Thursday, September 5, 2013

Positive Is Sometimes A Negative

This post was going to be something like what I posted on facebook earlier today. Something like this:

Nothing like forking over a wad of cash to the vet and moving a butt load of hay to remind you just how much you wub your pohney.

He may be 24 but he still acts like a 2 year old sometimes!
I had to have the vet out for Ghazal yesterday. He was three leg lame and even though I was fairly certain it was an abscess it had been bothering him long enough that I decided a veterinarian intervention was needed. Of course the abscess popped just while the vet was using the hoof testers which tells you how close it was to popping on it's own anyways. But, Ghazal is already feeling tons better and he got some bute to help as well.

While the vet was there I decided to get some real help dealing with his sweet itch. Poor boy has hardly no mane left at all and about half of his tail. He just goes out to the nearest tree and scratches and scratches. So we have some new meds to try and see if they help. The meds pretty much doubled the vet bill, though, but the old guy is worth it. I know I don't talk about him much on here as he predates online blogs but believe me had I started writing this blog 20 years ago there would be all kinds of sappy, silly stories about the guy. I don't get to mess with Zel a lot these days but I still love him with all my heart and I owe it to him to make sure he has the best retirement possible.

So my post would have ended there if it weren't for the call from the vet I got earlier this evening, right after we finished moving hay. Loki tested "highly positive" (The vet's words.) for EPM. She gave me a couple of options for treatment to think about and I am supposed to let her know what I want to do tomorrow.

Get better soon buddy.
I guess I'm not surprised. I could tell there was just something not quite right going on. He's not lame but just not quite right either. The good news is we've caught it very early and there doesn't seem to be any significant neurological damage at this point. The bad news is the treatments are expensive. One is really, really expensive and one isn't too bad but it will still put me over the top, financially. So the plan is probably going to be to move Loki to my sister's at least until the spring. I will pay significantly less in board and will thus be able to afford treatments much easier.

I'm not 100% sure about this vet. This is a different vet than from the one who treated Ghazal. I think I am going to call the vet who saw Ghazal tomorrow and ask for a second opinion on treatments. I wish my old vet were here. It really sucks going from a vet with whom you've had a good relationship and whom you trust to having to find somebody new.

I have to admit I've shed a few tears. I know this isn't the "end of the world" or anything but I'm still feeling very weepy about it. For now, though, I'm going to try my hardest to focus on the positives. We caught it early, Loki will most likely be just fine and with moving him to my sister's I'll get to see Ghazal a lot more, not to mention my sister who has always had a shoulder to lean on when I've needed it.

23 comments:

  1. :( I'm so sorry. I'm really glad that you guys caught it early and that you can help him out. I think there is another blog Year with horses or something like that, she has an EPM horse. Maybe check it out.

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    1. Thanks. I've been doing so much research on EPM my head is spinning!

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  2. I'm sorry. :( We just got a Thoroughbred in our barn that has EPM. Not fun!!!!! On another note, I know all about sweet itch from Red. :P Skin so soft fly spray mixture works better on them, put listerine in their manes and tails to prevent rubbing. Horseman's dream makes a product called "Fung-away" that works really well. :) If you need any tips on it feel free to email me. I seem to have Red's knocked out as much as possible.

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    1. Thanks. I'll see how these new meds work and if not so well I might shoot you an email to get some more ideas.

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  3. I really hate to hear that but before you decide on any treatments, AT LEAST LOOK AT/CONSIDER the pathogenes. http://pathogenes.com/ (go to products, and orogin)

    Vets can't technically recommend it to you first because it's not yet FDA approved (it's on its way there- all of the clinical studies were highly safe and effective), it's 150$ for 10 days (so if it doesn't work, you didn't lose that much money and you can go on the more expensive treatment). Unless Loki is very neurological (didn't sound like it) I'd really recommend it. Bring it up to your vet (and get a second opinion) and see what they say. Usually when you mention it, they're like 'thank god you mentioned it, yes I recommend it!' (Like I said, legally, they can't really recommend it first since it's not FDA approved). You do have to have your vet call and OK them shipping the meds out to you, but if you can get your vet do it quickly they can ship it to you pretty fast.

    I'm really sorry to hear about Loki, I was hoping it wasn't but from the symptoms he's had it just kind of sounded like Wiz and there's been a ton of it this year. BUT, the good thing is, you caught it early before it ate him up. But like I said, I really recommend the pathogenes stuff over the more expensive meds. Two of the horses at my barn have successfully been treated on the pathogenes and looked much better in just 10 days. The other horse was more neurological, but she's spent 1000s and six months later he's just now getting any better. Also, our massage therapist's horse almost died to EPM, even on the old meds, and the pathogenes stuff is really the only thing that worked and got her horse back into full time work. It's great stuff!!!

    Ugh they need to pay me to advertise for them! :) But really I'm just so grateful that the stuff was so inexpensive and worked so quickly and now I'm actually getting ready to go off and cross country school! Wiz is feeling so much better, so I hope the same to Loki!!

    Oh, and sorry to hear about Ghazal but I hope he's feeling much better as well. And sorry for writing a novel :) I just feel so bad because my first reactions were "OMG I CANT AFFORD IT MY HORSE IS GOING TO DIE HOW CAN I GET THESE MEDS WHAT AM I GOING TO DO" and in retrospect, I way over reacted, ha.

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    1. So I talked to my vet and she was very hesitant to try a drug that hasn't been FDA approved yet. I am getting a second opinion from a different vet but unfortunately it will probably take another week or so before I can get him out. The good thing is Loki is feeling really good right now. His gaits and everything are feeling very normal so even if we have to do the longer treatment I'm hopeful that we will be able to keep in at least some light work.

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  4. Also, since he doesn't sound like he has really clinical/dangerous symptoms, I'd continue to ride him. All the vets I've talked to said it's imperative to keep them in work to keep the neurological pathways working. The only reason they don't recommend you ride them I when they get really bad and can barely walk, just because they can trip and fall on you. My vet said it was hard to convince clients to ride their horses because they felt 'off,' but he said the more you ride them (if they're getting treated anyway) the stronger they get and the better off you'll be.

    I just want you guys to not give up and fight this because you win it!!

    (for example, my trainer's advanced horse was uncharacteristically hitting rails and scoring terribly in dressage. He later crashed through a fence so she stopped showing him for a while until one of her trainers suggested it might be EPM. She had him tested- EPM. Less than a month after treatment with Pathogenes, he went back to show last weekend and got 5th at Prelim! :) It's very possible to beat it!)

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    1. I am planning on still riding although we will limit jumping to just small stuff at the most. Once I move to my sister's there won't be any place to jump anyways unless we trailer to my trainer's for lessons. But, I'm going to continue to ride as much as we can.

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  5. So sorry to hear about Loki's diagnosis. I hope that you are able to get him feeling better soon!

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  6. I didn't realize you had an old guy, too -- very cool! I would love to hear more about him sometime. :)

    And ohhh, I am sorry to hear that Loki has not been quite right and that this is the diagnosis. Sounds like you at least have a plan of action. I hope the treatment goes as smoothly, cheaply, and successfully as possible.

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    1. Yes, Ghazal is my very first baby, I've had him since he was a two year old. He's spoiled, silly and absolutely every one of his quirks/faults/bad manners can be blamed on me but I love him to death and he pretty much gets away with whatever he wants as long as no one is in danger.

      Thanks. Loki is doing pretty well right now so I'm hopeful this is just a temporary set back.

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  7. So sorry about Loki... :( Hope he gets better. My Mom and I like to use a essential oils for stuff, so every time I hear about horses getting sick, i check out what will work. here's a list:
    Valor
    Immupower oil blend
    Palo Santo
    Frankincense
    Raindrop Technique--- http://paolashorseblog.blogspot.com/2013/05/raindrop-technique-for-horses-part-1.html

    http://paolashorseblog.blogspot.com/2013/05/raindrop-technique-for-horses-part-2.html

    Also, my Mom writes about these oils and can tell you more about them and how to order them: http://joshealthcorner.blogspot.com/

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    1. The vet gave me some stuff called Dermoscent Essential 6. http://discountpet.ecrater.com/p/9454949/dermoscent-essential-6-spot-on-skin-care-for It sounds similar, maybe? We'll see how it goes and then try something else if it doesn't work.

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    2. Hope it works well for you guys.

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  8. I'm sorry to hear about the EPM. I feel like Alchemy Eventing tried a new treatment that wasn't very expensive? Getting a 2nd opinion is almost always a good idea.

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    1. Yes, I've looked into the other treatment. It sounds very promising but b/c it hasn't gotten FDA approval yet my vet is reluctant to try it. But, we'll see what the next vet thinks.

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  9. Hugs! Focus on the good news- you caught it early and he will be ok! :)

    Nice to see your old guy making an appearance on here :)

    Yay for a sister to lean on when needed!!

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