Feeding and Medication Recommendations for Horses Diagnosed with
Equine Gastric Ulcer Syndrome
- Turn horse
out on pasture as much as possible.
hay available at all times while the horse is in the stall.
The horse's stomach should be full at all times to help buffer
hay is helpful in buffering stomach acid due to its high
level of calcium and protein. Alfalfa hay should
be fed every
5 to 6 hours and can be mixed with grass hay.
grain in the ration. High levels of grain can increase gastric
acid secretion and exacerbate recurrence
- 5. Stay
away from feeds that are high in fat (e.g. Equine Senior
type feeds, rice bran, and others), since
emptying and will allow the acid to be exposed to
the stomach lining for longer periods of time.
of antiulcer medication to promote healing. The antiulcer
medication GastroGard™ is the only FDA approved medication
to treat and prevent recurrence of gastric ulcers in horses. The
recommended dose to treat ulcers is 1 tube per 1000 to 1250# horse
once daily 1 hour before feeding for 28 days. The recommended
dose to prevent recurrence is 1/2 the healing dose daily. Some
horses owners will put their horse without ulcers on 1/3 to 1/2
dose GastroGard during the show season or when the horse is stressed
the most to prevent ulcers from occurring.
supplements like NeighLox, G.U.T., or Nutrient Buffer to
buffer stomach acid may be beneficial.
would recommend feeding
these supplements 4 to 5 times daily to increase
their effectiveness. These products have not
been shown to
heal or prevent stomach
ulcers, but some horse owners have reported satisfactory
results. Do not feed at the same time an antiulcer
medication is given,
or complete absorption may be inhibited.
exercising the horse unless using medicine proven effective
Recurrence of gastric
ulcers is high in horses that are housed in stalls, have limited
turn out and are under heavy training/stressful situations. Unfortunately,
we don't know all of the risk factors involved in the recurrence
of gastric ulcer disease in horses but using medications judiciously
and following the above recommendations have proven very effective.
following antiulcer medications are currently available for
use in horses. We have
organized them in order of least effective to most effective.
Only GastroGard™ has been proven effective to heal
ulcers while horses remain in heavy training. Treatment with
any of the
following drugs should be for at least 28 days followed by a
recurrence prevention program.