Ok, the whining is because the bloodwork came back on my 5 year old half arab yesterday. He's insulin resistant and has a low thyroid. The thyroid isn't a big deal, that is easy to fix with a little Thyro-L. However, the insulin resistance is a big deal. I kind of though he'd come back in the "at risk" catagory, but I expecting hiim to come in with the "high risk" diagnosis. *sigh*
Currently he has no issues. He's overweight, but sound, with no signs of laminitis. He doesn't have a crest or fat pads on his butt. He does have lumpy fat on his truck area, and a slightly swollen sheath.
We started thyroid medication yesterday. This weekend I will accumulate all the necessary supplements, foods, etc, to redo his diet. Oh, and a grazing muzzle. I need one of those too.
Which is where the hay source comes to mind. Anyone know of a source of tested, low sugar hay? Preferably timothy, but will take any grass as long as it tests at below 10% starch.
Also, I could use a few tips for keeping a grazing muzzle on a horse. My boy can take off a fly mask in two seconds, and if you leave him unsupervised with a halter on, he'll get that off too. He's good.... So, short of duct tape and staples, what's the best way to keep the muzzle on the horse?
I would for sure be working on the diet to see how that affects his weight before adding the Thyro-L, unless he's SO obese that he needs as much weight as will come off asap. Most IR and hypothyroid horses have weight managed well and often quickly by greatly reducing the sugars, no T-L necessary
The IR is the CAUSE of the low testing thyroid. Fix the IR issues and you automatically fix the thyroid issues (nearly always)
Ask feed stores if they know any farmers up there growing Teff hay. While not a guarantee, every test I've seen of batches from up that way (which is about 6 now) have been below 10% NSC
______________________________ The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET
As JB pointed out, look for Teff hay, especially in the PA and southern NJ area. Teff is a warm season grass and tends to be lower NSC. Quite a few farmers planted it this year and it did really well in this area with the long hot dry spells we had, flourished while orchard shriveled. Source I bought mine from is now on their second cutting and might get a third, it grows fast in the heat.
Not in your area, so can't suggest a specific source, but while you wait to find low NSC hay, you can soak the hay you have to remove a good amount of the sugars. An excellent source of info on dealing with the IR horse is the website http://www.safergrass.org/.
Good luck with your horse! You are actually quite lucky to find out about the IR without having to go through an episode of laminitis, which seems to be how most of us find out. Or should I say, your horse is lucky!
Yeah, sorry...I have great source for Eastern Oregon meadow hay, that always tests low carb and horses love it, but, well, it's in Oregon.
If you wouldn't mind sharing your source, I'd love to have that contact info. I am doing okay for now on teff for my IR guy, but having a second source of low NSC hay would be great. PM if you like (I'm in SW WA, so OR hay is what we get). Thanks!