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Sourcing Tested Timothy Hay in So Cal


Catgrmr@...
 

Hi! 


I’m new to posting but wondering if anyone near me has had good luck with finding tested Timothy hay? I’m in Southern California ( Norco, in Riverside county) and I usually only buy 4/5 bales at a time due to storage. Sometimes the feed stores have tested but usually they have not or they only have protein levels.


My mare is 13 and had her first laminitis episode last October 2019 after receiving steroids for asthma in the vet hospital. We had only owned her for six weeks at that time and she came to us very underweight and we had no idea she was insulin resistant. We had her tested in November and started following ecir protocols shortly after. She’s been allergy tested as well and she can only eat Timothy out of the grass hays. She’s been sound and pain free since February 2020 and has slowly been put back to work. Her farrier is really pleased with her feet and the last of her founder rings are gone. She wears front shoes ( just plain steel, nothing corrective) and had very minimal rotation on X-rays that has been corrected with proper alignment trims. She only gets Timothy hay, triple crown natural balance cubes, glycocemic eq, lung eq, salt, flax, biotin and vitamin e. She eats celery for treats or uckele low sugar treats. Supps are mixed with a small amount of stabul 1.  Her last bloodwork last week was 12.8 insulin and 85 glucose. This was drawn at 10am after eating her breakfast of Timothy at 6am so not fasted.  

I would love to get her Timothy from tested sources as I feel that’s my last area to tweak. If anyone in my area has any contacts that would be wonderful. 

She’s also due for vaccines and my vet and I are in discussions about how to do this safely. I’m worried that they will trigger some sort of reaction. This whole past year has made me paranoid about every little thing. My options are to pre med with banamine before and after and do one all in one shot with everything or break them up and do three injections either every two weeks with banamine before and after each injection or all three separate injections but done the same day. The last option is how I’ve always done my horse’s vaccines.  Any ideas on which is safest?  She did have a full set of vaccines last year right after we got her and seemed to have no issues then  


Thank you so much! 
--
Ronda F
Southern California 
11/2019


 

Hi Ronda!  Welcome to the ECIR group.  I know you’ve been around for a bit but, as this is your first post, we are sending you our ECIR group welcome with lots of associated reading material.  From your post, it sounds as though you have familiarized yourself well with our program but I often find something I don’t recall reading earlier, depending upon my focus at the time.

Hopefully someone will be able to advise you on finding tested timothy hay in your area.  Is there any possibility of renting storage for a larger amount and doing the testing yourself?  A search or two through the messages should give you some insight into how others deal with this issue.  I’m looking forward to learning more about your mare from her Case History.

And now here comes the reading....

Welcome to the group! 

The ECIR Group provides the best, most up to date information on Cushing's (PPID) and 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 Insulin Resistance (IR). These are two separate issues that share some overlapping symptoms. An equine may be either PPID or 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 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: IR 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 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 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 IR/PPID individuals.

We do not recommend feeding alfalfa hay to IR/PPID 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.

--
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


 
 


Catgrmr@...
 

Hi!

I requested the download for smart phone case history and I’ll fill it out as soon as I can :)

Renting storage is not possible at this time. I’m broke literally from selling my house and purchasing my current property so I could bring my horses home so I could better manage Charlotte and her IR. I had them both boarded but it was really hard when we were soaking hay and trying to make sure no one fed her a carrot or cookie or any other no no food.  I talked my husband into buying horse property and then I spent a small fortune getting the barn modified so they could have larger runs, the arena enlarged, leveled, and tons of new footing, round pen improved etc.   Plus I still have the problem that if I buy a larger quantity to test and it’s too high, I’m stuck with hay I can’t feed. I’ve even offered to pay the feed stores to test the hay and then I can purchase until a new batch comes in and then test the new batch but so far no one has taken me up on it.  What I’m really trying to avoid is having to go back to soaking, Charlotte hates it soaked and disposing off the water leaves me with muddy spots and it’s so much nicer/easier to feed dry flakes! 

I was just hoping that someone knew somewhere in so cal that sold tested Timothy hay  I’m sorta obsessed with little details and it sends me that I can’t know exactly all the numbers! I just want to manage her as best as possible  I’ve never dealt with laminitis before last year and I came so close to putting her down several times because it just wasn’t getting better and she was clearly extremely painful that I’ll do anything to avoid being in that situation again

--
Ronda F
Southern California 
11/2019


LJ Friedman
 

My barn is getting  about a years worth of Timothy hay for five or six horses. I will test soon. Then perhaps I can put you in contact with the Hay. seller?
--
LJ Friedman  Nov 2014 Vista,   Northern  San Diego, CA

Jesse and majestic ‘s Case History 
Jesse's Photos

 


Catgrmr@...
 

That would be great! Thank you so much
--
Ronda F
Southern California 
11/2019


Frances C.
 

Perhaps you will find Teff hay easier to find.
--
- Frances C.
December 2017, Washington & California
Case history: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Frances%20and%20Phoenix
Phoenix's Photo Album: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/album?id=12382


Catgrmr@...
 

Unfortunately, Charlotte is allergic to almost all hays except Timothy. Thank you for the suggestion though. 

 

Also I’m trying to add my case history but can’t find the link on my iPhone to do it. 

--
Ronda F
Southern California 
11/2019



Sherry Morse
 

Hi Ronda,

For your CH you need to go here: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files and create a folder named "Ronda and Charlotte" and then navigate to that folder (you can do that by searching on the name) - opening the folder and then selecting 'upload file' and navigating to your file and uploading it.

That's the super quick Cliff Notes version - if you need more detailed directions just let us know.




Joy V
 

Hi Ronda,

Kruse Feed in La Habra carries a very nice Timothy.  Have you spoken to anyone there?  They do deliver to all of Southern CA.  I don't know if they test or not, but you might be able to get a few bales and test them?

Good luck, if anything else comes to mind, I'll let you know.


--
Joy and Willie (PPID/IR)
Nevada County, CA - 2019

Case history:  https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Joy%20and%20Willie
Willie's photo album:  https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/album?id=242526


Shevawn Romine
 

I am in Texas, but used a tested Timothy for years (imported from Oregon) - yet it wasn't until I switched to tested (a bit lower than the Timothy but both still be below recommended levels) California Giant Bermuda that I got control of my horses weight . Of course this is still imported for me, from California, so might be something you would want to look into since it is coming from your state. Not sure what the difference was since both were tested low. The California Giant Bermuda also had the benefit of not having the runners that our Texas Coastal Bermuda has that was no good for my guy with stomach issues.


--
Cassie and Shevawn
03/2015   Gordon, TX
CH folder: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Shevawn%20and%20Cassie
Photos: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/album?id=76832


LJ Friedman
 

I remember reading somewhere that Bermuda can cause colic problems when it switched over from a different hay. So I don’t know if it’s good to switch to Bermuda. If you’re using it for your horses whole life,   maybe that’s fine.?
--
LJ Friedman  Nov 2014 Vista,   Northern  San Diego, CA

Jesse and majestic ‘s Case History 
Jesse's Photos

 


Eleanor Kellon, VMD
 

There is possibly a higher risk of ileal (small intestine) impaction when feeding coastal bermuda. This may be because of its lower fiber fractions resulting in less chewing, or being poorly chewed by older horses or horses with dental issues. It does not extend to other strains of Bermuda hay. Many horses do just fine on coastal. It also has nothing to do with making a switch to coastal.
--
Eleanor in PA

www.drkellon.com 
EC Owner 2001


LJ Friedman
 

My barn received  the Timothy hay today. I will send out samples to test for 603 and nitrates. The hay dealer, Jason from SoCal Hay,says he has other Timothy hay lower in sugar starch. He says he can send some test results to you, though they are not as detailed as we like, and he also says he could send you samples that he cores  from 10 bales approximately. I think you might want to contact him.  559-281-7527  ($24.50 when 272 bales were purchased)
--
LJ Friedman  Nov 2014 Vista,   Northern  San Diego, CA

Jesse and majestic ‘s Case History 
Jesse's Photos