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Callisto: Sore Feet, Positive for IR, On Prascend, What Else Can I do?


lara.wear@...
 

Callisto was first shod at the age of 3, shod for 13 years, front feet had a tendency to flare and shoes got thrown like crazy with the wrong farrier.  Went through
a number of farriers and eventually realized his feet were degrading uncontrollably (long toe, underrun and collapsed heels) and decided to go the barefoot
route in July 2020.  He has always had sensitive soles, even with shoes he was ouchy when he stepped on a rock.

I started him on a lower sugar (12% ESC + Starch) forage based diet in August 2019. At some point I added in Flax and Salt. In July 2020 I added MadBarn AminoTrace+ to his diet and lowered the sugar to 10%. Recently I added additional vitamin E and Magnesium.
 
In August 2020, X-rays revealed very thin soles. He also became very sensitive to touch, especially around the girth and chest.
  
He wore EasyBoot Clouds until the end of October, and when the ground softened due to rain, I took the boots off.  Had ACTH tested in November, and it was slightly high at 12 pmol/L, but vet suggested retesting in a year since at the time, he had no visible symptoms. All along I rode him lightly with boots and pads.

By Mid December, he was extremely sore stepping on a rock, and extremely slow and uncomfortable going downhill, and his feet had dramatic growth lines. I became suspicious of laminitis and stopped riding,  I asked my vet to put him on Prascend and he agreed. He is now on 1 mg of Prascend per day.  There was a little improvement, as in he was less sore walking on the concrete alley in the barn, but not instantly sound.

This month I got his ACTH retested and it's normal (4 pmol/L), and Glucose Insulin tested (ECIR EMS Calculator says he is Uncompensated IR). I also got new Xrays, and the vet and barefoot farrier discussed bringing the toe back significantly, and we are working on that.

His feet are still ouchy on anything but soft ground.  I am hand walking and tack walking maximum 30 min 4-5 days a week.

I don't know what to do next. What do I do next? What might I have missed? What else can I do?

--
Lara W. in BC 2021
Callisto Case History: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Lara%20and%20Callisto%20-%20Jackson/Callisto/Case%20History%20Form.pdf
Photo Album: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/album?id=261012


 

 

Hello Lara, you have done an excellent job with getting the case history document created for Callisto. We would like Case History folders to be named in this format – Lara and Callisto. It makes it easier for members and moderators to find your case history folder. That folder will contain all documents pertaining to your horse. You can add sub-folders for Test Results, Hay Tests, etc. All photos/jpegs do go into the Photo File that you already have created. When you can please make adjustments to the links in your signature so that the links are to your main folders (Case History and Photos) and not directly to documents.

 

When you have hay tests done I suggest you request the results be emailed to you (much faster) and they arrive as documents which can be stored within the Case History/Hay Tests folder.

 

We recommend that hay testing be done by Wet Chemistry method, NOT by NIR. NIR testing is cheaper but can be less accurate. This means your hay’s ESC and Starch levels may actually be too high to be safe for your horse. In general ESC + Starch levels combined should be no more than 10% combined but many horses need lower levels than that.

When I have take a sample of hay I follow the information about coring, testing, etc found in the following link.

https://ecir.groups.io/g/main/files/5%20Core%20Diet/1.%20Hay%20Information

I do initially have just the ESC and Starch tests run (Wet Chem method). I have the lab email me those results because the results get to me quicker and I can put the document into my hay test folder which is within my main Case History folder. If the two figures together are 9% or lower (even lower is nice) then I have the forage lab run the rest of the tests. This saves me money in the event that the ESC/Starch levels are just too high.  I am only paying for the testing on ESC/Starch. If the ESC+Starch combined is at a safe level I simply call or email the lab and have them run the rest of the test package.

You should take a very close look at not just your hay but everything that your horse is eating to include supplements, treats, etc. If you need put your horse on the ECIR Emergency Diet.  You will find a detailed document for new members below. All clickable links are in blue type. I suggest you go to the ECIRHorse.org web site for a good overall picture of Cushings and Insulin Resistance. I also suggest you use our WIKI if you need help understanding the structure/organization of this group. The link is below but you will find the Main group WIKI is in the column on the left side of this Main group.

Hooves.... You are correct that the toes have to come back in order for the heels to come back and widen. The soles also follow the toes forward and in general will become thinner. You may also see a ridge in the sole just behind the toe which farriers may want to pare away. I made that mistake  in the past. I suggest you also join our Hoof sub-group and go to the files there for more information.

If you have more questions we suggest you first do searches. You can search the files and messages, there are search buttons on almost every page. You can post specific questions by  starting a new topic. please take the time to read thru the document below.


Welcome to the group! 

The ECIR Group provides the best, most up to date information on Cushing's (PPID) and Equine Metabolic Syndrome (EMS)/Insulin Resistance (IR). Please explore our website where you'll find tons of great information that will help you to quickly understand the main things you need to know to start helping your horse. Also open any of the links below (in blue font) for more information/instructions that will save you time.

Have you started your Case History? If you haven't done so yet, please join our case history sub-group. We appreciate you following the uploading instructions so your folder is properly set up with the documents inside. Go to this CH message with info on how to use various devices and forms. If you have any trouble, just post a message to let us know where you are stuck.

Orienting information, such as how the different ECIR sections relate to each other, message etiquettewhat goes where and many how-to pages are in the Wiki. There is also an FAQs on our website that will help answer the most common and important questions new members have. 

Below is a general summary of our DDT/E philosophy which is short for Diagnosis, Diet, Trim and Exercise.

 

DIAGNOSIS: There are two conditions dealt with here: Cushings (PPID) and Equine Metabolic Syndrome (EMS)/Insulin Resistance (IR). These are two separate issues that share some overlapping symptoms. An equine may be either PPID or EMS/IR, neither or both. While increasing age is the greatest risk factor for developing PPID, IR can appear at any age and may have a genetic component. Blood work is used for diagnosis as well as monitoring the level of control of each.

PPID is diagnosed using the Endogenous ACTH test, while EMS/IR is diagnosed by testing non-fasting insulin and glucose.

The fat-derived hormone leptin is also usually abnormally elevated in insulin resistance but because there are many other things which can lower or increase leptin ECIR is not recommending routine testing for this hormone. Leptin is the hormone that says "stop eating".

In Europe, adiponectin is tested instead of leptin. Adiponectin helps regulate glucose and fat burning, and maintain insulin sensitivity. Low levels are associated with EMS. It has come to be preferred over leptin because it is not influenced by things like weight or exercise, and also because it was the only factor other than insulin levels that predicted laminitis risk

*Before calling your vet to draw blood for tests, we suggest saving time and wasted money by reading these details and then sharing them with your vet so that everyone is on the same page regarding correct testing and protocols.

*Please remember to request copies of the results of all the tests done rather than just relying on verbal information. Your vet should be able to email these to you. If you have previous test results, please include those as well. All should go in your CH, but if you are having any trouble with the CH, just post in the messages for now. 

Treatment: EMS is a metabolic type - not a disease - that is managed with a low sugar+starch diet and exercise (as able). The super-efficient easy keeper type breeds such as minis, ponies, Morgans, Arabs, Rockies are some of the classic examples. PPID is a progressive disease that is treated with the medication pergolide. Some, but not all, individuals may experience a temporary loss of appetite, lethargy and/or depression when first starting the medication. To avoid this "pergolide veil" (scroll down for side effects), we recommend weaning onto the drug slowly and the use of the product APF. The best long term results are seen when the ACTH is maintained in the middle of the normal range at all times, including during the annual seasonal rise. To accomplish this, the amount of medication may need to increase over time. Neither condition is ever "cured", only properly controlled for the remainder of the equine's life. If your partner is both PPID and IR then both medication and diet management will be needed. 

DIET: Almost all commercial feeds are not suitable - no matter what it says on the bag. Please see the International Safe Feeds List for the safest suggestions.

No hay is "safe" until proven so by chemical analysis. The diet that works for IR is:

  • low carb (less than 10% sugar+starch)
  • low fat (4% or less) 
  • mineral balanced  

We use grass hay, tested to be under 10% ESC + starch, with minerals added to balance the excesses and deficiencies in the hay, plus salt, and to replace the fragile ingredients that are lost when grass is cured into hay, we add ground flax seed and Vitamin E. This diet is crucial for an EMS/IR horse, but also supports the delicate immune system of a PPID horse. 

*Until you can get your hay tested and balanced we recommend that you soak your hay and use the emergency diet (scroll down for it).  The emergency diet is not intended for long term use, but addresses some of the most common major deficiencies. Testing your hay and getting the minerals balanced to its excesses and deficiencies is the best way to feed any equine. If you absolutely cannot test your hay and balance the minerals to it, or would like to use a "stop gap" product until you get your hay balanced, here's a list of "acceptable" ration balancers

There is a lot of helpful information in the start here folder so it is important you read all the documents found there. The emergency diet involves soaking your untested hay for an hour in cold water or 30 minutes in hot water. This removes up to 30% of the sugar content, but no starch. Starch is worse than sugar since it converts 100% to glucose while sugar only converts 50%, so starch causes a bigger insulin spike. Make sure you dump the soaking water where the equine(s) can't get to it. 

What you don't feed on the EMS/IR diet is every bit as, if not more important than, what you do feed! No grass. No grain. No sugary treats, including apples and carrots. No brown/red salt blocks which contain iron (and sometimes molasses) which interferes with mineral balancing, so white salt blocks only. 

No products containing molasses. No bagged feeds with a combined sugar and starch of over 10% or starch over about 4%, or fat over about 4%. Unfortunately, even bagged feeds that say they are designed for IR and/or PPID equines are usually too high in sugar, starch and/or fat. It’s really important to know the actual analysis and not be fooled by a name that says it is suitable for EMS/IR individuals.

We do not recommend feeding alfalfa hay to EMS/IR equines as it makes many of them laminitic. Although it tends to be low in sugar, many times the starch is higher and does not soak out. Additionally, protein and calcium are quite high, which can contribute to sore footedness and make mineral balancing very difficult.

TRIM: A proper trim is toes backed and heels lowered so that the hoof capsule closely hugs and supports the internal structures of the foot. Though important for all equines, it's essential for IR and/or PPID equines to have a proper trim in place since they are at increased risk for laminitis. After any potential triggers are removed from the diet, and in PPID individuals, the ACTH is under control, the realigning trim is often the missing link in getting a laminitic equine comfortable. In general, laminitic hooves require more frequent trim adjustments to maintain the proper alignment so we recommend the use of padded boots rather than fixed appliances (i.e. shoes, clogs), at least during the initial phases of treatment.

Sometimes subclinical laminitis can be misdiagnosed as arthritis, navicular, or a host of other problems as the animal attempts to compensate for sore feet. 

You are encouraged to make an album and post hoof pictures and any radiographs you might have so we can to look to see if you have an optimal trim in place. Read this section of the wiki for how to get a hoof evaluation, what photos are needed, and how to get the best hoof shots and radiographs.

EXERCISEThe best IR buster there is, but only if the equine is comfortable and non-laminitic. An individual that has had laminitis needs 6-9 months of correct realigning trims before any serious exercise can begin. Once the equine is moving around comfortably at liberty, hand walking can begin in long straight lines with no tight turns. Do not force a laminitic individual to move, or allow its other companions to do so. It will begin to move once the pain begins to subside. Resting its fragile feet is needed for healing to take place so if the animal wants to lay down, do not encourage it to get up. Place feed and water where it can be reached easily without having to move any more than necessary. Be extremely careful about movement while using NSAIDs (bute, banamine, previcox, etc.) as it masks pain and encourages more movement than these fragile feet are actually able to withstand. Additionally, NSAIDs (and icing) do not work on metabolic laminitis and long term NSAID use interferes with healing. Therefore, we recommend tapering off NSAIDs after the first week or so of use. If after a week's time your equine's comfort level has not increased, then the cause of the laminitis has not been removed and keeping up the NSAIDs isn't the answer - you need to address the underlying cause.

 

There is lots more information in our files and archived messages and also on our website. It is a lot of information, so take some time to go over it and feel free to ask any questions. If you are feeling overwhelmed, don't worry, you will catch on, and we are always here to help you! Once you have your case history uploaded, we can help you help your equine partner even better.

For members outside North America, there are country specific folders in the files and many international lists in the wiki to help you find local resources.

If you have any technical difficulties, please let us know so we can help you. 

 

 

--
Bonnie Snodgrass 07-2016

ECIR Group Primary Response 

White Cloud, Michigan, USA

Mouse Case History, Photo Album Deceased


Sherry Morse
 

Hi Lara,

You'll be getting a full welcome message shortly but you have a couple of issues going on.  Looking at the pictures and x-rays you've posted the trim still has much room for improvement.  The uneven wearing of the toes is a sign to me that the current trim is still leaving too much toe and Callisto is wearing off the toe to where it more naturally wants to be.  He also has NO sole depth at all so your current trimmer needs to not touch his sole at all going forward.  If he's more comfortable in boots please leave them on as he has no protection for his internal foot structures right now.  I would not be doing any forced exercise until his feet are in better shape.

Are you soaking your hay?  If Callisto were mine I would be as it's possible that it's still too high in ESC+starch for him (and since the tests were done with NIR and not wet chem were you to redo the testing the results might come back at over 10% ESC+Starch as well). I would not be feeding any of the hay that tested over 10% ESC+starch at all.

What type of timothy pellets are you using?  Many of those are also high in ESC+starch and you'd be better off using rinse/soaked/rinsed beet pulp as a carrier. 

I would not retest ACTH in November if you want to know if PPID is an issue.  Better to do that testing in July or August so if you need to increase his Prascend dosage you can do that prior to the seasonal rise.







His feet are still ouchy on anything but soft ground.  I am hand walking and tack walking maximum 30 min 4-5 days a week.

I don't know what to do next. What do I do next? What might I have missed? What else can I do?

--
Lara W. in BC 2021
Callisto Case History: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Lara%20and%20Callisto%20-%20Jackson/Callisto/Case%20History%20Form.pdf
Photo Album: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/album?id=261012


Kirsten Rasmussen
 

Hi Lara,

I'm sorry to hear Callisto is still sore barefoot.  However, keep in mind that if he had laminitis in November, he might be sore until that poorly connected hoof wall grows out a little farther.  This takes time.  Also, pulling shoes from a horse that has been shod all his life, especially when the hooves are pathological when the shoes are pulled, can also be a cause of long-term pain.  Blood will be flowing in areas of the hoof that may have previously been deprived of nourishment, and he may not have very robust internal structures because he hasn't needed them since he was 3.  It will take time and correct trimming to fully resolve his pain if there is a mechanical component.  It sounds like you are on the right track with shortening the toes.  In the meantime, support him with padded hoof boots to keep him as comfortable as possible and as for exercise, I agree with Sherry that if he is hesitant to walk don't force it and don't let other horses force him to move.  Circulation is good, but too much movement (especially if the trim isn't mechanically correct yet and/or the insulin is still high) can cause more damage.  One way to increase circulation without adding movement is to give him jiaogulan 1-2 tsp 2x a day given 20 min before meals to be most effective (there is more information in our files on determining how much to give).  Jiaogulan is a vasodilator, so it encourages the blood vessels to expand, but be aware that it will also speed up hoof growth and that will mean you will need to trim more frequently.  Mad Barn sells it and horses like the taste of it.

Given that his insulin is still abnormally high, I agree with Sherry that you should try soaking his hay as described in your welcome email, and removing the grass pellets for now.  Both of these could be worsening things by compromising the quality of his new hoof growth, which you want to be as tight and healthy as possible for a quicker recovery.

Is he still sensitive to touch?  This could be a sign of body pain related to his sore hooves, or a sign related to his PPID since it started in August at the beginning of the seasonal rise.  If he is still sensitive, he might need more Prascend despite the much improved blood work.  That is something to discuss with your vet.  You could do a short trial at 1.5 or 2 mg to see if it helps.  You could also consider ulcers as a possible cause and investigate this further with your vet.  As Dr. Kellon reminded us recently, not all pain or issues are related to EMS/PPID and there could be other things going on at the same time.

Callisto's glucose number is a little low, which makes me suspect his most recent blood sample may not have been chilled or put on ice immediately after pulling in, centrifuged within 4 hours, then refrigerated/frozen prior to overnight shipping to the lab on ice.  If his glucose has been affected, you can expect that his insulin and ACTH numbers are also on the low side and may not accurately reflect his actual insulin and ACTH (although they are not as sensitive as glucose to improper handling, so they won't be as strongly affected).

--
Kirsten and Shaku (IR) - 2019
Kitimat, BC, Canada
ECIR Group Moderator
 
Shaku's Case History
Shaku's Photo Album


lara.wear@...
 

Hi Sherry, thanks for your response.  

I would like to clarify a couple of your suggestions:

1) The hay values I quoted are Dry Matter. The As Fed ESC+Starch values are  (8.93+0.6) = 9.53% and (8.1+0.4) = 8.5%, which makes the hay less evil right? Unfortunately getting this
hay was very difficult and extremely expensive, and getting anything lower in my area is a lottery win.   I understand soaking will help, and this is within my power.
2) Regarding handwalking: he is foot sore on bumpy or rocky surfaces when barefoot, but he is great with boots and pads.  He moves around a lot in a 1 acre paddock on his own accord with boots and pads.  It's not like he's not wanting to walk forward. Do you still think I shouldn't walk him?
3) Regarding sole depth: do you see any improvement between the August Xrays and the February Xrays?  My farrier says he has more concavity than he did. 
4) There is no wear on his toes because he is never turned out without boots.  The latest photos are 4 days after a trim, and ~18 days after the post-xray drastic trim. The farrier comes out every two weeks and I rasp in between visits. My farrier never touches the sole and is completely aware of the realigning trim.  His approach is to cut the toe back slowly (maybe more slowly than others recommend, I don't know) and let the hoof capsule grow out.  Knowing this, can you expand on  "the trim still has much room for improvement" so I perhaps get a more effective trim?

Thank-you for your support.
--
Lara W. in BC 2021
Callisto Case History
Photo Album


Kirsten Rasmussen
 

If he is comfortable in boots and pads then by all means keep hand walking him.  Being sore on the concrete barefoot is probably largely due to his thin soles. 

I personally would take off more toe because I have found with my horse, who tends towards long toes and underrun heels on 3 of his feet, that the toe grows so quickly forward that it is hard to make progress with small changes.  If Callisto is comfortable in padded boots with the long toes, I think he will be just as (if not more) comfortable in padded boots with the toes drastically shortened.  If you are seeing progress after each trim and the toe is noticeably coming back more each time, and that's the pace you and your trimmer are comfortable with, then carry on.  But take photos after every trim and compare with the previous trim to ensure you are making steady progress and not just maintaining the same long toe.

I would expect Callisto's hoof rehabilitation to take time, just try to keep it moving forward and not stagnate or go backwards.

--
Kirsten and Shaku (IR) - 2019
Kitimat, BC, Canada
ECIR Group Moderator
 
Shaku's Case History
Shaku's Photo Album


Sherry Morse
 

Hi Lara,

We always look at "As Fed" and those values are still high if you have a sensitive horse.  Also, the fact that the testing was done using NIR and not Wet Chem means there's additional variation.  Off the top of my head, we've had some members retest with Wet Chem and they found that the NIR numbers were 20% less than the Wet Chem.  We also have several members whose horses are so sensitive that even on hay that's been tested with Wet Chem and come back at 7-8% ESC+starch it's still too much for them and they show improvement when that hay is soaked.

Bottom line on this - soak the hay at least an hour in cold water or 30 minutes in hot water before feeding. 

Exercise - you know him best. As noted in your welcome letter with regard to exercise

EXERCISEThe best IR buster there is, but only if the equine is comfortable and non-laminitic. An individual that has had laminitis needs 6-9 months of correct realigning trims before any serious exercise can begin. Once the equine is moving around comfortably at liberty, hand walking can begin in long straight lines with no tight turns.

And as Kirsten noted: Circulation is good, but too much movement (especially if the trim isn't mechanically correct yet and/or the insulin is still high) can cause more damage.

With all that being said I would err on the side of caution and be very cautious in what you're doing with him until his feet are in a better place.

I'm not the hoof expert - that's Lavinia - but I see no change in sole depth on the x-rays.  The continued soreness is an indication that things still need to be improved but how much of that is lack of sole, too long in the toe or elevated insulin is hard to say. That's why all areas need to be addressed.

If you want to get on Lavinia's list for trim mark-ups the best way to do that is post a message with the title "Lavinia, request for trim markups" and then include the information on when the photos and x-rays were done and when the farrier is coming back.  Make sure you read the section of the Wiki on hoof photos - generally the more of the foreleg in the shot the better as it helps with evaluating the hoof/pastern angle.


Candice Piraino
 

HI Lara,

I want to comment on your rads (xrays). They have been cut off and do not provide the full picture. A rad should show the block the horse is standing on when rads were taken on. This will allow us to see the full hoof. Some of your views are not true lateral either, which can give a skewed view. BUT he definitely has thin soles and it's not common for a horse to be taken barefoot to take awhile to build sole. He will not be comfortable on anything but soft ground for awhile until/if he can gain sole depth. 

Also, he seems to have thrush which is very painful. This could also be part of the issue! Don't rule it out until the thrush is gone. I recommend Artimud by Red Horse Products. I never recommend any chemicals, which can dry out the hoof as well as damage the new growing tissue- being counter-productive! As mentioned before, he definitely has long toes, which needs to be addressed.

When at a brisk walk, are his footfalls heel first? If he is walking toe first, he will not be able to properly rehab his feet and this can create more issues. If he is heel first or flat at the walk in boots and pads- keep him in the boots and pads. Do not force him to move if he is in acute state of laminitis. If he is well, then movement is great, because it will allow more blood flow to the hoof to help encourage more growth. 

I would highly encourage you to reconsider balancing your hay yourself- and try to only feed a hay that is low in sugar and starch- I don't think 10% is working for him from what I am reading. Soaking will make it safer- not safe. So if you can research more for a safe hay source, I would recommend you do so while soaking hay until then.

Also, 1mg of Prascend maynot be enough, so please consider increasing it and see if that helps his symptoms.

Do not do everything at once though because then you won't know what worked! LOL Try to choose an area and make changes gradually and reevaluate for positive changes.

I know it can and is overwhelming, but you are doing a great job!
--

Candice Piraino

Primary Response Team

September 2018, Summerfield, FL

Shark's Case History: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Candice%20and%20Shark

Shark's Photo Album: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/album?id=71507 

PHCP Barefoot Trimmer @ www.arkhavenfarm.com

 


lara.wear@...
 

Hi Kirsten, thank you for your response. None of my providers have hay that is below 7%. The lowest I can find is 8.5. Do you know of any people on this site from Vancouver Island? Perhaps I can get help from other people that live in the area.
--
Lara W. in BC 2021
Callisto Case History
Photo Album


Kirsten Rasmussen
 
Edited

We do have a few members from Vancouver Island, and I know finding low sugar hay on the west coast is hard.  I would advise starting a new topic and titling it "looking for low sugar hay on Vancouver Island". 

There is also a place in Langley (I think? somewhere in the lower mainland) that specializes in low sugar hay so if you have the means or if they deliver, that would be an option.  They are called Wrayton Transport Ltd Hay Sales and they bring in hay from Alberta and interior BC.  There is something wrong with their website when I try to view it, but here is their phone number: (604) 539-2304
Even mixing their hay half and half with yours might help IF they sell something notably lower in sugar.  Look for a hay with as low of starch as possible (because it does not soak out and it converts 100% to glucose), whereas ESC does soak out and it concerts only 50% to glucose.

Soaking hay makes a huge difference for them, it is worth the extra work.  You can soak a 24 hr supply in hay nets in advance, then set them out at meal times.  1 hr in cold, or 30 min in hot.  I always rinse and drain it thoroughly after.  You can also re-soak a second time with fresh water for another 1hr/30 min if you find he is still sore on the once soaked hay.

--
Kirsten and Shaku (IR) - 2019
Kitimat, BC, Canada
ECIR Group Moderator
 
Shaku's Case History
Shaku's Photo Album


Kirsten Rasmussen
 

Also, if you don't want to feed beet pulp, you could switch his grass hay pellets to either:
1) soy hull pellets (fed dry, or fed soaked), Hi Pro makes these so you should be able to get them at a feed store,
or
2) Ontario Dehy Timothy Balance/Complete cubes, aka Triple Crown Naturals Timothy Balance cubes (fed dry or fed steamed/soaked with hot water into a mash).

--
Kirsten and Shaku (IR) - 2019
Kitimat, BC, Canada
ECIR Group Moderator
 
Shaku's Case History
Shaku's Photo Album


lara.wear@...
 

Lots of great info here Kirsten, thank-you. 

The good news is, I did just manage to find a guy about 30 min away bringing in a trailer load of 6.3%(ESC+Starch as fed) hay with 5.8% protein this Saturday, which is a miracle because everyone in the area who claims to have low sugar hay is above 8.3%. So I'll go out and get a pick-up truck load. However, my storage is full of 3 other hays, which I've essentially been told not to feed. It's frustrating having $5000 worth of hay I can't feed, and no storage to put the new hay.  

And after I go to all this trouble, I don't even know if it will help his sore feet (I am hopeful it will help his high Insulin, but discouragement & doubt are winning at the moment).  I suspected he might have low grade laminitis and possibly PPID, which is why I put him on Prascend, but I've seen little change if any in his foot sensitivity. The only evidence he might actually have PPID is that his ACTH levels went back to normal after being put on Prascend.  Neither my vet or farrier confirmed my suspicion of laminitis and cushings, but they didn't disagree with me either.

We know he has very thin soles, so even if I get all blood work back to normal, will he be just as foot sensitive as long as he is barefoot?  Could it be that the only thing wrong is a poorly structured foot and what I should really be doing is waiting for it to grow out once, or twice, or three times? 

Ok, got some stuff of my chest. Thank-you to anyone who read this. It's a tough road.
--
Lara W. in BC 2021
Callisto Case History
Photo Album


Lorna Cane
 

I just wanted to add  here,with respect to soy hull pellets,that there can be a choke issue here when feeding them dry.
I know this from experience, with horses having had  no choke issues in the past.

Just dampening the pellets is enough to avoid this.

--

Lorna  in Eastern  Ontario
2002
Check out FAQ : https://www.ecirhorse.org/FAQ.php


Sherry Morse
 

Hi Lara,

Regarding the hay - sell what you have to have to have space for the new stuff. You should be able to sell it for what you paid for it, particularly at this time of year when everybody is starting to wonder if they'll have enough until this year's hay comes in.

Growing out a foot takes about a year and if the trim isn't right all the way along what will grow out will still be a poorly conformed foot - you've been seeing that for years now, even if you didn't realize that's what it was. 

What will help his feet is a diet adjustment to bring his insulin down coupled with getting his trim in order.  Prascend alone will not do both of those things and elevated ACTH may or may not be pushing insulin up.  There's a reason we refer to DDT&E - it's a number of pieces but they all need to be in place for these horses to feel better.

Diagnosis: You have the diagnosis: PPID/IR
Diet: We've explained what you need to do for his diet and you're working on the hay, now need to work on the carrier as well to make sure that's safe
Trim: again, would suggest that you post a new email asking Lavinia to get on the list for markups prior to the next farrier visit.  You can also read back in the messages regarding other horse's trim evaluations and see that many of them have needed to have adjustments made to grow out a proper hoof
Exercise: again, I would not be doing anything with a horse that is sore/short/lame.  He can self-exercise in turnout but that doesn't mean he's up for forced exercise.

Take a deep breath and keep breathing.  Just remember, there are no miracle cures and this is a marathon, not a sprint.  We can help you get your boy straightened out, it's just going to take some time.




lara.wear@...
 

Funny you mention that. I recently took over the morning barn chores at my barn because I'm micromanaging my two rehabs and noticed all 3 horses in the barn coughing quite 
heavily on different occasions.  I started wetting the pellets and it stopped!  I had never noticed before bcs I don't live at the barn.


On Wed, Feb 24, 2021 at 04:13 AM, Lorna Cane wrote:
that there can be a choke issue here when feeding them dry.
I know this from experience, with horses having had  no choke issues in the past.

 


Kirsten Rasmussen
 

I didn't mean to imply the hay you have is not going to work.  You can very likely feed it if you soak it.  Callisto's insulin isn't THAT high on it and soaking it might bring his insulin down to the "normal" range.  You will see a reduction in pain within a day or 2 if it's related, but even if it doesn't improve his hoof pain I would soak the hay anyways to get his insulin as low as you can and give him a chance to grow his best hooves.  With thin soles he will be tender on hard or rough surfaces until they thicken up.  I don't know how long that will take, it depends on the horse, the trim, the diet, etc.  For now you just have to support him with boots and pads and work on his trim.  Part of the pain could be the long toes applying a levering force on his laminae with every step...something to consider and ask your trimmer about.

The new hay you've found might be quite stemmy as most hays with protein below 6% are over-mature.  So try a few bales out and mix it in with your current hay, and watch to see if Callisto eats it.  If it's unpalatable and he doesn't eat it or if he gets free fecal water from trying to digest it, you probably won't want to buy too much of it.

Sounds like the dust in the grass hay pellets was bothering the horses!  The soy hull pellets I buy are about the same size as the Mad Barn Amino Trace pellets, almost indistinguishable in fact!, but definitely feed them wet (even dampened they seem to fall apart) if you are worried about choke (thanks Lorna!)...they just need to soak about 20 min before feeding so they are quite easy.

--
Kirsten and Shaku (IR) - 2019
Kitimat, BC, Canada
ECIR Group Moderator
 
Shaku's Case History
Shaku's Photo Album


 

Hi Lara,
Welcome!  I’d like to encourage you to change the location in your signature to include ‘Vancouver Island’.  We’ve had a number of members from that area.  I don’t know how many are active now but I know of at least one.  Also, including that in a subject heading might attract some attention as well, as Kirsten suggested.  
--
Martha in Vermont
ECIR Group Primary Response
July 2012 
 
Logo (dec. 7/20/19), Tobit(EC) and Pumpkin, Handy and Silver (EC/IR)

Martha and Logo


 
 


Lorna Cane
 

Yes,Kirsten,I agree about 'soaking' the soy hull pellets. If the water is warm it takes less than 5 minutes, cold not too much longer.
As long as the moisture is there I don't think they have to be soaked through....in my experience.

--

Lorna  in Eastern  Ontario
2002
Check out FAQ : https://www.ecirhorse.org/FAQ.php


Cheryl Oickle
 

I live on the island and deal with Riverbend Hay Sales in Nanaimo. They have testedo sugar hay and are amazing to deal with. 
As well Port Alberni Crackin Yolks Farm is a supplier and also tests hay and generally has a good supply of low sugar.
I am curious re less than the 7 as you requested.  Starch can be a major culprit as well. Wondering if that may be part of tbe problème? 
Apologies if I missed a thread on this one.



--
Cheryl and Jewel
Oct 2018
Port Alberni BC Canada
https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Cheryl%20and%20Jewel
https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/album?id=81063


 
Edited

Thanks for your post, Cheryl.  I went to look at Lara’s hay analyses and found that the starch is quite low, less than 1%.  While sugars can be soaked out to some extent, starches cannot.  

What puzzled me about Lara’s hay analyses is the level of sugar in the soaked hay (ESC=8.93%) which seems high to me.  Did you do an analysis of the unsoaked version of the same hay?  The two hays you have tested appear to be from different cuttings or at least have different dates in the names.
--

Martha in Vermont
ECIR Group Primary Response
July 2012 
 
Logo (dec. 7/20/19), Tobit(EC) and Pumpkin, Handy and Silver (EC/IR)

Martha and Logo