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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov. 12, 2010
    Posts
    51

    Default Let's talk about Lyme Disease--oh goodie!

    My horse lives at a wonderful place south of Leesburg, VA in Loudoun County--the 3rd most infected place in the US for Lyme Disease.

    I got him the latest Cornell Lyme titer and he is positive. No big surprise, because at least 3 of his 7 pasture mates are being treated for Lymes.

    Soooo, tomorrow he will be starting on a course of $500 (plus or minus) Doxycycline plus who knows what $$ pro biotics.

    He was vaccinated for Lymes in the fall, BTW. He has no symptoms, except that he has become unusually spooky.

    What are other's experiences with this disease and how have you coped? I am asking on behalf of my other horse, Moonshine, a lovely sweet Arabian X Saddlebred, who was down on the ground before she was finally diagnosed.

    She endured 3 months of doxycycline via catheter. That's how sweet she was. I wish I knew as much then as I know now--perhaps I could have spared her so much pain. She had to be retired due to ringbone and other painful side effects.



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar. 10, 2003
    Location
    Massachusetts, USA
    Posts
    3,503

    Default

    --Gwen <><
    "Treat others as you want to be treated and be the change you want to see in the world."
    http://www.thepenzancehorse.com



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov. 12, 2010
    Posts
    51

    Default

    http://www.thepenzancehorse.com/2007...lyme&ledum.htm
    Thank you, Cabullus. I believe in homeopathy. It has helped me no end, why not my critter!



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar. 14, 2010
    Location
    Earlysville, Virginia
    Posts
    3,244

    Default

    Doxy is not the ideal treatment for lyme. Oxytet IV is much more effective, if you can do that. Also, generally if they test positive, they could have just been exposed and not actually have Lyme.
    Charlie Brown (1994 bay TB X gelding)
    White Star (2004 grey TB gelding)

    Mystical Moment, 1977-2010.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov. 12, 2010
    Posts
    51

    Default

    Oh sorry it is Caballus. I am upset at the moment. I will check out your advice,



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov. 12, 2010
    Posts
    51

    Default It is the latest Cornell test for Lymes

    Positive on 2 factors, but not on the first one that would conclusively diagnose for Lymes. Very difficult, but the doctor says to treat.

    I am very interested in the information that Doxy is not the best way to treat. The doctor talked to me on the way to a conference on Lymes. Will be interested to hear what he learned.

    Thank you all so much for your info!



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec. 11, 2004
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    1,698

    Default

    I also suggest doing at least some oxytet injections while doing doxy. Yes, Cornell recommends IV oxtytet daily for a month, but that also has its risks. Anyone that's dealt with oxytet knows it's thick, tough to administer (my vet had me use an 18 gauge thin-walled needle), and can be very caustic to tissues. I asked about a catheter, and he said in his experience (been practicing since the mid-70s) those can result in just as much irritation, if not more, than just sticking the vein every few days.

    His normal protocol was to do IV oxytet twice a week for two weeks in the middle of doxy treatment, and said they've had good success with that protocol. I tried that with my guy (who was mildly positive for chronic stage Lyme, and also was symptomatic), and it brought his titer down some but not enough. So, for the final month of treatment, I kept him on doxy (total of 5 months) and injected oxytet every other day. That brought his titer down to negative values.

    I have to warn, though, that if you aren't good with IV shots, then perhaps ask about a catheter or get the vet or an experienced person to do it. The volume required is high (my guy needed 30cc) and it's not a fun product to inject.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec. 11, 2004
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    1,698

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by WishesRHorses View Post
    Positive on 2 factors, but not on the first one that would conclusively diagnose for Lymes. Very difficult, but the doctor says to treat.
    Not sure what you mean by this. With the new multiplex assay, if you are positive for two of the three antigens they I would say that is a positive. The only time I would say to question whether it's a true positive or not is if the horse has been vaccinated and tests positive for OspA ONLY, and not either of the other two. That said, if they are symptomatic at all (including being suddenly spooky), I would likely treat it as an early infection and start medicating.

    BTW, spookiness was the main symptom of my guy as well. He was sound, but still felt a bit NQR under saddle, but went from being relatively bombproof to literally spooking at his own shadow! Within a week of starting the doxy, I already saw an improvement in his demeanor.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    May. 13, 2004
    Location
    NW CT
    Posts
    837

    Default

    Lyme (not Lymes!) disease is tricky. Because the symptoms can be elusive, I regularly test (titer and Western Blot). If there are symptoms, I believe it's best to treat. If you don't or you wait too long, you can add your horse to the very large group of horses who are chronically sick, sore and lame because they are suffering from chronic Lyme disease.

    How to treat, in any given horse, should be guided by a vet experienced in treating the disease. I have grave concerns about the vaccine and would never give it to any horse in my care. I've known one horse who was given the vaccine and a short while later, developed symptoms of Lyme disease that quickly became severe and ended up being chronic. I also have a friend who was given the human vaccine years ago, and he ended up in a wheelchair. He attributes his illness to the vaccine (as does his doctor). Only an extended course of IV antibiotics enabled him to walk again.
    The aids are the legs, the hands, the weight of the rider, the whip, the caress, the voice and the use of extraneous circumstances. ~ General Decarpentry
    www.reflectionsonriding.com



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep. 8, 2007
    Posts
    2,899

    Default

    My horse had Lyme in 2005 before I purchased him. He was treated with Doxy by his old owner. By 2008 it had returned with a vengeance. He started showing neuro symptoms and tested crazy high. I did 28 days of IV Oxytetracycline via a catheter (which caused no problems whatsoever) and he has been right as rain ever since. Have your vet call Cornell. Oxytet is really the only way to treat.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep. 7, 2009
    Location
    Lexington, KY
    Posts
    16,819

    Default

    With antibiotic choice, it's pretty much a choice of pay me now or pay me later (with a relapse). Cornell's protocol is 28 days of IV Oxytet. If it were my horse...that would be my treatment plan and I'd be begging the vet to follow up with 30 days of doxy.
    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." ~Immanuel Kant



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2000
    Location
    MA
    Posts
    12,571

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by WishesRHorses View Post
    Positive on 2 factors, but not on the first one that would conclusively diagnose for Lymes. Very difficult, but the doctor says to treat.

    I am very interested in the information that Doxy is not the best way to treat. The doctor talked to me on the way to a conference on Lymes. Will be interested to hear what he learned.

    Thank you all so much for your info!

    If your horse was receiving IV antibiotics, the drug in question was probably tetracycline.
    It sure as hell wasn't doxycycline, because that cannot be administered I in the horse. It has the nasty side effect of causing fatal arrhythmias.
    "It's like a Russian nesting doll of train wrecks."--CaitlinandTheBay

    ...just settin' on the Group W bench.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    May. 25, 2013
    Location
    South of Edmonton, Alberta
    Posts
    62

    Default

    After reading this I will be having three of my four horses tested for Lyme. Two years ago before we moved to Alberta, Canada they lived on a tick infested farm in the middle of hunt country in Lexington, KY. I pulled countless ticks off of them daily. I had no clue then that horses could even contract Lyme, so it was never on my radar. This thread piqued my interest because my TWH gelding went from bombproof to suddenly spooky around two years ago and we could never figure out why, despite having the vet out more than once, having chiropractors and massage therapists work on him, and fitting him with a new saddle. Maybe this is the missing link.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    May. 25, 2013
    Location
    South of Edmonton, Alberta
    Posts
    62

    Default

    Lol. I just noticed that the most recent post on this thread is three years old. Oh well, I am really glad I read it!



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov. 12, 2010
    Posts
    51

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Alberta Horse Girl View Post
    Lol. I just noticed that the most recent post on this thread is three years old. Oh well, I am really glad I read it!
    My sweet mare Moonshine would get very anxious and swish her tail constantly. She would also go very speedily and was quite spooky when the disease was rampant. Good luck with your TWH--those guys have such lovely dispositions normally!

    My friend's horse has just been diagnosed with Anaplasma R--another tick borne disease--the symptoms were discomfort in her hind end and unwillingness to canter on a circle. I am going to tell her about Oxytet.


    1 members found this post helpful.

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