beet pulp, but I'm willing to use it if I absolutely need to.

And as for the work, that's actually a very good idea. We do have one elderly gentleman who would just love to do something like that. I would't be able to entrust him with leading her...atleast alone, because she tends to be a bit pushy and hot on the leadline just from lack of experience- but I'm sure he'd like to bring her some carrots or even her dinner, and spend a little time with her.

Thats very interesting, Anabel, and thankyou for bringing the massage up as an option. Unfortunately I really don't think that the rescue would be willing to pay for something like that, and we aren't in the position to pay for it either, but we do have a chiropractor who comes out occasionally. I could possibly talk to her about doing just a bit of work on Bree to see if that would help at all. We've also been having to do a lot of hoof reconstruction on her as well, as she had pretty bad thrush, low heels, and the common 'racehorse' hoof to deal with- so money has definately started to become an issue for us.

I've also thought about her recovery as well, though. Sad as it is, you do make a good point and I realize that sometimes a horse just can't recover from the type of thing she's been through. We actually think that part of the reason for Sierra's health problems was also linked to emotional trauma, as she always had this haunted, possessed look in her eyes. We had actually made the decision to put her down the week that she had a stroke. I guess that she just decided that her time was up at the same time we did, and she made the decision easier for us.

Bree, though, is a bit different. While she definately has that empty, lost look in her eyes- she also shows a lot of interest in what goes on around her. She loves to watch me take the kids for their therapy rides, and I've caught her trying to reach out and touch them on multiple occasions. I'm just hoping that we WILL be able to heal her mind and her body, because I really do see a lot of potential in her.
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Everyone in your life is meant to
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post #20 of 76 Old 04-03-2012, 09:57 PM
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This story is just breaking my heart. I am so earnestly hoping/praying that you are successful with Bree!
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