I’ve posted on the forums too many times regarding my problem child (13 YO OTTB).
Quick Recap - Prior to three years ago I had no trouble keeping weight on this horse though he always had tummy troubles in the winter - he’d usually show colic signs and we’d treat with omperzole and be on our way - but starting two winters ago (Following barn change - barn a) had issues with him losing weight - was ulcers (verified by scope) treated with succeed and omperazole (for several months). Since then I haven’t been able to get this horse back to a good weight - its gotten better but not great.
Horse seemed to have issues again second winter at barn A and hay quality wasn’t ideal - very stemmy - they offered alfalfa but he didn’t seem to want to eat it. Also had issues getting him to finish grain consistently. At this point I tried a lot of ‘hind gut’ specific remedies (equisure, oil, safflower oil, succeed, corn and molasses free grain, alfalfa pellets). My conclusion is that the horse doesn’t winter well and I live in the midwest. I can’t change availability of grass pasture in the winter but I could get him out of a stall 15 hours a day in the winter months.
I moved the horse this summer so he’s now out 24/7 with one friend on an acre pasture with shelter and an attached grass pasture. Horse gets - 4lbs of senior + 1lb RB + empower boost twice daily and all the 2nd/3rd cut, soft (not stemmy) grass hay he can get + daily pasture in the summer. Horse started gaining weight post move. Horse was eating all of his grain and seemed in good spirits.
Around the move I also tested horse for cushings (becauase I’d had trouble keep weight on him thought it might be something more). Test did come back positive and hes now on 1/2 tab of prascend (low dose due to not super high test results). I was hoping the prascend may help with weight gain/topline but doesnt seem to have made a huge difference.
Since this summer horse has become pickier (not always finishing grain) and weight gain seems to have stalled and maybe even gone the opposite direction. I’m really thinking now its obvious this horse doesnt do well on hay (vs grass) and has hind gut issues.
So what do I do - Over the months/years I’ve tried succeed - equipsure - safflower oil - ulcer eraser - regular oil - outlast - alfalfa pellets - abler’s Sucralfate - ompreazole - molasses and corn free grain. I couldn’t get him to eat the equisure - but tempted to try agan this year? He is still eating better than he did at Barn A. Im curious to try succeed again but have never seen great results in the past. Safflower oil was suggested by a vet but again no real results in the past.
The only time I tried ablers Sucralfate was during the most recent move over the summer and that is when he gained the most weight so I’m curious to try that again.
Also curious to try adding Chaste berry supplement to see if that helps?
How have people managed hind gut problem horses successfully long term? I was really hoping if i moved this guy and got him better quality hay and outside 24/7 some of his issues would resolve and while he does seem to be doing better I’m panicking its not getter better/faster. I know i could feed more grain but I also am not sure that is the smartest option with this horse- I have fed him up to 12 lbs of purina and he still didn’t put on that much weight.