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Gastric Ulcers in Horses

What are gastric ulcers in horses?

Gastric ulcers in horses are a kind of condition where the lining of the stomach is irritated or there are lesions. The following issues can cause a horse to have gastric ulcers:
• Not eating
• Certain types of food
• Certain medications
• Too much or not enough exercise

The signs of a horse having a gastric ulcer can include:
• Colic
• Poor appetite
• Teeth grinding
• Excessive salvia
• Diarrhea
• Lying on the horse’s back
Weight loss
• Poor coat
• Issues with behavior

When a horse is showing these kinds of signs, questions can arise regarding what causes gastric ulcers. Read below where a few commonly asked questions about gastric ulcers have been answered by the Experts.

What medication can help a horse with gastric ulcers?

When a horse has an issue with gastric ulcers, the owner may be able to give the horse a supplement that contains an antacid to help relive any issues. A vet may prescribe an acid blocker to help keep the acid in the stomach down and help heal any ulcers that are present.

Will a scope of the stomach be done if a horse has gastric ulcers and lethargy and what can cause this?

When horses have gastric ulcers as well as lethargy, the horse should be taken to a vet to have the stomach scoped. In some situations, the ulcers can be caused from being impacted. The vet will normally do the scope in order to determine the cause of the ulcers as well as what is causing the horse to be lethargic.

Can stress cause gastric ulcers and can the vet help calm the horse down? How can the ulcers be treated?

When a horse has gastric ulcers, the ulcers can often become worse and better depending on the stress in the horse’s life. Stress can cause a horse to have many stomach issues including gastric ulcers. Once the horse has calmed down, the horse could be stress free and the ulcers could go away or slowly begin to heal. Stress because of feeding changes can also occur with the change in feed. A vet may have other ways to help and calm the horse and rid the animal of stress and ulcers.

Will bicarbonate of soda treatment help a horse with gastric ulcers and if not why?

Bicarbonate of soda generally does not help a horse with gastric ulcers. this treatment can cause ulcers to become even more irritated than before. This treatment can also cause the horse to have extra gas build up that can also irritate the ulcers.

Can grains and density carbohydrates cause gastric ulcers in horses; if so, why?

Grains and density carbohydrates can cause a horse to develop gastric ulcers. the excess intake of these things may irritate the stomach and cause the ulcers to form. Acid that forms from the excess grains may also cause the lining of the stomach to become irritated and even cause lesions.

Can having gastric ulcers cause a horse to not want to be saddled and how can this be treated?

When a horse has gastric ulcers, pain that can occur may cause the horse to have issues with being saddled. In some situations when the ulcers are treated or cured, the horse may not suffer from any further pain and may then be able to be saddled up again. Until the ulcers are treated, the owner should make sure the horse receives enough rest as well as refrain from being saddled.

Gastric ulcers in horses can be a hard condition to determine. When a horse has ulcers, pain and discomfort may cause individuals questions regarding the treatments, causes and lifelong effects. When answers are needed for these questions, individuals can turn to the Experts.
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