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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar. 5, 2003
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    Wake Forest, NC
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    613

    Default Thyro L - side effects

    I recently started a regimen of Thyro L on my 30 YO pony after bloodwork from his spring check-up indicated that his thryoid is not functioning properly.

    He has lost quite a bit of weight and is having loose stools. I have decreased the dosage in an effort to stablize his weight. Has anyone noticed loose stools while feeding Thyro L? I'm not sure if the weight loss/loose stools are the result of the Thyro L or if he might have something else going on.

    TIA



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec. 13, 1999
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
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    35,576

    Default

    What was done to try to get the weight off before going on the Thyro-L?

    I ask because insulin resistance issues can cause the thyroid to test low, and if that is the thyroid is the only thing treated, you still have the underlying problem in existence.

    Thyro-L is indeed to raise thyroid levels which does cause weight loss.

    Presumably the "not functioning properly" was a low reading?

    ETA - or was his weight not an issue, but he's lost weight and is now too thin?
    ______________________________
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar. 22, 2005
    Posts
    569

    Default

    My big boy was diagnosed with a low thyroid (after foundering) and he's been fine on 1 teasp. 2x daily. I can only estimate how much weight he's lost (he's still beyond the numbers on the weight tape) but I can guess between 40 to 50 lbs in the last month, with no change in amount of food. His manure is still firm. My boy is only 16 but I also have a 35 yo with cushings that is on Evitex (chasteberry) and he's doing awesome. I have him on Poulin Forage super bites, carb safe and triple crown safe starch chopped hay. He also gets Accel as a supplement.
    Good luck with your old man. It seems like they can change in the blink of an eye. With my senior I thought last fall was going to be his last, but then I put him on the chasteberry and it's like he drank from the fountain of youth.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar. 5, 2003
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    Wake Forest, NC
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    Default

    The reason I had the pony's thyroid tested was because his summer coat is getting progressively longer/thicker each year. He completely sheds his winter coat, but his summer coat is not as short as it was when he was a youngster. Being a typical pony, he is an easy keeper, but I've always managed his weight with reduced turnout. He's never shown typical signs of Cushings/IR - never cresty, never laminitic (which is amazing for a pony), sheds winter coat like all other horses, no pot-bellied appearance---he's always been in remarkably good health.

    I was a bit concerned by the dosage recommended by my vet (She is new to the practice). By the time the results came in and I picked up the Thyro L from the office, she had forgotten that he is a 600 pound pony and gave me dosages appropriate for full sized horses. Once I reminded her of his stature, she dosed him at 1.5 tablespoons daily for 1 month and then .5 tablespoons per day, afterwards. Since he's lost so much weight, I've decreased the dosage.

    I have some new timothy hay which may be contributing the the loose stools, though I switched to the new hay slowly over 7-8 days.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun. 28, 2003
    Location
    KY, USA
    Posts
    1,926

    Default

    Might be time for new vet.

    Agree with earlier post, make sure underlying cause isn't something other than thyroid. We bought a horse on the medication, put him into serious work with proper nutrition, and he never needed it again. You're much better balancing weight without medication if you can do it - horse or human.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar. 5, 2003
    Location
    Wake Forest, NC
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    613

    Default

    I wasn't having a problem with his weight. The vet tested the pony's thyroid because of this thick summer coat. His issue was a thick summer coat - he completely sheds his winter coat every spring.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov. 1, 2005
    Location
    The Prairie
    Posts
    5,430

    Default

    I have had two horses on Thyroid L and have never seen them have loose stools as a result....
    I love cooking with wine. Sometimes I even put it in the food.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    May. 10, 2001
    Location
    NW Washington
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    1,075

    Default

    Wow, I had my 600 lb pony on 1 tsp once a day and then decreased it to 3/4 tsp once she was stabilized. Never did have any negative side effects with her. That's a huge dose he's getting!



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug. 30, 2007
    Location
    Illinois, USA
    Posts
    8,189

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by GallopHer View Post
    The reason I had the pony's thyroid tested was because his summer coat is getting progressively longer/thicker each year. He completely sheds his winter coat, but his summer coat is not as short as it was when he was a youngster. Being a typical pony, he is an easy keeper, but I've always managed his weight with reduced turnout. He's never shown typical signs of Cushings/IR - never cresty, never laminitic (which is amazing for a pony), sheds winter coat like all other horses, no pot-bellied appearance---he's always been in remarkably good health.

    I was a bit concerned by the dosage recommended by my vet (She is new to the practice). By the time the results came in and I picked up the Thyro L from the office, she had forgotten that he is a 600 pound pony and gave me dosages appropriate for full sized horses. Once I reminded her of his stature, she dosed him at 1.5 tablespoons daily for 1 month and then .5 tablespoons per day, afterwards. Since he's lost so much weight, I've decreased the dosage.

    I have some new timothy hay which may be contributing the the loose stools, though I switched to the new hay slowly over 7-8 days.
    My mum's 900lb Arab gets way less than that. Holy huge dose!
    Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar. 24, 2007
    Posts
    1,806

    Default

    I think you are treating the wrong symptoms........from everything you described you should be treating this as Cushings with pergolide.......treat the main cause and the thyroid should take care of itself.

    Dalemma



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun. 30, 2005
    Posts
    2,185

    Default

    My gelding that was 1460 lbs. got 3 1/2 teaspoons a day in the beginning.When he got down to his optimal weight 1200 lbs. we cut him back to 2 1/2 teaspoons. He immediatley gained 25 lbs in a week so we bumped him up to 3 teaspoons a day until he passed away.

    My gelding has no issues with the Thyro L.
    RIP Sucha Smooth Whiskey
    May 17,2004 - March 29, 2010
    RIP San Lena Peppy
    May 3, 1991 - March 11, 2010



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov. 13, 2002
    Location
    PA, where the State motto is: "If it makes sense, we don't do it!".
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    11,047

    Default

    You should be speaking with your vet.

    When you have a pony/horse on Thyrol-L you need to do periodic blood work to determine if the animal is getting too much or too little. You shouldn't be cutting back on it on your own--your vet should be in on this decision.

    It could be that things have changed with your pony--sometimes "weight loss" is actually muscle mass loss instead. I'd be looking at insulin resistance (check glucose and insulin) and Cushing's at this point. Also have the vet check the thyroid level again.

    What is this little guy eating? Anything containing molasses? Have you changed hays recently?
    "Good gardening is very simple, really. You just have to learn to think like a plant." ~Barbara Damrosch~



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar. 5, 2003
    Location
    Wake Forest, NC
    Posts
    613

    Default

    Thanks for all of the input and advice. I'll contact my vet's office and request the main vet, who has many more years of experience.

    I'm curious - Why do several of you think he may have IR or Cushings if his only symptom is a thick summer coat? We've had Apache for 20 years and he's never been laminitic, had trouble shedding or a weight problem. He is not an excessive drinker. When I say he's an easy keeper, I mean that he's just a pony who, because of his size, does not need a field full of grass 24/7. As a matter of pasture maintenance, all of my horses are on pasture 12 hours a day and on the dry lot 12 hours at night.

    Again, thanks for your comments.
    Last edited by GallopHer; May. 28, 2010 at 04:32 PM. Reason: additional content



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug. 30, 2007
    Location
    Illinois, USA
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    8,189

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by GallopHer View Post
    Thanks for all of the input and advice. I'll contact my vet's office and request the main vet, who has many more years of experience.

    I'm curious - Why do several of you think he may have IR or Cushings if his only symptom is a thick summer coat? We've had Apache for 20 years and he's never been laminitic, had trouble shedding or a weight problem. When I say he's an easy keeper, I mean that he's just a pony who, because of his size, does not need a field full of grass 24/7. As a matter of pasture maintenance, all of my horses are on pasture 12 hours a day and on the dry lot 12 hours at night.

    Again, thanks for your comments.
    I knew a TWH mare whose ONLY symptom of IR/Cushings (don't remember which) was some fat pads over her eyes and tail. Otherwise she had no other symptoms.
    Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov. 13, 2002
    Location
    PA, where the State motto is: "If it makes sense, we don't do it!".
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    Default

    I'm curious - Why do several of you think he may have IR or Cushings if his only symptom is a thick summer coat?
    It's not the thick summer coat I'm fixating on, it's the weight thing. Please read my quote below:
    It could be that things have changed with your pony--sometimes "weight loss" is actually muscle mass loss instead. I'd be looking at insulin resistance (check glucose and insulin) and Cushing's at this point. Also have the vet check the thyroid level again.
    If a horse/pony is insulin resistant they aren't able to use the sugars from their feedstuffs to feed their cells--there's a problem with transference across the cell membrane, hence when it looks like they're losing weight they are actually losing muscle mass. In a 30 year old it's best to stay on top of things--as horses/ponies age they just get old age problems, just like people.
    "Good gardening is very simple, really. You just have to learn to think like a plant." ~Barbara Damrosch~



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Mar. 11, 2006
    Location
    South of the Mason-Dixon Line
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    2,321

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Tee View Post
    Wow, I had my 600 lb pony on 1 tsp once a day and then decreased it to 3/4 tsp once she was stabilized. Never did have any negative side effects with her. That's a huge dose he's getting!
    Agreed. My medium pony gets 1 tsp daily. The only side effects are occassional skittishness. We then retest and adjust dose as needed. Never had a problem with loose manure.
    Ridge Farm Inc.-full care retirement
    http://www.horseretirementfarm.com



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jul. 5, 2007
    Location
    Beside Myself ~ Western NY
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    6,403

    Default

    If you read about Insulin Resistance/Thyroid/Cushings you will realise that the issues are so intertwined that you will wonder why the heck a vet doesn't test for all three when doing the initial diagnosis as a matter of course. I can see follow up testing just for one once you have isolated exactly which issue is ruling the roost. If our vet had taken a minute to explain things and tested for IR at the same time he did the initial test for Thyroid, we would have caught on a lot quicker, and saved ourselves and our horses a ton of pain and suffering.

    I realise a vet/doctor is not in the position to do an owner's research for them, but sometimes it's damned frustrating. Whenever a vet takes a minute to further my education I jump for joy. All too often it feels like the blind leading the blind with the horse stuck in the middle. Not every horse owner will spend hours a week reading updates on the latest on horse health care, but that seems like what is necessary... Heck, while I'm at it, why don't I just attend vet school? ... rant over. Deep breath....



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Mar. 5, 2003
    Location
    Wake Forest, NC
    Posts
    613

    Default

    A bit of an update. The loose stools were a temporary issue - only 2 days- which may have been the result of switching hay too quickly. Apache's weight is picking up a tad and I've backed off the Thyro L dosage. All seems good for now.

    When the vet comes out for fall shots, I'll discuss testing for IR - Cushings.

    Thanks for all of your responses.



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