The Chronicle of the Horse
MagazineNewsHorse SportsHorse CareCOTH StoreVoicesThe Chronicle UntackedDirectoriesMarketplaceDates & Results
 
Results 1 to 15 of 15
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug. 17, 2001
    Location
    Hangin' on by a thread...
    Posts
    3,326

    Unhappy Extreme heat = rapid respiration? Or, I did end up running xc...

    So, I did end up running in Lumber River, and I ended up scratching after xc. Sam was definitely distressed after xc.

    For those of you just checking in, here is some history: I have an 8 yr old Paint gelding, heavier on the muscle (not like a TB), who seems to be having difficulty when the weather turns humid and hot. When worked in the canter for any extent of time, his breathing is very rapid and shallow, like he's panting. It takes him a loooong time to slow his breathing down to a normal level.

    I ride him with a HR monitor and he can shoot up to 170-180 bpm when galloping out on course, but then it drops down to the low 80s within a minute or so and then, if I just let him stand, he pulses down to a high 60 within minutes. However, he's still panting like a steam engine (or a porn star! ).

    I just came back from running Novice xc, where the temps were in the 100's and the humidity was high, but there was a breeze. The breeze is what decided me to run - it wasn't too bad, actually, especially in the shade. He had moments out on course where he felt weird to me (bobbly from side to side), and then he punched it and felt like a rock star, which is why I kept going. I took my leg off completely and let him run at his own speed, which actually was too fast so I ended up rating him anyway.

    He had a very uncharacteristic run-out at a very simple jump (first warning sign), and then was a pro through the water and out again, and then had another uncharacteristic bobble at a solid table fence, which led him to rap his front legs and almost pitch me off. Since this wasn't like him at all, I called it a day and scratched him from stadium. At the cooling station, we sponged him down with ice water and kept hosing and scraping like crazy, and he drank TONS of water (more than he's ever done before) and 15 minutes later, he's still breathing fast and shallow and the water still isn't coming off him cool. 20 minutes later, his respiration slowed to a point where I wasn't worried he was going to explode or pass out, and we walked him back to the trailer, where I hosed him down two more times. Finally - he stopped panting and the water ran off him cold.

    Some info on him - he suffers from seasonal allergies. he tends to have a warmup cough in the hot, humid weather. He is on Cough Free which was working well until the really hot weather hit, and was on an antihistamine (Tri-Hist) for one day before the show (we stopped 24 hours out, according to drug regs), and he's also on Dex to reduce inflammation. My hubby, who is a bike racer, said that most likely what happened was that due to the antihistamine, his body temps skyrocketed and there were probably moments on course where he felt woozy (hence the wobbling I felt at odd times), and he was panting to cool himself down - he says that antihistamines tend to raise your body temperature like that, as well as dehydrate you quickly. That would explain a lot about today, but it doesn't explain why this horse tends to respirate quickly but drop his heartrate down at the drop of a hat.

    So, what do you think? Can a horse have a quick HR recovery time, yet still be respirating quickly and be hard to cool off? the other horses were hot and panting, too, but they all recovered much better than mine did. I talked to my vet and she said that it was definitely strange, and she was going to look into it, but meanwhil I thought I'd pick your collective brains. I'm very worried because this horse has a heart of gold and really gave me a nice dressage test, but I'm worried that if he continues to have this problem, I won't be able to event him and will have to do something less strenuous.

    Thanks in advance!
    "Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." - Thomas Edison

    So, the Zen Buddhist says to the hotdog vendor, "Make me one with everything."



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan. 25, 2004
    Location
    Milton, Ontario
    Posts
    1,437

    Default

    When the breathing rate is faster than the heart rate (also called being inverted) it usually means the horse is stressed. It is allergy season so your horse's wind may not be quite right.
    I would see if your horse perhaps needs a bit more fitness work to cope with the heat.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec. 8, 2002
    Location
    Fort Collins, CO
    Posts
    3,344

    Default

    My only thought is this- he has not been on Tri-hist before, if I read the other thread correctly, and then he is also on dex?

    I think that may have been too much- or at least it feels like that to me- Dex is a tough thing- esp in heat, at least with my guy, who needed it once for hives at an event. Yea, 5 cc's, not such a great dose, but still- if it does such a great job at one thing, it leads me to think it might be just as your DH said- just a bit too much on that day. It did cause my horses HR to be higher then I thought it should be and had been in the past. I know this is not what you saw, but...just my observation on Taco.

    You are a great horsewoman, though, and you did the right thing for him. Sorry it ended on a rough note, but it ended on a safe note. <<<Hugs>>>
    I have too many ponies but love 'em all!

    http://foxview-farm.blogspot.com/



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar. 12, 2006
    Posts
    4,343

    Default

    Truly-
    The air is THICK. Your horse is likely not used to it. I used to ride a full draft and on hot days, he would pant for a long time (*not sure on heart rate) and it would take 15-20 minutes of repeated cool water plus standing in front of a fan. Conditioning helped. Yet he hunts very successfully in Fall, Winter and Spring.

    I don't think your horse panting after running XC in 100+ temperatures means he can't event. He probably just needs to not run in extreme conditions. You probably ran him in the worst possible conditions- sudden heat that he was not used to.

    The air is intense- there is a heat advisory and honestly- it actually hurts my lungs to breathe. We got hit hard and early- normally when it is like this there are no events going on!



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan. 16, 2002
    Location
    West Coast of Michigan
    Posts
    36,321

    Default

    Rapid shallow respirations TEND TO mean "hot" to me more than "I'm in the lactic acid range". I don't know how scientific it is, but in humans acidosis provokes deep, labored breathing moreso than rapid "panting". His heart rates would indicate his CV fitness is at least decent; maybe it was just too hot for him or his airways weren't 100% due to allergies.

    Did you check his temperature after XC?

    I wouldn't give up on his eventing career after one yucky day, my goodness! We're all entitled to a bad day, and it's a rare weekend when SOMETHING isn't less than optimal.
    Last edited by deltawave; Jun. 8, 2008 at 09:41 AM.
    Click here before you buy.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug. 26, 2006
    Location
    North Central Florida
    Posts
    1,379



  7. #7
    eventer_mi is offline Our Lady of Perpetual Novice
    Original Poster
    Join Date
    Aug. 17, 2001
    Location
    Hangin' on by a thread...
    Posts
    3,326

    Default

    Thanks to all who responded.

    Hony - it's quite likely that he needed to be a bit more fit . We'll definitely work on that next time.

    Annika - thanks for the kind words, but I sure didn't feel like a responsible horse person when we were frantically trying to slow his respiration down. I've never had a horse breathe that quickly for that long, before. It was a bit scary. You're right - two different kinds of meds were probably too much. I didn't know that dex could raise heart rate. We were trying to help him breathe easier.

    Magnolia - thanks for the words of support. I had a tough time breathing out there in the heat as well! I hear it's supposed to get a bit more like normal next week.

    Lynn- that makes me feel a whole lot better. I discussed this with Joe and he agreed (about human acidosis). I can understand being HOT. No, I didn't get a chance to take temp - we were too busy hosing and scraping him down. GOod idea for next time, though.

    foxhavenfarm - yes, he was sweating just fine. I was careful to watch for abnormal sweat patterns.

    Thanks again! Looks like I just might have to call off the events that take place in the middle of a heat wave. Can't say that I'll be too bummed about it . It truly has been miserably hot these days.
    "Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." - Thomas Edison

    So, the Zen Buddhist says to the hotdog vendor, "Make me one with everything."



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct. 30, 2004
    Location
    Pine Top side of Atlanta, GA
    Posts
    4,961

    Default

    I went through EXACTLY your same situation 8 or 9 years ago with Buddy - he ended up tying up, colicking...never again, no matter WHO says, just do the the dressage test, go out on XC and see what he feels like...NOPE, come heat, we don't go.

    Am happy to hear all is well with your guy, and you! there will be lots of events, fall is not that far away - focus on fitness (when its cool - I didn't even get on a horse Thursday until 8:30 pm!)...again, smart thinking on your part to call it a day when your good friend was having a hard time.
    ~ it no longer matters what level I do, as long as I am doing it..~ with many thanks, to Elizabeth Callahan



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep. 2, 2005
    Location
    Alabama
    Posts
    7

    Default Medications can contribute to heat stress

    Sometimes Tri-Hist can cause anhidrotic symptoms. I know of 2 horses that were put on Tri-hist for allergies, they both stopped sweating and started to pant. As soon as they were taken off of the Tri-hist they started sweating again and their respiratory rate went back to normal. The combination of heat and humidity can be bad in the south were I live and I have to ride late in the day or at night if I am going to ride at all in the summer.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    May. 23, 2006
    Posts
    5,461

    Default

    [QUOTE=RunForIt;3272729]never again, no matter WHO says, just do the the dressage test, go out on XC and see what he feels like...NOPE, come heat, we don't go.
    QUOTE]


    Absolutely agree...especialy when the temps were 100F with very high humidity to boot.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec. 18, 2003
    Posts
    1,882

    Default

    Glad he is OK.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun. 19, 2006
    Posts
    423

    Default

    Your hubby sounds smart. When my horse started having problems with the Tri-Hist, a friend who works in a human ER told me that one of the first things they look at when patients come in with heat-related issues is the use of antihistamines.

    I was surprised that vets seem to be unaware of the connection although people on COTH are

    Sounds like you did the right thing.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan. 16, 2002
    Location
    West Coast of Michigan
    Posts
    36,321

    Default

    Just re-reading, and the web ate my reply last night . . .

    Do you mean his heart rate was 180 yesterday, or it's normally 180 when you're doing XC or cantering? That seems pretty high to me now that I look back at my stuff on fitness with Gwen--a HR of around 190-200 is getting near "red line" for the average horse. Cantering a Novice XC shouldn't put a fit horse anywhere near there--Gwen's HR would never get above 130 going 400mpm, no matter how far we went, unless there were hills. She'd "pant" when we were finished with an interval if it was hot/humid, but the heart rate only went up on steep hills or at speed > 550mpm. Different horse, sure, but just wondering if Sam couldn't use a little more fitness? I'm always saying a Novice horse doesn't "need" intervals, but if he's got a slight handicap with the allergies and, well, if you're living in steamy NC, it might not hurt.
    Click here before you buy.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul. 13, 2006
    Posts
    2,451

    Default

    I also agree with the fitness issue and helping with the recovery, but is there any chance he just hasn't learned how to breath yet under stress? We routinely do trot sets, and slow gallops with our non-TB's as believe it or not they don't all know how to breath while galloping! We had a heavier paint that sounds similar to yours that almost passed out in hot weather doing the same thing. We were able to re-create at home and the vet confirmed he was almost blacking out. We solved the whole thing by teaching him how to breath right. Lots of trot sets and slow gallops in good weather and then pushing them later in the day when it got hotter. He finally learned and ended up going through prelim!



  15. #15
    eventer_mi is offline Our Lady of Perpetual Novice
    Original Poster
    Join Date
    Aug. 17, 2001
    Location
    Hangin' on by a thread...
    Posts
    3,326

    Default

    YIKES - looks like Tri-Hist was a very bad idea! Won't be doing that again soon! Thanks for all the well-wishes for Sam - he seems to be just fine and not affected by his "attack".

    Yeah, Sam (and I!) could probably use a bit more fitness. Now, the trouble is achieving that without a hill in sight....

    mjrtango - that's very interesting. I never thought that some horses need to learn how to breathe. I'll have to really look into that possibility. Good to know that he went Prelim - Sam is such a game little guy that I have high hopes for him, too.

    Thanks!
    "Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." - Thomas Edison

    So, the Zen Buddhist says to the hotdog vendor, "Make me one with everything."



Similar Threads

  1. extreme heat and early pregnancy
    By kiwifruit in forum Sport Horse Breeding
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: Jul. 9, 2012, 01:09 PM
  2. EXTREME HEAT - am I doing everything I can?
    By Jumpin_Horses in forum Horse Care
    Replies: 31
    Last Post: Jul. 21, 2011, 12:53 PM
  3. Extreme Heat (100's) and Chickens
    By Calvincrowe in forum Around The Farm
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: Jul. 27, 2009, 11:53 PM
  4. Turn Out in Extreme Heat
    By Halfhalt08 in forum Horse Care
    Replies: 23
    Last Post: Jun. 24, 2009, 01:37 PM
  5. Extreme rapid respiration - any ideas?
    By eventer_mi in forum Endurance and Trail Riding
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: Jun. 11, 2008, 01:28 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
randomness