Thursday, March 15, 2012

Well Horse Thrush Off

tl;dr: I think it's working. Try it.

So after my new boot fitting with Mel's Boot Service last weekend, I decided to really commit to getting Dixie's heels down. I've been coasting on the "bad DC's from shoes and pads so young" excuse for too long without really trying to help her get low heels. Dixie's got a little thrush in the lateral sides of her front frogs, so I went to the local feed store to look for ... something.

Rant: I know yall are going to tell me "White Lightning!" or some other hard-to-find non-copper remedy, but the most irritating thing in the world* to me is paying marked-up shipping charges. Please, small business owners, roll the handling costs into the product price and charge me SHIPPING AND A BOX to get it to me. I don't mind looking at where you're located, and where I'm located, and paying a bit more because I'm on the other side of the country. I *do* mind paying, like, $8 for a tiny box. Charge an extra $4 for the product and $4 for shipping and you've got my business. I will pay $24 plus $4 shipping way faster than I'll pay $20 plus $8 shipping.

*First-world problems, I know right :rolleyes:

Anyway, yall are going to say "White Lightning!" but everywhere I've found that sells WL wants like $8 shipping.

So to the local feed store! They had the usual Coppertox-type treatments, with big dire warning labels that say WEAR GLOVES. DO NOT BREATHE FUMES. CAUSES CANCER IN CALIFORNIA. CAUSES HAIR LOSS ON CONTACT. And they had this Well Horse brand Thrush Off stuff.

I stared at the Thrush Off for a long time. It had won some award from one of the horse magazines for "best natural thrush remedy." The disclaimer (best natural) was a little :-/ but ehhh, yknow, if I was cool with unnatural remedies I'd already own Coppertox, right? So I took it up to the ladies up front and they said they'd heard good things about it, so I bought it.

Also it's about the same shade of purple as my shiny new halter, and you know me, I'm a magpie for purple.

The directions say to clean out the frog with a hoof knife, then scrub the stuff in with a toothbrush. I settled for picking her fronts out really well with a pick, holding her feet up where the soles were level, and dumping in a lot of purple liquid. I scrubbed a bit with a toothbrush, yes, but the main thrush I'm worried about is deeper than my toothbrush bristles and way deeper than I'd ever cut with a knife.

Two days later I picked them out well again and poured in more purple stuff. Then I read the directions - apply once a week. Oh well.

Today I picked them out really well and I think it's helping. I used to hit squishy stuff, deep in the lateral sides of her frogs, and occasionally she'd flinch. Today I didn't. I think her frog crevices are still deeper than I'd like, but there's definitely a bit of improvement.

I'd really like to trim before the ride, but there's not much to do right now. There's about a millimeter of growth on the lateral (out-sides) of her hooves. I might go to town on it tomorrow, but there's not a lot to do there.

Today's weather: Overcast and 60. Tomorrow's forecast: HORRIBLE.
Friday Night

Overcast with snow and rain. Low of 27F. Winds from the SW at 10 to 15 mph with gusts to 50 mph. Chance of snow 100% with accumulations up to 3 in. possible.
Don't care. Going anyway. Hope we don't die. If we do, please cremate us on the marge of Lake LeBarge. With a wake, with bourbon. Party of the century.

20 comments:

  1. Just so you know, I've BEEN to Lake LaBarge...in August. Was going to go swimming in it, so I could brag about that for the rest of my life. Yeah, right. I made it knee-deep in that frigid death-water, and called it a day.

    Interesting about the "natural" thrush off. Hmm. I don't get thrush much (which is surprising, given our environment), and when I see it, I zap it with some Durasole (Karen Chaton told me about it as a hoof-hardener), which works beautifully.

    Coincidentally (not), it is bright purple.

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    1. I'd've channeled the Bad Idea Wish Fulfillment Fairy and pushed you into the lake. For your own good, of course!

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  2. I've been having good luck with tea tree oil as a thrush treatment/preventative. I use a tiny syringe and dribble a few drops down into the deep crevices. Unfortunately, it's not purple. :)

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    1. You know, I've heard that before! I only remember it when I'm sitting on the couch, and NEVER when I'm in Whole Foods or some other tea-tree-oil vendor. SIIIGH. I'll write it on the grocery list and try it if the purple stuff doesn't do a good enough job!

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  3. If the Well Horse doesn't finish it off for you, here's another non-copper I've heard really good things about: http://www.cowboymagic.com/products-thrush-killer.html

    And the old remedy of equal parts clotrimazole and triple antibiotic: http://www.natureshoof.com/pathology.aspx#frog

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    1. I heard about the Cowboy Magic product, but I didn't know if it was out on the shelves yet - one of my blog friends pre-release tested it! Thanks!

      I've been using the antibiotic/athlete's foot goo, and it works for the frog sulcus but it's never been able to touch the deep pocket on the outside of the frogs.

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  4. I actually use apple cider vinegar on Lilly's hooves to keep the thrush at bay. I squirt it on every couple days and it really seems to work. I didn't want to use something caustic because I was afraid of doing actual damage to her hooves. I mean, if you're supposed to wear gloves when you apply it, how can it not be dangerous for hooves? On the other hand, I really do like all the pretty colors. :)

    I hope you're having so much fun that you don't even think twice about the weather!

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  5. Honestly, I've had better results with tea-tree antiseptic (or oil) compared to white lightning.
    Also- much cheaper.
    I never tire of hearing about Dixie's hooves!!

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  6. Funder you can get the cowboy magic stuff online. I've not seen it on shelves. IT WAS WONDERFUL. Part of the field study I did they gave me like four bottles of it. I used one whole one during the study (both mares, have one at the barn for all to use (there are a whole three of us there) and the rest stashed. If what you are using doesn't work for you and you want to give the cowboy magic stuff a go let me know and I'll send you a bottle.

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  7. Have you ever heard it using tea tree oil? It's cheap and can be found at most drug stores. My trimmer had me use it last year with Orion. Just dip a cotton ball in the oil then stuff it in the central sulcus - I used half a cotton ball and pushed it in with he hoof pick. It'll stay for awhile, even with mud. Helped get us on the way to no thrush.

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  8. Have you ever heard it using tea tree oil? It's cheap and can be found at most drug stores. My trimmer had me use it last year with Orion. Just dip a cotton ball in the oil then stuff it in the central sulcus - I used half a cotton ball and pushed it in with he hoof pick. It'll stay for awhile, even with mud. Helped get us on the way to no thrush.

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  9. Don't die. We'd miss you. And my husband can recite that poem by heart ("The Cremation of Sam McGee"). If you do die, we will bring bourbon and he can recite. But don't die. You can still change your mind if the weather is too awful. Don't let stubborness trap you (!)

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  10. I'm battling nasty thrush right now, too. I'm so frustrated with it! We live in a dry climate for goodness sake! Her stall is kept immaculate! She is outside most of the time!

    I confess that I had to cave the other day and get one of those terrifying looking products. I'm at the end of my rope with her feet.

    I have added White Lightning to my next SmartPak shipment, though. I feel exactly the same way you do about ridiculous shipping fees so at least this way it will ship "free" but it won't be here for a few weeks. I hope I can get Dee to stand patiently for soaking. She's had the springtime wiggles lately!

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  11. My mare has a chronic thrush problem, and the only thing that has helped is hydrogen peroxide, which I tried on the advice of some been-there-done-that horse folks. It bubbles down into the crevices really well.

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  12. Good to hear of another thrush remedy that works. Call me a bad non-natural horse owner but I was getting desperate with Desire's thrush and I too hate paying ridiculous shipping for crap--oh and waiting for it arrive tries me patience too, not gonna lie--so I'm using Thrush-XX which is green and will probably make me grow an extra head (2 are better than 1?)...yes I wear gloves to do it..anyway I squirt it in and spread it around with a 1" paint brush (coz guess what, they're WAY cheaper than a "horse hoof brush")...anyway it killed the thrush in Desire and Sheza's hooves, and we're now at very light & manageable-to-almost-nonexistent thrush, where before it only took a drop of moisture in the ground for Desire's hooves to turn nasty.

    So, for what it's worth, poisonous evil stuff works too, Lol.

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    1. I'm trying some of the purple stuff and managed to get it all over my right thumb last time I used it (and I had gloves in my pocket). I'm waiting for my thumb to sprout an extra head now lol.

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  13. Have a blast!

    I thought of you late last night. I had read this post in the evening, then later the wind got crazy, and I went down to the barn to lock the boys in for the night. It was a nice warm night, and lock-up wasn't popular, so it took quite a while. By the time I got my shower, I was overtired, and as I poured shampoo from my first bottle of shampoo for grey haired little old ladies, I thought "Holy crap, it's the purple stuff!". You've infiltrated my brain.

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  14. Funder, I have an extra bottle of White Lightning. If you want it, let me know. These days, I just dribble in some tea tree oil, or mix together Pete Ramey's little mixture of funk creams. I just don't have the soaking boots nor patience for WL. I could only do one foot at a time with the one boot that I borrowed from Dawn.

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  15. Check out http://fungusfree.net/equine/thrush-in-horses/ , they offer a holistic approach to the treatment of thrush. They are very helpful and attentive and will answer your questions about your four-legged friend's condition and their products.

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