Re: Newbie - waiting on blood results and trying not to panic

Mandy Woods

Hi Shannon,
Welcome to the group. Its good you're here because we can help you with Khandi.

The list philosophy is DDT/E. You've started the DIAGNOSIS by getting bloodwork. I hope your vet ordered the eACTH test (not the Dex Test which can cause founder) Insulin/Glucose/Leptin on a NON fasting horse! Your mare could be both Cushing and Insulin Resistant. Many horses on this list are. These are two separate conditions with overlapping symptoms that are treated differently. Cushings is a benign brain tumor treated with pergolide. IR is managed by DIET because the horse makes too much insulin which the cells will not accept.

With her breed, cresty neck and unexplained lameness you can start thinking IR! How old is she? Many Cushings horses start to present in their teens with long hair that is slow to shed in the spring. You need to start the Temporary Emergency Diet that is in the "Start Here" file. This diet reduces safely and quickly the sugars that she has been consuming. Pull her off pasture completely. No grazing even when hand walking. zNO grains! Put her in a dry lot so she can move at liberty. Get a muzzle and tape the hole at the bottom of the basket shut and you may have to weave the sides shut too. Horses are very clever at getting things in the basket! Until you can find low sugar/starch hay, soak her hay for one hour in cold water or 30 minutes in hot, pouring off the water where she cant get to it. This reduces the sugar up to 30%. Feed her atleast 4 small meals a day 6 hours apart so she has food going through her system. She needs the ER minerals which are Vitamin E natural gel caps, loose iodized table salt, magnesium oxide and freshly ground flax seed. The recipe is in the Start Here file. These minerals are at all major drug stores and Walmart. To be the carrier for the minerals, the safest and lowest sugar/starch meal out there is rinsed/soaked/rinsed beet pulp. You can make meals in advanced and frig or freeze them. You can also 'flavor' them with certain herbs and spices. If you have a Southern States store near you, get a 50 pound bag of Magox/OX for under $25. Give her one tsp twice a day. This bag will last you years! if you keep it at home. You can prepare her meals at home, put in baggies (salt and Vit E gel caps don’t mix) so put the E in with the beet pulp. Again, this diet is temporary because your goal is to have your hay analyzed at and the minerals balanced to it. I can hear you thinking this is too much! Shannon, all this information is overwhelming at first but I guarantee you will be helping other new members soon! When you see the results you'll be smiling!
If you shop at Walmart, pick up a fish hanging scale for under $7 to weigh your hay. **weigh all feeds dry** then soak. Many of us use poly hay nets to soak with. Stuff a net, weigh it, soak it in a much bucket or 18 gallon storage tank. Hang on a fence to drip out. That’s the second "D".

TRIM is a balance foot with toes backed and heels lowered. You will invest in good rehab boots like the Soft_Ride. Shoes are not recommended in the beginning because the horse is soooo sore than trimming is difficult and putting boots on is a trick. Bed her deeply in sawdust so she can get off her feet. Its ok if she lays down. Let her.

EXERCISE **ONLY** if she's able. This can moving at liberty in her drylot providing she's not on bute. After the first few days, NSAIDS are contraindicated. You don’t want a horse feeling better than her feet actually are! and ripping around tearing the new laminae loose.

Please read the files! Start a journal on Khandi. Take photos of her sides and her feet. Please join the ECH6 group too. This is where we keep our medical records on each horse.. I'm enclosing the link.

Shannon, we know the information we give in the beginning is overwhelming. You said she acts like she's starving ~ she is! This is a symptom of IR . Soak that hay! Can you get Ontario Dehy Balance Timothy Cubes? That is the only complete meal safe enough for her right now. Southern States can get them for you. Take a deep breath and start with the diet. As soon as you get the bloodwork results let us know - the lab, the values the units and lab normal ranges! Ask questions as the pop up. We've been through this and will can coach you.

Mandy in VA
EC Primary Response
OCT 2003

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