The saga continues.
Its difficult being a first time horse owner at age 14. I tend to make rash decisions and overlook the possible outcomes. I can be irresponsible when it comes to making long term decisions and I acknowledge that.
ANYWHOOOOO. My little AQHA mare, Easter, is of Impressive breeding. I have no idea of her HYPP status. I have a rough idea of it being N/H, but it will be confirmed sometime within a week or two. I was aware of her slight tremors when she arrived at home. I PLANNED on testing her before riding her (I realize I should of gotten her tested before her purchase) but I got caught up in the holidays, and rode her anyways. It has been in the back of my mind for awhile, as she generally had no symptoms. I began seeing slight tremors again while feeding her recently, and my parents and I just sent hair samples to the lab. At first I freaked out. What was I going to do? I am almost positive she is N/H, and I am aware of the fact it is not advised to ride her. I have looked into it however, and I understand it can be controlled with proper diet and or medication. It broke my heart at the thought of selling her. I also realized that any experienced horse person, (the kind of home I would've wanted her to go to anyway) wouldn't buy a N/H horse. I mulled it over and realized we were planning to purchase a second horse for my mother. My mare is now guaranteed a permanent home as a pasture puff/ companion for my future horse. Now I just have to start the process of searching for another suitable mount. :shock: It seems any horse on craigslist nowadays is either a backyard bred STALLION for $1000 for or any other conformationly challenged behavior ridden beast. Ugh. A whole different story.
Back on topic, what are some recommended tip for taking care of a HYPP horse? I know kayro syrup, and a vet on speed dial are essential. I also know to avoid alfalfa hay, certain mineral blocks, potassium, and stressful situations. She lives in her pasture, so she will receive necessary exercise. (She will probably be lunged regularly) She is also a pig, so I've been watching to make sure she doesn't founder, LOL. She is on a potassium friendly feed. I understand her total potassium level needs to be under 1.00% .. how can I assure this?
Any other advice? I am aware that it is an unpredictable disease. I know I could come home one day from school to find her dead- as hard as it was, I've accepted that. At age 14, I feel like these recent events, and just horse ownership in general has made me mature a lot. I just know this is a high maintenance condition, and am determined to learn everything possible to provide the care she needs. She depends on me. This has just been so hard. Every little girl dreams of galloping her horse around the pasture..
Thanks in advance.
The best source of information for HYPP is right at AQHA website. You dont need to be a member to view it. NH although still with some risk is generally non symptematic so in many cases NH horses never develop visual signs such as the muscle tremors associated with the horses ability to regulate potassium in its blood stream.
Low potasium diets are recemended since a high potasium diet will inhibit the ability of the sodium channels in muscles to activate properly.
High carb diets are generally recemended, glucose is one treatment for an attack, and in some cases diuretics may be needed to stop a sudden attack.
All in all I think it is important to avoid purchasing AQHA or crossbred horses who carry the gene so it is always important to have potential purchases tested before you buy them. I am glad you have decided to keep her forever as she will have a good home. Best of Luck.
Thank you. Any other suggestions?
Just a note. NH horses generally are non symptomatic so hopefully after she is tested your vet may look at her diet and have an ahhh haaa moment that will resolve her issues. Remember that 50/50 is the chance she might also be NN or HH so its a toss of the coin. Do you have her registration papers? or at least her dam and sires names? That would help you determine her status.
It is important to make sure your horse gets enough salt and water in her diet because salt is what makes a horse urinate and secrete potassium from their system. Avoid electolytes because many contain potassium, no mineral blocks because most contain potassium. Feed loose salt or salt blocks that are white (no potassium added)
Karo Syrup is also used to treat mild cases of HYPP as it lowers the potassium in their system because it provides a source of sugar in their bloodstream, which raises the insulin secretion rate in horses.
Make sure you are sure your horses tests come back and/or you have consulted a vet before you start any kind of treatment. It is important to do your own research before you take our word online.
There is nothing more I can advise you to do other than keep your parents informed with new information and I wish you the very best with your horse.
I'm glad that she has a home, but there are many people who will still buy n/h horses. As far as suggestions, watch what grain she gets, if she gets any. And as Annnie31 said, stay away from electrolytes.
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