Re: just a vent, I guess - long
Eleanor Kellon, VMD
A few things...
I'm assuming you think the severity of the allergies is IR related?
If so, is the IR well controlled? If not, pasture is really Russian
roulette. The home freezing method has never been confirmed to be
accurate. Grass researchers use flash freezing in liquid nitrogen,
right on the spot in the field, to avoid carbohydrate losses. The
levels and types of carbohydrate are also constantly changing
depending on weather (rain, sun - or lack thereof - and temperature),
growth stage of the plants, and which plants they are preferentially
eating. No laminitis is great, but it doesn't necessarily mean the IR
is as well controlled as it could be.
Are you also supplementing to balance the grass intake?
I agree with trying Spirulina. If they don't respond to that, you
could try chondroitin sulfate. That has helped some Spirulina
nonresponders with skin problems.
If her itching is confined to neck and belly, you may well have an
Onchocerca problem. Deworming with ivermectin every 4 to 6 weeks will
control that part. The culicoides transmit the Onchocerca larvae,
which then travel to the neck (nuchal) ligament to mature. Once
mature they send out microfilaria which migrate along the neck, chest
and withers/shoulders to the belly where they wait to be picked up by
Since she had a severe reaction to the belly being uncovered for a
day, it really does sound like she has a Culicoides hypersensitivity.
Barrier methods are equally important. We had some discussions
recently I think. Try the Archives.