Articles

Obesity and Laminitis

I was just reading an article stating that all obese horses are not necessarily at risk for equine metabolic syndrome (EMS) leading to laminitis. Which makes me think that my ideas about laminitis may be correct.

I have known fat horses that were not foundered and thin horses that were. So I question that the obesity is what causes founder.

I propose that most horses get laminitis and then get fat because they don't want to run around and exercise themselves if their feet hurt.

It seems to me that horses get laminitis from a traumatic event. Many different situations can cause laminitis: eating too much grain, infection, colic, injury to the hooves, drinking cold water by a hot horse, retained placenta, carrying too much weight on one leg, road founder or running a horse hard then suddenly stopping and not walking the horse allowing it to cool it down and reduce its heartbeat gradually, eating a mildly poisonous plant.

I have a horse that appeared to be addicted to buttercup. There was a large area of buttercup in the field at two different locations where I had my horses for five years. This one horse was always in the buttercup. I moved to another location where there is no buttercup. After a year away from buttercup her feet are finally beginning to recover from founder.

Another theory is that fat horses are often worked suddenly and violently by some stupid trainer who is trying to thin the horse down. All training programs should start slow and gradually get more intense. Just like a fat person can have a heart attack from sudden exercise, a fat horse can have a heart attack in its feet from sudden exercise.


Articles Home