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Photos from our less than stellar ride tonight

Recently Katai has been crabbier than normal. Maybe not even crabbier as much as more consistently crabby. When I was riding a lot earlier in the year I was contributing it to the increase in her workload and likely some sore muscles. Then we had #mareproblems so she had that reason and a week off, then a week off when I traveled for work, Then almost a week off when I was in Omaha, and now less work since I've been having trouble getting to the barn.

Last Saturday she got shots so I knew she wouldn't be feeling her best, then she got a massage which could have made her feel a bit tender, and finally got her hooves trimmed so that could have made her feel a bit off as well. She got a quiet week but I rode (just a nice light training ride) yesterday and today (slightly more work but still I kept it short).

Pretty cool that this is now a less than stellar ride. Also, you can clearly tell that
she's thinner than she's been recently. Not unhealthy skinny,
I can just barely feel her last two ribs, but still it's a big change from before.
I was hoping she'd feel different, and there are some differences, but she pretty much seems to be sensitive in the same places. Namely she's been crabby, not as forward as normal, doesn't want me to touch her near her flank, has become girthy, and has actually lost weight to the point that she is right on the edge of her ideal weight. This is a BIG change since she's always been an extremely easy keeper and she's certainly getting enough hay and the hay is great quality. She has been getting worked more so I'm thinking of adding some additional calories but it also could be a symptom

Tonight I did some digging/research and I'm fairly certain that she's got ulcers. The statistics would support it with 60%-90% of performance horses having ulcers. Also, I've always sort of wondered since she's just a horse that stresses easily and likes her routine. Now she's also living in a stall and has her own private paddock so she's not around other horses much and doesn't get much movement. In addition, all that time where I wasn't working here meant she was moving even less than normal, we gave her some bute after she had her shots, and she had a crazy week this past week where we certainly weren't letting her follow her normal routine so her stomach might really be bothering her.

She really just wanted to retract her neck but
I'm really happy with the amount of crossover that we've been getting!
At this point with all of this adding up I've gone ahead and ordered some UlcerGuard. I'm going to give her that over the four days and if I notice a difference I'm going to add a supplement to support her gut. If I don't notice a difference I'm going to call the vet and have her tested for Lyme disease since that's the other most likely option.

I'm really hoping it's not Lyme but I also think it's unlikely. Not that it couldn't happen but I've NEVER pulled a single tick off of her. In addition I've seen horses with Lyme and they are extremely sensitive to being touched to the point of kicking their people, rearing, biting, and flipping out completely. Katai is a very sensitive flower so if she were feeling anything like that she likely wouldn't even be letting me touch her but she's been enjoying her grooming on most of her body.

Bit of a head tilt here, mare was definitely still a bit stiff.
Chiro may also be in order
I found some additional info on Vitamin E deficiency and Selenium deficiency but neither of those match as closely and when I checked her vitamin supplement it actually contains a decent amount of both so I think that's unlikely.

She's also due to be dewormed and apparently that's something that can occasionally cause similar symptoms so I'm going to get that taken care of as well.

At any rate, I've ordered UlcerGuard, a supplement that supports gut health, and some dewormer for this year and I'll post an update once I receive it later this week and have a chance to try it out.


  1. As I was reading I was thinking 'ulcers' and then you said it. I think it's a good idea to try it and I hope that it works.


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