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If You Suspected A Horse of Being EPSM..

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  • If You Suspected A Horse of Being EPSM..

    .. what kind of testing is available now?

    How would you go about adding fat to the diet if the horse is 1) an easy keeper and 2) is sensitive to soy, alfalfa, flax, corn and most known feedstuffs 3) currently eats soaked hay stretcher pellets w/a mineral supplement and amino acid supplement and free choice grass hay?

    "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.

  • #2
    Wow. Good luck!! I have no idea but I'm definitely interested in what other options there are out there for you.
    Hemp oil, coconut oil, etc, are all some other fat sources that may be an option, though.


    • #3
      There is a dna test now, but it doesn't hold for all breeds, ie a TB doesn't test positive for it even when he tests positive via a muscle biopsy.

      A new genetic test has become available that evaluates DNA from hair or blood to determine if the horse carries the gene for what is being called Type 1 EPSM. The Type 2 - the more common form is only diagnosed presently through a muscle biopsy.
      As to the adding fat issue - this might be one you have to go with oil. You might try rice bran, but if the horse is really sensitive the carbs that come along with it may make that not work.
      The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


      • #4
        That's a tough one given his sensitivities, but you know that already!!

        I'd say try the rice bran too, but I know one EPSM horse who turned into a freaky mess on it. I suppose it just depends on the horse.

        This is gross but are there any products out there that are animal fat based that you could try? It kind of weirds me out to think of feeding animal fat to a horse but desperate times I guess.....!

        Sunflower oil? Olive oil (lol)? Both might cost a fortune though to feed at the rate you need to feed it.
        We couldn't all be cowboys, so some of us are clowns.


        • #5
          I did the DNA testing on one of mine. He was positive, which we had suspected. I fed him Safe choice grain and ochard grass hay. He looked so much better with the feed change. It was on the list to be fed that the university sent me. I have heard others say that it isn't the best, but it worked wonders for my horse.

          This is the unversity that I used...http://www.cvm.umn.edu/umec/lab/Adva...PSSM/home.html

          Good Luck


          • #6
            What about keeping his diet the same and just adding oil to the soaked hay stretcher? My EPSM horse gets soaked beet pulp and alfalfa cubes/TC 30% supplement and canola oil (2 1/2 cups day). He has no problem eating that much oil when added to the soaked BP/alfalfa cubes.

            He is also a bit of an easy keeper but is fine on the above diet. I do use a grazing muzzle on him when the pasture is good or his weight will definitely creep up!
            \"And indeed the love that the horses of the Rangers bore for their riders was so great that they were willing to face even the terror of the Door , if their masters\' hearts were steady as they walked beside them.\" The Return of the Ki


            • #7
              Something I have wondered as I have a friend who suspects her horse has epsm. Is feeding oil considered to be some kind of magic elixir for these horses? I mean, if you have an easy keeper why do you NEED to feed oil? She's feeding about 2 cups of oil a day and the horse is spun and getting fat. Why feed the oil if the horse doesn't need the extra calories/energy?


              • #8
                gumshoe, the EPSM horse can be difficult to manage if they are easy keeping.

                EPSM means, at a high level, that they can't use glucose for energy. So, like the IR horse, those sugars need to be reduced. But the issue with the EPSM horse is that they then need to have the energy replaced by something - fat - since they just can't use the glucose (well).

                So for the more severe cases, yes, it's not just about reducing sugars/carbs, it's also about adding fat.

                It gets hard if the horse can't use the calories from fat, but also can't deal with just the reduced sugars.
                The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


                • #9
                  My soy guy tolerates oil just fine. But canola oil and corn oil are both options... canola is just a few cents more for me at Sam's, I get it when I can as the omegas are a better ratio than soy... (but I can get the soy significantly cheaper in the 4.5gal jug than the 1.5 gal jugs the canola comes in... If I'm only getting the small jugs, not a big diff, but the big jug is a couple bucks cheaper for the same amt. )

                  And hay stretcher has soy & falf??? ???

                  I would go with Beep, tri-aminos & vits/mins, and oil.

                  In fact, that's what I do. I do use flax & BOSS for the EPSMers depending on season & need. And sometimes just to make them think they are getting 'grain' when others are getting their whole oats.

                  FWIW, I generally change diet first. If that seems to work, then I'll test. Maybe. Or maybe I'll just keep them on The Diet. <shrugs> Depends on how important it is to know. Obviously now that we know the genetics of it, I would want to KNOW before breeding a mare. A gelding... well, if The Diet works... I'm not gonna worry too much as long as it's working!

                  IMO, there are other issues that are close to ESPM that respond to "The Diet" very well. Including marey mare issues. I almost want to call it "EPSM Syndrome" in the way we started calling things "navicular syndrome." Ya know? So for me, diet change first. If it doesn't work, I'm only out a tiny bit of $$ for oil. No harm done.
                  InnisFailte Pinto Sporthorses & Coloured Cobs

                  Bits are like cats, what's one more? (Petstorejunkie)


                  • #10
                    There are so many feeds formulated now for this type of horse that it's no longer a struggle to figure out what to feed them. Although the real problem can be mainly what NOT to feed them as many are absurdly easy keepers.

                    There are a lot of these around, and since it's not always necessary to test to confirm what you already know to be true (ie, would you bother to go to the expense of "testing" a fat pony to see if it's sensitive to grass?), the science is well established enough now that going ahead and switching to a high fat/low starch diet is for the most part the way to go.

                    When horses are especially easy keepers, it won't be as important to ADD fat calories to the diet as it will to prevent starches from adversely affecting their metabolism. They are likely to be perfectly fine on nice quality timothy/grass hay supplemented with molasses-free beet pulp, if necessary, and a ration-balancer aimed at ensuring proper intake of vitamins/minerals.

                    Click here ( www.kerx.com/products/ ) and on the links below my signature and look around at what KERx has to offer, and particularly, look at the Releve concentrate formula and the IR pellets.
                    Inner Bay Equestrian


                    • #11
                      Hmmm, were the horse mine, I'd do plain beet pulp, Equipride and BOSS for added fat. If symptoms didn't improve, then I'd add canola or Cool Calories in smaller amounts than Dr. V normally recommends.

                      Often the easykeepers only have mild EPSM symptoms that can be controlled through natural fats or supplementing with the lower amount of oil as state above.
                      <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.


                      • Original Poster

                        Oh sorry, I forgot, he has a problem w/BOSS and Equipride...

                        He is a real PITA, can't you tell?!!!

                        I am thinking I will try adding 1/4 cup canola oil to what he gets now and seeing what happens...

                        I swear, the ones who need to have LESS are much harder than the ones who need MORE...
                        "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
                        The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.


                        • #13
                          Oh my! Poor boy.

                          Hmmm, how about LinPro?
                          <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by EqTrainer View Post
                            .. what kind of testing is available now?
                            There is a blood test now that is 80% accurate but muscle biopsy is the only way to know 100%.

                            I opted for the muscle biospy as I was tried of waiting for the blood test to come on the market.......I am glad I did as my guys blood work would have come back negative as he is one of those horses that does not have the specific gene that can be identified by blood testing.



                            • #15
                              Linpro is a great choice for easy keepers, and soy & falf free.

                              The interesting thing I have observed, is often the obese lose fat pads and look much more normal--as energy goes to muscles correctly instead of just sitting as fat.

                              The irony is hot horses usually calm down and lumps usually find some energy. Hard keepers become less so, and air ferns get better muscling and therefore less fat.
                              InnisFailte Pinto Sporthorses & Coloured Cobs

                              Bits are like cats, what's one more? (Petstorejunkie)


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by EqTrainer View Post
                                I swear, the ones who need to have LESS are much harder than the ones who need MORE...
                                Yep! It's like hot and cold weather - in cold you can still put more clothes on, but when you're hot, there's only so much you can take off!
                                The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


                                • #17
                                  Just continue to feed what he's already getting? I mean, is there some problem? Does he need to get fat?


                                  • #18
                                    Call the seminole nutritionist. The 800 # is on their website uner worldsbestfeed. If Larry the nutritionist is still there, ask him to call you back. He spend over an hour on the phone with me a few years ago, and gave me great advice on another nutrition issue.