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Depo Deaths - Chronicle Article

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  • Originally posted by mvp View Post

    What, specifically is the therapeutic effect? Does Bute also have a therapeutic effect under your definition?

    I'm confused about where the USEF would draw the line between "performance enhancing because it modifies behavior" and "therapeutic.... where the goal is very quiet behavior." How you you distinguish those categories?
    All of the drugs that are permitted by USEF have a therapeutic purpose. This includes Bute. There are also several other therapeutic substances (e.g., sedatives used for a medical purpose) that require withdrawal prior to competition. It isn't my definition. It's from the AAEP guidelines. USEF's D&M policies follow these guidelines.

    There are also therapeutic guidelines for "off-label use"

    extra label (off label) drug use: Use of a drug which is not approved for the horse or for a particular disease, but which has FDA approval for use in another species or for a different disease or route of administration. Off-label use does not apply in cases in which the product label prohibits a certain use or AAEP medication guidelines prohibit a certain practice for ethical reasons. Off -label use does not apply to illegally compounded products or to medical devices. All the criteria for therapeutic medications apply to off-label use.

    (quoted from the AAEP clinical guidelines for non-racing performance horses)

    Comment


    • Originally posted by endlessclimb View Post

      I'd vote the individual I originally responded to, whose horse is now for sale, was using it instead of training.

      Is depo use something disclosed when selling a horse?
      I wouldn’t assume the worse. Most people do disclose it. That’s where the recommendation came from with my new mare. Not everyone wants that pro ride and has the time. The poster’s life situation clearly changed after she bought the horse so if that’s what helped keep the horse and her safe after her life situation changed good for them. The poster also realized life was now life and is selling the horse. Kudos to her. No need to be all high and mighty because you are able to choose full training and have the time.

      Again some times horses need help realizing something like cross ties aren’t scary. Ace, depo, whatever can help with that. I will never use a patience tree/pole to teach my horse to stand and not pull back for example.

      Comment


      • Originally posted by Ghazzu View Post

        Makes *me* wonder if maybe it's because these establishments are replacing training/suitability of horse to job and/or rider with pharmaceuticals.
        Oh I thought that was a given. They are injecting geldings with birth control.

        Comment


        • Wow. Just wow. Any drug given can lead to an adverse reaction. Medoxyprogesterone needs to be disclosed at USEF shows on a med form, as USEF is studying this drug. Any drug overused is deplorable. Used in moderation, I am personally, not against, not to be confused with eliminating any pain issues first. If abused, it can cause medical issues in a horse. Every time you stick a needle in a horse, whether for therapeutic purposes or for joint injections, you take a risk. Vets, trainers, etc. Even adequan causes medical issues if given constantly. Everything in moderation. Anyone who is sedating a horse and putting a rider in the ring to jump doesn't care about the rider or horse. Just putting my two cents in.

          Comment


          • Originally posted by Denali6298 View Post
            I think the whole problem with depo is while it is appropriate for some horses, like the OP’s, too many people use it to make the horse competitive in a particular discipline. For example, you could have a gelding on depo because they show in hunters and it makes the horse better. That same horse could go to the jumpers, eventing or dressage and be competitive without the depo.

            It was recommended to me to put both my former and current mare on depo. The first mare needed a specific type of ride and my “trainer” just didn’t like that type of horse. When trainer shopping actually had one tell me they won’t ride a mare unless it’s on depo. Obviously they were not hired.

            Current mare was a rider problem. She’s spooky and has a mind of her own. She’d be a nice hunter if it kept her brain busy enough. I tried. She is better with eventing as it keeps her brain busy and if she has a moment on course it won’t keep us out of the ribbons. She doesn’t have moments in dressage as it keeps her totally engaged. If you’re a timid rider nothing will work.

            So while there are horses who’s lives are made better by depo, I think there are many more who are a square peg in a round hole because of their riders/owners. They want to do THIS discipline and the horse is fancy enough too win but...... Or the horse does win without help but can’t because the owner isn’t good enough to get that same ride without help.

            ETA: I don’t really care anymore if people what to use whatever for their horses even if it toes the line of violating the spirit of the rule because I show now just to see where I stack up. So maybe twice a year. I enjoy the process more than the shows.
            What I want to know is who are the people who keep the kinds of trainers who “won’t ride mares unless they’re on Depo” in business?

            Comment


            • Originally posted by BigMama1 View Post

              What I want to know is who are the people who keep the kinds of trainers who “won’t ride mares unless they’re on Depo” in business?
              People who don’t want to make an effort. People who are riders not horsemen.

              Comment


              • I love depo. It's been a game-changer for one of my horses. I use it on a mare who is downright dangerous in the spring. I train with a BN jumper trainer with 2 other horses but at this point I just ride the mare on my own b/c she's too nuts to show. On the ground, she's the best horse I've ever known. She can give pony rides to little kids and lets dogs run between her legs. But when you ride her and put her to work, she explodes. Her ears are always up, she's a beautiful mover and a 10+ jumper but she spooks all the time and can be downright dangerous. Rearing, spinning and has flipped. Most people won't get on her, I don't blame them and I don't want anyone getting hurt from my horse. She has all the best care, vets, farriers, chiros, etc. I spend a fortune on her care despite so many people over the years telling me to get rid of her.

                I keep my horses for the duration of their lives. I know if I gave her away or rehomed her sooner or later someone would figure out she can jump and would try to "fix" her. She would be passed from one bad trainer to another and ultimately end up being a broodmare (fightening!) or a kill pen.

                A few years ago after one too many trips to the ER, I found her breeder in Europe and turns out her little known stallion while a grand prix horse was difficult. He reared at the ingate and had to be led back to the barn by multiple grooms after showing. They stopped breeding him b/c the offspring were all nuts.

                So, I keep her and treat her like gold despite her bad genes and behavior u/s. I use depo mostly in the spring when she's the most insane, taper off in the summer and resume the next spring. Depo takes about 10-20% off the crazy which makes her just really difficult to ride, not necessarily life-threateningly dangerous. I've tried calming supplements but they make her dull and I'm afraid she's going to trip and get hurt. The depo taking off that little bit of edge helped me ride through the spins and rears and politely get her back in the right direction so much so that she does them less and less. over the years as I can catch the explosion the split second before it happens.

                You name it, I've tried it. I worked with riders you would know who tried and failed to "fix" here, tried every vet, every chiro, every this that and the other. I've cried more times than I can count, probably have been flung off her about 40-50 times, and have not had one person tell me to keep her. Ironically, I love her the most b/c she's taught me the most. She was supposed to be my first grand prix horse and she said no. So, I've accepted her for who she is and we now have a great time together doing really hard technical things at home but I need a little chemical help once in a while and I don't feel the least bit bad about it. I have to ride every single second at the top of my game whenever I swing a leg over her whether flatting, jumping or trail riding. But, I'm a better rider and horse person for it.

                I spend $2,250/mo of money I make myself from a career I built over years and years of hard work for a horse most people think should be dog food. My horse, my money, my choice.

                Comment


                • Originally posted by endlessclimb View Post

                  I'd vote the individual I originally responded to, whose horse is now for sale, was using it instead of training.

                  Is depo use something disclosed when selling a horse?
                  Since this is the second time you asked, I disclose all medications, including depo, other supplements, joint injections, etc.

                  The thinly veiled implication that I'm selling my horse due to behavior is uncalled for.
                  ​​​

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by Denali6298 View Post

                    I wouldn’t assume the worse. Most people do disclose it. That’s where the recommendation came from with my new mare. Not everyone wants that pro ride and has the time. The poster’s life situation clearly changed after she bought the horse so if that’s what helped keep the horse and her safe after her life situation changed good for them. The poster also realized life was now life and is selling the horse. Kudos to her. No need to be all high and mighty because you are able to choose full training and have the time.

                    Again some times horses need help realizing something like cross ties aren’t scary. Ace, depo, whatever can help with that. I will never use a patience tree/pole to teach my horse to stand and not pull back for example.
                    Full training is like... by me. I'm no pro. But I didn't buy an unsuitable horse, either.

                    On the patience pole, she's on a blocker ring so I could care less if she pulls back. I don't tie totally solid to anything, ever.

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by jhg140 View Post

                      Since this is the second time you asked, I disclose all medications, including depo, other supplements, joint injections, etc.

                      The thinly veiled implication that I'm selling my horse due to behavior is uncalled for.
                      ​​​
                      It's not about you, jhg. This is a widely used drug, and if that many horses are on it to get their XYZ show record, I do hope sellers are honest that the horse was sedated in order to get that record. But I highly doubt that the majority of people are that honest, really.

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by marginall View Post
                        I love depo. It's been a game-changer for one of my horses. I use it on a mare who is downright dangerous in the spring. I train with a BN jumper trainer with 2 other horses but at this point I just ride the mare on my own b/c she's too nuts to show. On the ground, she's the best horse I've ever known. She can give pony rides to little kids and lets dogs run between her legs. But when you ride her and put her to work, she explodes. Her ears are always up, she's a beautiful mover and a 10+ jumper but she spooks all the time and can be downright dangerous. Rearing, spinning and has flipped. Most people won't get on her, I don't blame them and I don't want anyone getting hurt from my horse. She has all the best care, vets, farriers, chiros, etc. I spend a fortune on her care despite so many people over the years telling me to get rid of her.

                        I keep my horses for the duration of their lives. I know if I gave her away or rehomed her sooner or later someone would figure out she can jump and would try to "fix" her. She would be passed from one bad trainer to another and ultimately end up being a broodmare (fightening!) or a kill pen.

                        A few years ago after one too many trips to the ER, I found her breeder in Europe and turns out her little known stallion while a grand prix horse was difficult. He reared at the ingate and had to be led back to the barn by multiple grooms after showing. They stopped breeding him b/c the offspring were all nuts.

                        So, I keep her and treat her like gold despite her bad genes and behavior u/s. I use depo mostly in the spring when she's the most insane, taper off in the summer and resume the next spring. Depo takes about 10-20% off the crazy which makes her just really difficult to ride, not necessarily life-threateningly dangerous. I've tried calming supplements but they make her dull and I'm afraid she's going to trip and get hurt. The depo taking off that little bit of edge helped me ride through the spins and rears and politely get her back in the right direction so much so that she does them less and less. over the years as I can catch the explosion the split second before it happens.

                        You name it, I've tried it. I worked with riders you would know who tried and failed to "fix" here, tried every vet, every chiro, every this that and the other. I've cried more times than I can count, probably have been flung off her about 40-50 times, and have not had one person tell me to keep her. Ironically, I love her the most b/c she's taught me the most. She was supposed to be my first grand prix horse and she said no. So, I've accepted her for who she is and we now have a great time together doing really hard technical things at home but I need a little chemical help once in a while and I don't feel the least bit bad about it. I have to ride every single second at the top of my game whenever I swing a leg over her whether flatting, jumping or trail riding. But, I'm a better rider and horse person for it.

                        I spend $2,250/mo of money I make myself from a career I built over years and years of hard work for a horse most people think should be dog food. My horse, my money, my choice.
                        You're not showing, your horse is dangerous and it sounds like you've done the training front, and you're not giving it to a gelding. Totally not even in the same class as the people being criticized.

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by endlessclimb View Post

                          It's not about you, jhg. This is a widely used drug, and if that many horses are on it to get their XYZ show record, I do hope sellers are honest that the horse was sedated in order to get that record. But I highly doubt that the majority of people are that honest, really.
                          If you think the person you're buying from isn't honest, don't buy from them. Or ask the question. Isn't that Horse Buying 101 - always assume you're dealing with someone dishonest?

                          ​​​​​

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by marginall View Post
                            I love depo. It's been a game-changer for one of my horses. I use it on a mare who is downright dangerous in the spring. I train with a BN jumper trainer with 2 other horses but at this point I just ride the mare on my own b/c she's too nuts to show. On the ground, she's the best horse I've ever known. She can give pony rides to little kids and lets dogs run between her legs. But when you ride her and put her to work, she explodes. Her ears are always up, she's a beautiful mover and a 10+ jumper but she spooks all the time and can be downright dangerous. Rearing, spinning and has flipped. Most people won't get on her, I don't blame them and I don't want anyone getting hurt from my horse. She has all the best care, vets, farriers, chiros, etc. I spend a fortune on her care despite so many people over the years telling me to get rid of her.

                            I keep my horses for the duration of their lives. I know if I gave her away or rehomed her sooner or later someone would figure out she can jump and would try to "fix" her. She would be passed from one bad trainer to another and ultimately end up being a broodmare (fightening!) or a kill pen.

                            A few years ago after one too many trips to the ER, I found her breeder in Europe and turns out her little known stallion while a grand prix horse was difficult. He reared at the ingate and had to be led back to the barn by multiple grooms after showing. They stopped breeding him b/c the offspring were all nuts.

                            So, I keep her and treat her like gold despite her bad genes and behavior u/s. I use depo mostly in the spring when she's the most insane, taper off in the summer and resume the next spring. Depo takes about 10-20% off the crazy which makes her just really difficult to ride, not necessarily life-threateningly dangerous. I've tried calming supplements but they make her dull and I'm afraid she's going to trip and get hurt. The depo taking off that little bit of edge helped me ride through the spins and rears and politely get her back in the right direction so much so that she does them less and less. over the years as I can catch the explosion the split second before it happens.

                            You name it, I've tried it. I worked with riders you would know who tried and failed to "fix" here, tried every vet, every chiro, every this that and the other. I've cried more times than I can count, probably have been flung off her about 40-50 times, and have not had one person tell me to keep her. Ironically, I love her the most b/c she's taught me the most. She was supposed to be my first grand prix horse and she said no. So, I've accepted her for who she is and we now have a great time together doing really hard technical things at home but I need a little chemical help once in a while and I don't feel the least bit bad about it. I have to ride every single second at the top of my game whenever I swing a leg over her whether flatting, jumping or trail riding. But, I'm a better rider and horse person for it.

                            I spend $2,250/mo of money I make myself from a career I built over years and years of hard work for a horse most people think should be dog food. My horse, my money, my choice.
                            Yes, your choice. However you aren't drugging the mare for the purpose of showing her in a discipline for which she is temperamentally unsuited, which is the problem that USEF is having to address.

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by jhg140 View Post

                              If you think the person you're buying from isn't honest, don't buy from them. Or ask the question. Isn't that Horse Buying 101 - always assume you're dealing with someone dishonest?

                              ​​​​​
                              I'm buying cheap OTTBs and really green beans. I'll not be easily duped, no worries.

                              I guess because I've never even considered giving it that I'm curious. Everyone claims it's so benign (don't agree, but that's how it is handled and discussed in bigger show barns) that I wasn't sure it would be mentioned. "Takes the edge off" doesn't seem like the type of thing that would necessitate disclosure by design.

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by endlessclimb View Post

                                I'm buying cheap OTTBs and really green beans. I'll not be easily duped, no worries.

                                I guess because I've never even considered giving it that I'm curious. Everyone claims it's so benign (don't agree, but that's how it is handled and discussed in bigger show barns) that I wasn't sure it would be mentioned. "Takes the edge off" doesn't seem like the type of thing that would necessitate disclosure by design.
                                From your recent posts I gather you haven’t been around many fractious horses. Sometimes you do need to take the edge off. In my experience you can be duped more with cheaper horses.

                                You like myself are in a position to work with these horses but at the end of the day realize what you call hot could be ho hum for another rider.

                                Even with a blocker ring I would never use a patience pole. I taught my blow back mare to ground tie without such a thing. Ie. There are many ways to Rome and you don’t know until you are in the saddle and even that doesn’t mean anything because you may not be as skilled.

                                Comment


                                • Originally posted by Denali6298 View Post

                                  From your recent posts I gather you haven’t been around many fractious horses. Sometimes you do need to take the edge off. In my experience you can be duped more with cheaper horses.

                                  You like myself are in a position to work with these horses but at the end of the day realize what you call hot could be ho hum for another rider.

                                  Even with a blocker ring I would never use a patience pole. I taught my blow back mare to ground tie without such a thing. Ie. There are many ways to Rome and you don’t know until you are in the saddle and even that doesn’t mean anything because you may not be as skilled.
                                  Ha, ok. Want my mare? She doesn't ground tie, and I'll give you 100 bucks if you can teach her.
                                  Last edited by endlessclimb; Oct. 15, 2019, 08:32 AM.

                                  Comment


                                  • Originally posted by jhg140 View Post

                                    Since this is the second time you asked, I disclose all medications, including depo, other supplements, joint injections, etc.

                                    The thinly veiled implication that I'm selling my horse due to behavior is uncalled for.
                                    ​​​
                                    Easy, there.

                                    I don't think there was a thin veil over anything insulting.

                                    I can imagine that someone asked twice because the question wasn't answered, and asked twice of you because you use Depo and because you have a horse who, without the recipe, would probably not be the horse the buyer thought they were getting. If you had a different horse, this question probably would not have come to you. But that doesn't mean you have to sell your horse.
                                    The armchair saddler
                                    Politically Pro-Cat

                                    Comment


                                    • Originally posted by endlessclimb View Post

                                      I'm buying cheap OTTBs and really green beans. I'll not be easily duped, no worries.

                                      I guess because I've never even considered giving it that I'm curious. Everyone claims it's so benign (don't agree, but that's how it is handled and discussed in bigger show barns) that I wasn't sure it would be mentioned. "Takes the edge off" doesn't seem like the type of thing that would necessitate disclosure by design.
                                      I disagree about something so benign and ineffectual needing disclosure. At the top end where competition is fierce and horses are expensive, someone who is buying a hunter that will continue to win for them is going to want to know that they are getting "the same horse"-- or as close to it as they know how to manage it, train it and ride it.

                                      And this is one of the issues that makes the USEF D&M rules about things like Perfect Prep and Depo for geldings and other relatively-rideable horses: When those things are used to make very good horses even better, and no one is willing to back down from that "insurance" or uber-high standard of performance, horsemen and the public alike are going to find those drugs' defense untenable.

                                      Again, I think you only have to look at the reputation of Western Pleasure to understand the problem. And COTH is full of people decrying the dead, crippled-looking horse to be found in that show pen.
                                      The armchair saddler
                                      Politically Pro-Cat

                                      Comment


                                      • Originally posted by mvp View Post

                                        I disagree about something so benign and ineffectual needing disclosure. At the top end where competition is fierce and horses are expensive, someone who is buying a hunter that will continue to win for them is going to want to know that they are getting "the same horse"-- or as close to it as they know how to manage it, train it and ride it.

                                        And this is one of the issues that makes the USEF D&M rules about things like Perfect Prep and Depo for geldings and other relatively-rideable horses: When those things are used to make very good horses even better, and no one is willing to back down from that "insurance" or uber-high standard of performance, horsemen and the public alike are going to find those drugs' defense untenable.

                                        Again, I think you only have to look at the reputation of Western Pleasure to understand the problem. And COTH is full of people decrying the dead, crippled-looking horse to be found in that show pen.
                                        Derail time, which is my specialty...

                                        Largely, I think this is the case for WP, because I don't think it looks or even is natural. That said, about a year and a half ago I broke out a 3 year old that was WP bred, got him going ok, then passed him back off to his owner (boards at the same barn). He's a great rider, very versed in the show ring for WP, hunt seat, and showmanship. I *know* this horse isn't drugged, and I *know* he hasn't been hobbled to go that way, and lo and behold... that horse just moves in that slo-mo way the WP horses go.

                                        I didn't even explore it while I was breaking him. He was a sensitive, off balance, easily offended dude, so I just focused on forward forward forward. Once he was over the silly baby crap and they moved out of the sidepull into the bosal - fast forward 1.5 years and that little guy is winning local everything. I just rode him again the other night - pulled him out of the stall, saddled, got on - no lunging or anything. Not my cup of tea, but it can be done with pure training. (WAY too much work to go so SLOW, haha)

                                        I've broken out my fair share, but to be honest, this was the first purely WP bred horse I broke out. I don't know if that is normal for them to go like that when bred correctly or not.

                                        It did, however, open my eyes that not all of them are drugged into oblivion to move and act that way. And this horse is a rising 5 year old! Can't imagine what he will be like when he's finished.

                                        As an aside, it's fun to try showmanship with my hot TB mare, with this guy's instruction. "wait, which side should I be on again?" My mare thinks it's the dumbest thing ever.

                                        Comment


                                        • Originally posted by marginall View Post
                                          I love depo. It's been a game-changer for one of my horses. I use it on a mare who is downright dangerous in the spring. I train with a BN jumper trainer with 2 other horses but at this point I just ride the mare on my own b/c she's too nuts to show. On the ground, she's the best horse I've ever known. She can give pony rides to little kids and lets dogs run between her legs. But when you ride her and put her to work, she explodes. Her ears are always up, she's a beautiful mover and a 10+ jumper but she spooks all the time and can be downright dangerous. Rearing, spinning and has flipped. Most people won't get on her, I don't blame them and I don't want anyone getting hurt from my horse. She has all the best care, vets, farriers, chiros, etc. I spend a fortune on her care despite so many people over the years telling me to get rid of her.

                                          I keep my horses for the duration of their lives. I know if I gave her away or rehomed her sooner or later someone would figure out she can jump and would try to "fix" her. She would be passed from one bad trainer to another and ultimately end up being a broodmare (fightening!) or a kill pen.

                                          A few years ago after one too many trips to the ER, I found her breeder in Europe and turns out her little known stallion while a grand prix horse was difficult. He reared at the ingate and had to be led back to the barn by multiple grooms after showing. They stopped breeding him b/c the offspring were all nuts.

                                          So, I keep her and treat her like gold despite her bad genes and behavior u/s. I use depo mostly in the spring when she's the most insane, taper off in the summer and resume the next spring. Depo takes about 10-20% off the crazy which makes her just really difficult to ride, not necessarily life-threateningly dangerous. I've tried calming supplements but they make her dull and I'm afraid she's going to trip and get hurt. The depo taking off that little bit of edge helped me ride through the spins and rears and politely get her back in the right direction so much so that she does them less and less. over the years as I can catch the explosion the split second before it happens.

                                          You name it, I've tried it. I worked with riders you would know who tried and failed to "fix" here, tried every vet, every chiro, every this that and the other. I've cried more times than I can count, probably have been flung off her about 40-50 times, and have not had one person tell me to keep her. Ironically, I love her the most b/c she's taught me the most. She was supposed to be my first grand prix horse and she said no. So, I've accepted her for who she is and we now have a great time together doing really hard technical things at home but I need a little chemical help once in a while and I don't feel the least bit bad about it. I have to ride every single second at the top of my game whenever I swing a leg over her whether flatting, jumping or trail riding. But, I'm a better rider and horse person for it.

                                          I spend $2,250/mo of money I make myself from a career I built over years and years of hard work for a horse most people think should be dog food. My horse, my money, my choice.
                                          Again, that sounds like a reasonable use for the drug. Not to simply replace training, or to make an already tractable horse look dull enough for the hunter ring, or to chase a blue ribbon.

                                          Comment

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