Giardiasis In horses

Discussion in 'Equine' started by Lisa in WA, Jan 26, 2018.

  1. Lisa in WA

    Lisa in WA Formerly LisainN.Idaho Supporter

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    Anyone ever deal with it?
    I have a mare (Windsong for the old timers here) who has had an issue with a kind of chronic diarrhea (fully formed stools but squirts liquid at the end of defecation). Seems like it cropped up last summer and it’s waxed and waned. No weight loss, coat looks good, eyes bright but a horse keeping nightmare, particularly in winter...trying to keep legs, butt and tail clean.

    Had her blood and manure tested and everything came up clean. Put her on months of Sandclear (the psyllium helped to a degree), though her fecals were clean, we power pack dewormed her with panacur, put her on BioSponge for 6 weeks, and finally, though giardia is “rare” in horses, occurs mostly near water like creeks, rivers etc. and wasn’t included in the tests, put her on a course of metronadizole. She’s been on it for a few weeks, just finished and it’s worked!

    Upon questioning the vet, it’s possible that she was infected three years ago or longer when she lived at the cabin and we had lots of water, beaver (they actually call giardia, Beaver Fever) and the parasites encysted and went dormant till last summer.

    Though upon further thought, I remembered she had a problem with “juicy poops” a few years ago at the cabin and the vet thought she might have sand in her gut so we put her on Sand Clear.
    So...long story but if you have a horse dealing with chronic juicy poops, you might consider giardia as a cause.
    Apparently it’s on the rise.
     
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  2. M5farm

    M5farm Well-Known Member

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    we had an issue last year with one, Wormed and Moved her to a different pasture and it cleared up. Im not sure what she had but by your description it sounds the same. We have had no issues since . The lot she was in was bordered by woods and during this time had high water in the edges . The field directly across the road has water on it but less wooded areas. I thought she may have been eating a particular plant that was causing it the other 3 never had issues . she was a rescue that was starved down before she got here.
     

  3. TroyT

    TroyT Well-Known Member

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    Have you tried ulcer guard for horses and/or switching her to a rougher hay?
     
  4. Lisa in WA

    Lisa in WA Formerly LisainN.Idaho Supporter

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    Mine? No, the vet didn’t think her symptoms were indicative of ulcer. I don’t know what’s you mean by rougher hay. She is on a good orchard grass/Timothy hay and I board her now so switching hay isn’t an option.

    And since the flagyl (metronadizole) worked...we have a pretty good idea it was giardia.
     
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  5. TroyT

    TroyT Well-Known Member

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    Our horses have manure problems when the hay is too soft like orchard grass, not enough fiber, so we feed mostly timothy. Glad you got it cleared up. Next time I see our vet I will ask him about it.
     
  6. Lisa in WA

    Lisa in WA Formerly LisainN.Idaho Supporter

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    I sure wish we'd tried the Metro right off the bat. Its always the last thing you try that works. :D
    We do have the best timothy here in Washington, don't we?
     
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  7. TroyT

    TroyT Well-Known Member

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    Yep we have great timothy here in WA. We buy it in compressed bails. I really love those things..
     
  8. Lisa in WA

    Lisa in WA Formerly LisainN.Idaho Supporter

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    Basin Timothy is hte best in the U.S. or maybe World, considering we have to jockey with international buyers to get it.
     
  9. TroyT

    TroyT Well-Known Member

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    True, we get our timothy from an exporter. Saves a bunch of money the bummer is we have to go get it, so it takes up a couple of week ends. I think we paid $260 a ton for compressed 2nd cutting Timothy last year. Which is much cheaper that $340 a ton for 3 string 2nd cutting Timothy was going for west of the mountains at the time, compressed bales were ever more expensive.