What should you feed a horse with Cushings?

Published by Charlie Davidson on

What should you feed a horse with Cushings?

Horses and ponies diagnosed with PPID/Cushing’s Disease should be fed a low sugar and starch diet….Which Dengie Feeds are suitable to feed a horse with PPID/Cushing’s Disease?

  1. Alfa-A Molasses Free – 6.5% (NSC ‘as fed’)
  2. Alfa-A Oil – 6.5% (NSC ‘as fed’)
  3. Healthy Tummy – 6.5% (NSC ‘as fed’)
  4. Alfa-Beet – 7% (NSC ‘as fed’)

What grain should I feed my horse with Cushings?

While cool-season grasses, such as orchard grass or timothy, are typically higher in NSC. Alfalfa averages 10-15% NSC, and oat hay is very high, averaging 22%. Alfalfa can be a good option for a horse with Cushings if they are a hard time holding their weight because it is more calorie-dense than grass hay.

Can horses with PPID eat grass?

Choose forage wisely. Grass hays are typically best for horses with PPID and IR; however, alfalfa generally tests as having lower NSC than grass hays and might be a good option in some situations. You can feed these instead of some or all of your other forage to reduce the diet’s overall NSC.

What treats can a horse with Cushings have?

Starchy or sugary treats will raise insulin to dangerous levels, increasing laminitis risk. Horses with Cushing’s disease also require a low starch/low sugar diet….Safe to feed, generally:

  • Apples.
  • Apricots (without the pit)
  • Bananas (including the peel)
  • Beets.
  • Berries.
  • Carrots.
  • Celery.
  • Cherries.

Can horses with Cushings eat carrots?

Unfortunately most commercially made horse treats, as well as apples and carrots, can be high in sugar. This presents a problem with horses that have Cushing’s disease, or Insulin Resistance/Metabolic Syndrome, as those horses’ sugar and starch intake must be limited.

What happens if Cushing’s is left untreated in horses?

If a horse has untreated Cushing’s Disease, it is more likely to develop laminitis and the laminitis will be more difficult to control. If an equine has any of the clinical signs suggestive of Cushing’s, a blood sample can be taken to check ACTH levels in the blood.

Can horses with Cushings be on grass?

Pasture grasses can have a high NSC content, especially during the spring and fall seasons, and the risk of colic and laminitis is greater when horses are on pasture. Since laminitis and founder are more common in horses with Cushing’s disease, pasture grazing should be severely limited or totally avoided.

Can horses with Cushings eat hay?

It has a high nutrient and fat content, is soft, and easily digestible, and has a low NSC level of 11.7%. Because most horses that get Cushing’s are middle-aged or older, this Senior feed can replace hay and be fed as the sole feed or with hay.

How long can horses live with Cushing’s?

Vets encourage owners of Cushing’s horses to decrease the amount of carbohydrates they feed (e.g., grains or other concentrates), maintain the horse at a healthy body condition score, and ensure his diet is properly balanced. Well-managed horses should live about five to seven years or more past diagnosis.

What should a horse with Cushings not eat?

Also, because horses with Cushing’s are more prone to insulin resistance and high blood sugar, feeds and forages with higher non-structural carbohydrates (NSC) should be avoided. NSC’s are what make up the starches and sugars in your horses feed and forage.

How long can horses live with Cushing’s disease?

Do horses with Cushings suffer?

In a horse suffering from Cushing’s disease, there either is not enough dopamine present or the body is not adequately recognizing it. This has an effect on the adrenal glands and the kidneys, and the horse becomes prone to having infections. In severe cases, Cushing’s disease can cause neurologic disease.

What should I Feed my horse with PPID?

Regardless of the answers to these questions, horses with PPID should be fed a primarily forage diet that will maintain (or regain) ideal body condition and to avoid obesity, which will worsen insulin resistance. Not all horses affected with PPID also have insulin resistance.

Can a horse with PPID do forced exercise?

Whenever possible, horses with PPID should be allowed turnout time, as exercise improves insulin sensitivity. Forced exercise or work should be reserved for horses that do not have active laminitis and are free of musculoskeletal disorders.

What is the role of insulin in horses with PPID?

But in horses with PPID, especially those not considered to be at risk of IR, IR is commonly the result of the PPID. Insulin’s major role in the body is to signal cells to take up glucose in order to maintain circulating blood glucose levels within a relatively tight range.

Can a horse have pituitary pars intermedia dysfunction?

Feeding horses with pituitary pars intermedia dysfunction (PPID), also known as equine Cushing’s disease, can sometimes be difficult because horses affected with PPID are often older, underweight, and may have insulin resistance with or without recurrent laminitis.

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