The onset of Laminitis can be sudden for many horses and it can be a very overwhelming and stressful time for caring owners. There is so much conflicting advice out there and it can be confusing to know where to start, especially in the heat of the first few days!
Here is a guide to get you started on the path to recovery.
Implement the Emergency diet immediately. This diet strips all additional sugars and starch from the diet and gives you space to breath while you arrange the other feeds, supplements and management practices. Immediately stop all other feeds, treats and supplements.
Talk to your vet about obtaining an accurate diagnosis. Laminitis can be caused by multiple factors, the most common two are;
PPID is managed with drug therapy, EMS with diet. If they both occur together which is common you will need to address both treatments.
Find a good Farrier/Trimmer who is experienced with Laminitis rehab.
The hooves must be trimmed according to the internal structures. If your budget allows get radiographs to determine the positioning of the pedal bone inside the hoof, this will help your Trimmer to give the best trim possible, it also will help to give you a more accurate prognosis based on the degree of damage and rotation of the Pedal bone inside the hoof.
If you do radiographs make sure your vet puts markers on the hoof so the dorsal wall, coronet band and tip of the frog can be easily identified on the films.
Finding a Vet and Farrier/Trimmer who work together is ideal.
Hoof trims in the early stages should be performed every 2 weeks and its very beneficial for the horse to wear hoof protection in the form of boots and pads. Movement is important and if the horse isn’t comfortable it won’t move. Boots can help encourage movement and therefore blood flow and healing. The horse will need somewhere comfortable to stand and lie down, ideally sand or other soft, non edible material.
Avoid more than a couple of days of NSAID (Bute) treatment. If the horse is sore and the hooves are unstable, the last thing you want is for pain to be blocked as the horse may do even more damage to the feet if it starts moving around too soon. NSAID’s can also cause stomach upset and interfere with healing in the long term.
Movement is important but only once pain medication has been stopped and the feet have been appropriately trimmed and booted.
If the horse is not voluntarily moving much then the horse will need to be hand walked, in straight lines, several times a day. The more this can be done the better, again provided the horse has boots with nice thick pads and has been well trimmed. If the horse is very unwilling to move don’t force him/her.
Missy’s Bucket Range of feed supplements provides essential nutritional support for Laminitis recovery and prevention.
Insulin Resistance is the most common cause of Laminitis and Minerals play an important role. A mineral balanced diet is crucial in promoting healthy insulin levels and optimal recovery from Laminitis.
Missy’s Bucket supports horses through Laminitis by providing the minerals, vitamins and antioxidants often deficient in pasture and hay diets.
Targeted ingredients promote antioxidant defences, balanced immune and thyroid function, normal glucose metabolism, healthy nerve and muscle function, and proper insulin sensitivity.
Dietary management including optimal mineral balancing forms the keystone of Laminitis prevention, management and recovery. Along with a low sugar diet, excellent hoof care and an appropriate exercise program, Missy’s Bucket provides the commonly lacking and crucial vitamin and mineral additions for Laminitis support and prevention.
Find out more about the Missy's Bucket products here.