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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone, so I have my two boys Royal and Duke. Both Arabs 10 amd 24.
Royal recently got injured in our paddock and the vet came and while she was there she thought he may have cushing disease. We have had bloods taken and are awaiting on results. They should be in tomorrow hopefully.

He has foundered, he gets abcesses but they burst through the toe not on the sole. He is losing muscle and had sway back, and also gets super fluffy and is 24. He gets wormed every 3 months and had teeth done in February. Dentist advised due to his age his teeth are deteriating.

I have him on foundergaurd until the winter months, chaff and hygain zero. He gets 900gram of zero and 500g of chaff. So 1.5kg of hard feed 1 x a day. My farrier is happy with his weight as he wants him to be skinnier and sound than fat and founder.

I was looking into speaking to my vet if we get a diagnoses or not for cushings about taking the chaff away and adding hygain Essential for both my horses. So both will be on zero and essential for 1 hard feed a day. They have 24/7 access to pasture. They are on a few acres, I beleive it is 2 but I havent measured it out.

I can only feed once a day and I want them to get some more condition for winter coming. I cannot afford a large bale of hay and I cant keep more than 1 small bale at a time for lack of storage at my paddock.

Can anyone give me advice please on the fibre essential for weight gain. And if I get a bale of hay once a week can I leave it in the paddock for the boys to adlib in hay nets and if they eat the fibre essential which should keep them fuller for longer will they demolish the hay or leave it and pick at it and the grass?
Thanks.

Royal has 4 white socks and Duke doesn't.
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There is a group on FB called "Equine PPID (Cushings)" that has a list of acceptable feeds, by country, that are acceptable for horses with PPID (under 10% NSC's preferred). I encourage you to join this group if you have FB, it has been tremendously helpful for me and my horse who was also recently diagnosed.

If Royal does indeed have PPID, medicating him with Prascend/Pergolide may be the answer to him gaining weight (plus a slightly altered diet). Muscle wasting along the ribs is one of the first symptoms of PPID. Looking at Royal's SI area, I'm hesitant to say whether or not he truly needs a lot of weight or not - to me it looks like muscle wasting/aged horse. @walkinthewalk may have more to say on that front, as I'm not too familiar with SI injuries and conditions.

Things to consider with Royal...the dentist said his teeth seem to be deteriorating. I encourage you to look up EOTRH (Equine Odontoclastic Tooth Resorption and Hypercementosis). This disease comes along with PPID (due to decrease immune system) along with just aging horses in general. I will link my thread here that has progress pictures of my horse on Mushroom Matrix's Equident. Here is my thread.
EDIT: My equine dentist has especially seen it prevalent in Arabians over other breeds!

As for the foundering and absess issues, if he is indeed PPID positive, medicating with Prascend/Pergolide will also likely help these issues.

One thing to keep in mind is that using homeopathic remedies instead of Prascend/Pergolide IS NOT the solution to the disease if Royal is PPID positive. I've been seeing these remedies more and more often, and the only way to treat the disease and it's symptoms is with the actual medication.

Good luck!
 

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I actually just checked the list I mentioned in my previous comment and for Australia the safe feeds to give to a PPID positive horse are as follows:
  • Hygain Zero NSC 4.9%
  • Hygain Micrlupins NSC 7.3% high protein 34%
  • Fiber Fresh Fiber Protect NSC 2.8% dry, 1.3% wet
  • Fiber Fresh Fiber Easy NSC 4.7% dry, 2.1% wet
  • Omega Feeds Pony Plus NCS 5.3%
  • Prydes EasiFibre NSC 8.7%
  • Prydes EasiSport NSC 8.1%
  • Prydes EasiKeeper NSC 7.8%
  • Prydes LupinPak NSC 10%
  • Barstoc SpeediBeet NSC 5.5%
  • Maxistoy NSC 5%
  • Fibregenix Lami Low Cal NSC 9.74%
  • Johnstons Natural Formula Alfalfa Plus NSC 9% 23% protein
  • Harry's Choice Alpha Fibre NSC 9.52% 21% protein
 

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Ditto everything @ClearDonkey said, especially check his teeth. It was her thread that made me ask my vet to check my Cushings horse’s teeth when he drew blood last week.

He asked me how I knew about EORTH and I told him one of the HF members had to deal with it and kindly went into detail. The vet then checked Joker’s mouth, showed me how to check for equine gum disease, and to call him ASAP, if I see Joker’s 25+ year old teeth getting longer instead of shorter:oops:

2. Regarding your Royal’s back —- I Hope I’m wrong but that looks like the beginnings of the swayback syndrome called “lordosis“. I just posted a link on someone else’s thread regarding it.

I would highly recommend taking the horse to a clinic or hospital that can x-ray his back to give you a diagnosis.

2.1. My 25 yr old Cushings horse has a twice fractured sacrum and is almost as straight across his back as he was when he was 10. His difference is the arthritis build up at the SI.

2.2. Old vertebra injuries could be causing Royal’s swayback. My Arab had serious vertebra damage when I rescued him at age seven. He saw a chiropractor as needed his entire life but, around 23-24 his back started to sway a little.

2.3. I reLly would want a diagnosis on Royal’s back so you know what you’re dealing with and can approach the issue correctly:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Ditto everything @ClearDonkey said, especially check his teeth. It was her thread that made me ask my vet to check my Cushings horse’s teeth when he drew blood last week.

He asked me how I knew about EORTH and I told him one of the HF members had to deal with it and kindly went into detail. The vet then checked Joker’s mouth, showed me how to check for equine gum disease, and to call him ASAP, if I see Joker’s 25+ year old teeth getting longer instead of shorter:oops:

2. Regarding your Royal’s back —- I Hope I’m wrong but that looks like the beginnings of the swayback syndrome called “lordosis“. I just posted a link on someone else’s thread regarding it.

I would highly recommend taking the horse to a clinic or hospital that can x-ray his back to give you a diagnosis.

2.1. My 25 yr old Cushings horse has a twice fractured sacrum and is almost as straight across his back as he was when he was 10. His difference is the arthritis build up at the SI.

2.2. Old vertebra injuries could be causing Royal’s swayback. My Arab had serious vertebra damage when I rescued him at age seven. He saw a chiropractor as needed his entire life but, around 23-24 his back started to sway a little.

2.3. I reLly would want a diagnosis on Royal’s back so you know what you’re dealing with and can approach the issue correctly:)

Thankyou for this reply. I am awaiting to hear from the vet and will ask them about lordosis. I appreciate the reply very much :)
I will keep you posted on what the results are.

Have a wonderful day.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I actually just checked the list I mentioned in my previous comment and for Australia the safe feeds to give to a PPID positive horse are as follows:
  • Hygain Zero NSC 4.9%
  • Hygain Micrlupins NSC 7.3% high protein 34%
  • Fiber Fresh Fiber Protect NSC 2.8% dry, 1.3% wet
  • Fiber Fresh Fiber Easy NSC 4.7% dry, 2.1% wet
  • Omega Feeds Pony Plus NCS 5.3%
  • Prydes EasiFibre NSC 8.7%

  • Prydes EasiSport NSC 8.1%
  • Prydes EasiKeeper NSC 7.8%
  • Prydes LupinPak NSC 10%
  • Barstoc SpeediBeet NSC 5.5%
  • Maxistoy NSC 5%
  • Fibregenix Lami Low Cal NSC 9.74%
  • Johnstons Natural Formula Alfalfa Plus NSC 9% 23% protein
  • Harry's Choice Alpha Fibre NSC 9.52% 21% protein
Thankyou for that information it was great to read. Im happy to know I have him on hygain zero at the moment, so I will look to add in another fibre option and keep you updated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Update on Royal from the vet:

Royals blood test came back positive for cushings. We do another test in 6 weeks to assess how its going on the medication. His level was 160 and a positive is 120.


She doesn't want me changing his food at all for a few weeks as he can lose his appetite from the medication and she wants to be sure its from that and not anything else.


She recommended we do a bcs just to keep track of them both and if we need to use feed excel later on for a diet plan.


I am relieved and happy we have a avenue to go down now.
 

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She doesn't want me changing his food at all for a few weeks as he can lose his appetite from the medication and she wants to be sure its from that and not anything else.
Did your vet tell you how to slowly build the dose, rather that right away just start on one pill? This aids in avoiding "the veil" which is the loss of appetite/depression/lethargy your vet it talking about.

I started at 1/2 pill for my gelding (whose levels at initial testing were 1,150+) and kept him on a 1/2 pill for 6 weeks, and then re-tested. His levels came back at 11.8.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Did your vet tell you how to slowly build the dose, rather that right away just start on one pill? This aids in avoiding "the veil" which is the loss of appetite/depression/lethargy your vet it talking about.

I started at 1/2 pill for my gelding (whose levels at initial testing were 1,150+) and kept him on a 1/2 pill for 6 weeks, and then re-tested. His levels came back at 11.8.

Hey thanks for the reply. No she didn't mention that. She said if he becomes legarthgic we can cut it back to half a tablet.

My farrier told me the another horse died on the medication from a heart attack. I need to watch out for him going crazy, or losing his appetite altogether or being fine.

I am going to work on diet first and see if that can help put on fat.

Adding teff hay, fibre essential and hygain zero. Rugging even though he gets super fluffy and I have to check his bcs score and I read you want them on 5. I think he would be a 3 atm.
 

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Hey thanks for the reply. No she didn't mention that. She said if he becomes legarthgic we can cut it back to half a tablet.

My farrier told me the another horse died on the medication from a heart attack. I need to watch out for him going crazy, or losing his appetite altogether or being fine.

I am going to work on diet first and see if that can help put on fat.

Adding teff hay, fibre essential and hygain zero. Rugging even though he gets super fluffy and I have to check his bcs score and I read you want them on 5. I think he would be a 3 atm.
I'd suggesting building up rather than cutting back. From the stories I've read of others, most often they totally have to stop the pill rather than just decreasing the dose for the symptoms of the "veil" to disappear.

I doubt that medication caused a heart attack, so I wouldn't be too concerned about that happening.

My horse had pretty much an instantaneous energy boost and was a bit wild for about a month, but wouldn't you feel that way too if all of a sudden you felt way better? I swear, he became 20 years younger overnight.

I'd encourage you to look past Royal's current condition and focus on medicating first. Based on your pictures it isn't so much the weight that he is missing, but the muscle. The combination of medication + good feed makes all the difference. I say this because despite absolutely loading my horse up with hay + senior feed + fat supplements, nothing made a difference until he was medicated. We now are feeding no fat supplements and have the option to cut back on his senior feed now as well.
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'd suggesting building up rather than cutting back. From the stories I've read of others, most often they totally have to stop the pill rather than just decreasing the dose for the symptoms of the "veil" to disappear.

I doubt that medication caused a heart attack, so I wouldn't be too concerned about that happening.

My horse had pretty much an instantaneous energy boost and was a bit wild for about a month, but wouldn't you feel that way too if all of a sudden you felt way better? I swear, he became 20 years younger overnight.

I'd encourage you to look past Royal's current condition and focus on medicating first. Based on your pictures it isn't so much the weight that he is missing, but the muscle. The combination of medication + good feed makes all the difference. I say this because despite absolutely loading my horse up with hay + senior feed + fat supplements, nothing made a difference until he was medicated. We now are feeding no fat supplements and have the option to cut back on his senior feed now as well.
Thankyou!. The vet told me the same thing. Lucerne hay a biscuit a day in the slower feeder net or 2 as we have to 2 horses. Medication and just what I am feeding him now. So 1kg of hygain zero and 600g of chaff. That will also go from lucerne/oaten to just Lucerne. She said if I cannot test the teff hay so stay away from it as it can also be hi in sugar.

Medication will start hopefully next week once the script is sent up to me and I can get it at a cheaper rate elsewhere.

Also I will be bcs scoring them both each month from now on.
 
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