Wow, where has the last 6 weeks gone? Time has just flown by. Strangely, it feels like we’ve been so busy that we’ve been running to stand still, and struggling , sometimes almost literally, to keep our heads above water. We don’t actually seem to have actually achieved much though.
Colic & Cushings
Back at the end of January Florence had a second bout of colic. It presented slightly differently from the first one, and thankfully she only had to be flushed through once. It was still scarey though! Because we have no idea what is causing Flo to colic, our lovely Vet Gemma ran a whole load of blood tdests. They all came back normal, except one. Cushings Syndrome, or more more correctly PPID, is caused by a benign tumour on the Petuitory Gland. It causes the body to make excess Adrenal Cortical Trophic Hormone (ACTH). This leads to reduced immunity, , increased inflammatory response, increased thirst, excessivd urinatination, excessive sweating, muscled waist img, fat deposits in strange places, heavy, sometimes curly coat that doesn’t shed, and, frighteningly, a predisposition to laminitis. A horses ACTH level should be 28 or less. Florence’s is 39! ! Cushings is actually very common. A vet once told me that the majority of horses over the age of 15 have it to some degree. . Back in the day thdre wasn’t much you could do about Cushings, except manage the symptoms as they arose. Nowadays there’s nedication. . Fantastic!
For the last 6 weeks Florence has been taking 1 tiny tablet a day. They really are small. It controls the ACTH. On Monday the vet will return to take more blood to check if Flo’s ACTH levels have dropped. I’ve definitely noticed less wee, and also less sweating. So fingers crossed.
Florence isn’t the only one who has been causing us some concerns. Quite frankly Sapphire is being a right royal pain in the neck! As well as being intermittently lame, she is being a complete misery. She swings from sulking and doing the full on ‘I want to be alone’ routine, to the full on aggressive bully. The vet can’t find a cause for the lameness, and a full blood screening came back with everything showing as normal. We did put Sapphire on a Tim amount of Bute for a while, but all that happened was that she escaped, and it took Hal and I an hour to catch her!
Sapphire has been so horrible towards Florence, that she kicked the partition wall between their stables out of position. No sooner had Hal mended , and reinforced it, she did it again! We’ve swapped them around now, on the hope she’ll kick it back. No luck so far.
We’ve actually turned them out over night now. It’s a bit wet and cold still, but they all seem happy with the arrangement.
So that’s it. We’ve all survived another winter. Here’s to summer!