Diagnosing eating related issues

Equine Gastroscopy

As you know, horses can have many issues related to eating, which is why our equine gastroscopy machines are crucial in our diagnostic processes. Gastroscopy is a valuable veterinary tool that uses a flexible video endoscope to examine the equine esophagus and stomach. This uncomplicated procedure is performed while the horse is under light sedation. Sedation is not needed to control pain, but to instead to control the "ticklish" feeling your horse may experience as the small (1 cm) endoscope is passed through their nose. A gastroscope is the only way to accurately diagnose the presence and severity of stomach ulcers in horses.  It can also be used to identify stomach impactions, parasites, tumors and other abnormalities that may be affecting your horse's GI tract.

Stomach ulcers are extremely common and are the second highest cause of poor performance after Lameness.  Do you have a grumpy gelding or a moody mare?  Behavioral issues are often a sign of gastric ulcers.  Gastric ulcers cause chronic pain which leads horses to perform poorly or have a poor attitude under saddle.  This is one of the main reasons we scope horses.  The difference we see in performance and attitude is quite remarkable.

Image of Equine Gastric Ulcers
Gastric Ulcers reported in horses  (AAEP)
25-50%
FOALS
60-90%
FOALS

Treating and Preventing Equine Ulcers

At Countryside, we do not believe in blindly treating horses for ulcers for several reasons. First, we do not want you to invest in an expensive treatment for a horse that does not even have ulcers. Secondly, we don't want to prolong any suffering for the horse. There are several different types and grades of equine ulcers that require different levels and lengths of treatment. We want the best result and outcome for you and your horse. Once your horse is diagnosed, medication and lifestyle changes will be necessary. We are here to guide you through this process, and we will recommend an exercise and feeding program for your horse.

Read more about the importance of diagnosing Ulcers in this recent article from Dr. Dan Carter, ‘Why it’s worth chasing the ulcer diagnosis.”

Did you know horses are designed to be grazers? Frequent intake of roughage aids stomach acids and reduces risk for ulcers.
From the Blog

News & Articles

As many of our clients know, we love sharing our knowledge and important animal health news. Our blog contains valuable educational resources in one easy location.

1 Sep

Common Health Problems in Horses

Arthritis afflicts horses as they age similarly to humans. Colic is a severe horse condition that can strike at any time. Laminitis is a condition that strikes a horse's...
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12 Sep

Arthroscopy: Revolutionizing Equine Joint Conditions

This advanced non-invasive technique allows the surgeon to navigate and evaluate a horse's joint and its cartilage to find any irritation, bone chips or areas needing to be cleaned.
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1 Sep

Caring For Your Horse As The Weather Warms

As the weather changes, temperatures and humidity rise, and insects become more active, you’ll want to take extra precautions...
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1 Sep

Joint Management in Horses

Horses are high performance athletes. Their movement provides the ultimate combination of strength and coordination. But, what really helps a horse achieve...
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1 Sep

4 Specialty Equine Vet Services You Didn't Know We Offered

Come On In To Learn & Understand. Today, let’s explore some of the equine services we offer to help your gentle giant live their best life possible.
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1 Sep

Chasing the Ulcer Diagnosis - Why It's Worth It

Some horses with ulcers are easy to spot - they lose their appetites or experience chronic colic. Sometimes it’s hard to recognize a horse suffering from...
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1 Sep

Countryside Dental Month Recap

February is National Dental Month, and we as a clinic have strived to use this time for education. Along with performing dental exams, we have also released...
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1 Sep

West Nile Virus

The West Nile Virus (WNV) is a viral disease that can result in fever and neurologic disease. WNV circulates in nature between birds and mosquitoes.
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1 Sep

Neuromuscular Condition: Kentucky Trust

If you’ve ever had a love for horses, you know it’s something you never outgrow. No matter how busy life may get, the love of riding never completely fades away.
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8 Jun

Common Health Problems in Horses

Arthritis afflicts horses as they age similarly to humans. Colic is a severe horse condition that can strike at any time. Laminitis is a condition that strikes a horse's...
More
6 Jun

Arthroscopy: Revolutionizing Equine Joint Conditions

This advanced non-invasive technique allows the surgeon to navigate and evaluate a horse's joint and its cartilage to find any irritation, bone chips or areas needing to be cleaned.
More
1 May

Caring For Your Horse As The Weather Warms

As the weather changes, temperatures and humidity rise, and insects become more active, you’ll want to take extra precautions...
More
24 Jan

Joint Management in Horses

Horses are high performance athletes. Their movement provides the ultimate combination of strength and coordination. But, what really helps a horse achieve...
More
10 Jun

4 Specialty Equine Vet Services You Didn't Know We Offered

Come On In To Learn & Understand. Today, let’s explore some of the equine services we offer to help your gentle giant live their best life possible.
More
19 Apr

Chasing the Ulcer Diagnosis - Why It's Worth It

Some horses with ulcers are easy to spot - they lose their appetites or experience chronic colic. Sometimes it’s hard to recognize a horse suffering from...
More
19 Jan

Countryside Dental Month Recap

February is National Dental Month, and we as a clinic have strived to use this time for education. Along with performing dental exams, we have also released...
More
18 Dec

West Nile Virus

The West Nile Virus (WNV) is a viral disease that can result in fever and neurologic disease. WNV circulates in nature between birds and mosquitoes.
More