My trusted OTTB, Dusty and I just completed a 2 day horse trial on the weekend. We actually achieved a great result with a 4th overall placing, but something was just not right.
I sensed the vibes from Dusty a few days before we hit the road for the big event. I started to get a little concerned a couple of weeks ago when he showed little interest in his feed. I actually had to make him eat which is so unlike Dusty who has always had a good appetite and constantly looking for a treat that he knows might be in my jeans pocket.
Another sign that concerned me was how girthy he was when I saddled him up on the first day of the trials.
I mentioned these symptoms to my friends during the competition and the verdict was unanimous. It sounds like Dusty may have gastric ulcers.
Could this be the case?
As soon as I arrived back at the ranch, I couldn’t wait to google gastric ulcers. The more I read the more I was convinced Dusty was suffering with Equine Gastric Ulcer Syndrome EGUS. I know I could get a more definitive answer if I got my Vet to perform an endoscope. Apart from the cost it is a very invasive procedure that I was not prepared for Dusty to endure.
My next task was to find out what the treatment was for equine gastric ulcers. My research led me to Omeprazole for horses. That was the easy part.
How do I know what is best for my Dusty? There are so many products on the market in so many forms with price tags that I am sure only an Arabian Prince could afford.
What a dilemma, I knew my horse was suffering and I couldn’t bear to make him go through his training regime knowing he was in discomfort.
Then I heard it! That familiar ‘Ting’ sound when you get a message on Facebook. I grabbed my phone and it was like she had been reading my mind. There was a message from my good friend Betsy who had sent me a link for a website where she had found a product called Abprazole which she had used on her mare who had similar symptoms to Dusty and had seen great results. I read some of the product reviews and soon realized Dusty was not alone. It makes sense to me now when you think about what we expect from our equine friends especially the Performance kind. Heavy training schedules, trailing on long journeys to events, rigors of competing all lead to stress and stress is a major cause of equine gastric ulcers.
I was sold. The prices were very affordable and they offered free shipping for registered mail. But wait, how many would I need? Plus Dusty was off his feed and the website said mix Abprazole with feed. I need some more help. I went straight to the ‘Contact Us’ page at Abler sent a message to firstname.lastname@example.org. Within 24 hours I had a response from one of their horse experts who recommended AbGard to start, which is Abler’s paste form of omeprazole. Abler also provided information about their Dosage calculator so I knew how many syringes and packets for treatment and maintenance regime to buy. I ordered some of the paste to kick start Dusty’s treatment and also ordered the granule form, Abprazole that you just sprinkle on feed for when Dusty is back to his normal self and eating habits.
My package arrived within days and I started Dusty on the AbGard syringes. After 2 weeks I have seen a massive change in Dusty’s behavior. He is eating all his feed with the added blue pop rocks. No flinching when I put his saddle on and I am sure we will be in the winner’s circle at our next event.
Thanks to Abler I now have my horse back and he is healthy and happy.