West Nile Vaccine


I normally give the West Nile Vaccine to my horse annually in May. I was recently told that the vaccine should not be given to horses with Cushings. Has anyone heard of this?

Horse Vaccination Protocol | Depaolo Equine Concepts Health Library

  Cynthia Boriskin from CA

  Tucker 10/10 

Re: Diet for Cushing horse with few teeth

Lavinia Fiscaletti


Not an uncommon scenario when you switch out hay for a soaked product. It's a totally different mouth feel. He's going to have to learn to accept another food source as he obviously cannot chew hay anymore. You could try using the Ontario Dehy Balanced Timothy Cubes instead - they can be soaked and will disintegrate into a fluffy mash that even the toothless can manage.

Do you have a case history up for your boy? We really need to see the entire picture to be able to comment more fully. IF you don't have one for him, would you please fill one out on the ECHistory8 sister site here:

You'll need to join - I'll send you an invite.

We ask that you please sign your posts with your name (first is fine), year of joining (2005) and general location so we can help you more effectively.

Lavinia, Dante, George Too and Peanut
Jan 05, RI
EC Support Team

Re: Re; Emergency again!

Lavinia Fiscaletti

Hi Pim,

Where are you trying to upload it to - which site? If it is anything other than ECHistory8 it is likely because it is full and won't allow the upload. If it's to ECH8 then it's likely a Yahoo issue - of which there are many since Neo was instituted.

Wait a few hours and if it still gives you trouble just email it to one of us (volunteers) and we'll get it up for you.

Lavinia, Dante, George Too and Peanut
Jan 05, RI
EC Support Team

Re: Questions for Ofeigur

Lavinia Fiscaletti

Hi Barbara,

The trim has really gotten away from the farrier. The toes need to backed quite extensively, heels are under run but it's going to be a finesse game to get them corrected because you can't afford to lose any height during the process due to the sinking. Frogs are also quite run forward so are throwing off the proportions. Both fronts have a broken back hoof-pastern axis, with the RF being worse. Here is the link to just his album rather than the Photostream feed:

I can get some mark-ups done for you before Tues - probably on Monday as I'm away tomorrow.

Unless there was a sample handling error, his ACTH is quite solidly low so I wouldn't recommend trying to lower it any further. Is the muzzle sealed when he's on the pasture - poor pasture can be quite high in s/s due to being severely stressed. When had he eaten last in relation to the blood draw? Might be worth considering retesting the Mountain Sunrise pellets to see if there may be high s/s batch?

Have you ever tried using Metformin to lower the insulin/glucose? It works for some, but not all, horses and is only a temporary measure but might help.

I see TIBC and iron values but not  ferritin - was the iron testing done at KSU?

How is he feeling?

Here's the link to his case history - the one in your post is no longer valid:

Lavinia, Dante, George Too and Peanut
Jan 05, RI
EC Support Team

Re: Questions for Ofeigur

ferne fedeli

Ofeigur must be an Icelandic and mine was similar in his latest tests.  His ACTH was pretty good (well, after a heart-stopping high ACTH that Cornell redid!) at 17.2, and his Leptin was 2.1,  but his Insulin was 46.98.  Mine is in a dry lot with only hay and then ODTB soaked cubes and some Stabul1 pellets with his supplements, balanced minerals, etc...  Maybe it is something with Icelandics!!!  The only thing I would worry about for Ofeigur would be the pasture...
My guy got Laminitis last fall from just a few patches of grass growing in his dry lot--at least I think that must be what triggered it.
Ferne Fedeli
No. California

On Sat, Apr 4, 2015 at 5:21 PM, bbraun@... [EquineCushings] <EquineCushings@...> wrote:
Ofeigur's ACTH is 10.3, which is good on 0.5 mg of Prascend. However, his insulin and glucose are worse than they were last September (now insulin 154.9, glucose 119).  He does go out on a very poor pasture with a muzzle every other day.  Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated at this point!  Would increasing the Prascend help?


Re; Emergency again!


Hi  - I've tried 5 or 6 times to upload our case history and each time there is an error message... so I must be doing something wrong. We've decided to switch to doxycycline from the sulfa drugs for his bile/duct liver infection. Off Pentoxy and back on Jiaogulan. Last insulin lower at 128, yet Gluc. slightly higher  at -  111 (Cornell)  Have also been trying Dr. Kellon. No more rotation so far at 3-4 degrees. Also on Prascend. Thanks! Pim and Diamond Dandy in New Mexico

How to Manage Tryggur's Insulin level


I have updated Tryggur's clinical history with new blood work. From my perspective, his ACTH is OK (no meds).  However, his Insulin and Insulin/glucose ratio are worse than last September in spite of changing him to the ODTB cubes earlier this month. He was not eating his supplements with the beet pulp when he was on soaked Bermuda hay. The only other change that I can see to make the difference in his blood work is the fact that my trainer has not been working him since early December in addition to my riding him.  Will increasing his exercise be enough to bring his Insulin level down?  Or is there something else we can do in addition?



N. AZ 3/14


Questions for Ofeigur


I have gotten new bloodwork, lateral xrays, and new feet photos in Ofeigur's files. My vet and I are at somewhat a loss for where to go next. Ofeigur's ACTH is 10.3, which is good on 0.5 mg of Prascend. However, his insulin and glucose are worse than they were last September (now insulin 154.9, glucose 119). His Bermuda pellets are soaked, he gets 1/2 lb max of triple crown lite, custom mix supplement from HorseTech, Vit E, salt, and chondroitin.  See his clinical history which has been updated. He does go out on a very poor pasture with a muzzle every other day.  Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated at this point!  Would increasing the Prascend help?


Also, from the pictures and xrays, it is obvious to me that his toes are too long, but what about his heels and coffin bone? See new photos and front lateral xrays in his photo album. Again any help would be appreciated. The farrier is due on Tuesday, and I will show him the films but would sure appreciate suggestions how far he can go.



N. AZ, 3/23/2103$20Ofeigur/


Diet for Cushing horse with few teeth


I have a 28 year old Cushings miniature. He has maintained his weight with Healthy Weight Oil, Well Sove Low Starch, soaked beet pulp and chopped coastal hay (I cut it up). The equine vet came this last week and had to pull 4 molars, which left him with exactly 2. I have tried the timothy hay pellets (soaked) but, after 2 days, he won't eat that anymore as a hay substitute. Have any of you had this problem?

Re: Testing ACTH how soon after food?

Eleanor Kellon, VMD

Make sure the horse has continuous access to hay overnight and on the day of testing.

Eleanor in PA
EC Co-owner
Feb 2001

Re: sex steroids

Eleanor Kellon, VMD

No formal study has ever been done on DHEA or stanozolol (Winstrol) in PPID horses.  Individual horses whose veterinarians have put them on stanozolol have done well with it but you have to be committed to continuing to use it for the life of the animal because they typically crash if it is stopped.  Winstrol is off the market for horses but available as a compounded injection.

I'm not aware of any attempts to use DHEA in PPID horses.  We do know that horses absorb it when given orally and there are modest increases in testosterone in mares and geldings.  Dosage used was 1 mg/kg.  In human women, DHEA does help with weight loss and if postmenopausal also helps control IR.

Calorie control is also crucial. I would suggest you feed him either 1.5% of current weight or 2% of ideal body weight as hay (whichever is larger) and make sure his muzzle is completely sealed when on pasture.  Turn him out for 3 hour intervals.

Eleanor in PA
EC Co-owner
Feb 2001



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Testing ACTH how soon after food?

beverly meyer

Vet comes Monday at 10 or 10:30 AM.  If I feed at 8, do I stop feeding an hour before blood draw?  Or is it ok to feed right up to blood draw?
Beverly 6/14
Beverly Texas

Re: sex steroids

Sharon Manning

I found this conversation between Linsey McLean and Dr. Kellon dated Jan 9 2002 while searching for information on giving a Cushings horse DHEA. Dr. Kellon had mentioned Winstrel at 10 cc IM also during this post. Can anyone tell me if it has been concluded that it is safe to give our Cushing horses DHEA? ( I couldn't find a number of the posts but hopefully you guys can find it). Does the group recommend Winstrel for obese cushings horses?
.... I am always looking for something diet wise that might help, even if just a little. He can not be worked because of Ataxia.
The weight gain over the winter just really blew my mind but DH thinks he over fed the horses because it was so cold. So, that could be part of the issue with him. DH now has his orders where this is concerned. 
Sense starting him on pergolide the swelling in his sheath is mostly gone. He is still large and fat but it at least it now looks like a normal one. 
My new hay is the lowest s/s hay I have ever had and he likes it!
I just found a muzzle large enough for him after ordering three. He has a really large head and mouth. So he will be learning to love it over the next few days.
Trying also to figure a way, that I can afford, to make a dry lot but for now I am able to keep him in the barn/run in area with his hay in slow feed bags and then when he starts to head out around 4:00 pm I lock him in the stall till after dark. So... that is a improvement in controlling his pasture time.
One more question I tested my pasture a few years ago. I don't do it every year. I know the protein goes up and down but the minerals stay close to the same, correct? I figure in pasture to balance his diet with the hay.



Re: New hoof photos, opinions on why so sore??

Lavinia Fiscaletti

Hi Tiffany,

I definitely wouldn't stop the Jiaogulan as it is helping to increase circulation, which will help in maximizing hoof growth.

Do what you can, when you can and let her comfort be your guide for now.

Sounds like the farrier you spoke with may be able to help. Please keep us updated.

Lavinia, Dante, George Too and Peanut
Jan 05, RI
EC Support Team

Re: Diagnosing PPID


Hi Barbara,

Did Lily actually have the adverse effects (depression, lack of appetite) that some but not all horses experience when starting on pergolide?  Or was the vet just worried that she would if the dose was increased?  Two things that we recommend to avoid this "pergolide veil" are increasing the dose slowly, like you said, 0.25 mg at a time.  Give that dose for 3-4 days before increasing another 0.25 mg until you reach your target dose and then retest ACTH about 3 weeks later to see if the current dose is controlling the ACTH.  You should also monitor the symptoms while increasing the dose to help you evaluate if you are at your target dose.  Read this message by Patti  to help you with evaluating symptoms: 

Make sure that your vet knows that we have many, many horses on this list that are on much more than 1 mg of pergolide.  Look here in the pergolide database to see some of the doses: 

The other thing that we recommend to avoid the pergolide veil is a product called APF.  You can read more about it/purchase it on their website here:  You can also purchase it through many online supply catalogs and at some local tack/feed shops.

How about trying some "safe" treats rather than apples and carrots for Lily?  Have you tried a piece of celery, a peanut in the shell, Tums, tic tacs?  And if you really want to feel like you are doing something special for Lily, you can make her some low sugar/starch treats.  Here's a post from Nancy with the original recipe linked at the bottom and her adaptation of the recipe into salt cookie:   Not sure if you are a member of ECHorseKeeping, but it's our sister site for non-IR/PPID related topics.  Easy enough to join if you haven't already so you can see the recipe!   I made these (sans salt) and my boys love them!!  Spiral
(non-IR,non-PPID) wasn't too sure at first, but has grown to look for his treat each morning.  Chancey (IR) has never met a food he didn't like!  Please read Dr Kellon's note on "Treats for IR horses" second file in this folder: 

The proper amount of ground flax seed for a 1000 # horse is 2-4 oz, so about a third of that would be appropriate for Lily, around an ounce.

Maggie, Chancey and Spiral in VA 

Re: Can basic minerals go bad?

Lavinia Fiscaletti

Hi Sue,

I can so relate to your dilemma. Dante, my ultimate special needs boy, does this on a regular basis. In his case, has nothing to do with the quality of the supplements themselves just that he has decided he doesn't like it anymore and wants a chnage. This goes for his ODTB cubes and any flavorings as well. It means I need to switch up the carrier and flavorings again. I have found that dividing his supplements into as many feedings as possible helps a bit but doesn't prevent this entirely. Luckily, I can rotate what I use as he will stop eating something for a time but it doesn't go "off the list" permanently.

I have had issues with vit E gelcaps once in the past - all the horses wouldn't eat a new batch I had gotten so I sent them back and got them replaced - no problem with the replacement batch.

It is possible the flax is "off" - that is the ingredient with the shortest shelf life, even when stabilized. The minerals don't "go bad" and keeping them in tightly sealed containers should prevent clumping from humidity. Contact HorseTech directly to answer your question about their minerals.

Try only feeding 1/4 of the the total amount of supplements in a meal and see if that helps. Then build back up to the total amount incrementally. Don't remove various ingredients as that defeats the purpose of the "balanced" part. Check the Picky Eaters Checklist in this file for more suggestions:

Lavinia, Dante, George Too and Peanut
Jan 05, RI
EC Support Team

Re: Can basic minerals go bad?

Lavinia Fiscaletti

Hi Sue,

Here's the link to Busy's case history:

Lavinia, Dante, George Too and peanut
Jan 05, RI
EC Support Team

---In EquineCu

Re: Can basic minerals go bad?


Hi  Everyone,

I have tried a number of times to copy and paste his history to this conversation without success.  His history is in ECHistory 3 under Business Image I hope that helps.

Sue and Busy
October 2010
Kingston ON

Can basic minerals go bad?


Hi Everyone,

My horse Busy, has gone off his mineral supplement blend that I make to balance his hay.  This isn't the first time but it has got me wondering why which has led me to this question.

 Could  one of this mineral ingredients be bad/off/rancid, could this be the reason that he isn't eating it?

 Most of the minerals that I get don't have an expiration date.  The flax that I use is Equigold may be the culprit.  Although I store it in the fridge at home, the feed store can get very hot during the summer and the bag usually has yellow oil on the outside. There is no expiration date on the bag. Does anyone know what ground flax smell like when it is rancid.  I just opened a new bag that I think was older as it was the last one they had and it smells like linseed oil, does anyone know?  
The salt and the Vitamin E shouldn't  be the problem.   I get my other minerals from Horsetech and they are dated.  Can I use them past the expiration date and if so how long after.  I find 2 kg of copper and zinc last a long time and sometimes I don't need a mineral for a season like calcium carbonate.  Some of the minerals that I get like biotin and Mag oxide I get from the feed store but they don't have a date on them and are exposed to the air and light.  But it is easy to get and cheap.

My process so far started with going back to just the emergency diet of Flax, salt and Vitamin E, I though if it was the flax then he wouldn't eat it but he did.  Then I thought that it was the phosphorous  (61.5 grams Horsetech apple flavoured) which is more than I have ever had to give him by a lot, so I cut that back even though I know it will compromise the balance but I needed to know if that was the problem.  He has been hit and miss so it does make a difference but I think it may be something else  too any suggestions? 

I have included what he gets because I can't seem to find it in his history. Sorry.

These are mixed into soaked ODTB cubes top-dressed with  1/2 cup of ground split peas which he scraps off the top.

In the mineral mix is:
Selenium 1 gram
Copper 1.06 grams ( 135mg of Cu from 12.7%poly copper)
Zinc 1.8 grams  ( 395 mg of Z from 22% poly zinc)
Lysine 10 grams
Magnesium - 21 grams (12 grams of magnesium from 56% mag ox)
Phosphorous 61.5 grams (16 grams from Phos. from 26% monosodium phosphate)
Biotin - 50 grams ( 220mg /kg)
Salt - 3 Tbsp.
Flax - 1/4 cup
Whey protein Isolate - 40 grams

Any suggestions would be good I am wasting an enormous amount of ODTB cubes when he doesn't eat his stuff.

Sue and Busy
Kingston, ON
October 2010

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