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Dead Quiet horse suddenly SPOOKS & BOLTS at everything

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  • #21
    Hay

    Sorry my cat stepped on my mouse.... and hit reply before I was done...

    I did a test on my ulcery horse because I wasn't sure what his problem was. He was definitely not as drastic as yours but maybe you could try the same test, if he seems better, then get the vet.

    I soaked alfalfa cubes to mush and gave him several pounds every night. (He has TMJ and can't eat them dry.) He also got 1 oz Pro CMC with am and pm feed for 1 month. I noticed a dramatic difference. I had to take him off the alfalfa as it was just making him too hot so he is on the Pro CMC now.

    His symptoms were the spooking but definitely not as bad as yours. Just ever so slightly and really not him so that is why I did this test. He had come off a treatment with that Doxy stuff for Lyme and I hear that is can cause some ulcery situations.

    I am watching my guy and have conveyed all the info to my vet via e-mail. If he reverts to any traumatic signs I will call the vet and do that gastro guard route but for now, this works for me.

    In January when I really don't ride and if he's a little hot it won't matter, I'll put him back on the alfalfa but I'll do Lucerne or something as I can't soak alfalfa cubes here in January...Or maybe purchase actual bales for the evening feed.
    Sorry! But that barn smell is my aromatherapy!
    One of our horsey bumper stickers! www.horsehollowpress.com
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    • Original Poster

      #22
      Ok, he stands "camped under' but the vet could not find any obvious reasons for this. A sole bruise on his right front, but that's it. Chiropractor came out and again, could not find any reason for his being "camped under" stance. He's not obviously sore anywhere. He's gaited but doesn't want to gait, prefers to trot, will gait if really pushed to do so. He is barefoot and ridden in Easyboot Epics. This nervousness, bolting and spookiness all just started recently, he's been on my farm since Sept 1. New farm, same feed, new abusive pasture mates (i recently separated them and put him with a goat), soreness issues & navicular meant new bute daily, xrays shows light navicular, also has glacouma, cataracks. Poor guy is only 10 years old.... and he's a mess. But the sweetest thing on four hooves. He was calm and quiet when he arrived, now he's a mess. He' is much better with me than he is with his nervous, newbie owner.... but he is definitely a different horse than the old dopey guy that arrived here three months ago.
      Kim
      The Galloping Grape
      Warrenton, VA
      http://www.GallopingGrape.com

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #23
        pines4Equines, thanks for the info. This is not my horse, it is my boarder's and I'm doing my best to help her. She doesn't want to spend another dime on this horse, but I can't see letting him suffer if he's in pain. I'm willing to do all i can... because she wont' call the vet any longer at this point. She's "spent her wad" on him and now its either get rid of him, or for me to find out best I can what is ailing the poor fella....
        Kim
        The Galloping Grape
        Warrenton, VA
        http://www.GallopingGrape.com

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        • Original Poster

          #24
          The vet did flex tests on both front coffin joints, and hocks. No soundness issues... he doesn't seem in pain on his feet, (hoof testers), joints, along his hips or back (chiro). Except for slight bruising on his front sole. His only issues (apparantly) are his eyesight, hearing (although never tested) and possible ulcers.... I can't think of anything else?
          Kim
          The Galloping Grape
          Warrenton, VA
          http://www.GallopingGrape.com

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          • #25
            Sorry my cat stepped on my mouse.... and hit reply before I was done...
            Is the mouse OK??

            Comment


            • #26
              I haven't read the responses yet, but I would investigate the vision until it is proven without a doubt. A friend's horse was thought for years to be a nut case. Went through several trainers, probably abused before my friend got her. She has had the same vets as long as she has had her, and nothing was ever noticed. On her last check, they found cysts in her eyes. They are not attached, so move into and out of her vision, so vision is obscured, then clear. I wish I could remember the technical terms. From what I understand they can be easily removed with laser surgery, not even a big price tag. Depending on how he moves, your guy could possibly see in certain situations and not so well in others. There is nothing in this mare's demeanor or actions that would in any way make you think she's blind.

              Comment


              • #27
                Originally posted by GallopingGrape View Post
                soreness issues & navicular meant new bute daily
                If he is getting bute every day for extended periods that could cause ulcers or worse. Bute is not meant to be given for long periods of time. I personally will almost never give bute for any more than three days.

                Comment


                • #28
                  Hay

                  BTR: Mouse is a-okay...

                  Galloping Grape: ProCMC is really the cheapest route. It's about $35 retail and the gallon lasts me a month for two horses served 1 oz twice a day to each horse, maybe even longer - not sure. Certainly this woman can cough that up and he'll be safer for all who have to handle him.
                  Sorry! But that barn smell is my aromatherapy!
                  One of our horsey bumper stickers! www.horsehollowpress.com
                  Add Very Funny Horse Bumper Stickers on facebook

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                  • Original Poster

                    #29
                    I picked up the ProCMC today and will start giving it this evening. So, if this brings this good ol' boy back to normal, I could safely assume that he has ulcers? Again, the owner won't keep putting money in him... this is on my own dime, I'm not trying to be cheap, just find the least expensive way to finding out his problems...... Thanks everyone... this list is so helpful!!
                    Kim
                    The Galloping Grape
                    Warrenton, VA
                    http://www.GallopingGrape.com

                    Comment


                    • #30
                      if he is negative to the soundness exam, why the bute?

                      You might want to consider a quality fly mask. Horses with eye issues often have secondary photo sensitivity. Cataracts can also alter the flow of the liquid in the eye (glaucoma like) which is very painful and sensitive to pressure and movement.

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                      • Original Poster

                        #31
                        The vet did radiographs and saw navicular in both front - so he said to give the bute daily to help reduce inflamation or pain... but there was no pain with hoof testers and flex tests. I pull him off it... but now that we're talking about it... I have no idea why the bute if there was no obvious pain or lameness.
                        Kim
                        The Galloping Grape
                        Warrenton, VA
                        http://www.GallopingGrape.com

                        Comment


                        • #32
                          GG, what did the vet mean when he said that he "saw navicular" on the xrays? Changes on a navicular bone do not = navicular syndrome, nor is there any correlation as to whether or not a horse with changes on the navicular bone is sore or lame, so I'm wondering what me meant. And if there is no soreness and pain... agree, why in the world would he prescribe Bute?

                          You are a good soul to help this horse.
                          www.dressageclinics.org

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                          • #33
                            A couple other things to consider:

                            -How different is his turn out routine? Is he getting turned out for less time? Did he have good buddies at the last place he could run and play with a lot?

                            -Same feed, I assume means same grain. What about other forage-- including hay and grass. Could be a vitamin B-1 issue-- can make them spooky. If the ulcer treatment doesn't pan out, I'd look into the vit. B.

                            Comment

                            • Original Poster

                              #34
                              Unfortunately, I was not there when the vet did the radiographs but his owner passed the info to me... as saying "he has navicular syndrome". Unfortunately that's all of the info that I got... and the bute didn't make sense to me since there was no obvious signs of lameness.... Oh, except for the fact that he stands very "camped under"..... but two different vets (one vet and one horse chiro that I called in) cannot find the cause for this?

                              As for his previous turnout, he was left in a field with other buddys, and not ridden for two years. He came to me FAT with terrible feet. The farrier is still working to get his feet back in good shape. He was on grass, and McCauly's M30 which I have not changed. He gets the M30, full turnout and grazing 24x7 and his new buddy is a goat. They go everywhere together and seem to be very happy. My other geldings are in the paddock next to them and this horse could care less about them. He never even looks over in their direction. The one gelding really beat him up alot.... I think he's very happy with his new goat friend. They even sleep together. He "spoons" the goat... its hysterical.
                              Kim
                              The Galloping Grape
                              Warrenton, VA
                              http://www.GallopingGrape.com

                              Comment


                              • #35
                                If the eye issue and ulcer issues are ruled out-did he ever ride in hilly terrain? If not going downhill with an unbalanced rider (not you-could be a previous rider) can be extremely scary for the horse. I was test riding a new saddle which was ok for the most part but was going downhill and the saddle slipped forwad and my horse couldn't walk out-she was not happy-even though we go uphill, downhill a lot. Try and see how he is uphill-most horses are ok-may want to run up a little fast but are ok.

                                If he does have pain-downhill could be flaring it up too-so he maybe freaking out...

                                I do know of one horse that the vet said to ride only on the flat and not hills. The owner sold him to someone in the desert..

                                Comment


                                • #36
                                  Try testing for Lyme Disease - can't hurt, might help. Especially as behavioral changes or odd lameness/soreness is a classic sign...

                                  Comment


                                  • #37
                                    I would suspect that spooking while walking down a specific hill would mean there's something behind him, at the top of the hill, that he's not seeing correctly and it scares him. I wouldn't attribute it to ulcers. A true test would be to find several other hills and see if he does the same thing.

                                    Another thought - since this was a recent purchase, it's very possible the horse was being worked harder or had a different routine. Do you know what his daily routine was like at the former barn?

                                    On a similar note, regarding ulcers and feed- I recently discovered this article... I'm not sure how to take it, as I've always been told feeding oats isn't the best thing for horses, especially with the modern feeds we now have. But it's "food" for thought... http://www.thehorseshoof.com/oats1.html

                                    My horse was quiet and easygoing, pretty much unflappable, until his teeth started bothering him last week (vet coming tomorrow, whew!). He stopped eating his grain (he gets oats, Ultium and BOSS) and suddenly became Mr. Goofus Spooktacular outside, and Mr. Bounciful in his stall. I suspect it's because he's not eating all of his oats. Nothing else in his life has changed.

                                    According to the article, the oats have fatty acids which balance the horses' energy level, as well as keep stomach bacteria and acid at the proper level, helping to prevent ulcers. I have been told feeding oats can CAUSE ulcers - so if anyone has some knowledge on this issue, please chime in!

                                    Comment


                                    • #38
                                      If you get a fly mask, get one with a dark mesh, not a white or light-colored mesh.
                                      To me, it does soun like an eye problem... what breed is he?
                                      "Uh, if you're going to try that, shouldn't you unplug it first?"

                                      Comment


                                      • #39
                                        Alternative to Gastrogard

                                        Ulcergard is the same stuff just labelled differently so they can sell it OTC. It does cost less. Try a 1/2 tube a day for 10 days and see if it helps.
                                        You can also go to CostCo, WalMart or Sams club and pick up generic omeprazole (Prilosec) and give the tablets. Yo give 5 X the human dose once a day. DO that for 14 days and see if he gets better.
                                        If he has cataracts then yes they cold be getting much worse, they'll need a vet for that.
                                        Good Luck
                                        Yours
                                        MW
                                        Melyni (PhD) PAS, Dipl. ACAN.
                                        Sign up for the Equine nutrition enewsletter on www.foxdenequine.com
                                        New edition of book is out:
                                        Horse Nutrition Handbook.

                                        www.knabstruppers4usa.com

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                                        • #40
                                          You could try a week of bute and see if his behavior changes.

                                          There is no chance this horse had been on a longterm sedative when he first come to your barn?

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