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EPSM Eventers: What is your horse's diet?

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  • EPSM Eventers: What is your horse's diet?

    I have a 13 YO Shire TB Novice level mare that was diagnosed as moderate type 2 EPSM based on muscle biopsy.

    We switched to high fat in May 2011 and she has done well except she seems to get winded and poop out very quick. She is not unfit. She works 5-6 days per week/ ~1hr per ride with 2-3 dressage rides, 2 hacks, and 1-2 jump days.

    She has always been very energetic so the lack of energy has me concerned.

    Basically what I am really wondering is:

    1. Are other EPSM horses competing and at what level? Do they feel the EPSM limits their horse's advancement (or would they max out at training level with or without EPSM)?

    2. Are you feeding high fat? If not what are you feeding?

    a. Do you feed ALCAR or L-Cartinine in addition to your diet?

    b. What did/didn't work for you as far as diet is concerned?

    3. Any advice/ Lessons learned from you experience.

    Thank you very much!

  • #2
    Supplementing my mare with Vit E & Sel made a night and day difference for her. I haven't had a bx or dna test to confirm or deny whether she hass PSSM, but her history supports it. No blood work to check for Sel levels, but I will discuss it with the vet when he comes out....

    A preride electrolyte & Vit E & Sel in a small amount of grain seem to help my mare....greatly....She finally has energy and endurance.

    Maybe it is time to add calories via Beet pulp or a Low NSC grain....for additional suport for her work load.....

    Good Luck!
    Be Patient! Be Kind! Try to understand!

    Comment


    • #3
      My horse was on Purina wellsolve and beet pulp
      MIDWAY SOCCER 08' First Season!!!!!!

      Comment


      • #4
        Mine was a full TB. He ate 3 pounds (dry weight) alfalfa pellets, soaked in hot water till mush/soup plus 1 cup canola oil, 3xday. When he went off his feed (often), I dosed him with the oil. No matter what, he got the fat. He had free choice alfalfa/grass hay. He was successful through Prelim, did the full format 3-day at Morven, was written up in The Chronicle. I put him down when he blew out his S-I for the second time and was too miserable/dangerous to keep around. I loved him more than life. Our 6 years together were the greatest education I've ever had. Poor, sweet thing-a lovely horse in a bad body.
        Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.

        Comment


        • #5
          How is your mare doing?

          I know its been a while since your post, however my 4 yo TB/Hano is highly likely to have EPSM and I've been researching high and low regarding the diets, particularly what eventers have been doing. How is your mare doing? Have you changed anything since your last post?

          Here is what I've decided to start with my mare. We have changed from Cavalor feed to Seminole Perform Safe (12% protein, 8% fat, 9% starch). She gets this feeding AM and PM:

          5 lbs Perform Safe
          2 oz Ultimate Finish 100
          5 g ALCar
          1 T table salt

          Thoughts? Her feed should supply 5000 IU of Vit E/day along with an appropriate amount of Selenium and Magnesium. We are trying the diet for 2 months then will biopsy if no vast changes. Really hoping to finally see some results in weight gain, topline, and overall work tolerance/comfort level. Seattle is a super talented mare and I just hope this is the solution to getting her back on track.

          It seems that if well managed, EPSM won't necessarily limit the upper level potential. Look forward to hearing how your mare is doing and any suggestions are greatly appreciated! Thank you!
          Last edited by ehobbs686; May. 3, 2013, 09:30 AM.

          Comment


          • #6
            My draft cross began to exhibit symptoms last year. Nothing major, he just wasn't quite right. Nothing that a vet could pick up on, but since I have owned him since he was 6 months old and broke him myself, I knew he just wasn't quite right. He was reluctant to pick up the canter at times, there were a few bucks and he was pissy when tacking up. Again, nothing I could really pinpoint, other than knowing something was amiss. I had his teeth done, had his back checked by the chiro and his saddle reflocked, but he was still not quite right!
            It was approaching summer, so I was very reluctant to do a muscle biopsy as I was worried about it not healing properly, as he has allergies and issues with sores not healing in the summer. So instead, I changed his diet.
            Because I knew he was somewhat at risk for EPSM with his breeding, I had already been trying to feed a high fat diet anyhow, while working around his food allergies. He was already on Seminole Ultra Dynamix (he is allergic to beet pulp and flax) and good t/a or o/a hay.
            I simply added Seminole Ultra Bloom to his diet....2 cups every meal and within 2 weeks, he was back to normal.
            I was amazed that he responded so quickly and that for him, the fix was so simple!
            This past winter, I also added SmartPak Smart Muscle to his diet, which seems to help with his warmup, as he can be a bit sluggish warming up.
            He is also gets his other supplements...Hilton Herbs Bye Bye Itch and Hilton Herbs Hoof and Health.
            Lori T
            www.calypsofarmeventers.blogspot.com
            www.facebook.com/LoriTankelPhotography
            www.facebook.com/LTEquine for product updates on the lines I rep

            Comment


            • #7
              I'm throwing these links out because Dr Valentine is, afaik, THE PERSON to talk to about EPSM/PSSM diets and has talked to me about it on many levels.

              Plus there is a lot of misinformation out there, even from vets, which is something I ran into when I had a horse diagnosed with it. She said it's just not widely explained in vet school just yet (or seven years ago when we talked). Even so, I've recently run into someone who had a vet tell her that her horse had to be dry lotted and never allowed on grass, and there wasn't even a PSSM diagnosis. I don't know if she's confused with another metabolic issue (IR?), but PSSM horses absolutely can be turned out on grass.

              http://ruralheritage.com/vet_clinic/epsmdiet_goals.htm

              http://ruralheritage.com/vet_clinic/epsmdiet.htm

              I don't have a horse with PSSM, but I feed the diet anyways. My trainer feels the same way, which is awesome beyond belief. I know the OP's initial post is a year old, but I want to suggest that Vit E could be what is causing her horse to "poop out."
              COTH's official mini-donk enabler

              "I am all for reaching out, but in some situations it needs to be done with a rolled up news paper." Alagirl

              Comment

              • Original Poster

                #8
                I am the original poster.

                My mare is doing well. She is schooling training level now. She and I had some confidence issues cross country so we are having our first recognized event of the year next weekend but dropped down to BN to try to get out trust back.

                My mare began to not tolerate the high fat/Dr. Valentine's diet. Honestly I wasn't very comfortable with it either based on my concern for her becoming IR ultimately.

                I did change her diet. We are in New England so she is now getting Poulin Carb Safe, ALCAR, Vit E, and Magnesium.

                I strongly recomend Dr. Kellon. She will help you build your horses diet. I took her online nutrition class where I learned to balance my horses diet and she runs a yahoo group where there is constant discussion about EPSM horses.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I'd love the info on the Yahoo group, though I don't entirely understand how to navigate them .
                  COTH's official mini-donk enabler

                  "I am all for reaching out, but in some situations it needs to be done with a rolled up news paper." Alagirl

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by AMTefft View Post
                    I am the original poster.

                    My mare began to not tolerate the high fat/Dr. Valentine's diet. Honestly I wasn't very comfortable with it either based on my concern for her becoming IR ultimately.
                    Can you explain what you mean by "began to not tolerate"?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by outfoxem View Post
                      Can you explain what you mean by "began to not tolerate"?
                      I would also like to know this, as my horse is on the EPSM diet currently and doing well on it. But if there is something I should be looking out for (like precursors to IR, for example), I would like to know about it.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        My daughter's ** horse did quite well on Purina Ultium with added Cocosoya oil. We also supplemented with vitamin E and selenium.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Seminole Perform Safe DOES NOT provide adequate selenium for a PSSM horse. If you read the bag, it says so right on it.

                          I know, because I used it and my mare started cross cantering.
                          After selenium supplementation, the CC went away.

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            Sorry for the delay in my response! I was away a few days!

                            Anyway- by "began to not tollerate" the high fat I mean she simply wouldn't eat it. She was not interested in her grain anymore.

                            I also think she has more energy now that she is off high fat.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Right now mine gets Seminole Wellness Compete Safe. 1/4 scoop twice a day, to get her supplements (smart combo, u gard, EZ keeper grass vitamin) and stop her from going nuts that others are eating and she's not. 4 - 5 flakes of orchard grass mix hay, and PM turnout in a grazing muzzle during the spring. She's a pretty easy keeper.

                              When we move to the new barn, she'll transition to alfalfa pellets (trying to cut out the beet pulp because of her anhidrosis), and we'll be doing omeprazole paste for a month and changing the supplements to smart gut, corta flex, and the EZ keeper. She leaves the smart combo behind about half the time. Then she will have a freedom feeder hay net with bermuda and timothy mixed in it, and PM turnout. There's less grass there (a normal amount, not an insane/lush amount like she's on now) so hopefully we can forgo the muzzle.

                              The muzzle and the low starch feed made the biggest difference. We did add oil for about 6 months when she was tying up a couple times a week just after normal rides. Then we did the equi winner patches, and even though i'm still a skeptic (didn't fix the anhidrosis), she doesn't tie up anymore! Also, I try to carefully regulate her exercise and increase it VERY slowly, and have a long warm up and cool down.
                              Pisgah: 2000 AHHA (Holsteiner x TB) Mare (lower level eventing, with a focus on dressage)

                              Darcy: 7? year old Border Collie x Rottweiler? Drama Queen extraordinaire, rescued from the pound in Jan 2010

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I'd include magnesium for stiffening muscles and grumpiness. Seems to help
                                and cannot hurt in normal quantities.
                                Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Foxtrot's View Post
                                  I'd include magnesium for stiffening muscles and grumpiness. Seems to help
                                  and cannot hurt in normal quantities.
                                  Oops! I left that out! She is on epsom salts too. We haven't quite gotten the quantity right, at least relating to spookiness. Don't want to give too much to upset her tummy, but need enough to actually help. We suspect some minor ulcers, and with the move to a new barn, some opemrazole paste won't hurt.
                                  Pisgah: 2000 AHHA (Holsteiner x TB) Mare (lower level eventing, with a focus on dressage)

                                  Darcy: 7? year old Border Collie x Rottweiler? Drama Queen extraordinaire, rescued from the pound in Jan 2010

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by AMTefft View Post
                                    Sorry for the delay in my response! I was away a few days!

                                    Anyway- by "began to not tollerate" the high fat I mean she simply wouldn't eat it. She was not interested in her grain anymore.

                                    I also think she has more energy now that she is off high fat.
                                    Thanks for responding!

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Just going through all the old EPSM threads and wanted to update on here.
                                      Tucker had a relapse this past fall. I contacted Dr. Kellon and he said that EPSM horses can relapse if not on vitamin e, so he had me start with a very high dose and now Tucker is on a lifetime maintenance dose of over 8000 iu. He had me tweak his diet, by reducing the ultra bloom to 1/2 lb daily and adding a pound of equalizer balancer. I saw some changes within 3 weeks, but at 3 months later, there are still some issues. His biggest is his lack of impulsion and stiffness at the canter, especially on corners. He has a hard time maintaining his canter for any length.
                                      This has been so frustrating...it is eventing season here in Florida and after a few years of either health issues (mine) or being laid off and broke, I am finally looking forward to getting out on the cross country course and now it looks like it won't happen.
                                      I started him on electrolytes yesterday and am going to order ALCAR today. I hope that these work.
                                      How are everyone else's EPSM horses doing?
                                      Lori T
                                      www.calypsofarmeventers.blogspot.com
                                      www.facebook.com/LoriTankelPhotography
                                      www.facebook.com/LTEquine for product updates on the lines I rep

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        My first horse had EPSM. He was an Appy x QH. Now, we did hunters, not eventing, but he had the same lack of energy. He was a total slug to ride--I could barely keep him going. He was hitchy, crabby, reluctant to work, refusing fences he wouldn't normally refuse, etc. I was only 12-13 at the time, so my mom did the leg work and contacted Dr. Valentine. We started him on her diet, and within a week or so he was a different horse. He got the alfalfa pellets + canola oil with a vitamin E/selenium supplement. It was a sloppy sticky mess to feed him, but he ate it.

                                        Now, while he was willing to work and a happy horse again, he was never 100%. He would still have bad days where cantering was difficult for him. It wasn't fair of me to ask him to keep jumping (we did 2'6" courses, nothing big.) We ended up selling him to a woman who wanted to do trail rides and jump an occasional log with him. Looking back, we probably could've tried other diets and supplements to see if they would be better for him.

                                        Comment

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