Category Archives: Handy Tips

Sand in the Gut.






This is pretty serious.

My pony, Slick, has had sand in his gut for a month now.

At first, he was improving so we figured it was going to be OK – and we still think he will be OK.  BUT, getting rid of the sand isn’t as easy as I had hoped.

DIAGNOSING SAND IN THE GUT

I had been out of town and when I came back, I noticed that Slick had runny manure all over his back legs and tail.

Yuk.

And then I felt his spine and realized that under his fluffy coat, he was losing weight.

I called the vet.

On the phone, the vet diagnosed it as ‘probably sand in his gut’.

But our dirt isn’t sandy?…

Hmmmm.

I told him that none of my horses have ever had sand in their gut nor even sand in their manure.

The vet told me to do the baggies test.

(That is where you scoop up a small piece of manure in a baggie, pour water on top, let it dissolve and then hold the baggie diagonally so that the sand will be heavier and form on the bottom corner.)

I saw no sand after the baggie test.

See… I knew it.  No sand.  We had no sand here.

BUT I WAS WRONG.

When the vet arrived, he listened to Slick’s sides for quite a while.  He said he was listening for the sound of an ‘ocean wave’.

That ‘ocean wave’ sound is the sand moving about in the gut.

If a horse has diarrhea along with the ‘whooshing sound’, then he has a bad sand buildup because the solid manure cannot pass, only liquid.

The next phase is sand colic…

This is not good.

Slick has sand in his gut and diarrhea.

He was losing weight because the sand is heavy and painful in the gut – he didn’t want to eat much.

Yikes.

FIX IT BEFORE IT TURNS INTO SAND COLIC!

If a horse has sand in his gut, it is imperative to have the horse eat something sticky which will clear the sand out along with the sticky matter as it ventures through the equine GI tract.

Most vets recommend psyllium.

My old tyme vet recommends a week of tapioca pearls once a month…  I used to do this religiously but fell out of the habit.

Oy.

(I don’t know if Chia is sticky enough… even though Chia becomes very gooey when wet, it clearly did not stop Slick from having sand buildup.)

WHAT TO DO.

My vet told me to get psyllium and feed it three times a day in very wet, soaked beet pulp pellets.

So, we ran out to Tractor Supply and got a $39 (tiny) bucket of psyllium.

I fed it for a week.

Slick got markedly better!

We still heard the ‘waves’ in his gut, but only on one side.

…then I ran out of the very expensive psyllium.

Instead of buying the small expensive tub again, I bought 50lbs online, thinking I would save money and give it to Slick and all of my other horses, too.

The 50lbs box arrived.

It looked and smelled just like the other product.

I fed it to Slick 3 times a day for two weeks.

He got worse.

???

TODAY

Today I am going back out and getting another two tubs of the expensive psyllium product and I will let you know if he gets better.

If he does, then I know that not all psyllium products are alike.

I will also tell you what works and what doesn’t…

MORE SAND?  HOW?  WHY?

How could he have gotten worse when we had one side cleared?

Is he eating more sand?  Why?

From what I have read and what my vet has said for horses who do not live in a sandy environment but still have sand in the gut – the causes are unknown.   Maybe some horses eat dirt out of a need for minerals… maybe out of boredom…  No one knows.

I put out extra minerals and have given Slick free choice of 3 different types of hay.

The vet tried to put me at ease by saying that perhaps the new gut whoosh sound is actually a larger chunk of harder sand that may have become loose – which is actually good.

DIRT VS SAND

Don’t be like me… Ignorant.

‘I don’t have sand, I have dirt.’

It never occurred to me that he would ingest dirt and become sick.

Don’t do what I did because you don’t think sand colic applies to you.

It could happen – even on dirt.

Know the signs… diarrhea, loss of weight and a ‘whoosing’ sound in the gut.

Get some tapioca and feed it for a week, once a month.

Or, get some good psyllium and feed it as a precautionary measure occasionally.  My vet also said that he has head that Metamucil works just was well as psyllium (- but I’m not willing to try that until he is better for sure.)

As soon as I am done with my little test here, I will tell you which type works

…and which type – not so much.

 

HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth… if you like this, please pass it around!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Grey Thursday, Black Friday… How about GREEN WEDNESDAY!: Green for Saving Money!!


Wednesday, November 21st, 2012 | Filed under Handy Tips




I’m not one to go outside and shop.

Maybe once and a while… but not often and absolutely not during big sales.

Agggh.

So imagine my delight when 2 wonderful sales popped into my inbox!

Actually,  only one popped into my inbox.

The other one I found when I went a huntin’ online…

First, though… I was really tempted to purchase these boots from Equestrian Collection.  But, I don’t really have that kind of excess money AND I really don’t ever ride in foul weather.

But, I liked them.

I just wondered if maybe they would be too tall for my stumpy legs.

Dunno.

I think these are a good deal because there is only one pair left – and it just happens to be my size.

Sigh.

Anyone have these boots? I loved them but I really don’t ride in foul weather and I’m betting they are too tall (and elegant) for my stumpy legs…

DEALS!

OK, for those of you who feed Chia, I found a place that is less expensive than the place that donates to the Bucket Fund.  So, even though I would prefer to have donations to the BF, this place is actually less expensive.  And, they have free shipping!

So, you might want to check them out.

Click here or click the image below.  NO AFFILIATION.

Click image to go to the website. No affiliation.  I have never ordered from them and know nothing about the company.  But, the prices are nice!

MY FAVORITE DEAL!

You all may have heard me wax lyrically about Equion from Enzion.

It is a no-frills supplement that works incredibly well for overall food absorption, coat and hoof health (reproductive health as well).

This is the stuff that when my foals and youngsters would enter training all shiny and gorgeous – my trainers asked me, “WHAT is your secret?!”.

I highly recommend it.  I’ve been using it for 20 years and I can absolutely tell when I run out…  The results are obvious.

I also use their free choice Mineral Salts.

Here’s the sweet deal…

For the next few days (Nov 22 – 27), shipping is FREE!

That is H-U-G-E if you buy in bulk like I try to do.

So, I’m passing on this sale.

Again, no affiliation.  I just love the product!

Click to go to this sale!

 

If any of you find any wonderful deals over this holiday, please email me and I’ll post them!!

(Be careful out there…!)

Remember the TWH mare from the Castaic Shelter that we helped save?! Well, here she is with her new friend, Sundown. Life is good! Her new name is “Allie”.

HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth… if you like this, please pass it around!

 

 

CLICK image for the Bucket Fund!

.

 

Copyright

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.


Supporting The Bucket Fund through Amazon Smile
Please choose HORSE AND MAN, INC when you shop via Amazon Smile through this link.


Riding Warehouse
Your purchase with Riding Warehouse through this link helps the Bucket Fund!



HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth... if you like this, please pass it around!