Desperate to find what’s wrong - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 08-16-2019, 06:13 PM Thread Starter
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Desperate to find what’s wrong

Wondering if y’all could help me out. I bought a horse in January out west and when we brought him home (to western Pennsylvania)?he’s just gone down hill... no past medical issues, but he is 16 years old, ever since we brought him to Pa he ran good(barrel racing) for a good month and he started to get unmanageable he wanted to run off and stick his head straight in the air, so we tried evaluating it and got his teeth checked, had a vet exam etc. we couldn’t find anything wrong. Since then he’s lost so much weight in his top line and butt that I’ve had him on a break trying to let him gain weight. we can’t figure out what was wrong, we re-evaluated his diet and nothing seems to be working, he’s super jittery and he keeps nudging his head like he has a tick of some sort, super sensitive to touch and keeps going lame, we noticed he isn’t drinking a lot of water so we’ve been giving him electrolytes as needed, We put him on epm meds for 2months and they didn’t seem to do anything so We just had his blood tested for lymes and are treating for threadworms... has anyone else had symptoms like this and what was your diagnosis (I’ve known this horse for a good while before I bought him and I’ve raced him before I bought him so I know how he usually acts and he’s totally different) he’s usually a super easy keeper and only gets a few supplements with a handful of grain and is as fat as they come! We’ve totally upped his grain and we don’t think it’s his diet
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post #2 of 10 Old 08-16-2019, 06:29 PM
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Sounds like he's reacting to pain. So he's fat but lost lots of 'topline'? Have you had him seen by a good bodyworker? A chiropractic vet or such? Saddle fit?
boots likes this.

Some info I've found helpful; [COLOR=Lime][B]www.horseforum.com/horse-health/hoof-lameness-info-horse-owners-89836/
For taking critique pics; [COLOR=Lime][B]https://www.horseforum.com/members/41...res-128437.jpg
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post #3 of 10 Old 08-16-2019, 06:47 PM
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Which part of Western PA are you in (county). The horse needs seen by a vet or a vet that is also a chiropractor.

Sometimes being out at the poll can make a horse behave that way. Horses a.so get TMJ i. Their jaws like humans do, so another thing to consider.
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A Good Horseman Doesn't Have To Tell Anyone; The Horse Already Knows.

I CAN'T ride 'em n slide 'em. I HAVE to lead 'em n feed 'em Thnx cowchick77.

Last edited by walkinthewalk; 08-16-2019 at 06:57 PM.
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post #4 of 10 Old 08-16-2019, 06:56 PM
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What was his diet before and after he moved? Living situation before and after( pasture, stall, friends, access to forest, ponds, cet)?

What did the vet check? Have you tried a bute, robaxin, or omeprazole trial? Has he been 5panel tested(assuming quarterhorse)?

Any changes if you hand walk before riding, or warm him up with a cooler or quartersheet? Does he get better or worse during a ride?
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post #5 of 10 Old 08-16-2019, 07:16 PM
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WELCOME to the Forum...

So, sadly your horse is not doing well.
You "knew" the horse before buying him, rode him a few times...
But do you know enough of his maintenance medical regiment and routine that he was sound, healthy and able to run?
How extensive a vet check did you do before purchase?
Yes, whether you "know/knew" the horse you did not know how he was maintained to keep sound and wanting to run-hard and often in competition...
He definitely sounds sore, hurting and in need of some intervention = a very thorough evaluation and medical check-up to uncover what ails the horse today..
16 years old and still competing, can pretty much think he has some serious wear & tear on his body that is now needing some vet help.
A month off of what ever supplements, drugs, injections, special food and in correct amounts is when issues are going to rear their ugly head and you now need to face them head-on to get the animal back on track or make some hard-decisions about future use of the animal.
If you are really friendly with the seller of the animal, call them.
Reach out and ask, don't accuse, but you need to know what is up with the horse and guarantee the seller knows...
Unless you had some crazy clause in a sale contract the horse is yours...
You need information, you needed it before you purchased the animal, but you especially need it now to help the animal be healthy again and pain-free.
You need a vet, a great diagnostic lameness vet and to spend the money for bloods, x-rays and all the exams done now that should of been done before.
I'm not knocking your local practitioners, but you need a specialist and team approach if you have no ideas of what ails the animal...places like University settings for specialized medicine.
You also need to ask the previous owner to divulge what is happening so you can help the animal faster.

Let us know what you find...
Best of luck.
...
jmo...

The worst day is instantly better when shared with my horse.....
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post #6 of 10 Old 08-16-2019, 07:47 PM
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Do you have Lyme results back yet or you’re waiting? Sure sounds like that could be it. Did you send the blood off to Cornell vs doing the “snap test” at the barn?
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post #7 of 10 Old 08-16-2019, 09:25 PM
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Another thing to test for could be PSSM. The change in the diet from out west to PA could bring out issues. Horses with PSSM can lose a lot of muscle mass very fast after an episode.
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post #8 of 10 Old 08-16-2019, 09:25 PM
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Lyme was also my first thought. The Cornell multiplex is the way to go for that.


There is no joy equal to that found on the back of a horse.
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post #9 of 10 Old 08-17-2019, 06:26 PM
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He has been tested for Lyme.

Ulcers were my first thought too, he's been through a lot of stress lately!! I would rule that out first, sounds like your vet is on the right track so maybe you already tried it?

I'm also curious for more info. If ulcers have been tried and these tests are negative I would consider going to a larger clinic or hospital.

Have you done any bloodwork?
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post #10 of 10 Old 08-18-2019, 10:25 PM
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I would try treating with nexium for ulcers. It shouldn't hurt anything and it could help. As far as treatments it is relatively inexpensive.
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