Narrow airways - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 01-07-2018, 07:01 AM Thread Starter
ATh
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Unhappy Narrow airways

Hi!

For some time my horze have had this odd problem with his airways. When it rains or the air is damp, his Mucous membranes in the lower part of the nasal cavity get inflamed causing him the sound like he is having a cold. A hissing sound and a sound like when we have a slightly stuffed nose. Sometimes there are also fluid.
Everything else is ok with him. I have had two wets. The first one sad is was normal and I shuoldnt worry. The other one sad he has somewhat inflamed membranes. But had no idea what causes it. He said it shouldnt be a problem for det horse.
When it is present and especially when it is worse than most of the times, I do worry. I dont like his heavy breathing.
For the record, it started with a cold with clear mucous coming from one nostril and lasted for a couple of weeks or so.
Have any of you experienced a horse with similar problem, and perhaps found a solution?
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post #2 of 13 Old 01-07-2018, 07:59 AM
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Has your horse ever been scoped to see what is actually going on inside those lungs?
Do you know if the horse ever had pneumonia during its life?
I'm not a vet first off so wonder if heaves, aka COPD, is something that horses develop in your country?
And have you tried a allergy medication given when this flares up?
I did not get the impression this is a continual issue, but something that flares up then goes away....

That's all I've got to ask and offer.
More information though for those better informed about airway issues to help you...

Ohhh... WELCOME to the Forum!!
....
jmo...
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post #3 of 13 Old 01-07-2018, 11:16 AM Thread Starter
ATh
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I have had him since he was three. Dont know if he had any issues with his airwas before that. Dont think so. He has always have a bit of what you call copd. But never had any flu, cold and never heard him sneeze or cough. A year ago he had a cold but didnt cough or sneeze either.
The wet didnt think that it has anything to do with this. I asked about allergi. But allergies flare up when pollen is present. This occurs any time of year and day if it is damp weather. The wouldnt try with any allegi medicine as this can give side effect which he didnt want to give the horse.

I thougt it was something in the grass. But a few times I have put him in stable, the weather was dry and he had no problem and the next morning he had. I opened the stable door and it was raining. So it has to be something related to the moisture in the air!?
It cant be the grass. Because it started the place I had him before he was moved to here.
That cold he had did something. Is it possible that a virus is doing this and it wont let go?

I am giving him all the hay he can eat plus some pellets an minerals and vitamins. What else can I feed him? If it is a virus, then what can fight it.
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post #4 of 13 Old 01-07-2018, 07:49 PM
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Allergies can flare up from many different things, not just pollen.
Something is triggering his reaction...
Something he eats, something he is exposed to.
Mold, food dust particles, different hay, different feed, maybe a supplement or treat fed, saddle pad washed, blanket put on...pesticide sprayed, fields dragged, plants pollen blowing in the breeze...allergy to a different species of animal...
So many things it could be...

Start a journal where you write down every day what is fed, environemental issues of weather, dust, grass cut...wet, dry, wind... what is fed, activities done...just everything and see if you can find any kind of pattern over a few weeks time.
Then speak to that vet again and see if you can combine mind power to find a reason....

Good luck.
...

The worst day is instantly better when shared with my horse.....
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post #5 of 13 Old 01-07-2018, 08:47 PM
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I know firsthand how frustrating this can be. I have a horse that coughs when it gets very cold. It took me two years to eliminate every other cause (it only happens in the winter, in very cold temps). This year, so far, he hasn't coughed once. But I'm managing it very aggressively by keeping him as warm as possible on the coldest days. He did have pneumonia when he was younger, so I also give a natural supplement that helps his breathing as a preventative measure in the winter. This is what he gets for prevention: https://www.bigdweb.com/product/respi+free+32+oz.do You probably can't get it in Denmark, but perhaps you can have a look at the ingredients and find something similar in your country.

I agree with horselovinguy that it is going to take meticulous observation to get to the bottom of it. But I wanted to mention that if he truly does have narrow or obstructed airways and using a natural supplement doesn't help, you might have to resort to a bronchodilator. This is different than the usual steroid (Dexamethasone, a corticosteroid) given to COPD horses around here. The one I used last winter when things got pretty bad is called Ventipulmin (clenbuterol hydrochloride). This helps open up the airways, and does not require a weaning off period. In other words, the side-effects are not as scary as with the steroid. I treated him for 28 days in March 2017 and the cough was gone and has not returned since. We have just come out of a very cold spell here -- it was -36C with the wind last night -- but he is still not coughing so I'm very pleased.

I don't mean to suggest you should put him on something like this immediately, but you should know what the various options are. You don't have to go right to the steroid (this is what local vets always tend to suggest so I had to do some digging to find out about Ventipulmin). The problem is that if your horse continues to cough, it irritates the airways even more and just makes the problem worse. You may never figure out exactly why he coughs when it's damp, and may just have to treat the symptoms as best you can.
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post #6 of 13 Old 01-08-2018, 12:37 PM Thread Starter
ATh
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Minus 36c is quite cold. The record in my country is 31c and that was four decades ago.

No, I cant find the product in my country, but may have found something similar. If it wont help I can ask my vet about that ventipulmin.
Would it be a waste to give him plenty of vitamins and minerals helping the immune system fight whatever it is?
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post #7 of 13 Old 01-08-2018, 01:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ATh View Post
Minus 36c is quite cold. The record in my country is 31c and that was four decades ago.

No, I cant find the product in my country, but may have found something similar. If it wont help I can ask my vet about that ventipulmin.
Would it be a waste to give him plenty of vitamins and minerals helping the immune system fight whatever it is?
Absolutely not, a strong immune system is key! Though in my experience, it's best to build his immune system well before the coughing starts, but I'd still do it now to give him the best possible chance of fighting this.

The best thing to do is start with a hay analysis, take the label from any processed feed he gets, as well as any supplements, then work with an equine nutritionist to fill in the gaps. Not much point in just randomly giving him vitamins he doesn't need. A complete and balanced diet is really important, but you can also make him sicker by giving him the wrong things.

One thing I've been feeding mine for a few months now is spirulina, or blue-green algae. It's a very messy green powder, but not very expensive and you should be able to get some shipped to you fairly easily. Here's an article on the benefits of spirulina for horses with lung and respiratory issues, allergies, and a poor immune system, but if you google it, you can find many more: Spirulina (Blue-Green Algae) for Horses | The Naturally Healthy Horse

And this is a good one: https://www.horsejournals.com/horse-...irulina-horses

As you can see, it appears to be pretty safe to feed in the recommended doses, but it does take time to work so be patient.
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post #8 of 13 Old 01-08-2018, 02:49 PM
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Well either he has some residual infection, that flares up when wet, or he has COPD,which is fueled by sensitization/allergy to something Treatment and management, will depend on this differentiation.
While bacterial infections cause a purulent discharge, viral infections, not complicated with a secondary bacterial infection, are clear
I agree that you need a better diagnosis in order to target your treatment.
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post #9 of 13 Old 01-08-2018, 03:25 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smilie View Post
While bacterial infections cause a purulent discharge, viral infections, not complicated with a secondary bacterial infection, are clear
Perhaps that is why the vet wasnt much for give antibiotics.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Acadianartist
One thing I've been feeding mine for a few months now is spirulina, or blue-green algae. It's a very messy green powder, but not very expensive and you should be able to get some shipped to you fairly easily.
I remember that I bought some of that some years ago for my self. Dont recall why. But it smelled at looked odd. So I never took it. Well a horse is not that choosy, I think.
It isnt cheap here. But that goes for everything that says horse on it.
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post #10 of 13 Old 01-08-2018, 06:29 PM Thread Starter
ATh
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One thing a forgot was that he often scratches his nostrils. That also started about the time he had the cold. Dont know if that tells anything.
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