10 Steps to Reverse
PHOTOGRAPH of Lochy - Cathy Dee
Take your focus OFF trying to get the horse right and focus on ‘getting it right for the horse’!
Create an area where there is NO GREEN GRASS! Do whatever it takes; initially, it doesn't have to be a large area but this is the KEY.
There are some great ideas on Tracks & Dry Lots here.
You need to make sure they can’t reach under or over fences to nibble on any green shoots whatsoever. Remain on patrol for any emerging greenery.
Source plain grass hay, brown and stalky rather than green and leafy.
Ensure there is NO clover, Lucerne or Rye-grass in it.
Take out all feeds/chaffs that contain Lucerne, Rye or clover, molasses, kelp and herbs.
Invest in some sort of ‘slow feeder’ to slow down the hay consumption so they never run out. Hay such as Oaten, Wheaten, Rhodes, Brown Top, Cocksfoot, Prairie and Timothy are examples of OK sources of hay.
Feed plain feeds, oaten or timothy chaff with any or all of the following: beet, copra, linseed meal. Avoid any processed feeds and soya bean/canola meal which are too high in potassium.
You can add flax seed oil for omega 3s.
Add salt to their feed in addition to supplying a salt lick at a rate of approximately 10gms per 100kgs live-weight.
Unrefined sea salt is good or just plain salt will do until you can source some. I know it sounds a lot but isn't actually for horses and they absolutely don't get enough from a salt lick.
. Feed PremiumMVA (NZ & UK) or Supreme Vit & Min (Australia) this will supply all the essential vitamins and minerals needed when they are on a hay-only diet.
Add Alleviate Gold (high dose) until the symptoms have subsided.
Contact us for guidance about which products to continue with - this depends on other associated symptoms, along with the hay you have sourced.
If one of the symptoms is photophobia (can't stand the light, just like they have a migraine head-ache) then absolutely ensure there is adequate shade and put on a UV mask. Photophobia normally disappears within the first few days on their new diet regime, especially when Alleviate Gold is used.
Light exercise is OK so long as you keep them within their comfort zone. This is where nose-nets can be a big help. Don't expect anything in particular of the horse because increased blood supply with exercise will trigger more episodes and cause distress.
Expect that recovery will take several months and that it will be somewhat erratic. In other words you may be making great progress and then they will have a bad day for some reason. Don't panic just stick to it!
Keep a diary of your observations. It will be very helpful to be able to record your experience for others. Feel free to e-mail Jenny, Val or Nina for moral support! Be sure to include your landline phone number.
Go back over steps 1 - 10 and make sure you are following them meticulously!
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