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Lazy Fat Young horse

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  • SquishTheBunny
    started a topic Lazy Fat Young horse

    Lazy Fat Young horse

    Not sure if there is any suppliment that may be lacking in his diet?

    Coming 3 year old, is a SLUG, he's SO unbelievably lazy. He's also chubby. I had him out in the arena just to run around a little since he cant out in the paddock (too hard out there), and I have to chase him....he decides he "may" trot...but only if he can grab anything that possibly resembles food on the way (ie. flowers under jumps).

    He knows how to lunge, but there is no way I could get him to canter on the lunge (which I am ok with right now because he is just 3)...but noooo effort.

    Is he doomed to be a lazy horse, or is this (hopefully) a phase?

    I dont want to give him any grain as he is really tubby right now, but maybe a handful every day wouldnt hurt now that I am "trying" to work him?

    Any suggestions for the backing process with a lazy youngen?!

  • SquishTheBunny
    replied
    No, we both know the difference between Cushings and IR. They can be related, and often are, but can also be two separate diseases.

    Thyroid pannel back (T4, Free T4 by Eq,T3) all within normal ranges. No Thyroxine for him.

    Im not concerned about EMS, he really doesnt show any signs other than being overweight - and at this point, he was on a roundbale for a year with no work. I'd be fat too. He has bounds of energy when he wants to, he is the one instigating chasing the weanlings around!! He just doesnt want to put his energy into running around on the lungeline.

    My vet also doesnt think he's IR at all. Again...shows no signs for that.

    If in 2 months time he hasnt lost a little weight with the work and cutback on juvenille feed, I will investigate further....but it doesnt really make sense to run $1000's of dollars of tests on him if he is likely doesnt have those problems.

    Leave a comment:


  • rcloisonne
    replied
    Originally posted by SquishTheBunny View Post
    Well, the good thing is I work at a vet clinic so I can get Levothyroxine for practically free, however, until I get blood results on him I would ABSOLUTLEY not put him on thyroid medication if he was not hypothyroid. Yes I know its an easy way to loose weight (for people too), but I dont want to mess with the Thyroid unless he is (at least boarderline hypo)
    And as with people, supplementing T4 eventually triggers the body to reduce or stop manufacturing its own thyroxine. The feedback mechanism in a healthy animal or human is tightly controlled. It's considered unethical to prescribe T4 to humans for the purpose of weight loss in the absence of documented thyroid disease.

    He certainly isnt PU/PD so Im not worried about EMS. His bloodwork done only a year ago was completely normal. No change in bevaviour.
    There is no evidence PU/PD is caused by EMS. It is a common symptom of Cushing's though.

    I pulled blood, so will send in for a T4 to check for thyroid levels.
    Check T3 as well. T4 only gives minimal data. T3 (the active hormone) can be high normal while T4 is low at any point in time. Low T4 does not mean the animal needs supplementing with synthetic thyroxine.

    Oh...and BTW he was checked out by a vet less than a year ago (normal blood) and I asked her about IR but she was not at all concerned about it for him. She said to watch out for PU/PD, lack of shedding, cresty neck, and muscle atrophy - none of which he has. His mother is VERY stocky, so I am still pretty convinced its genetics....but will start out by running a T4 and putting him to work
    Again, I think your vet is confusing IR with Cushings.

    Leave a comment:


  • Zenyatta
    replied
    I had the same problem with my horse as a 3 yr. old, turns out he was slightly anemic.
    Pull blood, put him on a diet and fit him up.

    Leave a comment:


  • Fharoah
    replied
    Make sure he is getting a good complete vitamin mineral supplement and getting the recommended amount for him size Then slowly build his fitness.

    Leave a comment:


  • DMK
    replied
    let's just say my coming 4 year old TB is so generous of proportion that his barn name has been changed from Lido to "Peppy San Lido Boonsabar" (I am so getting him a halter plate that says that too). Frequent comments from the vet and farrier: You're sure he's a TB? (Yes, damnit, the Jockey Club has DNA!)

    He was a slug on the lunge line, in the jump chute and everyplace you can imagine (including while being ponied with my older horse). It wasn't that I couldn't get him to go, it's just that I used more calories then he did in an attempt to get him to go. He's a TB fer chrissakes, his dad won the Woodward TWICE. He's an embarrassment to his genetic code. Until I got him going under saddle, then he discovered his motor. He's not rushy or fast, but I can feel that motor hum. So aside from dieting (slow hay feeders are your friend), don't worry until you have a few months under tack. Remember, you can always get them to go faster. It's slower that presents the larger challenge.

    Leave a comment:


  • Dalemma
    replied
    Originally posted by flyracing View Post
    Yikes on the mark-up! Will your vet give you a script? My horse was on 3 scoops for his big weight loss. Vet said that was max for a horse with normal blood work. I now give 2 scoops daily and it cost me $13/month from my vet or $17 through smartpaks.

    It would still be worth it for me at the $80/month price (I'd probably lose weight too from having to eat a little less ) But that would be a lot of money to test it out given my vet feels it only helps about 20% of horses with normal blood work.

    If you need 5 scoop daily, then I suggest smartpak at $35/month.
    I live in Canada so I am sure it has to do with duty and brokerage fees.

    5 scoops is what was recommended on the container for my horses weight.....my horse was also IR.

    Dalemma

    Leave a comment:


  • SquishTheBunny
    replied
    Well, the good thing is I work at a vet clinic so I can get Levothyroxine for practically free, however, until I get blood results on him I would ABSOLUTLEY not put him on thyroid medication if he was not hypothyroid. Yes I know its an easy way to loose weight (for people too), but I dont want to mess with the Thyroid unless he is (at least boarderline hypo)

    He certainly isnt PU/PD so Im not worried about EMS. His bloodwork done only a year ago was completely normal. No change in bevaviour.

    I pulled blood, so will send in for a T4 to check for thyroid levels.

    He just got tossed out with a new herd as well,and they are constantly chasing him away from the rounbale...so hopefully his new buddies have come up with an "intervention" for him and his food related issues

    He also cantered (at will) in the indoor aren when some snow fell off the roof He certainly has bounds of energy out in the turnout field...but kind of reminds me of a kid who doesnt want to to their homework while in the indoor arena. Just kind of ... thinking he would rather be with his buddies or eating.

    I should have the blood results tomorrow afternoon - and go from there.

    Oh...and BTW he was checked out by a vet less than a year ago (normal blood) and I asked her about IR but she was not at all concerned about it for him. She said to watch out for PU/PD, lack of shedding, cresty neck, and muscle atrophy - none of which he has. His mother is VERY stocky, so I am still pretty convinced its genetics....but will start out by running a T4 and putting him to work

    Leave a comment:


  • Diamondindykin
    replied
    Originally posted by flyracing View Post
    Yikes on the mark-up! Will your vet give you a script? My horse was on 3 scoops for his big weight loss. Vet said that was max for a horse with normal blood work. I now give 2 scoops daily and it cost me $13/month from my vet or $17 through smartpaks.

    It would still be worth it for me at the $80/month price (I'd probably lose weight too from having to eat a little less ) But that would be a lot of money to test it out given my vet feels it only helps about 20% of horses with normal blood work.

    If you need 5 scoop daily, then I suggest smartpak at $35/month.
    I was paying $23 a month and my horse was getting 3 1/2 scoops a month when he passed away.

    Leave a comment:


  • flyracing
    replied
    Originally posted by Dalemma View Post
    I have also had a horse on Thyro-L and it worked great but I had to use it at the maximum levels which was 5 scoops a day.....and it is expensive.....$60.00 for 3 weeks.

    Dalemma
    Yikes on the mark-up! Will your vet give you a script? My horse was on 3 scoops for his big weight loss. Vet said that was max for a horse with normal blood work. I now give 2 scoops daily and it cost me $13/month from my vet or $17 through smartpaks.

    It would still be worth it for me at the $80/month price (I'd probably lose weight too from having to eat a little less ) But that would be a lot of money to test it out given my vet feels it only helps about 20% of horses with normal blood work.

    If you need 5 scoop daily, then I suggest smartpak at $35/month.

    Leave a comment:


  • Dalemma
    replied
    I have also had a horse on Thyro-L and it worked great but I had to use it at the maximum levels which was 5 scoops a day.....and it is expensive.....$60.00 for 3 weeks.

    Dalemma

    Leave a comment:


  • sadlmakr
    replied
    Best thing is to get him vet checked. After that I would change his feed to something where he is not so pudgey. If the hay is Alfalfa change it to grass hay. A little bit of suppliment with his vitamins and minerals would be good just to make sure he is getting what he needs to gow on. Longe line work is good. Teach him his basics and if he doesn't want to work then the longe whip come into play. Even if you only do walk and trot you can teach him word commands and whoa.
    A good working trot will draw down the fat and build muscle.
    Sounds like overproduction of Insulin or thyroid imbalance.
    Children that can't stop eating have similar problems. They have to be taken off the high sugar/carbs so not to trigger the pancreas to produce more insulin which in turn drives down the bloodsugar and then they are hungry again.
    Vet check time.
    Can you turn him out with the high energy colts that are wanting to play and chase?
    He is too nice a horse to let this go by.
    Hope it turns out well for you and him.
    Kind regards, sadlmakr

    Leave a comment:


  • Diamondindykin
    replied
    Originally posted by flyracing View Post
    Have you or your vet considered doing a 90 day course of Thyro-L? It doesn't work for all horses, but it can be a miracle for the ones that it does work for.

    My vet gave it to me when my horse was working 60-90 minutes 5 times a week with a long trail ride on the 6th day and intense galloping on two of the days. He was eating 1 flake of grass hay in the morning and 2 flakes at night. In a double netted slow feeder he would be finished with dinner in 30-40 minutes and couldn't go out side on grass (obviously) and no grain. He needed to lose about 150 despite being on this miserable diet for 2 years. He did have normal blood work (including thyroid, cushing, insulin resistance).

    We put him on the Thyro-L and he lost 75lbs (by weight tape) the first month!! His energy sky rocketed. We was able to go out on grass and eat normal portions after the first two weeks (and still lost weight). We decided after the 3 months that the change was so positive that we would let him stay on it for the remainder of his life (hopefully 15+ years). Over a year later, he is in perfect weight, looks GREAT, has oodles of productive energy (not hot, but stanima he never had as an upper level eventer), and he is soooo much happier eating the same portion size as everyone else!!

    I second this^^^^^^ We put my gelding on Thryo L and he lost 260 lbs. in 3 months. It was amazing for him but we just didn't catch his EMS in time

    Leave a comment:


  • flyracing
    replied
    Have you or your vet considered doing a 90 day course of Thyro-L? It doesn't work for all horses, but it can be a miracle for the ones that it does work for.

    My vet gave it to me when my horse was working 60-90 minutes 5 times a week with a long trail ride on the 6th day and intense galloping on two of the days. He was eating 1 flake of grass hay in the morning and 2 flakes at night. In a double netted slow feeder he would be finished with dinner in 30-40 minutes and couldn't go out side on grass (obviously) and no grain. He needed to lose about 150 despite being on this miserable diet for 2 years. He did have normal blood work (including thyroid, cushing, insulin resistance).

    We put him on the Thyro-L and he lost 75lbs (by weight tape) the first month!! His energy sky rocketed. We was able to go out on grass and eat normal portions after the first two weeks (and still lost weight). We decided after the 3 months that the change was so positive that we would let him stay on it for the remainder of his life (hopefully 15+ years). Over a year later, he is in perfect weight, looks GREAT, has oodles of productive energy (not hot, but stanima he never had as an upper level eventer), and he is soooo much happier eating the same portion size as everyone else!!

    Leave a comment:


  • Diamondindykin
    replied
    I had the same issue with my young gelding and he was also an easy keeper. He never had the cresty neck either but all of a sudden when he was 5 years old he gained a ton of weight. Turned out he had Equine Metabolic Syndrome........he was euthanized 3 1/2 months later from laminitis. All the signs were there when he was younger I just didn't recognize them. He was also very lazy and didn't like to move much..........other signs were excessive drinking and peeing. We had tested my guy over the years and the test result always came back fine.

    Leave a comment:


  • JB
    replied
    Even 30 minutes of brisk hand walking can do wonders.

    Leave a comment:


  • SquishTheBunny
    replied
    Awww... I know!!! Sob sob. If he was a dog, he would totally be a lab. I have TBs and one is a hard keeper....this one is SO the opposite!

    He's got good big feet, and big joints...at least he's not on toothpick legs. I know he's still young but Im thinking about breaking him this week and getting him lunging a little more (was only doing once a week at most, just walk and a bit of trot). Such a catch 22 of too much work for a young horse, and not enough. I think in his situation the work wont be a bad thing for him. Obviously I'll keep it easy, but a lot of trot work might slim him down a little.

    I hope now that he is in an "up" phase (his bum is about 2" taller than his withers), that he will just disperse the fat lol.

    he's a short pudgy guy, about 15.2+ at the withers, and just over 16hh in the bum. I really hope he doesnt end up looking like a fat draft!!! he's "supposed" to be a hunter, but he thinks he's "supposed" to rid the world of all food.

    Leave a comment:


  • Dalemma
    replied
    My bet is if you got your horse down to what is an appropriate weight my guess is he would have more energy.

    Dalemma

    Leave a comment:


  • alibi_18
    replied
    I'm seeing more and more of fat dogs, cats and now horses...and kids.
    It is never good to be overweight, it is our responsability as a owner/parent to take care of our beloved ones.

    Pony boot camp asap!

    I would have the vet look at him, making sure what kind of exercices would be good to start with and don't go to fast with his 'rehabilitation' as your horse could have more chances of injuries in this condition.

    Leave a comment:


  • chicamux
    replied
    On the other hand, lots of youngsters will seem slooooow and lazy for their first year or two. I bought a 2 yr old ARABIAN as an endurance prospect (and he needed rescuing). this is not a breed known for slow and lazy behavior. I got on him a few times as a 4 yr old then began to regularly ride him when he was 5. I was ready to sell him as a western pleasure horse, he was soooo slow under saddle, so lazy it was just dissapointing. Then after he'd been under saddle and doing W/T/C on the trails for about 8 months he got fitter (he was always amazingly balanced) and WOKE UP! We haven't had a lazy moment since. Just leave your youngster to growup with 24/7 turnout if possible preferably with other young or active boys. Come bac to training later on.

    chicamuxen

    Leave a comment:

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