My grey arab 16yo gelding has many external melanomas, especially a growing large clump on the end of his tail, and has

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Customer: HI, my grey arab 16yo gelding has many external melanomas, especially a growing large clump on the end of his tail, and has had a lot removed from his penis 2 yrs ago,and i am concerned that he may be in pain from internal ones as well.
just lately when he is having a feed, he has been extending his penis , stiff, shifting weight from one hind leg to another, hunching a bit and pawing. He's never done any of that before. He is urinating normally.
Is his behaviour a sign of a pain response do you think?
Answered by Dr. Mike in 4 hours 9 years ago
Dr. Mike
25+ years of experience

510 satisfied customers

Specialities include: Horse Veterinary, Large Animal Veterinary, Small Animal Veterinary

Dr. Mike :

That behavior certainly suggests discomfort. I have a few questions that may help me answer your question more accurately

Dr. Mike :

Does he only do this during feeding time?

Dr. Mike :

Have there been any changes on the farm.... new herdmates, different pastures, a "buddy" that has left, etc?

Dr. Mike :

Does he have any other medical issues such as lameness, etc?

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thanks . I have only noticed him do it in his stable at feed time twice. He has had laminitis years ago and is walking stiffly lately. pasture dry due to drought , Am letting him have a bit of "locked up " winter feed (rye and clover) every now and again. Weather v. hot - was lying in stable during day a few days ago when and seemed uncomfortable, so am hosing him down every couple of hours until it cools tomorrow.

Also, probably against my better judgement because of his founder, but as its so dry, have started giving him half a biscuit of very rich lucern hay of a morning as there is no pasture. Because of his laminitis history, I never let him feed 24/7 on pasture and keep him in a well grazed area at night , and feed him X-Tra Cool and white chaff

My first thought with that history is that gastric ulcers may be involved. Legumes are great at providing a protective film over the affected stomach lining, but your veterinarian may want to consider adding a trial course of ranitidine or omeprazole to see if that doesn't set him straight.


Ranitidine is a pain, as it has to be given three times daily (at least initially), but it's less expensive. Omeprazole is more expensive, but is only given once daily.


Dr. Mike41570.5709862268

thanks for that much appreciated


Your concern with internal melanomas is a valid one, but they typically don't cause pain related to meal time.

They can be difficult to identify, but a thorough rectal exam including ultrasound can evaluate a significant portion of the abdomen.

A fluid sample from the bottom of the abdomen can be analyzed for abnormal cells as well.


Dr. Mike41571.4843318982

Thats what my vet said - and often they dont show up on ultrasound. I will ask him about the fluid sample.


Also have noticed he does the stiff penis thing when he's just standing too lately

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Dr. Mike
510 satisfied customers
25+ years of experience
Dr. Mike
+ years of experience

510 satisfied customers



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