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Stance Blog

Dealing with Gastric Ulcers

Stephanie Saxton - Wednesday, January 15, 2014

As most equine enthusiasts know, there are horses that are 'good doers' and there are horses that are 'not so good doers'. And then, if you're really lucky, you get to experience a horse that even though you feed them half their body weight in roughage, pellets, pastes, vitamins, minerals and whatever else you found on the Internet that was guaranteed to "make your thoroughbreds butt look like a quarter horse," they continue to spite you and look like a needy rescue case!

Having a horse like this is extremely stress inducing, as it often leads to symptoms including being highly strung, continually nervous and fidgety with possible hair and weight loss- and that's just you!

Possible stress reducing strategy

But before you try the above activity to reduce anxiety levels about the condition of your horse, ask yourself- if apart from the refusal to gain even a few grams, your horse displays other migraine inducing tendencies such as; an attitude resembling that of 'Grumpy Cat',

a coat lacking that Pantene shine

or a lack of appetite when their previous enthusiasm towards food rivalled that of a One Direction fan-

you might have a horse with Gastric Ulcers on your hands.

Ulcers can be a real pain in the....ummm hindquarter, and are a really uncomfortable experience for your equine buddy. And despite the assumption that only horses in high stress situations get this condition, even your totally chilled, paddock grazing, trail blazing companion can be susceptible. In fact, more than half of all horses will suffer with an ulcer at some point in their life. So Gastric Ulcers, and conditions like Equine Metabolic Syndrome, can be caused by a multitude of things. Yes, it can be due to a horse being in a high stress, high performance environment. But it can also be due to factors such as wind sucking or crib biting, a genetic predisposition, and the big one, diet.

A horses digestive system is a very complicated thing. A bit like women actually, complex and delicate!And like a good woman, the digestive tract needs to be shown a little TLC to remain it's best. Horse feeds with a low Non Structural Carbohydrate (NSC) count are ideal, as horses are not designed to process high levels of things like sugar and starch. High levels of NCS's are known to be contributing factors to metabolic disorders such as laminits and Cushings disease. Definitely not something you want for your horse!

Gastric ulcers are generally areas of erosion and irritation in the digestive tract, and high NSC feeds are literally rough as guts on your horses guts. On top of feeding your horse a meal with less than 12% NSC (like CoolStance Copra), you should also give your horse as much grazing time as possible. If they must be stabled all the time, try and feed them smaller meals more often. By feeding your horse a diet that is gentle on it's stomach, you will be reducing the risk of those yucky, stress inducing ulcers, and in turn, possibly saving your own sanity!

To find out more about a balanced, healthy diet for your horse, please visit Stance Equine and check out the science behind our feeds. Our company is all about promoting health from the inside out and as responsible horse owners ourselves, it is our job to make sure the best information is out there for you too- so that if your steed does suffer from ulcers, you have the answers before you resort to pulling your own hair out. Because let's face it, your horse will probably appreciate you using his tail as a toupée even less than those nasty ulcers!

Happy riding everyone!

Tess- Social Media Manager

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Products

CoolStance

CoolStance copra is a unique horse feed because it has low Non Structural Carbohydrate (NSC), and yet has a high digestible energy content.
Learn More

 

PowerStance

PowerStance is a unique powdered coconut oil supplement.  PowerStance delivers the secret ingredient from CoolStance as a powder.
Learn More