I think my old show horse has EPM the parasite that can cause nerve damage and death in horses. Lethal (our horse), was moving stiff and slow yesterday, and this morning he started 'stumbling' and 'drunk walking'.
Of course my vet is at an out of State at a seminar until tomorrow, but I did get a hold of his wife--who has been one of his techs for years and they raise and show horses.
When I told her I had the Marquis she said start him on it, it can't hurt him, it can only help if that is what he has.
We will not be sure until the spinal tap tomorrow. Other possibilities are also not good. She mentioned stroke and other things.
Thank you. We have Possum, woodchuck, LOTS of Raccoons. He started out as my show horse, but over the years he has really become my mother's pet. She is pretty much worried sick about him. He is a 22 year old Quarter Horse gelding. I hope he gets through this, but eventually she will need to accept that he is getting older and he may not be around in 10 years :(
She loves that horse. We used to joke that he is the son she never had.
No signs of colic what so ever. He is actually eating, drinking and going potty normally. Clear eyes, normal breathing. He actually didn't lay down in his stall at all last night. We think he is too scared to lay down, that he won't be able to get back up. There are other signs of EPM. If you lift his head he about falls over.
Just an update the vet was out and drew blood (which he said was conclusive enough-- he no longer does the spinal tap for that), and it is being sent in to the State lab for testing.
In the mean time we are treating him from the EPM, which my vet highly suspects that he has. He gave him some shots, and left bantamine (sp) and a gallon of some stuff I am supposed to give him orally 3x per day.
This is NOT going to be fun. Leathal is BIG and NOT COOL about stuff like this. He about launched me off the ground 4 times for the blood draw. Any ideas on how to give 120cc liquid 3x per day to an unwilling horse?
Glad to hear he is better. Hate to say it but a twitch may work? You can twitch and ear just by holding it. The muzzle if you have one. Coordinate the swallow of the medication with letting go of the twitch? No idea how else.
My mom has issues with 'being mean to horses'. Which, I don't think a twitch is mean, some times it is necessary for their own good-- my mom though is a little off. She freaks out over 'reprimanding' horses in any way.
That is why they are the rotten awful brats that they are, is her spoiling them and not making them mind.
I can't just say 'you spoiled him, you take care of him', because mom is in her 50's and weighs 105 pounds and is just not strong enough to control him at this point.
Shots would be as bad he just has a nasty disposition with vet/farrier work. It really is my mom's fault too, it's not the horse.
Frustrating. I think I may go to Tractor Supply and buy a twitch. I will tell mom she can't come in the barn until I am done, and just do what I need to do to get the medicine down him. He really doesn't have a choice-- it's the meds or he would likely have to be put down.
I have seen bridals that have a hollow bit in them you can inject medication into. It seems like a good idea to me you can possibly put him in a cross tie with the bridal on and then you "inject" the medication into the port and it is squirted into the horses mouth and he can not spit it out at you. maby you can find one through your local feet store or on line.
I prefur to have my Bordeaux with fur instead of a cork and bottle ;)
Hmmm.... I will have to look in to it. The product he doesn't like is DMSO and it is a natural wood based solvent that also acts has a anti-inflamatory and is one of the only things that goes directly to the central nervous system.
It reacts chemically with water and gets super hot. You have to wait until it cools down to administer it.
Update, and thank you to all for the thoughts and pm's. Right now he isn't fighting me 1/3 of what I thought he would be doing. He is pretty sick. Still a lot of the 'ataxia' drunk walking. I could probably knock him over, and he would go down if you turned him even slightly tight.
This is day 3 of the Marquis day 2 for the DMSO and Bantimine. That DMSO is NASTY crap. Not only does it kind of burn your skin, and chemically heat up when mixed with water, but it gives who ever ingests it a 'oniony-garlic scent' and I don't mean in a pleasant roasted garlic way.
I mean, I never knew a horse exhaled so much air but the stench will literally about knock you out. I have a sensitivity to a lot of chemicals and I am gagging as I am dosing him. This stuff also absorbs in to the skin and I know I have had a lot get on my hands and arms (my vet forgot to leave me plastic vet sleeves). I think it has made me lose my appetite-- that or I am just exhausted from all this and my own animals, kids.
Then my mom got sick last night. I am sure about the stress over this horse. She called me at nearly 1 a.m. having a panic attack and chest pains. I went and picked her up last night and she slept at my house. When this is all over I think I need a vacation. With out kids, with out pets, for at least 4 days and 3 nights.
He is actually doing a lot better. The vet ran a bunch of blood tests and it came back negative for EPM and positive for West Nile Virus. It took 8 days to get all the results back from Michigan State though.
The Marquis definitely didn't hurt, and getting the vet out ASAP with the shots and DMSO quickly probably saved him. I guess West Nile actual has more of a 'complete recovery' than EPM.
He still has a few weeks of treatment, but after about 7 days, he greatly improved. No more drunk walking, stumbling and stuff.