How much is too much??

This topic contains 24 replies, has 15 voices, and was last updated by  janine9499 2 years, 5 months ago.

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  • empaul02 Original Poster empaul02
    Topics Started: 3Replies Posted: 8

    I have an appendix mare who is very “OCD” about things. She gets very worried over small things. She isn’t necessarily hot, but I wanted to know if anyone had any recommendations on a supplement that would just be a sort of buffer to keep extra acid out of her stomach because of her frequent anxiety. I don’t want her on an “ulcer curing” supplement because she has really only had one or two problems with upset stomachs. Suggestions?? Thanks!!

    Joe-Joe Joe-Joe
    Topics Started: 17Replies Posted: 1205

    If she does not have a health problem that can be identified, why give her anything? What do you feed? How does she behave that you perceive as a problem? What sort of things make her anxious? Perhaps making some changes to her routine might solve the issue.

    It is never the horse's fault

    empaul02 Original Poster empaul02
    Topics Started: 3Replies Posted: 8

    She just gets very worried when things are out of place. (Ex. If a horse across from her is gone for the day she looks for them). She has calmed down a LOT since I first brought her to this barn but I know that when horses get upset acid builds up in their stomach, and I just wanted something mild to act as just a precaution to ulcers that may eventually arise from this. She is on a 12% grain and gets hay 3 times a day.

    Mapale Mapale
    Topics Started: 4Replies Posted: 421

    On days you feel she is tense – if it is infrequent – you can give her omeprazole. I administer it if I have prolonged use of bute. It protects the stomach. She may continue to calm down as she gets more and more used to variety and you will need it less and less. Here’s hoping.

    You can try massage to calm her if you don’t want medicine.

    You can also try talking to Smartpak about their calming supplements – they’ll be able to tell you which, if any, applies.

    Alois Podhajsky: “When I hear somebody talk about a horse being stupid, I figure it’s a sure sign that animal has outfoxed them. ...

    Joe-Joe Joe-Joe
    Topics Started: 17Replies Posted: 1205

    The issue I have is that if one gives something to anyone (horse, dog, person, etc.) a resistance could be built and if something arises that really requires it, then it (whatever it may be) it won’t be effective.

    It is never the horse's fault

    empaul02 Original Poster empaul02
    Topics Started: 3Replies Posted: 8

    Maybe more of a digestive tract buffer? I just feel like I can be doing more to keep her stomach happy as well as her! I’ve had her for 4 years and it’s definitly part of her personality, just an anxious girl. Maybe I will ask smartpak or just the vet of there’s something that just nutralizes it instead of using a prevention.

    Joe-Joe Joe-Joe
    Topics Started: 17Replies Posted: 1205

    That sounds like a better plan, and if I were you, I’d probably ask my vet first.

    It is never the horse's fault

    Chris
    Topics Started: 0Replies Posted: 15

    You don’t mention your horse’s lifestyle, but if she’s getting hay 3 times daily then I’m guessing she’s mostly confined to a stall? If so, her “OCD” type of behavior is much more likely stress-induced due to a lack of sufficient turn out and interaction with other horses, than a lack of some supplement IMO. You might also try a natural horsemanship approach with her if you haven’t already, such as Parelli’s Seven Games.

    Have the “one or two upset stomach” problems been recent, even though you say she’s calmed down a lot at your new barn? To what changes in barns do you attribute her now calmer nature (might be some important clues there to meeting her physical/psychological needs)?

    dressageklay
    Topics Started: 0Replies Posted: 1

    My gelding has dealt with gastric ulcers, anxiety and general stomach upset, and the two things diet-wise that I found the most helpful were aloe juice (1/4-1/2 cup/day) and probiotics. You might also chat with the vet about her diet – size of grain feedings, frequency of feeding, etc., to make sure that something physiologically isn’t contributing to the anxiety. In my experience, my gelding is very calm and level-headed… but if he’s in pain or something is wrong physically, he turns into a worry-wart basket case. It would be pretty simple to do something like probiotics or aloe juice for a week or so to see if you notice a difference… neither of those should do any harm and are relatively inexpensive.

    Aloe juice has a bit of a bitter taste, but even with my picky eater, he would slurp the remnants out of the bowl after eating the soaked feed if it felt good to his stomach. Aloe juice helps to balance the pH in the stomach, and also has great healing properties for any damage done by excess acid. It isn’t a proton-pump inhibitor like omeprazole and doesn’t result in an exacerbation if you stop after extended use (I take it too, so personal experience as well – this stuff is great).

    empaul02 Original Poster empaul02
    Topics Started: 3Replies Posted: 8

    Actually, she is turned all day everyday, weather permitting. She gets hay for lunch outside. I actually was looking into the smart digest because it has probiotics and prebiotics and seems to be simply a buffer to her stomach. As far as the aloe juice, can you just buy it at a regular grocery store? May be a good help a couple days before and after trailer and what not. She has also been at the new barn for 2 years now I don’t know why I refered to it as “new” but it is definitly and over-all less busy barn than the previous one. I am looking for something now not because she has been acting up more often but I am starting to travel 1-2 hours for shows a couple times a month and know that can be added stress. I appreciate everyone’s opinions!

    Joe-Joe Joe-Joe
    Topics Started: 17Replies Posted: 1205

    You could also try something like Vita-Calm, but be careful if you are showing at a level where drug testing is done.

    It is never the horse's fault

    Rosita Rosita
    Topics Started: 0Replies Posted: 6

    I have had great luck with an OCD Arabian gelding with the following simple strategy. We did move him to a barn where feeding directions were properly followed and turnout was better. You seem to have that under control.

    Here is the nutrition that turned him around mentally.
    – 12,000 IU vitamin D3 daily
    Horses make D3 when out in sunlight on green grass via a different pathway from humans. Winter can be really hard on them. D3 caps at store can be just put in with pellets. Or get D3 drops from Swanson Vitamins. My horses are on this daily all year because I have a gelding with free pasture access who seems not very interested in my lovely pasture with perfect equine mix of forage plus a mare with metabolic syndrome who cannot have grass.
    – 3.5 grams magnesium malate daily.
    Mg is often offered as the oxide or carbonate which is not particularly bio-available (just cheap). Vet literature says 14 grams (but as oxide!!!), which is enuf to tinker with gut pH (acid to base range). When I test my hay, it comes up short on Mg, even tho our area has limestone bedrock. Acid rain is the culprit, leaching grass as it grows. The rain or snow pH around here is 4.4 when it should be about 5.6 if it were just influenced by the carbon dioxide concentration of air. Car emissions create oxides of nitrogen (make nitric and nitrous acids) that lower the pH. If your bedrock is granite, most derived soils may need Mg & calcium. I crush the pills coarsely and top dress on pellets with a quarter cup of ground flax meal. Mg malate available also from Swanson. Six tabs do the trick.
    – our horses get a couple of lecithin gel caps daily for tummy health.
    Of course they also get 1 gram vitamin C daily because they do not buddy groom (they are “frenemies”).

    pflady
    Topics Started: 0Replies Posted: 25

    You can buy aloe juice at large chain drug stores (such as CVS). I used it on my gelding when he was taking phenylbutazone. It has to be refrigerated after opening. If you mare gets any alfalfa in her hay, that also raises (less acid) stomach pH.

    cowgirldld
    Topics Started: 0Replies Posted: 2

    Check in to Probios. I used that on my mare for awhile when we went to a new barn and she was a little anxious. It’s a probiotic and something that will help protect her stomach and help her digestive tract – just like humans. I think (but not positive) that it is something she can stay on.

    whippoorwill_horses
    Topics Started: 0Replies Posted: 1

    I run Whippoorwill Horse Rescue of TN. I have seen this in a couple. I am not an expert and would consult with my vet but, Probios powder works great for me. One small scoop daily in soaked food. The price isn’t bad at all & mixing with feed is so easy.

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