Friday, 23 July 2010

Hanging Out

Although I knew by the end of the day (ie. now!) I'd be in agony with my sciatica, I plumped for long-reining Quadi around the woods. It was a perfect sunny afternoon and offered a good chance to see how he is moving.

I didn't put boots on him so that I could observe his gait and footfalls without them. The ground in the forest is forgiving and he wasn't wearing me so he wouldn't have been too encumbered even over stony patches.

And he was a Very Good Boy. A stop or two at some tarpaulin writhing in the breeze but that's allowed :) We tried a couple of trots but he was rather onward bound and I found it hard to walk to his trot speed, and he didn't seem to want to alter the pace any, so mostly we walked briskly.

Jean asked me in the comments yesterday about ulcers.

I am 90% certain he has ulcers. I discussed them with the vet last time he was out. In order to have Quadi scoped he'd have to travel to either Edinburgh or Glasgow (respectively 130 and 150 miles away). Not the end of the world, but my poor pony has had his fill of vet and vet centres and needles and fuss recently, and he's not been bad behaviour-wise, so we haven't travelled him. Whilst scoping is vital to diagnose, we all feel it's too much at the moment for Quadi.

Since we moved yards, his distended tummy has radically subsided. He's on a high-fibre, low calorie and low sugar diet, and I supplement this with Yea-sacc every day. So although I haven't done anything to heal his ulcers (I hope at least) I'm managing the situation.

I had a grand plan to buy a 2-month supply of Gastrogard or other generic ulcer medication this summer to treat him, and then everything we're doing to maintain him at the moment would be good to maintain his hopefully-healed tummy. Sadly this hasn't happened because I've worked 24 days offshore in an eight month period (I expect to work about 180 days in a 12 month period!), so finances won't allow this.

It's another stick I'm beating myself with at the moment. I think about it every time I tack him up. I hope that he's not in pain when I ride him unless he acts up, and when he does I try to avoid a confrontation and diffuse the situation (apart from yesterday, that one got away from me). I'm not 100% convinced he's fully able to engage his abs but he goes so well in the school these days, even better when my friend rides him. I really want to film him working in the school but trying to co-ordinate everyone is tricky.



  1. i expect though that the good food, yeasacc, and general handling has helped a lot in ulcer reduction? if he has them...

  2. Yes, I hope so. He's demonstrated positive changes both physically and mentally so fingers crossed I've gotten something right!

  3. Phooey. Here in the USA there are some feed supplements--Ugard for one that help, but I'm not sure what's available "over the counter" there.

    I do know the change in Tucker after I treated him was amazing, so the ulcers definitely to affect behavior.

    Alfalfa hay also helps if you can get some. It acts as a buffer to stomach acid. It would help if you could give Quadi something to eat before you worked him. (Alfalfa cubes?...don't know what's available in the UK) Then, there is food in his stomach to counteract the acid.

    Wish the medications to cure this were not so darn expensive. It is so frustrating.

  4. I think I can get Ugard but not sure if that heals ulcers? I've heard mixed reports about it.

    He's already on an alfalfa/straw chop (along with micronized linseed) and always has access to hay before work. In winter he gets beet pulp but that's pretty much it, apart from his vit/min supplemenet, joint supplement and his Yea-sacc. Poor love gets more powder than feed in summer!

    I think he has insulin resistance/Equine Metabolic Disorder too, and I treat him as such. A tricky horse in mind and body *lol*

  5. Sounds more and more like Tucker every time I read your comments.

    The Ugard will help cut the acid. Any one of the oral antacids will help somewhat.

    The key to the omeprazole (Gastrogard/Ulcergard) is that is stops acid production for 24 hours at a time, allowing the ulcers to heal.

    Ranitidine (Zantac), another human antacid works too, but needs to be dosed more often. Some people have been able to get it at wholesale places at a decent price. You'd have to research the dosage for horses but it might be something like 20 human pills.

    IR too. I am currently trying a high fat, low carb diet with Tucker, adding oil for more fat. Since it's been so darn hot here, I haven't worked him to see if there is any difference, so I have no idea what's working or not.