Hives - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 09-23-2016, 10:24 PM Thread Starter
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Hives

I have an older mare, she is 25 and we have just retired her from a childrens camp about a month ago. Since we have had her she has broken out in full body hives 3-4 times. Luckily, she hasn't had them too bad on her neck and throat, but her whole torso and down her back legs have been covered in several large hives. I have told my vet each time it has happened and she hasn't seemed too concerned she has just told me to give 10mL of dexamethasone and I can repeat it every 12 hours if necessary, which I have been doing. I then heard from another vet (one who is not a large animal vet) that giving dexamethasone is excess can cause a horse to founder. So now I am worried about giving her the dex all the time, especially because of her age. Has anyone had an experience with this? What do you use when your horse gets bad hives? Are there any supplements that you use to help with not getting them?
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post #2 of 3 Old 09-23-2016, 10:33 PM
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I would only give Dex as absolutely necessary. It's not an "in excess" thing, sometimes even a little bit can cause issues.

As far as the hives I would try to figure out WHY she is getting them. You may be able to find an alternative rememdy or management technique, and if not find a better long term plan.

FWIW I know another older horse suddenly having bad hive issues atm. And know another horse who developed allergies in his 20s after a life with no issues (he is getting allergy shots and they have been very successful).

I would recommend hydroxyzine, worth a shot, I have seen success with it.

Honestly even if I had issues I would still not use Dex unless really needed. A lot of people pop it like a tums. It's not.
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post #3 of 3 Old 09-24-2016, 08:22 AM
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Ditto, even a little dex can cause a horse to founder.

You need to find the root cause.

What is different at home than was at camp?

Was she out 24/7 at camp and now in a stall with shavings? If so, bagged or shavings from the lumber mill?

What about hay? Does she get alfalfa?

You may have weeds or trees that weren't at camp that turn toxic as Fall approaches. Is she eating fallen tree leaves or weeds instead of grass?

What are you feeding in her feed pan that she was t getting at camp?

Maybe some of these things don't apply and that shortens up your "process of Elimination" list.

Also ditto Yogi's comment about "didn't have issues then but does now". A lot of things didn't used to bother me when I was young but they do now. Aging always begets new issues and it's tougher in animals because they can't tell us what is wrong --- we are left to figure out the root causes without their help:)
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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.
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