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Thermal colic epidemic!? Weird year at Thermal.

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  • Thermal colic epidemic!? Weird year at Thermal.

    As if the weird human injuries aren't enough (Archie breaks his hip while ON a horse??), there have been apprx. 5 deaths of horses due to colic, and now being called colitis in some cases. Another is sick but should be ok. There were 16 cases of "allergic reactions"--looks like swollen glands in the throat latch area. All due to toxic hay delivered to show grounds and fed.

    Sounds inflammatory, I know, but if you know someone showing at Thermal, then they need to know. There has been some testing of hay--soaked in water for 30 minutes or more, and the water turns "coffee black" in color. This is toxic hay. NOT all the hay is toxic, ours tested fine--light green.

    Yesterday, one horse had surgery, and will be fine, but a rancid pack of hay was removed from an otherwise healthy colon. This horse will make it. Hay has been sent to Cornell for testing. Management has not been "officially" made aware, pending results of hay test. Seems to be hay supplied by the main supplier, but again NOT ALL the hay was toxic. And, it all looked good and smelled good, but not good when ingested and soaking it is the only way to find out.

    Sorry to be alarmist, but want to get the word out. Our horses are ok, still working on hay from home, but neighboring barn did lose one two days ago. Heartbreaking.
    My treasures do not chink, nor glitter. They carry me to great heights, they gleam in the sun, and they neigh in the night. That is my life, at the end of the day.

  • #2
    Wow--that is horrible! I'm glad to hear your barn is okay. There are several horses from our barn out there now. Yikes!

    It seems like there would be more of an uproar over this.
    A helmet saved my life.

    2017 goal: learn to ride like TheHorseProblem, er, a barn rat!


    • #3
      whoa really? When did all this start happening? My barn was down there for two weeks, all horses made it through and came back ok. My trainer's horse is still down there though. You would think even though they are pending test results show management would want to be proactive about this so more horses don't die??


      • #4
        Weird year at Thermal for sure!


        • #5
          I must say that even up north we are dealing with abnormal amounts of colic and colic that turns BAD!

          I had 1 horse this summer with a torsion, then in October I had one with a Right displacement, ended fine. In November I had a different horse with a right displacement that ended up at MSU and lead to Colitis AFTER the displacement was resolved. That same night I had two with a gas colic. ( tested ALL of our feed and everything was FINE!) then two weeks later the first horse with displacement ( which in turn was also one of the ones who gas coliced..) was found dead in his stall. ( Found out he had atrophy of his right liver lobe and fibrous lesions attaching his liver and diaphragm and was basically a ticking time bomb)

          the barn I lease from has had 3 put down in the last year from colic ( this was not the barn I was at when I had issues with my horses) and an additional two with minor colics and a VERY LARGE local barn has lost 6. Another 3. All of these barns are well established and have NEVER had this issue.

          I am not sure this is just a THERMAL issue as much as a nation wide drought that has effected all of the hay...


          • #6
            Originally posted by horsegurl View Post

            Management has not been "officially" made aware, pending results of hay test. Seems to be hay supplied by the main supplier.....
            Confused....the hay may be coming from the HITS supplier, but show management hasn't been made aware of the problem ?

            You're not being alarmist. You're speaking up. Better safe than sorry. Thank you !


            • #7
              Originally posted by nlk View Post
              I must say that even up north we are dealing with abnormal amounts of colic and colic that turns BAD!

              I am not sure this is just a THERMAL issue as much as a nation wide drought that has effected all of the hay...
              ^THIS. My trainer's farm has over 100 horses, all of which live outside 24/7 and most of which have lived on the farm for years or were born there. Trainer grows her own hay. We get maybe one or two mild cases of colic a year.

              In the past two months we have about 8 cases of colic, half of which have been very bad. Two cases of colitis, two horses with impactions...a bad 8 weeks. Definitely something weird.


              • Original Poster

                I am home now, so don't know what the test results were. The vets sent bad hay sample for testing. Were waiting tests results to make "bad hay" diagnoses official. Vets did not feel they could give show management speculative diagnoses. Not all the hay was bad. Seems like certain palettes had the bad hay. To top it all off, there was an Earthquake just outside of Indio on Monday!!!!
                My treasures do not chink, nor glitter. They carry me to great heights, they gleam in the sun, and they neigh in the night. That is my life, at the end of the day.


                • #9
                  Sent info to our barn owner/manager just in case. Thank you.....
                  Live in the sunshine.
                  Swim in the sea.
                  Drink the wild air.


                  • #10
                    Crazy changes in weather from hot to cold and back again can't be helping horses either. That will bring on colic in plenty of horses.
                    You don't scare me. I ride a MARE!


                    • #11
                      What type of hay?

                      Does anyone know what type of hay is allegedly toxic? Alfalfa? Timothy? Bermuda? Also was this hay that was purchased from the show? Or purchased from a local company?