My 18 yo OTTB has been on stall rest since this past Spring due to a complicated and difficult issue with his hock. With really excellent veterinary care, he has improved, and for the last couple of months has been allowed out to hand graze and hand walk.
He has now improved to the point that the vet has cleared him for limited turnout - small paddock, short period of time. (I am so excited!) The vet recommends that I give my horse 2cc (20 mg) of Ace intra-muscularly prior to turnout to decrease the chance of him running around. My horse is ~1000-1100 lbs and is in good health.
I have very limited experience with Ace and have no experience with it in this horse.
So my question...as far as Ace dosages, it this "a lot", "a little", "medium"?
Every horse, Ace reacts differently. I have almost the same situation due to colic surgery. Once b4 this all happened, I gave my horse (about the same weight as yours) 1/2cc ace in the mouth (doesnt do shots without a vet) b4 riding. NO change at all. I thought Id see a bit of reaction, like having one or two beers, but no. B4 turnout, my vet said when giving by mouth usually u need a stronger dose, so I administered 1cc into the back of her throat. Waited 30-40 minutes while in stall. Then turned her out. She was great. Still ran a bit, trot to cantered softly, chased the other horse, but everything was soft and not violent bucking or biting, nor squealing. Then instantly enjoyed the big paddock grazing.
I say everything in moderation. If he is normally a HOT TB, & your vet knows him, listen to the vet. But to err on the side of caution, maybe Id give him a little less than 2cc of what the vet prescribed. If he has tried to pull away from you handwalking or when another horse screams or spooks and is acting HOT, u know he'll be burning rubber when u turn him lose & may need that much 2cc. Good luck.
2 cc is not a big dose. Mine was on reserpine with a 3 cc ace chaser for t/o. Good luck, very exciting when they can finally go on t/o again. I would also make sure he is hungry (focused on grass) and nothing else exciting is going on around him.
I gave my mare 2cc last weekend (trailering for the first time in three years), and I couldn't tell that it did much of anything. Maybe a slight effect, but not much at all. She still did fine and hauled like a champ, but I don't think that had anything to do with the Ace.
When my 17 y/o TB gelding was coming off of stall rest, we started by giving 3 cc's of ace prior to turnout in a small paddock. We weaned him down off of that over the next two weeks til he was calm enough to go out without it!
Charlie Brown (1994 bay TB X gelding)
White Star (2004 grey TB gelding)
You can give it by mouth if you'd rather not give shots.
When we were doing handwalking and adding limited turnout with Phinn we used ace and started with 1cc IV and 1cc IM. This was my vet's recommendation, it starts to act fast, but lasts a while as the IM portion is absorbed slower.
As days went on we learned to vary it based off of what his mood was that day, you could tell by how he was in his stall what sort of antics he would be up to handwalking or in his little turnout. Some of our variances:
1cc IV/1cc IM, generally, the IV/IM mix was in effect in about 10 mins and lasted several hours.
2cc IM, generally took about 30-40 mins to set in, and lasted several (about 3) hours.
2cc orally, again, generally took about 30-40 mins to set in, and lasted several (about 3) hours.
As time went on we started backing off the ace and worked off of 1.5 and then 1 cc doses.
I used a vet recommended 2cc oral dose coming off stall rest (so I assume he got slightly less than 2cc) and it had a noticeable calming effect. My problem was to keep my horse from spooking during the hand-grazing phase as he was so wound up he would violently spook at about anything. It worked very well without any obvious impairment. I used it infrequently, only on occassions like strong winds. I don't know if their tolerance increases with regular use.
I avoid drugs so I did a lot of reading on the potential side effects before I used it. I don't have the reference handy, but I recall 4cc being the recommended max dose with an extremely low percentage of adverse effects being documented.
I'd say 2cc is probably middle of the road, especially if given orally.
I much prefer to oral dose, if possible, and don't get why my vets want me to do things IM, especially after the clostridial and banamine thread.
Yes you can. It takes about 30 minutes to take effect and the horses are as quiet as if they were stuck. One of my horses is horrible to have her ears clipped, my vet said 4-5 cc's orally 30 minutes before we attempt the deed. She's perfect.
For horses coming off lay-up going out for the first time in a while we first turn them out in a small paddock (obviously) and it all depends on the horse but usually the first day they get 3cc Ace IM then adjust from there, some need more, some need less and then they're weaned off until none is needed.
My horse is coming off of stall rest from a splint. My vet recommended 1cc of ace to start with. That's a pretty low dose, but he wanted to make sure my guy still knew where his feet were so that he didn't interfere and re-injure the splint.
And as others have said, give it 30 minutes to kick in. But that's 30 minutes of the horse being calm. So you want to avoid a situation such as giving the ace and then turning out the other horses and making the horse wait the 30 minutes inside before going out.
I realize that all ace PROBABLY comes in the same concentration, but it is so very, very, very much safer to express medication dosages in MILLIGRAMS rather than a volume to be given.
Parents have inadvertently poisoned their kids by giving "half a teaspoon" of liquid tylenol without making sure that the pediatrician meant CHILDREN'S tylenol and not INFANT tylenol, for example.
To be safe, double check that YOUR 2 cc's is the same as the VET's 2 cc's is the same as your friend's 2 cc's.
That said, I used oral Ace powder when Keebler was on stall rest and started with 20 milligrams and as he became more and more tolerant it went up as high as 100 milligrams. Tolerance happens, and there is no "one size fits all" dosage. But for a typical horse under typical circumstances, I also start with 20 milligrams and go up or down from there depending on the response.
i know horses who fox hunted on 2cc's of ace. We had a rehab horse who got .5cc IV and 1-1.5 IM when he was started back under saddle. It saved our butts on him! Some people hate it, I just horses. I never made the calls on the ace given except a few times with farm owned horses!
Thanks everyone for the information - and moral support!
In a couple of days, I'll be able to start my horse on limited turnout. After all that has gone on, this is a big day for us. And I am both nervous and excited. So much so, that while the vet recommended 2 cc (20 mg) for my horse, a friend at the barn suggested that I (myself) might need a somewhat larger dose!
I was going to say the same thing deltawave. Most Ace that Equine vets dispense is actually 25mg/ml not 10mg/ml (this concentration is more typical in small animal practice) at least here in Canada so one persons 2cc might = 50mg vs 20mg.
I've used 1 cc (25mg) IV on my mare in the past and it was just enough to keep her a quiet. That said others who expressed every horse is different would also be correct and starting low is always safest. There are potential side effects to most medications and IMO everything should be used with caution.