Thursday, September 19, 2019

how what why: Charlie + Ulcers

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that should you and your horse ever struggle in some inconsistent, hard-to-pin-down manner, the Greek chorus of internet horse forums will unfailingly reply with some sing-song variation of the following mantra:

Saddle fit!

Teeth or Dentist!!

Ulcers!!!

Plus, frequent bonus armchair diagnosis:

Hoof angles and/or something to do with shoeing!!

Tho of course, depending on where you live, you're also just as likely to hear tell of various common tick-borne illnesses like Lyme! or Anaplasmosis!

it was recently brought to my attention that this property's owners permit riders on the driveway. helllll yesssss!!
On one hand, it's almost become a joke. Or like you could create some devilish sort of drinking game by guessing how long it takes before somebody suggests one of the above in response to anyone even so much as whispering about horse struggles.

On the other hand, tho, there are very real reasons for that, right? Like, there are reasons why these ailments often top the list of suggested pain points whenever owners run into problems.

Mostly, it's because these comprise most of the lowest hanging fruit. Common issues that can cause low grade but persistent nagging problems without the obvious acute indicator of a head bob or tree trunk leg. (Well, except anaplasmosis haha.... if your horse busts out with lethargy, a big fever, and four swollen legs outta nowhere, well... call a vet LOL).

And the symptoms are often easy to miss bc they can be as generic or general as "not wanting to go on the bit," or "won't go forward," or "kinda more pissy / spooky / grouchy / fussy than usual." Really, symptoms can be even minor deviations in behavior, soundness, or even general condition.

So.... I figured I'd talk a little more about one of those ailments - Ulcers.

This is by no means intended to be a substitute for talking to an expert or professional - I am (obviously) neither. Nor is this intended to be a thorough, comprehensive or definitive medical guide on the subject of gastric ulcers in equines. I am not offering advice here, or suggesting ways to diagnose your horse.

the passage through to the driveway is unbelievably softy and cushy despite our intense drought
Rather, I want to talk about my own approach -- the choices I've made, my experiences, and my plan for Charlie.

And, in the meantime, if anything I say here makes you feel unsure about your own horse's behavior (under saddle or otherwise), soundness, or general overall wellness, by all means - talk to someone about it. Your vet, coach, trainer, other vet, barn manager, riding buddy, working student, slightly scary but veteran older boarder, invisible friend, emotional support toaster, .... whoever, right? Ask around, phone a friend. See what people say.

Honestly, my experiences with horses have impressed upon me the idea that... there are many right ways to go about horse care and maintenance, and generally very few truly wrong ways.

Sure, there are some horse people who are blessed with knowing exactly the correct way of doing literally anything and everything. And who will judge you for deviating even slightly from their prescient prescriptions. It's true! I can tell you for a fact that there are regular readers here who check in for no reason other than to see if I've managed to murder, maim or otherwise mess Charlie up yet (shout out to my girl Denise!!).

And, ya know. To those folks, may you always feel smug and secure in your convictions. For the rest of y'all... Well. It turns out there are actually a shit ton of different options if you think your horse's particular woe stems from gastric ulcers.

tho ya know, there's a certain amount of charm to our normal pasture lanes <3
If y'all are worried about ulcers, again, best bet is to talk to somebody about it (even if that somebody is the google). When I'm thinking about horsey symptoms, my thoughts range across the following (in no particular order):

- has my horse's attitude or behavior changed?
- is he more spooky and/or grouchy? girthy?
- is he nervous or unsettled on the ground and/or under saddle?
- having trouble holding weight or coat looking dull?
- reactive and/or reluctant to go forward under saddle?

Which... Well. Charlie is a sleek glossy fatass dadbod panther on his post-lunch nap break. So.... Hm.

BUT! Beyond superficial symptoms, there are other indicators -- specifically revolving around lifestyle!! Any of the following lifestyles can make an otherwise sturdy horse vulnerable or prone to ulcers (in no particular order):

- not enough turnout
- not enough forage and/or grazing
- stall rest or prolonged confinement
- solo / individual turnout
- travel in the trailer
- competitions and/or intense training sessions

We're getting closer here. I'm more or less satisfied with Charlie's amount of turnout (would prefer more particularly in winter) and forage. And he's out in a big herd that he absolutely loves, but in a secure and confident way that doesn't leave him buddy sour.

this is charlie trying to look sad after i tubed him. tho ya know, try to ignore the giant grass stalks stuck up in his snackamore after what was an unabashedly indulgent gallop/graze through the woods lol
The travel tho? Yeeeaahhhhh that's kinda the biggie. I do everything in my power to try to always have two horses on board when I go places, bc I feel pretty strongly that being alone on the trailer is harder on Charlie than when he has a friend. But research shows that actually any amount of travel (esp if it involves crowded horse shows, even if the horse isn't actually competing at said show) can increase a horse's vulnerability to ulcers.

So.... Charlie travels, right? According to my budget workbook where I track lessons, clinics, shows, etc, we've averaged 2 trips/month this year. Realistically tho that number is higher in summer and lower in winter. Meaning we've been closer to 3x per month more recently. And actually, we had 3 trips in an 8 day period last week... So. Yea. The travel.

For this reason alone, knowing that any horse I manage - be it Charlie or Isabel - will travel frequently... My approach has been to just plan on treating for ulcers annually.

Obviously Charlie was fresh off the track when I bought him, so treatment was a priority and happened in the first ~2 months. A year later, he was coming off surgery and stall rest and it made sense for another dose. I'm about 90% sure I did a treatment last summer too after the whole Plantation fiasco, but I didn't tag it in any blog posts and can't find it in my paypal payments (thank god for modern vets LOL) so maybe I didn't.

Regardless, I'm pretty much all aboard the "treat first and ask questions later" train here.

apparently liquid fucking gold
Essentially, there are two different tracks you can take when it comes to ulcers: treatment and prevention / maintenance.

The most common treatment drug is omeprazole - an inhibitor. I'm pretty sure this is one of the only FDA approved treatments (tho sucralfate I believe is commonly used in instances where there are hind gut ulcers?? idk, see above "not an expert" comment LOL). As an inhibitor, this drug is not generally recommended for long term (daily) usage.

For prevention, there are loads more options. Generally, in this case we're talking about barriers or blockers, rather than inhibitors. Ranitidine (yes the same shit you can buy in bulk at Costco, your horse just eats like 15 at a time lol). Calcium. Magnesium oxide. Purina Outlast. Slippery elm bark. Aloe juice. Alfalfa. Tums haha.

The prevention stuff is good on a daily basis, especially in the period immediately following a treatment since the absolute last thing you want after inhibiting acid production for a month is to have a giant wave come splashing through when the drug suddenly vanishes from the horse's system (taper, yo!!!!).

There are a couple different varieties of omeprazole available on the market. For use in horses, the most common are the Gastrogard / Ulcergard tubes. They're also the most jesus-christ-this-shit-is-expensive option. Liquid fucking gold, apparently.

The Canadian company Abler has a really nice selection of omeprazole products too, including their unique "pop rocks." I ordered from them a few times for Isabel and was generally pretty happy with the service (they also threw in a few free packets of sucralfate).

MUCH more reasonably priced, dear god
I've also read of bloggers using Nexium, with the idea being: it's maybe easier/cheaper to get a hold of, and if the horse responds positively to it then that's a good indicator to invest more heavily in treatment.

I personally tend to do some combination of the above. One of my vets sells 30 day supply jars of generic omeprazole for $95. Compared to a 4 day tube of Ulcergard that sells for $37.... Well, that's a no fucking brainer haha.

Except.... I've been told by more than one vet that there's something about Ulcergard / Gastrogard's proprietary formula that seems more effective than the generic, including the Abler products. It's not really clear why.

So Charlie's plan involves a few days of the proprietary Ulcergard, half tube per day, at the same time we introduce the generic omeprazole to his 2x daily supplement cups. Then we'll downgrade the Ulcergard to a standard dose, while maintaining the full treatment dose of generic omeprazole powder for a couple days.

Then, when the Ulcergard is finished (I bought two total tubes that should last about 6ish days per my plan), Charlie will just be on 2x daily doses of the omeprazole powder. I measure out his supplement cups every 8 days so I have some options for fine-tuning the amount per day based on whether (or not) I see any changes in the horse. This will continue for about 30 days, at which point we'll taper off.

charlie's supplements are getting out of control these days. farriers formula per usual (forever and ever, amen), some electrolytes to finish out the year, and also a top line muscle supp, since multiple vets have said over the years that he's predominantly a muscular case vs joint case. right now we're doing this pro elite stuff, but i'm probably gonna switch back to purina's supersport once this is done. i felt like it made charlie run a little hotter, a definite advantage LOL
To be honest... I don't expect changes tho. Like. Charlie is just not an ulcery type TB. I've treated him multiple times before and it never made any iota of a difference. And generally speaking, he's the friggin King of the Dings -- stoic he is not.

But... We do it anyway. Maybe I'm just a little liberal with the drugs. Or a little risk averse. Or maybe this will be the time when Charlie says, "Actually, thanks - I needed that!" Whatever, right?

For some horses tho, this treatment is the actual literal manna from heaven, the silver bullet. It can be a life changing difference maker. In the off chance that Charlie shows big changes with treatment, I'd probably proceed to scoping his guts for actual confirmation of the existence of ulcers.

This is important for a few reasons, first bc it would tell us where the ulcers are located. For instance, hind gut ulcers require more involved treatment to actually fully heal than what I've described above - tho symptoms could be soothed at least in this plan.

Likewise, I believe if a horse is insured, diagnosis confirmation is required via scoping in order to get the cost of treatment reimbursed.

i've been using 1lb deli tubs for supplements as a way to assuage my first world environmental guilt. they're working out great and the barn staff are happy with them!!
Generally speaking, tho, the plan I've laid out for Charlie will tell me a few things. If he responds in a big way, I will know it's worth investing more to look more closely. If he doesn't really respond, I'll still feel like I've done my due diligence in ensuring he's thriving in the lifestyle I offer him.

In that same vein, it'll give me confidence in my training with him when things get tough. Which, let's be real, that's mostly what this is all about. Making sure that I've got all my i's dotted and t's crossed so that when push comes to shove, I'll do my goddamn job in the saddle haha. Riding is hard enough already, ain't none of us need to be preoccupied by wondering if our horses are actually uncomfortable or in pain.

So. That's the plan. I'll let you know how it goes LOL.

What do you think, tho? Have you wondered about your horse and ulcers? Or treated?

Charlie isn't particularly ulcery, tho Isabel was, but seemed easily managed. Maybe you have had similar experiences? Or maybe you have a horse that's way less easily managed? Or experiences that were completely different from what I described above? Anything you'd like to share with the community of horse people who are curious about how folks have approached this issue?


29 comments:

  1. I am so freaking paranoid about ulcers now. And guilty that I didn’t treat Carmen when she arrived. I tried to buy the powder from Abler but they can’t deliver to Canada. At least that’s what I understand. I buy generic tubes from my vet ($10 per tube) and I treat Carmen when we travel. I give her a tube the morning before and one each day we’re away. I also feed her pre& pro biotics. This seems to help.

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  2. It is funny how everyone approaches this differently. I make sure my horses get a tube (1/4 a day of the Ulcergard), when we travel. I try to start the day before trailering, then finish out the tube until gone. I do the same for any stressful situations (like moving fields/stalls/barns, changing pasture mates, etc).

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    1. we might be moving spicy's field this weekend so thank you for reminding me to do something before I upheave his entire life and ruin it beyond recognition for moving him to a field he can SEE FROM HIS CURRENT FIELD

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  3. I do wonder about ulcers - my gelding was grumpy and a bit difficult at times, but fat and shiny... I did do a treatment when I first got him, but didn't see a change. I guess it is good to double check the low hanging fruit and see if there is a straightforward solution...

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  4. When Promise first injured her stifle, she was ordered to have 8 weeks of stall rest and was on (a rather unhealthy dose of) bute I think 3 times a day with grain to keep the inflammation down. Obviously, all of that, even with a round bale IN her stall to keep her both relatively still for the stifle and eating constantly for her gut, caused (or maybe exacerbated, I'll never know for sure) ulcers. To the point where even I couldn't get near her. Like, this horse would do ANYthing for me, and I couldn't even get near her. She did NOT want to be touched by humans. Who can blame her, really? Everything literally hurt. I called the vet, he told me to get some Maalox and give her like 1/2 a bottle a day for 3 days or something crazy like that, to see if there was any improvement. There was a drastic improvement in about 12 hours. I could actually get near my horse and she was cuddly again. I called him back and we did Ulcerguard for 4 days while doing a loading dose on I think SmartGut or something similar from SmartPak. She stayed on that maintenance supplement until I lost her 3 years later.

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  5. Have I told you that when I first got Mae off the track that I ordered so much GastroGard that the territory rep for our geographic area reached out to me personally? Luckily we haven't needed it since that initial 3-4 month period but I do keep her on TractGard for maintenance. I've found it works well for Mae, it's cheaper than the other alternatives out there, and she hasn't had a flare up while she's been on it

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  6. So I'm a big proponent of nexium but this time around I'm treating Subi's ulcers with Abler's paste. My issue was I didn't catch something was up right away and he went off his feed. So, Nexium is nice because you can toss it in feed, but if your horse isn't eating, it doesn't work. So, ulcergard was sort of off the table price wise for me (I mean, if I have to go that direction, I will, but I was trying to avoid it) but I was willing to try Abler's Abgard. Of course, but the time it showed up (they actually got it to me REALLY fast--4 days with the free shipping), the nexium had started to work and Subi had started eating again, but whatever...

    I've opted to do a full 30 days with Abgard this time around, but in the future, I have certain times a year that I'm going to put him on nexium as a preventative measure and see if I can stop ulcers in their track. With his vision issues and deteriorating eye sight (stupid cataracts), late summer is going to be an issue EVERY year so I have to be proactive. I think I'll be OK in the winter now that he knows and LOVES his stall, but I'll keep him on Purina Outlast and 2 flakes of alfalfa in his stall just in case.

    He does get Animed Ulc-R-Aid which appears to do nothing as a preventative. But, I have 2 unopened containers due to a shipping error and a replacement container so he's going to keep getting that because what else will I do with it? But, I do plan to stop it want I FINALLY run out.

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  7. When we first moved to WSS, the BO recommended Alber for Quest so we did an order of that. It likely helped in some way- though tbh there were so many changes to Quest's lifestyle in that short period of time that I'm not sure if the supplement or it was the fact that Quest LOVED being in a pasture board setup. I hope Charlie benefits from the extras!

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  8. I think Spicy would not have ulcers if he were in his field, and the same thing happened at the same time every day and he never went anywhere or got ridden or had his feathers ruffled.

    unfortunately that is not his life.

    If you decide you need something longer term I HIGHLY HIGHLY recommend U7. I still need to treat when I travel but as far as 'daily gut maintenance' it has made a HUGE difference. I say treat when I travel because usually a couple days after hauling he becomes a tit again, probably because when he trailers he just stares out the window refusing to eat and contemplating his own death.

    It's a good thing he's cute and I love him.

    Anyway, this is a really really great post.

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  9. I treated Eeyore a couple weeks after I got him since his life style changed so dramatically from stalled in a busy facility with horses everywhere to a small herd and out all the time. Not sure it was needed but I can get it through dusty and pretend I’m not spending money.

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  10. I totally agree with the first part of your post, ulcers, saddle fit and teeth do seem to come up ALL the time!

    I've had multiple people suggest to me that I need to treat Kachina for ulcers, both professionals and armchair critics. She gets 24/7 turnout in a big paddock, 24/7 forage and zero grain which should reduce our risk but she does travel, is a horse who tends towards tension, and is girthy. So last spring I got her scoped, she was ulcer-free at that point (which was soon after a barn move) so that's a big indicator to me that her issues are not ulcer related and I have never treated for them.

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  11. Oh man, I was like "piffle, ulcers are not real! Not for my horse!" for literally years with Candy. She was the opposite of Charlie - several physical symptoms, zero lifestyle stressors. I finally took my vet's advice and treated her with a powdered mix of omeprazole & rantinide (or however you spell it) for two months and she is like a completely different animal. I would not believe the changes if I hadn't seen them firsthand.

    At any rate, good luck with Charlie's treatment! Whether it's ulcers or not, I hope you find something that helps him feel his best again.

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  12. I had a really interesting experience with this in July.

    Zurich is an anxious, sensitive, emotional type horse. We also tick all the boxes for prime ulcer development. We ship out a lot - at least 2 or 3 times a month. Turnout is limited, he does not have hay in front of him 24/7.

    In July, even though he was fat and shiny, attacking his grain like he'd never eaten before, to really spooky and anxious under saddle - especially about jumping. This horse, who is a solid, proven 3' Hunter/Eq horse, started stopping. At stuff we had literally jumped 1,000 times. He got to the point where he was really anxious about jumping 18" crossrails with no filler. This was not my horse that eagerly takes me to the jumps with ears locked on.

    I actually thought it was his hocks (see fat, shiny, dappled-out horse with good appetite comment above.) Ulcers weren't even a consideration, or on my radar. I booked an appointment for my vet to see him. When she palpated him in his sternum/girth area, he almost dropped to the ground. We didn't scope (he's not insured, and we did decide to go ahead with hock injections), but I decided to give him a full 30 day treatment with Omeprazole paste.

    Literally the very FIRST DAY I gave him the paste, I had my horse back.

    Now, post-treatment, I take steps to ensure his stomach stays happy. He is on a SmartGut Ultra supplement. He gets alfalfa pellets + Outlast before every ride. He gets omeprazole paste the day before, day of, and day after we trailer. He gets good alfalfa hay *in* the trailer. I do my best to make sure I protect his stomach the best I can.

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  13. Your line "may you always feel smug and secure in your convictions." I'm definitely filing away - it very much fall in line with the "may the odds be ever in your favor" Hunger Games quote. I see what you did there lololol

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  14. I LOVE those deli tubs. Obviously literally reusing them from the deli is best, but if anyone doesn't buy a lot of deli items, you can get a 50 count on Amazon for $13. We've found them nearly infinitely reusable for dry goods.

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  15. Amber isn't an ulcery type of horse, either, but Whisper sure is. Ulcergard helped her a ton when my mom put her on it, and now that she's more confident and secure (thank you, Kahlua!) we're weaning her off of the ulcergard and putting her on a pelleted u-guard. She's been doing really well with this. For Amber I'd buy a tube of ulcergard before a show and start the 1/4 dose on a Thursday and continue through the show on Sunday, and that did seem to help her more than when I didn't do it. I also got a tub of pelleted u-guard when she had her surgery since she was on a lot of meds and she certainly looked uncomfortable. That helped for sure, but other than that I'm pretty lucky that Amber is so low-maintenance! lol

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  16. I had long wondered if Phantom had ulcers, mostly due to her (then) tension under saddle and propensity to ride up instead of down through a ride. One year I had her hocks injected, but she still continued to be sore in her back and girthy. I talked to the vet about the possibility of ulcers and she said omeprazole wouldn't hurt, so I tried her on it for a month.
    At the end of the month, I had the most relaxed rides I think I'd ever had on her. I slowly tapered her off the omeprazole. And my old horse came back. So off to the vet clinic we went to get scoped.
    And no ulcers were seen.
    I went home with a course of Adequan instead. That fixed the back soreness/girthyness.

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  17. I'm with you on treating first, as it's very easy to do. I don't scope as between me & my vet, we know my horses well & can zero in on issues pretty accurately. A minor note that omeprazole is not effective for treating hind gut ulcers & can actually aggravate them. So if a horse is not responding to that & ulcers are suspected, that can be why. My memory is rusty bc I haven't had to deal with ulcers in a while, but as I recall ranitidine & sucralfate do hind guts.

    The reason Ulcerguard/Gastroguard (same thing) are so expensive is because they have a special coating that is required to allow the omeprazole to actually reach the site of the ulcers without being broken down by the digestive tract first. Without this coating, it's not physically possible for the chemical to persist long enough to get to the ulcer site, which is why a lot of cheap generics are a waste of money. I think (can't remember to be sure) that the UlcerGuard coating maybe expired recently, so there MAY be some generics that can now use that, but I'd check labels carefully to see if it's coated & manufactured with appropriate QA/QC.

    One preventative I do really really like that I have done my own "field" testing on is TractGuard -- it's not terribly expensive & is a really nice stomach buffer. It definitely makes a difference for Echo, as when I take him off of it, he'll soon start to get girthy. Put him back on the TractGuard & he's back to his normal happy self.

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    1. Jumping on this comment thread! The coating you refer to is enteric coating, and I agree I don't think many generics (or human ready omeprazole) has that, so it's less effective for horses. Abgard has the coating, which I commented about below.

      After chatting with a Merial rep (folks that make ulcergard), they said the reason it is so expensive is because omeprazole for horses can be really tricky to keep from spoiling. So they developed a way to show when the product went bad- which is that the ulcer/gastrogard turns dark purple. If it's the normal greyish/whiteish color it's good. But developing a formula that has a longer shelf life and indicates when spoiled is the reason behind the $$$ and why no other company has created a competitive product.

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  18. I've never had Cupid scoped. His chiro always tests his "ulcer points" and doesn't get a reaction (though he is a touch girthy, especially on the right side), so I just do a preventative feed through. But I give Ulcergard if we travel, I think it smells like a cinnamon cookie and Cupid doesn't seem to object - as opposed to dewormer which he runs from!

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  19. Ulcer symptoms do seem to be somewhat individual to the horse and severity related, too, I'm sure. Bravo's eating habits don't change but he does get uncharacteristically spooky and he starts to get mean when made to work- biting, ear pinning, snaking his neck on the lunge line... etc. I've owned him for 7 months and treated twice- nexium and Abler pop rocks. Both times were for a full 30 days with a taper at the end. Both treatments seemed to have worked but I can't quite figure out how to get them to last. So I'm on a bit of trial and error to determine what environmental changes I need to try to make vs the efficacy of a gastric supplement of some type. We're trying SmartGI Ultra at the moment but I'm starting to see some spooky behavior again... It's been helpful to see what others are doing. Thanks for this post! Hope the tummy relief helps Charlie feel back to his old self!

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  20. So long, long ago, when I was but a teenager, we thought my horse had ulcers. Back then, they didn't scope them regularly. It wasn't easy to get done, and usually involved a trip to the vet hospital. Not to mention very little was really known at that point about horses and ulcers. So we treated with Mylanta and Zantac. Back then, it cost $700 a month for that much zantac. Crazy. Anyway, long story short, we should have scoped because he didn't have ulcers, he had a giant stone in his intestines. None of this has anything to do with Charlie, my horse's symptoms involved regular episodes of mild colic. Not just hmmm could it be a thing type stuff. Just my experience with non ulcers I thought I'd share, even if you didn't actually ask...
    But anyway, I never would have pegged Eros as an ulcer-y horse, but the body worker felt very strongly the other day that he has them. So we'll follow a similar course of treatment and see where we go! She is a vet as well, so I trust her opinions. And he has been kind of grumpy lately.
    Hopefully Eros and Charlie are back to their happy slightly less lazy selves soon!

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  21. I had a pony in the yard who was just psychotic. The most anxious, stressy, spooky animal I had ever seen in my life. Most days one could only work on a 20m circle at the gate. A year of work on the psychological side of things did help, but she was still borderline to ride and would spook badly EVERY ride, usually at nothing ("Champagne sees dead people" became a running joke lol). Then I had a light bulb at last and did an ulcer treatment. It was like flicking a switch. She now show jumps with confidence at shows!

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  22. My horse before May developed ulcers. He had a high forage diet. Probably not as much turnout as he would have liked, but quite a bit. His symptoms?
    - minor colic episodes
    - slightly spooky

    yeah... that was it. I had somehow CONVINCED myself it was ulcers and got him in for scope (required for insurance to cover the meds/colics). It ended up being the right move for him.

    Honestly, after that, I started seriously looking at finding him a home that he would find less stressful. He was just unhappy being a competition horse, even without the ulcers. Now, he happily lives on a small, backyard barn with all the love and turnout he could hope for.

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  23. In 2017 P didn't have standard symptoms, but as a last ditch effort I had him scoped (since it's required for insurance) and it turned out he had the most severe ulcers (2/3 and 3/3 grade ulcers) and was on an extended dose of GG/Sucralfate, and was clear upon re-scope. Before, during and after the treatment I saw zero changes in P. He still hates baths and grooming, getting girthed up, still stopped at jumps (the reason I went the ulcer route ultimately)- nothing ever got better or worse with him.

    When I brought Leo home, I put him on 10 days of the full dose of GG then tapered off and while I can't say whether or not that made a difference in anything (since I didn't know him), I wanted to get off on the right foot. He doesn't mind brushing or bathing, doesn't particularly enjoy being tacked up, but nothing screams ulcers to me.

    That being said, I'm going to talk to my vet about doing a treatment plan similar to yours just to see, since he travels alot (alone also) and I think that if he didn't have them before, that leaving him inside all night alone with no hay/water (requirement pre-scoping), he'd definitely develop them because of that!

    Keep us updated on how C does!

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  24. Oh shiiiiiiiiit. I could write a fucking novel on ulcers. Foster wasn't ulcery from a behavioral sense either, until of course those fuckers got to grade 4 status and then he got girthy. 10 weeks of ulcergard later... anyawys.

    What I want to share with you is that Smitty also got ulcers. Not wanting to spend a small fortune, I went with the Abgard (paste) and Succeed (supplement) for 6 weeks. He was scoped before (diagnosing the ulcers) and after (to confirm they were gone). And it worked. That's my anecdotal evidence for Abgard's efficacy.

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  25. So, June has had ulcers, and needed her teeth done, so I guess all I'm missing is saddle fit issues? Luckily, treating the ulcers and floating the teeth resolved a lot of problems.
    I need to look into products like Abgard and Nexxium, never even heard of them.
    I THOUGHT that in order to effectively treat ulcers it was one tube of Gastrogard or Ulcergard per day for 28-30 days. Like, a full tube. I totally do a half tube for travel and stressful situations to help prevent, but I thought treatment needed a full tube. I may be wrong?
    It seems like there are lots of options and it's just finding out what is best for your own horse and how the results turn out. I hope Charlie is feeling his best in no time!

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  26. Just to be different and stand out from the crowd - I think you and Charlie are doing well. Everyone gets down or disconnected from time to time. With what little information I have on the two of you from this blog, it sounds like you could just need to take a break. Rest does wonders.

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  27. I'm so curious to see ow this all works out! Ulcers are such a god damn mystery to me and I've never seen two horses react or recover in te same way or from te same treatment! It's definitely a puzzle that requires a lot of persistence on the owners part! Scout get's a little unlike himself this time of year too, and he had a bout of anaplasmosis last year around this time. Could be the hot weather that just won't stop... who knows!

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