How smart are you about equine ulcers?
Did you know over 60% of competitive horses are affected by Equine Gastric Ulcer Syndrome (EGUS)1?
Ulcers can affect any horse at any age, so it's important to learn what to look for and how to diagnose, treat and prevent ulcers.
All horses suffer from stress. Not just competition horses.
It's not just race horses and show horses that are affected by ulcers. Horses that are stabled with limited pasture time, that experience abrupt diet changes, that are transported or that face changes in herd dynamics like introductions or removals of other horses from their group are all susceptible to increased stress that may result in gastric ulcers.
They can't tell us they're suffering from ulcers, but they can show us.
Irritability while being groomed, changes in attitude, resistance under saddle, loss of appetite and stress related habits like cribbing can all be signs of gastric ulcers, but are often dismissed as “bad behavior”. Don’t overlook the potential that ulcers could be the cause – if your horse exhibits these signs, it may be time to contact your veterinarian.
The only way to really know a horse has ulcers is by taking a look inside.
Proper diagnosis is crucial to get appropriate treatment started promptly. A gastroscopic exam allows your veterinarian to examine the inside of the stomach and to definitively diagnose ulcers. If an ulcer is found your horse may be prescribed an approved omeprazole paste for treatment, and recommendations may be made for environmental and management changes that can help prevent ulcers in the future.
The way to try to solve issues caused by ulcers is to treat and prevent.
A horse diagnosed with gastric ulcers must be treated. Gastrogard® (omeprazole) is the only proven effective and safe treatment and is available from your veterinarian. Preventing ulcers is best achieved through managing environment and feeding to minimize risks, and by using Ulcergard® (omeprazole) during times of stress. GASTROGARD and ULCERGARD help solve issues associated with gastric ulcers.
Not all omeprazoles are created equal. Ensure you get what you pay for.
Many products claiming to treat ulcers that look more affordable may be less effective, and may not be what they claim. One study of compounded omeprazoles has shown incomplete tube fill, as well as air pockets and lack of consistency in the pastes themselves. GASTROGARD and ULCERGARD have demonstrated consistent quality – providing confidence to veterinarians and horse owners.
Now you're a Gut Genius. Thanks for making yourself more ulcer aware.
Now that you know what to look for and how to treat and prevent gastric ulcers, spread the word to your stable mates, barn friends and fellow horse lovers. And reach out to your veterinarian for more information or to have your horse evaluated for gastric ulcers.
Contact your veterinarian
To learn more about gastric health, ask your veterinarian about your horse's risk for ulcers and how to prevent them.