Gastric ulcers are incredibly common amongst horses today, due largely to the way in which they are managed and kept. Between 60 and 90% of horses will suffer gastric ulcers at some point – the numbers vary so greatly because the prevalence of ulcers varies between disciplines. No matter how you look at it, that’s a staggering statistic!
The prevalence of gastric ulcers and other gut disturbances is why we at EquiNutritive, provide products that always have gut health incorporated into them. Gut health is at the core of horse health and if the gut is well cared for then other niggling issues tend to dissipate.
We’d like to share with you some symptoms of gastric ulcers to watch out for, a few top tips for avoiding gastric ulcers and some ideas for rebalancing gut health if your horse has suffered from the condition.
Signs of gastric ulcers can be very subtle and hard to spot and the condition also shares symptoms with a number of other ailments. The best thing to do is know your horses ‘normal’ and then keep a look out for any changes that might suggest a developing problem, such as:
Reducing The Risk:
Horses have evolved to graze and consume forage for 18 hours a day. Modern day horse keeping practices don’t normally allow for that and so in order to offset that, some management strategies should be implemented to allow the gut to function as normally as possible. To reduce the risk of gastric ulcers, consider the following:
Getting the Balance Back:
When a horse has been unwell, such as with colic or gastric ulcers, the gastrointestinal system usually falls out of a healthy balance. The microbial populations have been disrupted, and the stomach may be tender from the presence of ulcers. If you suspect that your horse has ulcers, it is necessary to confirm the suspicion with a visit from you vet, who will scope the horse to assess the problem. If your horse does have ulcers it is likely that it will be put onto Gastrogard to resolve the issue. To help soothe the pain of gastric ulcers both during and after veterinary treatment and to rebalance the gut, you can try the following:
Has your horse had gastric ulcers? Do you take steps to prevent them? Share you stories and strategies with us in the comments below.
Comments will be approved before showing up.