Equine gastric ulcer syndrome (EGUS) is among the most common causes of equine colic. Colic is the number one killer of horses, besides old age.
Ulcers are a non-idiopathic cause of colic, meaning scientists have been able to determine that ulcers contribute to colic. The majority of horse colic causes, however, are idiopathic, or unknown.
Despite the mystery surrounding idiopathic causes, scientists have established a direct connection between diet and the development of colic in horses.
Natural diet and the equine stomach
The Equus, the modern feral horse, comes from a long line of plains-dwelling animals. Modern horses developed to forage constantly for roughage. Roughage consists of tough, fibrous grasses, leaves, and bark. The horse has long teeth perfectly adapted for the wear and tear of grazing. All sorts of grass, brambles, trees, bushes—the horse will chomp on a wide variety of plants twelve to eighteen hours a day to obtain nutrients and dietary fiber.
The horse’s delicate, small stomach depends on this type of intake. Unlike the human stomach, which produces acid only when we eat, the equine stomach produces hydrochloric acid all the time. As the healthy horse is consistently foraging, its hindgut is consistently maintaining a mesh-like layer of fiber to protect the stomach-lining from acid. Without the proper diet, gastric ulcers in horses will develop as the acid eats away at the stomach lining.
Equine ulcer symptoms
Horse ulcer symptoms include:
• Poor appetite
• Weight loss and poor body condition
• Poor hair coat
• Mild colic
• Mental dullness or attitude changes
• Poor performance
• Lying down more than normal
Rresistance to grooming and poor hoof quality as signs to look for. Symptoms indicate your horse is under an immense amount of discomfort and—if ulcers go unchecked—pain.
Equine colic symptoms
Unchecked ulcers may lead to horse colic. Horse colic signs include:
• Persistent movement (even in the stall);
• Frequently pawing at the ground with a forelimb;
• Repetitively lying down and getting back up;
• Kicking at the belly
• Frequently turning the head to the flank
The biorhythms of a horse revolve around its grazing lifestyle. To prevent the development of ulcers in horses and colic, horse owners must try to come as close as we can to natural feed for our horses. In todays modern world this is extremely difficult. An alternative is to treat and prevent colic related gastric ulcers in horse with an equine medication available online with Abler Equine Medication.