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He HATES, HATES, HATES Pergolide!

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  • He HATES, HATES, HATES Pergolide!

    I've been giving my gelding Pergolide since December of this year. We've gone from liquid in a small syringe to powder to Gourmeds. We've put it in grain with molasses (not good, I know), in grain with tiny bits of carrot to fool him on the basis of size and texture, in applesauce, hand fed in grain, and hidden inside apples. Nothing has worked for more than a couple of weeks. Most didn't work at all; he spit out the apple immediately with a disgusted look on his face. I'm at the end of ideas. I wish I could just inject it. Do they make an injectible form?

    He's out 24/7 with a run-in because he's claustrophbic (an abuse and neglect rescue). He isn't easy to catch so the liquid injected in the mouth won't work because I will never be able to catch him. I've been handfeeding him a small amount of grain with the pergolide bits in it. That worked for the longest, about 2 weeks. Now he just stands with his lips pressed shut.

    Any ideas? I'm open to any suggestions.
    "The captive bolt is not a proper tool for slaughter of equids they regain consciousness 30 seconds after being struck fully aware they are being vivisected." Dr Friedlander DVM & frmr Chief USDA Insp

  • #2
    Nope. I have the same problem with a boarder horse! Only you can't "worm" him with anything.
    Kristen

    Kiwayu & Figiso Pictures:
    http://community.webshots.com/user/kiwayu

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    • #3
      Have you tried the flavored pergolide from SmartPak? We use the alfalfa flavor powder, mix it with a bit of water and pull it up into a 20ml syringe, then squirt in the horse's mouth. He went from running away when he saw the syringe to not minding it at all. It comes in other flavors as well - peppermint and apple, I think.

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      • #4
        Oh dear.
        Well, this is the sequence we went through with the old guy, shooting it into his mouth (and getting most of it in there, but not all). Turned into a rodeo at dosing time even if we fed then too.
        Then we started spiking apples and he was pretty good, if he didn't eat it out of your hand you could put it in his bucket. Then he got wise to that and right now we are putting the liquid (this has all been liquid) into a dose of flaxseed oil, which I hope is OK, I know it doesn't stay good if mixed with water, and dumping that into his lightly molassed grain. We are just getting to the end of the first gallon of oil and maybe a month or two (trying to remember how many oz in a gallon and can't right now but he gets two ounces, 1/4 cup) anyway this is about the time he ought to be turning his nose up at this method too.

        Hope this method is acceptable and works for you.

        And the dewormer he'll let me do but gives my DH grief, I treat and give syringes full of applesauce so he never knows what he is going to get.
        Last edited by ReSomething; Jun. 10, 2010, 10:25 PM. Reason: because for some reason I could ignore 8oz in a cup and think a quarter was one ounce.
        Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
        Incredible Invisible

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        • #5
          What about those bits that are hollow that you can fill with whatever (liquid) medicine, Easy Wormer Drenching Wormer/
          http://www.horsetackreview.com/review-display/7278.html

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          • #6
            When I had to give pergolide to my ultra-picky gelding, I got the capsules from thriving pets, made a slit in a piece of carrot, stuck the capsule in the slit and fed him the carrot. He munched them down without a problem - either they had no taste or they tasted good. This same horse won't fall for that trick with previcox, by the way - he spits the whole thing out. Thriving pets is a great online pharmacy, by the way - you should check them out.

            Good luck!!!!
            R.I.P. Ollie (2007-2010) You were small in stature but huge in spirit. You will never be forgotten.

            Godspeed, Benjamin (1998-2014). A life well-lived. A horse well-loved.

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            • #7
              did you try capsules?

              they're so small my mare doesn't even notice them. (she hated gourmeds!). we just give it to her w/ her feed.
              http://www.eponashoe.com/
              TQ(Trail Queen) \"Learn How to Ride or Move Over!!\" Clique

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              • #8
                My horse did the same thing with pergolide. She despised it. It's a horrid drug. In my situation, it dramatically affected my horse's appetite and made her extremely depressed and lethargic - even when started very slowly and worked up to 1 mg. and even while also taking APF daily. It made no difference. I eventually stopped the drug because there's just no quality of life for an animal when they're so depressed and lethargic they stand there and wait to die. I wish I had some advice, but nothing that I tried ever worked for more than a couple days.

                For some horses, I don't think it's a matter of "tasting the pill" but the affect the medication has on them. My horse lost all interested in life, and in food while on pergolide. I tried 2 different times, 2 different years - same result each time. This mare would lick bute powder out of the bottom of her feed pan but a tiny sprinkle of pergolide and she'd stand in the back corner of the stall looking like she saw a ghost.

                I agree with syringing it with applesauce but if your horse is bad about taking stuff by mouth, that probably won't work.

                About 8 of the horses I trim are on pergolide and their owners talk about the same troubles with the drug so you're definitely not alone.

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                • #9
                  My girl just started on it and I have bute-sized pills. She only gets 1/2 1xday. I got the apple molasses flavored , which smell good, but obviously may not taste that great. Luckily, they crumble up pretty easily, so I have tried that with a few of her favorite Canada Mints, which are about the same size, but firmer. It's only been 2 days, so I don't think I'll have too much of a problem eventually. She loves her food, so I think she'll just sigh and go for it rather than starve. About the APF. My girl has been on it and her vet suggested I stop it because it may interfere with the Pergolide.

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                  • #10
                    The Yahoo Cushings group strongly recommends using APF with pergolide. The vet on there - Dr. Kellon recommends that most horses get APF with the pergolide, so I'd be interested in seeing studies proving one way or the other.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Auventera Two View Post
                      My horse did the same thing with pergolide. She despised it. It's a horrid drug. In my situation, it dramatically affected my horse's appetite and made her extremely depressed and lethargic - even when started very slowly and worked up to 1 mg. and even while also taking APF daily. It made no difference. I eventually stopped the drug because there's just no quality of life for an animal when they're so depressed and lethargic they stand there and wait to die. I wish I had some advice, but nothing that I tried ever worked for more than a couple days.

                      For some horses, I don't think it's a matter of "tasting the pill" but the affect the medication has on them. My horse lost all interested in life, and in food while on pergolide. I tried 2 different times, 2 different years - same result each time. This mare would lick bute powder out of the bottom of her feed pan but a tiny sprinkle of pergolide and she'd stand in the back corner of the stall looking like she saw a ghost.

                      I agree with syringing it with applesauce but if your horse is bad about taking stuff by mouth, that probably won't work.

                      About 8 of the horses I trim are on pergolide and their owners talk about the same troubles with the drug so you're definitely not alone.
                      Auventera, I am sorry that you had such problems with your horse. It's a shame you couldn't find a suitable medication to help manage her Cushings, and I'm sure that had some bearing on her decline in health and subsequent death.

                      However, Pergolide is NOT "a horrid drug", and I think you stating this as a fact is unwise as it might scare off some who have been advised to use the medication for their Cushings horses.

                      The OP has been using Pergolide for several months and from what she says, the ONLY problem she is having is getting the horse to eat it. She makes no mention of the various problems you had.

                      So coming along and making a statement like "it's a horrid drug" not only is not relevant to the OP, it is a blanket statement you put forth as a fact based on your experience with ONE horse.
                      "My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we'll change the world." ~ Jack Layton

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                      • #12
                        I'm confused.

                        I thought Ace had said her horse didn't have Cushings? Am I thinking of someone else?

                        Regardless, OP, good luck. I like the carrot idea with the capsules.
                        "Aye God, Woodrow..."

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by marta View Post
                          they're so small my mare doesn't even notice them. (she hated gourmeds!). we just give it to her w/ her feed.
                          Ditto this. My old arab would eat the capsules as a top dress, but don't open them and pour them on his grain. He'd dump the bucket.

                          Then they came out with flavored pergolide capsules. No way. He'd just eat all the way around the capsule and leave it all by itself in the bottom of the bucket. Go figure, my neighbors mare loved the flavored capsules, apple her favorite. Would spit out the unflavored.

                          Ask for a sample first.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Starting Pergolide

                            my 21 yo horse had high acth levels pulled about 3 mos. ago. my vet recommended rx through Todd's Harvard Park Pharmacy, Denver, CO. they compound a pellet sized capsule. i give it to my horse each day at about the same time. the easiest way is to put a small handful of grain and the capsule in a bucket and let him eat it up. i don't top dress it, since i can't be sure he'll get it, but this way i watch him. we have another horse at barn who also gets pergolide same way. before i realized he'd eat it with some grain, i tried stuffing it down his throat and learned that horses are quite good at spitting things out from the back of their throat ( and it made my arm a mess)

                            when my horse first started he did have suppressed appetite for about two weeks. now he's back on feed and doing great.

                            good luck
                            it does work
                            good luck

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I would advise you to train the horse to come to you - probably the quickest way in the long run to save on this expensive medicine ( at least it was expensive for me, buying it from my vet as she would not write a prescription). After you train him to at least NOT run away from you - I'd stick with the flavored emulsions in a syringe... the amount you squirt is small, and you can do it so fast.

                              But you would be much better off if you were able to catch this horse once a day. Catch him when you feed him. He comes in to eat, right? Teach him that he gets haltered once a day at feeding time. Squirting the Pergolide in his cheek should take a milisecond after he gets used to getting caught.

                              I know it's hard when they hate taking meds... I have one that absolutely would not be paste wormed. But FINALLY I got him used to syringes by using applesauce in them, which he adored. Now he opens his mouth!

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I took care of two horses who were on pergolide (not my horses so I really won't debate the role of pergolide) and they used small capsules of pergolide. They then used treats with holes drilled in them the size of the capsules and put the capsules inside. Both very picky mares loved them. Both mares turned up their noses at the same capsules inside carrots or apples fwiw.
                                My blog:

                                RAWR

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                                • #17
                                  Giving Pergolide to Horses!

                                  My daughter tried everything. Today, she diped the pill, a huge one, in Peppermint Extract, and voila, he gobbled it up. Now we are waiting for the vet's visit and hopefully, my daughter did the right thing.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Remember that you don't want to get pergolide on yourself, as ingestion in humans is linked to heart valve problems. Our horse would tell you pergolide is a horrible drug. I do think it helps him, even though he emphatically does not like the taste.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Our barn cushings horse gets the powder that actually smells really sweet. She gets half her dose in the am and the other half in the pm. She eats a purina senior slurry so I think the powder is well disguised. Her appetite is amazing and she's actually gotten pretty pushy to handle. She looked like she had already checked out when she arrived in sept. It's been heartwarming for all if us who care for her to see her turn such an enormous corner....I can't wait to clip her out in the spring...she will feel like a new woman!
                                      It\'s a beautiful day, dont let it get away.....

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        We get the apple flavored pergolide capsules from Thriving Pets. We open them up and mix them in his daily bucket of beet pulp, flax seeds and a bit of TC Senior.

                                        We syringed the liquid suspension into his mouth for years but then found out it is not as stable as the capsules. We tried the flavored wafers/treat years ago and he would not eat them. Then we tried to hide the capsule in carrots and apples.

                                        We have found that the easiest way to get him to eat it is to open the capsule and mix it up in his feed. He eats 100% of his bucket with the apple flavored pergolide mixed it. Even the 6 mg. capsules are a small amount of powder (we feed 1/3 in the am and 2/3 in the pm).

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