FAQ: How Do I Know If My Horse Has Cushings Or Is Just Shedding?

Do horses with Cushings shed?

Horses with Cushing’s also tend to shed the long “cat hairs” under their bellies and chins last, so the sudden appearance of that pattern is also cause for concern. Horses with Cushing’s disease are more likely to develop laminitis, so let your veterinarian know right away if your horse isn’t shedding normally.

How do you test a horse for Cushing’s?

How do we test for Cushing’s? Typically, a blood sample will be pulled and submitted for plasma ACTH levels. Horses with Cushing’s disease have high levels of plasma ACTH. Most horses showing symptoms of Cushing’s can be diagnosed with this test, however, plasma ACTH levels can fluctuate with the season.

What can Cushings be mistaken for?

Symptoms such as fatigue and weight gain can have many different causes. Cushing’s syndrome may be mistaken for other conditions that have many of the same signs, such as polycystic ovary syndrome or metabolic syndrome.

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Why is my horse shedding so much?

It is actually the horse’s pituitary gland that recognizes this change in daylight hours and produces hormones that cause a horse to shed its winter coat. If you are looking to speed up the shedding process, adding light and vigorous grooming can help.

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.

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.

What are the first signs of Cushing’s disease in horses?

Clinical signs include increased coat length and delayed shedding of the winter coat, laminitis, lethargy, increased sweating, weight loss and excessive drinking and urinating. The disease primarily affects those over the age of 10, with 19 being the average age at diagnosis.

What age do horses get Cushing’s?

Equine Cushing’s Disease is a condition of older horses and typically develops in horses over 15 years of age, although it can develop in younger animals.

How is Cushing’s disease treated in horses?

PPID cannot be cured, but its effects can be controlled with medication and management. The drug most commonly used to treat horses with PPID is pergolide mesylate, a dopamine agonist that helps to regulate the pituitary gland.

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Can you have a mild case of Cushings?

Although the majority of patients with Cushing’s syndrome have elevated levels of cortisol, it is becoming increasingly evident that many patients with a mild case of Cushing’s syndrome may also have normal levels of cortisol resulting in several 24-hour urine collections to confirm a diagnosis.

How does Cushings make you feel?

People with Cushing’s syndrome may see their face get round (“moon face”), they gain weight in unusual ways, bruise easily or feel weak, tired and sad. Women and men may also notice fertility and other problems. CS is most often found in adults between the ages of 20 and 50.

What does high cortisol feel like?

General signs and symptoms of too much cortisol include: weight gain, mostly around the midsection and upper back. weight gain and rounding of the face. acne.

What month do horses start shedding?

As the hours of daylight increase, a horse’s winter coat begins to loosen and shed. This process started way back in late December, but you usually won’t see the obvious, hairy results until now.

How can I speed up my horses shedding?

Apply some old-fashioned elbows grease. Control the timing of mess and shorten its duration by going over the horse with a currycomb or shedding blade during vigorous daily grooming sessions. Those lengthy daily sessions collect the worst of the hair in one area and can shorten the shedding season by a week or more.

What is a shedding blade for horses?

The most popular tool for speeding removing a horse’s winter coat is the aptly named “shedding blade.” The long, flexible metal strip has sharp teeth on one side that, when dragged carefully across a horse’s coat, pull out the winter hairs that have been pushed nearly to the ends of the follicle by the growing summer

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