‘Spydee’ was a wreck!
The video shows all the classic signs of ‘head-flicking/shaking’.
Sarah had been struggling with her horse ‘Spydee’ for 2 years. She is happy to share this story in the hope that others will benefit.
"‘Spydee’ is an 18 year old Standardbred that I purchased 9 years ago. We started doing forest rides about one year after I started him under saddle and we both loved it and had some beautiful adventures together.
In April 2018 he became reluctant to float and in retrospect I believe there were earlier signs than this that there was something amiss. I stopped all work and observed. In June I went out to feed him and he was a wreck. I could not even get anywhere near him safely.
It took me 3 months to get a diagnosis during which time I seriously considered putting him down as he was in such obvious discomfort. The video from this time shows all his classic symptoms: Head tossing, Rubbing his nose on his leg, Putting his nose to the ground and Blowing.
It got to the point where the only relief he had was nasal stimulation and had to keep his head down grazing. I did not see him lying down or at rest during this period.
I got a second vet in and he also diagnosed head shaking but suggested a supplement containing Magnesium, Vitamin B and Tryptophan. Within a week I noticed a change and within 2 he was able to roll and lie down for a short period.
However the head-shaking was still there and I had to keep increasing the dose. I tried alternative therapy and the therapist (who used cold laser and Bowen to good effect) suggested that because he had responded to the supplement, it might be a dietary issue and suggested I look at Calm Healthy Horses.
At Jenny's suggestion I got a blood test. Whilst ‘Spydee’s results came back within the normal range they gave the clues to Jenny and Vicky. So I decided to forge on with their recommendations.
I removed all Lucerne, the commercial pellets and molasses from his diet. I started him on Supreme Vit & Min, GrazeEzy, SOS and plus added salt in June 2019. I kept him in the paddocks as I didn’t want him to be cooped up.
Within weeks I walked out to find ‘Spydee’ laying with his buddy, both sunning themselves after their morning feed. I still tear up just thinking about it.
About three months ago I showed him his saddle blanket and saddle. He didn't scarper so I saddled him up and led him around. At one point in the paddock he stopped and wasn't keen to move on.
I realised we were standing where I normally mounted. I called for my husband just in case and put my foot in the stirrup. There was no objection so I mounted and he moved off. I rode for 5 minutes, got off and thanked him. We now ride for up to an hour a couple of times a week.
The vet came recently and was amazed that I was back to riding but agreed that he was ready.
I tell his story to anyone who will listen. I would have been quite happy to watch ‘Spydee’ being a Calm, Healthy Horse without ever riding him again.
Being able to ride him is an absolute gift, mostly because it shows the extent of his progress and healing.
‘Spydee’ and his buddy remain on Graze Ezy and Supreme daily, mixed into soaked beets and then oaten chaff added. Their free choice hay is oaten. They do graze on some grass which fortunately hasn’t been affecting him.
Sarah Adams, Australia