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What reaction does your horse get if he is allergic to molasses?

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  • What reaction does your horse get if he is allergic to molasses?

    I am pretty sure my horse is allergic to molasses after being allergy tested. What types of reactions does your horse get with this allergy? I am just looking for some common symptoms. My horse swelling in the jowel and gets tired.

  • #2
    I'm still struggling with the concept of an allergy to what is essentially sugar. Was this done by skin testing? Reputable lab? Controls? Veterinarian with allergy expertise has reviewed the results?
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    • Original Poster

      #3
      It was done by skin and by blood. The results came out the same way. I had several vets look at the results.

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      • #4
        Well if the results are accurate, just don't give him any molasses anymore. Problem solved. At least he isn't allergic to hay or dust.
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        • Original Poster

          #5
          Originally posted by Laurierace View Post
          Well if the results are accurate, just don't give him any molasses anymore. Problem solved. At least he isn't allergic to hay or dust.
          Thats the problem. He is also allergic to orchard grass and Bermuda grass. So I'm trying to figure out what he is reacting from.

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          • #6
            Take all the things that he is allergic to out of the equation.
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            • #7
              Unless he's allergic to beet or sulfite, I can't imagine how he could be allergic to molasses. Who tests for a molasses allergy? Sounds very weird to me.

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              • #8
                Molasses is more than just sugar. Google it and the chemical composition varies accordind to the source. Not to mention there are several additives used to preserve shelf life out there.

                OP, Living with allergies is all about avoiding that to which you are allergic to. So eliminate those feed ingredients that your horse tested positive too and see if you get improvement. Investigate from there. FYI- when I act tired and a bit cranky from an allergy flare up it generally is because I have a pounding headache. During severe problems my face nasal passsages and tongue swell....then the next day I feel very run down and plain exhausted.

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                • #9
                  Okay so let's take a look at what an allergy actually is. An allergy is when the body reacts to an undigested protein as if it were a foreign invader. It is an immune system response. One cannot be allergic to anything but undigested proteins.
                  Molasses is made by taking sugar either from cane or from sugar beets heating it up thusly reducing the sugar content but increasing the mineral content per gram. During the initial extraction process of the sugar you're only left with an absolute microscopic amount of undigested proteins then that microscopic amount is reduced even further during the heating process because it is a caloric producing nutrient and contributes to the heat. Therefore the only way to your horse can be allergic to molasses is if they were so allergic to it that meerly touching a tiny particle of that would even send their immune system interreaction the likelihood of that is very very slim.

                  Most likely your horse has a sensitivity to molasses. Sensitivities can be to any of the six essential nutrients with the exception of water. Sensitivities to sugar is actually very quite common in horses
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                  chaque pas est fait ensemble

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                  • #10
                    duplicate
                    Last edited by Petstorejunkie; Dec. 19, 2011, 08:19 PM.
                    www.destinationconsensusequus.com
                    chaque pas est fait ensemble

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                    • #11
                      A
                      www.destinationconsensusequus.com
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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by D Taylor View Post
                        Molasses is more than just sugar. Google it and the chemical composition varies accordind to the source. Not to mention there are several additives used to preserve shelf life out there.

                        .
                        Sure but then wouldn't the allergy be to one of the preservatives or to a byproduct of processing, not 'molasses' in general.
                        How specific are allergy test results? Do they identity a specific ingredient in a food product or would test resuts just say 'hot dog' or 'ice cream'?

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                        • Original Poster

                          #13
                          Originally posted by S A McKee View Post
                          Sure but then wouldn't the allergy be to one of the preservatives or to a byproduct of processing, not 'molasses' in general.
                          How specific are allergy test results? Do they identity a specific ingredient in a food product or would test resuts just say 'hot dog' or 'ice cream'?
                          This is my question exactly. My horse tested positive to so many things that I don't know what is a false positive or not. It is very frustrating! Also if he is allergic to molasses what ingredients in molasses is he allergic to? There is sugar in a lot of things.

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                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            The vets I have talked to don't have any kind of answer about this. I just was wondering what other people might be dealing with this and what they have found out about it.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by S A McKee View Post
                              Sure but then wouldn't the allergy be to one of the preservatives or to a byproduct of processing, not 'molasses' in general.
                              How specific are allergy test results? Do they identity a specific ingredient in a food product or would test resuts just say 'hot dog' or 'ice cream'?
                              1st let me say I have never had a horse tested. Tho I have been tested on several times. With me they started with a general screen...some of the sites you are stuck with are mixes. Then if you get a positive they start breaking it down into individual items. When you are done you are a giant itchy pin cushion and you have a bit of info to start working with and what you need to eliminate from your life if possible.

                              Now a young friend of mine is highly allergic to camels.....I do not recall a camel test. Tho there was a site for pets/animals to which I had no reaction. I assume camels was in that group...and thus for me required no further testing. On the side- thank God I am not allergic to my animals. I would be dead! The interesting thing is he had never even seen a camel other than on TV before and his reaction was so strong the site caused him enough pain he broke into tears. The nurses and the doctor had to stop testing and give antihistamines and steriods.

                              BTW Petstorejunkie, tho proteins (and polysac's I believe also) are the most common anitgens. They are not the only antigens out there.

                              Ok just chatting about this stuff has me itchy. So I am off to shower and take my Zyrtec-D. Then it is back to a super clean on the home for holiday guests. Which by the way is one of my allergies - those freaken dust mites kill me. But I lands me no help from the family with cleaning detail. They would rather watch me die in dust mite city than pick up a dust cleaner and help.

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                              • #16
                                Just like there can be a positive "allergy test" with no demonstrable allergy, an animal (or person) can be intolerant of something without being truly "allergic".

                                When you're dealing with a situation like this, the whys and wherefores are sometimes really difficult to sort through, and the only practical thing one can do is to try a process of elimination of things in the diet and environment to see if the symptoms (whatever they are) will improve.

                                This requires an enormous amount of time and patience, especially when the symptoms are vague and hard to pin down. A horse that pops out in spectacular hives is one thing, but one whose behavior is just slightly different, who acts grumpy, gets a little bloated or girthy or sweaty or stocked up or who has other nonspecific signs is MUCH harder to sort out! These things can happen for any number of reasons besides "allergy".

                                Withdrawal of all grain, starting up with a one-variety hay (timothy, alfalfa) and observing, then adding back ingredients one by one is probably the only way to be sure, and even then I'd imagine setbacks and points of confusion are very common, especially in horses whose "allergy symptoms" are not your classic swelling, rashes, hives, etc. Then you're probably dealing with "intolerance" and not "allergy" . . . and the treatment is the same anyhow: don't give the stuff they don't tolerate.
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                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by deltawave View Post
                                  Just like there can be a positive "allergy test" with no demonstrable allergy, an animal (or person) can be intolerant of something without being truly "allergic".

                                  When you're dealing with a situation like this, the whys and wherefores are sometimes really difficult to sort through, and the only practical thing one can do is to try a process of elimination of things in the diet and environment to see if the symptoms (whatever they are) will improve.

                                  This requires an enormous amount of time and patience, especially when the symptoms are vague and hard to pin down. A horse that pops out in spectacular hives is one thing, but one whose behavior is just slightly different, who acts grumpy, gets a little bloated or girthy or sweaty or stocked up or who has other nonspecific signs is MUCH harder to sort out! These things can happen for any number of reasons besides "allergy".

                                  Withdrawal of all grain, starting up with a one-variety hay (timothy, alfalfa) and observing, then adding back ingredients one by one is probably the only way to be sure, and even then I'd imagine setbacks and points of confusion are very common, especially in horses whose "allergy symptoms" are not your classic swelling, rashes, hives, etc. Then you're probably dealing with "intolerance" and not "allergy" . . . and the treatment is the same anyhow: don't give the stuff they don't tolerate.
                                  Depending on the number/kinds of allergies it may not be needed to go to this extreme of WD'ing everything but one hay variety in this horses case. Just starting with alfalfa and or timothy hay and some whole oats should due to trick here if his known allergies are limited to molasses, orchard and bermuda. OP, does he have others?

                                  Monitor and watch for improvements. And during this time you have the opportunity to research some vit/mineral supplements and decide your next step. You may wish to try a few high antioxidant supplements. Winter is a good time start this process as with a horse you have fewer resp allergens hanging around in the air because an allergen only need intrude on the body....not just be consumed.

                                  One other tid bit individuals with allergies tend to want to avoid that which you are allergic too. I have been living with a couple a food allergies much longer than I have been diagnosed by screening. By decades in fact. I can recall breaking into tears when my mother screamed at me to eat a certain food. I was fairly young but I knew later I would feel badly if I ate it. The taste itself I found awful as if that was not bad enough. My refusals caused frequent conflict at the dinner table, accusations of being spoiled and punishements such as no desert. But even as young as I was I did know that if I ate it later I would feel terrible....sometimes I gave in and sometimes not. The foods I avoided back then are the very foods I tested moderately positive for as an adult.

                                  My point here is horses are not such dumb animals either and if I as a child can relate a not feeling so great aftermath and subsequent learned refusal response so can a horse. If there are feeds he does not seem to like very much pay attention.

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                                  • #18
                                    My older TB had an allergy to molasses, as well. He got hives and had some respiratory difficulty. No swelling in the jowel that I could see, but he was definitely lethargic.

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                                    • #19
                                      My point here is horses are not such dumb animals either and if I as a child can relate a not feeling so great aftermath and subsequent learned refusal response so can a horse. If there are feeds he does not seem to like very much pay attention.
                                      I dunno, we had a pony at my childhood barn who got into the grain and foundered TWICE. He would do it again EVERY DAY if we relaxed our vigilance, the sneaky little SOB.
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                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by deltawave View Post
                                        I dunno, we had a pony at my childhood barn who got into the grain and foundered TWICE. He would do it again EVERY DAY if we relaxed our vigilance, the sneaky little SOB.
                                        Your pony LIKED his feed and did not founder on the spot. He probably could not put 2 and 2 together.

                                        So he never learned.
                                        Charlie Piccione
                                        Natural Performance Hoof Care

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