Blog Archives
This is a space where all of us horse addicts can get together to discuss some serious topics related to horse health. I will be posting two to three answers a week to the questions you have about your horse’s health related issues. Keep in mind these are only my opinions and they are for informational purposes only. Please consult your veterinarian before treating your horse or pony for any ailment.
In addition to answering questions from you I will be sharing some of the many articles that I have written. Also, I will try to keep you up to date on the latest developments in the world of equine health and nutrition.
We also welcome any health questions you may have about your canine companion!
- Dr. Lydia Gray
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Licking Paws

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My 10 year old Jack Russell has recently started licking his paws. A friend told me this can be caused by a reaction to yeast in foods and that I should switch him to something higher in protein and lower

Posted in Canine Ask the Vet

How To Handle Headshaking

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My horse suffers each spring and summer from something that causes her to snap or toss her head and sneeze or snort/blow out through her nose very strongly and in succession. Sometimes she even rubs the inside of her upper

Posted in Ask the Vet, Behavior

Managing Polysaccharide Storage Myopathy (PSSM) in Your Horse

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My horse was just diagnosed with Equine Polysaccharide Storage Myopathy, he is now on Poulin Grain Carb Safe. Can you explain more about this, and how to keep the total carbohydrate level at 12% or below? Thank you. – SK,

Posted in Diseases and Conditions

Heaves in Horses – What to do?

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I have a 10 year old 1/2 Percheron 1/2 Quarter Horse mare, and we live in the Midwest outside of Chicago. My mare suffers from severe seasonal allergies – she is the worst in spring/fall. She will cough, have a

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Posted in Diseases and Conditions

Psyllium: To Wet Or Not To Wet

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I have an Arabian mare that I just moved to a farm that has very sandy pastures. She’s not brought into her stall much so she is fed her hay and grain outside, and we also have some grass that

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Posted in Ask the Vet

Is Water Softener Salt Ok for Horses?

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Is water softener block salt okay for horses. I bought some and it contains brine, and they told me it was okay. – CM, Illinois Dear CM, This was an interesting question that, quite truthfully, I had never thought about

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Posted in Ask the Vet, Seasonal Horse Care

Do fly control supplements really work?

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I board my horse at a facility with approximately 30 other horses. There is adequate pasture space for all. And fairly good manure management. My question is, do fly repellent supplements work? I know that for larval killer, all horses

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Posted in Ask the Vet

Choosing a Flea Preventative

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What is the most effective flea med available? BG, Texas Dear BG, Unfortunately, there’s not really “one” most effective flea product. Because different products contain different active ingredients, they all work a little differently. It’s up to you and your

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Posted in Canine Ask the Vet

Ponies and Pasture: The “Perfect Storm”

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I have an eleven year old Shetland pony that is morbidly obese. He rates at an eight on the Henneke scale and poorly tolerates even light exercise. He has been examined by my vet and has no physical condition to

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Posted in Ask the Vet, Nutrition

The In’s and Out’s of Popped Splints

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My young two year old warmblood has very small splints on both front legs. There is one on each leg up front. I am wondering if those splints will grow over time when he is being jumped and worked on

Posted in Lameness

Impaction Colic in horses: how to keep things flowing

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“I have a 10 year old Reg Tennessee Walker Mare. She has had impaction twice in the last 6 months. I was able to clear the impaction and she went back to being herself. However, friends have suggested feeding her Metamucil to keep things flowing…”

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Posted in Ask the Vet, Misc. Topics

Barefoot or shod: what’s right for YOUR horse?

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“Hello Dr. Gray. I am writing today in regards to shoeing. There seems to be a trend towards riding barefoot. A huge article just came out in Dressage Today magazine about Shannon Peters taking a few of her top performers barefoot. I am intrigued by this concept because I have been taught that horses always need shoes for added stability. The thought of riding without shoes is equal to the sin of jumping without a helmet. Should my training level dressage gelding go barefoot?…”

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Posted in Ask the Farrier, Skin, Coat & Hooves

Heartworm Testing

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“Why does my dog need a heartworm test every year? Can’t I just buy the preventive from you without a prescription? – ER, Vermont”

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Posted in Ask the Vet, Canine Ask the Vet

Skin Allergies: Sweet Itch

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My horse is 15 years old and gets sweet itch every spring. Someone told me to add Flax seed meal to her diet. I’ve started that this winter. I’ve noticed a growth in her mane and tail but was wondering

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Posted in Ask the Vet, Skin, Coat & Hooves

Deworming Q & A

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Question: “I’m looking for the 3-way rotation chart. Can you report this on your website?”

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Posted in Ask the Vet, Seasonal Horse Care

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Jen and Tally
Apparently I've been obsessed with horses since I was born, and I used to beg for pony rides on a regular basis. I started showing in 4-H, progressed to equitation and jumpers in high school and rode on the IHSA team in college where I also discovered the joys...

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