Grass founder

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Grass founder

Post by Sydney on Sun Oct 19, 2008 6:39 pm

A bit I wrote a year ago. I thought I would post it right now because of the winter frost setting in it is a dangerous time for foundered/prone to founder horses. I hope someone can benefit from it.
BCS= Body condition score.
If theres any other words in here you would like to know please feel free to ask.

Whenever I copy/paste something out of word it messes up the format so excuse bad paragraphing.

-------------------------------------------------

Sydney Kotow

Twelve little ponies graze contentedly in a hilly green
pasture during a perfect spring day. It may seem like the dream image to a
little girl or horse lover but where the green grass grows, disaster can
strike.
Founder, right next to euthanasia is a word horse owners
hope will never be associated with their equine health record. We go to every
precautionary measure from muzzles to grass less paddocks but do we really know
the villain behind this menacing disease?
Founder, the aftermath of
laminitis. It can start innocently enough; a horse eats the wrong grain, reacts
to medicine, is worked on hard ground or in our case, eats grass.
Laminitis and founder are often used interchangeably but
they are two very different diseases closely related to one another.
Laminitis occurs when blood flow is
interrupted (short term, constant or infrequent) to the sensitive and
insensitive laminae (the tissues that connect the coffin bone to the hoof wall)
of the horse’s hoof, causing them to separate. When the horse develops
laminitis the laminae experiences decreased blood flow, nutrient supply, oxygen,
edema, and death of the tissues in the laminae. Causes for the edema in the
laminae are blood clotting, swelling around the blood vessels, and restriction
of the veins, that in turn cause the blood to be deterred away from the
capillaries in the laminae. (Beadle,
1999) There are two main types of laminitis, acute and chronic.

Founder and laminitis are often
confused, founder cannot happen without the horse developing laminitis first
and the laminar tissues weakening. When the horse founders the coffin bone
tears away from the lamina and rotates. From there the bone can tilt downward
until it penetrates the sole of the horses hoof. Generally, severity of
rotation in the coffin bone is measured in degrees. 10 being moderate and 40 being severe. Beyond 40
degrees the bottom of the coffin bone will become vertical and penetrate the
hoof sole. Over time a vertical coffin bone can deteriorate and the toe portion
of the bone can become flat. When the coffin bone begins to rotate, pressure is
placed on the toe of the hoof creating the “elf shoe” deformed look in the hoof
if veterinarian and farrier care is not called upon. When the coffin bone detaches itself from the laminae it never
completely regains it’s former attachment and allows the horse to become prone
to founder again. (Avisar, 1996)
Founder almost always occurs in the
front feet and it’s easy to see why. A horse’s body was built front heavy with
a long thick neck and big head. At adulthood the horse typically carries 60% of
his body weight on his front limbs, putting pressure on sore feet with founder.
Founder can be thrown upon a horse
in many ways. As caretakers we should know what the signs are and when to call
the vet. Any case of laminitis or founder is an extreme emergency. Without a
hoof you have no horse so take preventative measures and call the vet early.
The horse will usually come in from the pasture or out of the stall lame. Digital pulses on each foot will feel as if
they are pounding, heat can be felt, and the horse will be extremely sensitive
to hoof testers in the toe area. The horse might shift his weight from one leg
to another and walk with very stiff limbs. In extreme cases the horse will not
stand square and will attempt to put more pressure on the hind legs by leaning
in an attempt to find relief. Some horses lie down on their sides as this is
the only way they can relieve the constant pressure being placed upon their
sore feet. A horse that has developed chronic laminitis will have rings
parallel to the coronary band and bleeding or an enlarged white line area on
the sole of the hoof. If the case has been left long enough the coffin bone may
drop and penetrate the sole. In cases of neglect, death can be quick to follow.
Grass founder is a very puzzling
disease, there are still holes in research today. It is essentially the same as
grain founder but with different ingredients. Easy keepers are thought to be
more at risk for grass founder as well as overweight, under worked horses. Do
not exclude very fit well fed athletes, any horse is at risk. Numbers of grass founder cases increase in
the spring and fall; right when growing starts and stops with temperatures
fluctuating.
There was a time when grass founder
was thought to be caused by very rich green grass. Now we learn fall grass can
give horses even more of a risk as it starts to brown and attempts to store
nutrients to keep itself alive before the winter frost sets in. Research has
shown a starch like carbohydrate to be the delinquent. This carbohydrate is known
as fructan.
Fructan is stored by grasses and
hays for times of need like an overcast or sunny
day with cool temperatures. The carbohydrate is used by plants when
photosynthesis of their cells slow or cease. Cloudy days or temperature drops
make growing conditions for grasses less ideal so they store fructan for these
times. When the sun comes out from behind the clouds or day breaks fructan
production commences. Since the weather in spring and fall can change from warm
to cool rapidly within days or hours the levels of this carbohydrate are
highest to help the plant survive. (Christie, 2007)
Cutting hay during times of
environmental stress such as anovercast
day or when photosynthesis is not
optimal will leave your hay with very high levels of fructan. When the hay is
cured the levels stay consistent.
It is almost impossible to test your grazed grasses for levels
of fructan because these levels go up and down during the day and vary day by
day depending on the weather and where the sun is in the sky.
Fructan is digested in the hindgut,
fermenting rapidly and causing an excessive amount of lactic acid buildup. The
lactic acid kills the bacteria in the hindgut, which releases endotoxins into
the blood.Endotoxins are essentially the dead bacteria. When fructan
ferments the bacteria multiply so rapidly that they die off quickly because of
the increased acid content in the hindgut. (Thomas, 2003)
Endotoxins effect the
cardiovascular system, which in return shuts off the run of oxygen and
restriction to the feet. This results in laminitis, the weakening of the hoof
structure, and ultimately the rotation of the
coffin bone or founder.
There really is no proven way that
will help all horses recover from grass founder. However, first removing the
foundered horse from grass and any grain or concentrates altogether, is a good
method until he is sound. Cool season grasses such as timothy, fescue, and
clovers are at a higher risk of larger fructan levels. Although fructan levels
are lower in warm season grasses it does not mean the horse cannot founder off
them or that they have no fructan in them. Keeping previously foundered horses
off grass during spring and fall when temperatures fluctuate is a must as well
as never turning a horse out that foundered in the same paddock that gave him
the condition in the first place; he will likely founder again. If that paddock
is the only one accessible to you, grazing muzzles are an inexpensive way of
preventing grass founder.
Some farriers can apply corrective shoeing and others are
experienced in the areas of the natural trim, which has recently been shown to
work in some cases even better than shoes.
Take the horse or pony off all grain and call the vet immediately if you suspect any
signs of laminitis or founder. X-rays of the foot can be taken to determine if
the coffin bone has rotated and what treatment should be applied. Some pain
medications can be applied to temporarily relieve pain but they only cover up
symptoms, not treat them.
It is recommended to feed hay with
10% of fructan or less. This is one more reason it is very important to get a
hay analysis. Alfalfa is a good alternative by itself or mixed with grassy hay
to make up the protein and calories the grain once supplied to the horse.
Some supplements on the market
today help the horse keep the weight on without the risk of too much
carbohydrates, starches, or sugars added to the diet. They could be added if
the horse has a hard time keeping on weight without a concentrate or grain. Too
many calories can be counterproductive in the healing process. Once the horse
has healed it is recommended to put him on a low starch, high fat diet to help
prevent a repeat episode.

Founder Facts

  • For
    prevention avoid letting horses graze in the late afternoon/evening, when
    temperatures drop below 40 or the morning to follow a temperature drop.
    Overcast days also pose a threat.
  • Brown
    grass in the fall poses a very high risk, as fructan has saved up high
    levels in an attempt to live out as long as it can until the winter frost.
    Wait until grass has browned all the way down to the roots before allowing
    horses to be turned out on it.
  • Putting
    grazing muzzles on horses that are high risk or have foundered before are
    very good and safe precautionary measures. Also turning out in a paddock
    without any grass is a good preventative choice.
  • When
    hay is cured fructan levels stay the same. It is possible your horse may have foundered off the hay
    instead of grass. Local feed stores usually can send samples of your hay
    to test for levels of fructan.
  • Every
    case of founder is different. Every case will require a different
    treatment. Some work, others don’t. Ask your vet and equine nutritionist
    what nutrient requirements your foundered horse will need and any special
    things you should be adding to his diet.
  • Research,
    research, research! If your horse founders, chances are you are in for a
    long and heartbreaking battle. Do as much research on methods of treating
    founder as you can. Talk to other people who have had foundered horses,
    contact specialist farriers and veterinarians. The more you know, the more
    you will be able to help your horse.
    Any little bit can help but when it comes to your horse’s feet,
    take all precautions.
  • Gradually
    introducing your horse to grass can make the risk of grass founder
    smaller. Start with 10 minutes and add 5 minutes each day until the horse
    can be let out to graze for the desired amount of time. Remember, once
    horses are let free in a grass filled paddock it can be hard to coax him
    to come back inside. Hand grazing initially is a good insurance plan.


References


Ralph E. Beadle,
DVM, PhD 1999

Professor of Veterinary Medicine



http://evrp.lsu.edu/06laminitis.htm


(to
find the year the article was written right click and view page info)





Yehuda Avisar, DVM 1996




published in ANVIL Magazine, October
1996


http://www.anvilmag.com/farrier/frandlmt.htm




Sarah Christie 2007




Horse illustrated magazine march 2007


“confounding grass founder”





Heather Smith Thomas 2003


Grass founder part
1 and 2



http://www.horsecity.com/stories/071403/hea_grassfounder_HB.shtml










The Fructan Jingle
by Katy Watts


When you wake at
crack of dawn
Graze your pony on your lawn
But sugars rise in afternoon,
For foundered ponies, this spells doom


When frosts cause fructans to increase
Your ponies grazing now must cease.
Hold off a day, or maybe more,
Or else your pony may get sore.
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Re: Grass founder

Post by lightertouch on Mon Oct 20, 2008 11:14 am

Fantastic article Sydney thanks for the info! I knew bits of this, but not the whole lot so cheers!
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Re: Grass founder

Post by Cyndi on Mon Oct 20, 2008 5:08 pm

Great article!

Fanny is overweight and an easy keeper. Your article has really made me stop and think.

I am interested in getting some natural supplements for Fanny, so I contacted a lady in Alberta (Riva's Remedies), and I'd mentioned to her that Fanny was overweight and an easy keeper, and that she'd always been pastured for the entire summer for the past six years (on 30 acres of pastureland). This lady replied to me, and one of the supplements she recommended was a probiotic, because of all the grazing Fanny's used to. After reading your article, I'm wondering if the probiotic is to counter the fermentation that goes on in the gut - to help the good bacteria in the hindgut.

This past summer, Fanny got barely any grass because of overgrazing, but the place I'm moving her to has ample grass. The grass here is still fairly green.
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Re: Grass founder

Post by bohohorse on Tue Oct 21, 2008 2:33 pm

Great topic, and a really good read. I completely agree that owners have to educate themselves as much as possible. I'd also add that it's a good idea to monitor your horse daily or at least a few times a week - find out how warm your horses hoofs feel normally for a start then you can monitor for any changes. See if he has started wincing or dropping when he walks over stones. Learn how to find the digital pulse. With most healthy horses you will not find a pulse at all. But for some (mine included) there will always be a mild pulse. Find out what is normal for your horse.

Regarding the fructans, there are people who argue just as strenuously against the fructans theory as it was proposed after an experiment where horses were constantly overfed fructan rich feed until they foundered. But of course you can overfeed a horse Mars bars and he will eventually founder!

But then to counter that, there are horses whose owners claim that they are notably footier after a morning on frosty grass. As usual it's a case of monitoring each individual. Some horses do very well when grazing is reduced but is it the grass? or the ground which it grows in?

There isn't much proof attached to using probiotics but then... to be honest there isn't a lot of reliable proof for much when it comes to laminitis and founder. Some owners in the UK swear by magnesium supplementation as a preventative as UK pastures are deficient in it. Personally I manage Z's stomach (and therefore feet) by feeding as plainly as possible, including dried herbs bought in bulk or cut from the hedgerows and a kidney and liver support herb supplement.

In the UK incidences of lami are growing at an exponential rate and the most convincing theory is that it is something to do wtih the fact that most horses are on ex cattle pasture. Especially as many farmers are suffering from a drop in the market and can make more money by renting their fields to horse owners. Cattle pasture is of course heavily fertilised and has severe excesses in some minerals and deficiencies in others. Plus, it is designed to fatten an animal destined to have a very short life! Apparently the poor cows also suffer with ill health due to the grazing but no-one cares as they are going to slaughter anyway.

There is another interesting theory - supported by vets and EPs here and in the US, including Bob Bowker - that hormonal changes in coat change times (spring and autumn) somehow are involved. This was noted when lami prone horses who were kept away from grass entirely still showed symptoms in spring and autumn.

Also the problem with conducting convincing experiments is that it can involve inducing laminitis in healthy horses which most people (rightly) don't have the stomach for. The EPAUK EP's are doing the best they can in terms of non-harmful experiments and fingers crossed, they will be able to help owners to stamp it out in the future. Along with ulcers, it's something that owners should be WAY more vigilant for.
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Re: Grass founder

Post by Cyndi on Sun Mar 14, 2010 6:41 pm

Because of wanting to help Preacher get better, I've been reading a lot on the subject of laminitis and founder. It is confusing how even the 'natural' sites have differing opinions as to what should or shouldn't be fed, etc.. Step one will be getting a proper diagnosis, of course.

I'm thinking about 'renting' a bale corer and getting the hay tested this week.

I know that it's important to start treating laminitis and founder right away, yet I see pics of those poor horses and ponies with elf feet and wonder how the poor things could be left that long. From what I've been reading, it looks like Preacher has chronic laminitis, and I hope to check for "sinking" tomorrow. Who knows how long this has been going on over the past 2-3 years. One of the guys once said that Preacher's always been a little lame, so I wonder how soon it started once he was put on sweet feed. No work, no decent exercise, yet being fed a high protein, high starch, high sugar feed. I just read something today about the dangers of feeding Quarter Horses sweet feeds. I just want to do what I can to help him feel good.

I'd like to gather as much info as I can before I go to CanAm, so that maybe I could pick something up there that will be beneficial.
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Re: Grass founder

Post by Cyndi on Mon Mar 15, 2010 9:30 am

Still waiting to hear from the vet This is driving me crazy now, even more crazy than I already am!

I checked the coronet bands of the horses. Fanny's were good, but both Preacher and CK had a definite (to me) "sinking" ridge.

I don't know if I can do this on my own! I think it'd be best if Preacher and CK went to a rescue who knew what they were doing, not relying on me and the guys who know even less than me at the barn! I'm learning all I can about this, but I don't know if it's enough. There are so many differing opinions. Will do the best I can though, for Preacher and CK's sakes.
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Re: Grass founder

Post by Cyndi on Tue Mar 16, 2010 6:22 am

I received an email yesterday from Elaine, the lady who runs a natural boarding facility, and she's also a barefoot trimmer. She gave me the number for a homeopath who specializes in treating horses with laminitis/founder. I'm waiting to hear back from her.
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Re: Grass founder

Post by HorseHippie on Tue Mar 16, 2010 8:40 am

Let us know what you find out. I am very interested to hear/read what she has to say.
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Re: Grass founder

Post by Cyndi on Tue Mar 16, 2010 8:54 am

The homeopath called a short time ago. She wants to do a hair analysis so she can see exactly what Preacher and CK need, then she will proceed with homeopathic remedies.

Unfortunately, this isn't cheap. The hair analysis is $175 per animal (I'd like to get Fanny checked, to see if her dry skin has an underlying cause), the homeopathic treatment will cost $185 per animal. Initial cost of supplements (zinc, copper, magnesium, etc.) will be around $200 but will last a long time.

I have an almost-full bag of kelp, so she said to go ahead and offer it free-choice. The Himalayan salt rock that I have out there is beneficial too.

Then I had to call my friend and break the news to her. She doesn't like the price and would just like to start with having the vet come out and go from there. I called the clinic again, and should hear back from our vet today sometime.

It's so hard to want to do the right thing, yet not being able to afford to do it.
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Re: Grass founder

Post by fin on Tue Mar 16, 2010 3:54 pm

hi Cyndi, all credit to you for taking founder seriously. You really need to let the owner sort this out and get the vet to do some x rays then you know what you're dealing with. If Preacher has foundered the prognosis won't be good (depends on the degree of rotation of the pedal bone) and any treatment is likely to be expensive, much more than the amounts you were talking about initially. Just keep the weight off Fanny. Thank goodness she is OK. Good luck with your efforts
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Re: Grass founder

Post by Cyndi on Tue Mar 16, 2010 4:51 pm

Thanks Fin. I am grateful for everyone's support, but I sure would like to do more for Preacher.

My friend wants me to go the vet route, so tomorrow I'm going to pick up some bute and get him started on it (vet can't see Preacher till Monday, but he wanted him started on bute asap). The vet wants him in a stall, but there are only two stalls in the barn and they are filled to capacity with bales. Next best thing for me to do is haul some straw bales out there for soft bedding outside. The vet wants a soft area for Preacher to be in, yet my farrier said last week that being ankle deep in soft manure/hay/straw is the worst thing for Preacher. Sigh. I can't win for losing!

You can bet I'm watching Fanny's feet like a hawk! She's never been on the sweet feed that Preacher and CK have been on for the past two years, so she's okay. I've been giving her a mix of seeds and nuts that I make myself. She is overweight, or at least she looks like it, but part of it is the breed. I've been in touch with the lady who owns Fanny's 'cousin' and despite being ridden almost every day of the week she still struggles with him gaining weight. Fan's looking pretty good these days, but to someone else she still looks overweight. That's why I want to ride her more, so she'd get some decent exercise. Being in the dry paddock helps too.

The vet kept referring to laminitis, not founder, so I don't know if he'll actually take x-rays to check the coffin bone. It's kind of out of my hands now.
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Re: Grass founder

Post by HorseHippie on Wed Mar 17, 2010 10:46 am

Cyndi, good on you for looking after Preacher! I really hope your friend will get Preacher the help he needs.

As for bute and stalling - not really the way I would go, but, not my horse. I would try to keep Preacher moving as much as he can comfortably move to keep the circulation moving and any toxins moving away from the hoof to be detoxed by the liver and kidneys and then excreted.

Bute is very very hard on a horse and they can actually go into a laminatic attack from it. If you can convince the owner to do so, only dose him when he needs it, not just because the vet said every four hours. We all experience aches and pains but we are not all on a steady dose of Tylenol are we...(well, at least I am not). There is also a product called "buteless" that actually doesn't have the chemical make up as bute, but works just as well (from what I have heard). I use a homeopathic remedy of Arnica Montana if I see my guys sore and it seems to help.

If you can get some probiotics into Preacher to help detox him, it would really help. Omega Alpha has some kidney and liver flushes available and they are all herbal and they are great products for detox, the probiotics will help with his digestion. Just mix with beet pulp and he should gobble it up.

It is good that you are getting minerals from the homeopathic doctor, they should be in an organic form (not chelated or inorganic as much of our store bought stuff is). The body will be able to absorb the organic forms much better and effectively use it as it is intended.

Dealing with laminitis is not easy. As for the vet referring to it as laminitis - it's because laminitis is the inflammation of the laminae (forgive my spelling), and founder is the actual detachment of the coffin bone from the hoof wall, the vet can't technically diagnose founder as x-rays haven't been performed to clarify.

I am happy to hear that Fanny is doing well. What breed is she again Cyndi?
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Re: Grass founder

Post by Cyndi on Wed Mar 17, 2010 4:48 pm

Thanks Horsehippie.

I totally agree with you, with not wanting to give Preacher bute. But that's the route my friend wants to take at this point. I started him on it this morning. I might keep him on it till the vet sees him on Monday and then do my own thing after that. Is that bad? I'd rather go with the Arnica Montana, and had thought of it, but again I figured I'd wait until the vet sees him. If he has foundered, there's little hope for him in the "traditional" way of thinking, yet the homeopath I spoke to sounded like she fully expected him to get better if we just found out exactly what is going on and treat accordingly, from the inside out. I think that the Omega Alpha cleanse and probiotics would go a LONG way in helping him feel better. I would treat all three of them, because even we're encouraged to do a cleanse at least once or twice a year.

Also, if he has foundered, would it not be best to have a barefoot trimmer come in? We have NONE around here. Sheesh, I'm thinking of taking a course and becoming a trimmer for Southwestern Ontario!! LOL My farrier wants to shoe Preacher, but I don't want that. ARGGGGHHH!!!! It's the poor helpless animal that gets caught in the middle.

Fanny is half Canadian Horse and half Newfoundland Pony. She is such a sweetie. The past two days she's been standing nicely for me while I groom her, and yesterday she followed me around and then let me cradle her head. I was concerned about Preacher, and am wondering if Fanny could sense that. This may sound weird, but it's almost like she was trying to tell me something. The first thought that came to my head was whether or not I should move her soon.

It may have been nothing, since she actually tried to nip at me today! Mind you, CK was standing beside us and he kind of bumped her. I think she nipped at me because she thought I'd done something.

How much Arnica Montana do you give a horse??
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Re: Grass founder

Post by Cyndi on Thu Mar 18, 2010 6:23 am

Horsehippie, or anyone else who might know...would there be a problem with using the Omega Alpha products while Preacher is on bute? I was thinking of keeping him on the bute till the vet checks him on Monday, then taking him off it and doing the Omega Alpha thing, but I'd start him on it sooner if there were no known complications. The only reason I'd keep him on bute till the vet came is so that I could honestly say that I'd been giving it to Preacher if the vet asks. Honest to a fault, I am. I could also stop the bute and be honest and tell the vet that I'd stopped it, but I don't want him to get peeved at me, and risk losing the good relationship we have.
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Re: Grass founder

Post by FlorayG on Thu Mar 18, 2010 9:07 am

very difficult.
i had a pony had laminitis a few years ago, i did all the right things the vet said, she still wasn't right, I had her feet X-rayed and there was no rotation of the pedal bone, the vet just said keep resting. I called my homoeopath in, he gave her a remedy and she was 100% sound the next day and never had it again. I'm lucky though I have one of the best homoeopathic vets in the UK near me - some of them aren't so good.
Vetrofen is supposed to be good for laminitis as well but not mixed with bute
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Re: Grass founder

Post by Cyndi on Thu Mar 18, 2010 9:34 am

I would like nothing more than to go with the homeopath that I talked to the other day, but money is an issue for my friend right now. I could pay for it, but it would seriously cut into my "new barn" fund, for when I move Fanny. Very difficult indeed.

I guess the "good news" is that so far I am the only one giving Preacher his bute. There was a note for me this morning from one of the guys, saying that he needs me to show him what to do. So at least Preacher is getting a lower dose than what was prescribed.
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Re: Grass founder

Post by Cyndi on Thu Mar 18, 2010 11:02 am

By the way...if I was a guy, I'd give my right nut for the homeopathic remedy that your homeopath gave for your pony!! Results like that sure would be nice.
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Re: Grass founder

Post by FlorayG on Fri Mar 19, 2010 2:26 am

Ah, but that's not how it works - it wouldn't be the same remedy for a different horse. if it was then I would just send it to you
Bute is a difficult subject - sometimes a horse is in so much pain with laminitis you have to give it. Once when Kitty got it and I had to stable her she was on bute and ACP but she hates being stabled so much she just weaved (wove? woved?) all the time, not at all good for laminitic feet, so we decided to take her off the bute as the pain would make her stand still and double the ACP, that worked. Her laminitis came on in early winter and was due to toxins in the soggy dead leaves she was picking up in the field we think, as she was not fat at all. Really, laminitis needs agressive tratment - have you found the Laminitis Trust website? I found theirs the best and most informative.
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Re: Grass founder

Post by lightertouch on Fri Mar 19, 2010 3:23 am

Laminitis treatment is somewhat controversial. I would also be inclined not to confine Preacher - I also think using the feet will stimulate the circulation to rinse the toxins away. You could phone the manufacturers of the flushes to see if they recommend treating with them at the same time as bute. I'm glad you had a good experience with the Lami Trust website FlorayG, however I'd just like to mention my EP is a bit dubious about some of the stuff the Lami Trust/its creator does/advice it offers. We were just talking about it yesterday!

Cyndi, brilliant idea, train as an EP and it sounds like you'd have a monopoly in Ontario! You'd never be short of clients, I'm sure!

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Re: Grass founder

Post by Cyndi on Fri Mar 19, 2010 9:59 am

Well, finally some good news!

I went to CanAm this morning, it's a big equine emporium that happens once a year in London (Ontario ).

I went in to pick up my Barefoot bareback riding pad, and thought I'd just walk around and look at all the vendors. There were supposed to be a few people there that I've 'met' through groups like this as well as email or from ordering products, etc...

Right off the start, I saw the Nurtural display, so I went to see Zoe!! YAY!! She is SO nice. We had a nice chat and I got a chance to check out the new noseband "grip" that are on the bridles now. Very nice. Grippy, yet not chunky.

I was also able to pick up a nice "natural" shampoo and conditioner for the Fanster, from the guy I buy her natural fly spray from. He was giving a 'seminar' at the time, but I talked to his wife for a while.

Got my bareback pad, of course - can hardly wait to try it out!!

Now, this pertains to the actual subject of laminitis/founder. Sorry to take the long way here - just wanted to share my exciting morning!

There was a vendor that I'd checked out on-line, called Herbs 4 Horses, so I stopped in to see what they had. I asked the young lady working there what she would recommend for laminitis. She was very helpful and told me about a product I could safely give all three critters, and it would help Preacher's and CK's feet. Then we started talking about hoof trimming for laminitis, and I found out that she's a natural barefoot trimmer! She is actually willing to drive the two hours to come to the barn to trim Preacher's feet (and CK's...and even Fanny's) decently!!! The only extra she'll charge is for gas, which isn't bad. What a relief, and a huge answer to prayer! The product she recommends for laminitis isn't terribly expensive either, plus it's on sale for the weekend. She also gave me a $20 coupon for on-line shopping.

Things are looking up!! And tomorrow I can hopefully meet Sydney!!
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Re: Grass founder

Post by lightertouch on Sat Mar 20, 2010 3:57 pm

Great news Cyndi! Hope tomorrow is great fun!

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Re: Grass founder

Post by Cyndi on Mon Mar 22, 2010 9:51 am

I met Sydney on Saturday What a doll she is.

I tried out the new bareback pad yesterday. It is very comfy, but it sure does feel different than just being right on her back. Will take a bit of getting used to. I didn't feel as secure on a pad as I do bareback.

The vet came out to see Preacher this morning. The official diagnosis is that he has indeed foundered, and so has CK.

The vet wants Preacher on stall rest for a month, on bute (10cc for two weeks, then 5cc after that...which could take months). That doesn't sit well with me, and it would drive Preacher nuts. There are no stalls available in the barn, because they're full of hay - whew. And he hasn't had bute since Thursday or so, because that's the last time I was at the barn (till yesterday), and I'm the only one who can give it to him. He'd also like to see Preacher shod, with pads. He would actually like to see Preacher at a different barn. He said that three animals on a quarter acre of land isn't right...or something like that. I've seen more horses on less land in Arizona, so I don't know what to say about his comment. From a horse's point of view, yes, more space is better. I want Fanny to have wide open spaces, but I also don't want to leave Preacher high and dry. I want to be with him until I see signs of improvement. Maybe, for my own peace of mind, I could move Fanny and then still go check up on Preacher and CK once in a while.

I've been in contact with a barefoot trimmer who is two hours away (the one I met on Friday), and she's going to try to make it out here Wednesday evening. If she can't make it out that day, she probably can't come till Sunday. Preacher has been started on the herbal supplement, so hopefully we see some signs of improvement in the next week or so.
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Re: Grass founder

Post by HorseHippie on Mon Mar 22, 2010 10:46 am

Hi Cyndi, I just wrote a whole reply and lost it...RRRRR!

As for the arnica, I use 30c, 4 tablets every hour for 4 hours in the morning and then again at night. If I don't see anything change after the 3 dose, I quit and try something else (so far the 3rd doseage seems to be working).

I am totally not impressed with the vet's recommendation, but since I have turned into a hippie and not too happy with today's modern conventional medicine, I can't fault the vet for advising a treatment that they were taught to recommend...what a mouthfull...I would let Preacher stay outside with his friends and move around as much as he wants too, the movement will increase circulation and help move all those toxins out of this hooves.

You can give the omega products with the bute, just follow the dosage recommendations on the bottle - I use both the kidney and liver flushes for 7-10 days. I would go the full 10 days with your critters. I don't know what herbs you are giving though already, so you may not have to give the flushes...

Please keep us posted on what the trimmer has to say!!! Be warned though, if she trims and adjusts angles to improve hoof mechanism, Preacher may be even more ouchy as he has to learn to adjust to his new feet and circulation will be adjusting itself accordingly too.

I figured Fanny was a Canadian, I have really been researching them lately as I have decided my next horse will be a Canadian. I am so excited, I am going to see a breeder in Alberta in May!!! Too cool!!!
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Re: Grass founder

Post by Sydney on Mon Mar 22, 2010 12:21 pm

Aww thanks Cyndi! I really enjoyed meeting you, your as lovely in real life as you are on the internet. I hope you can use that cinch and I still hope I can get a guest blog post out of you Razz

Stall rest=less movement=less circulation=slower healing. It's a "traditionalist" thing. Don't listen to it. In university we had a saying: A year on 24/7 turnout will heal all injuries and two years will cure them. How incredibly true.

What I would be worried about now is WHY those two foundered and preventing Fanny from doing the same. That would scare me.
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Re: Grass founder

Post by Cyndi on Mon Mar 22, 2010 5:27 pm

Thanks for your thoughts ladies!! I'm glad I'm not the only one who feels the way I do about the vet's recommendations.

The supplement the critters are on is "Simmerdown". You can read about it if you google "herbs for horses", I think. It will help with weight loss and I think it's supposed to help with toxins. It aids in preventing laminitis as well as Cushings.

I know the trimmer will want to really lower Preacher's heels. I will have to warn the guys that Preacher may be more sore for a bit. I haven't done the arnica yet.

A Canadian breeder in Alberta??!! It's not Diamond A is it??!! If you visit that farm, make sure you look at their stallion!!! I LOVE him. I've never met him, but have seen pics and have heard so much about his lovely temperament. His name is Davidson Norieau Duc, and he used to live here in Ontario. He has a mane and tail to die for. There is a mare in Alberta that I went to see when she was for sale out here (she had been bred to Duc later on, but she never 'took'). Her owner decided to ship the mare out to her daughter's farm, rather than sell her.

Sydney, you are very kind I want to get to your blog, but time has not been on my side lately.

The question of why CK and Preacher foundered concerns me too. I had been thinking that it was because they don't get any exercise, yet had been eating large amounts of sweet feed (Preacher got a coffee can full, and CK got half a coffee can) every day for the past couple of years. The vet asked me this morning if there were any walnut trees along the paddock. He said that walnuts can cause laminitis and founder instantly. Now my mind is racing, whether or not I can remember seeing the big green walnuts on the ground in the paddock. I would think that if I noticed them last summer or fall, I would've said something...but my mind is playing tricks on me and I'm wondering if I did see them but just thought everything was okay because if CK and Preacher were fine after living with a walnut tree all this time, it wasn't the bad kind of walnut. The vet thinks that Preacher's been having trouble with his feet since last summer!!!

The vet said Fanny's feet looked good, so I'm going to try to be content with that for now. I literally feel sick, being stuck between wanting to help Preacher, yet I also want to have this pressure off of me, move Fanny and enjoy spending time with only her, and not worry about anybody else around us. That's what we had when she was in training last spring, and I really miss it. I think Fanny misses it to. She just quietly moves around, following me, almost like she's depressed. I want her to be able to run and play with 11 other horses.
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