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MY 15 yr. old spotted saddle horse that I have raised is gravely ill. In fact he will die soon. He has cancer of the small intestines or large, not sure, Sounds like it is some type of lymphomia. He started getting sick in Nov. of last year. First thing was wt. loss. then he started having dependent edema. At U.T. he was diag. with IBS ( inflam. bowel disease.) We thought it was due to food allergy or some type of infection. After 2 mos of antibiotics and 1 mo. of steroids, finished the steroids in late Feb. He is now going down hill fast, wt loss is rapid ,appetite is almost gone except for grazing. He has no muscles mass left. My Vet tells me he will get weaker and will not be able to get up after he gets down at some point. I was just wondering if anyone had this happen and is able to give me a time as to how long this will take. I'm trying my best to get prepared not that I will be able to. I guess I just wanted to see if anyone out there has had this kind of cancer and can give me some words of comfort. thanks Nancy G.

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Nancy, I am sorry to hear about your horse.
Nancy, I have never dealt with this sort of thing but wanted to send you my heartfelt sympathies. I hope and pray you gather the strength to get through this.
Oh Nancy...I am so sorry to hear about your horse. I haven't had this sort of loss, but I know how I would feel if it happened to my SSH, Little Rock. Does he appear to be in pain? I know animals are often very stoic and don't show pain like humans do...have you considered putting him down to lessen the chance he is suffering? It sounds to me like he does not have much time left, but sometimes an animal or person can hang on longer than you think with the illness they have. I hope you have friends or family close to you to help you through this. If not, please know that many of the TTR members are here for you. I personally am praying for you and your horse. Please let me know if there is anything I can do.
Nancy so sorry about your beautiful horse. I have lost a very loved horse and know the pain. Remembering the times together helped me. My husband also hung a pair of my horses shoes in our barn with her name under them. I guess that was hes way of showing me he understood my pain. I shall say a prayer for you in hopes God will make this sad time a little easier.
Take care.
I want to thank all of you for writting your comments. Reading them lifted my sad heart. My boy seems to have good days and bad days. Today he seems more "with it" Maybe he is not too much pain. I do have bute that I can use. Again thanks for you thoughts and prayers. Nancy
Nancy I just wanted to let you know how sorry I am that you are going through this. I have never dealt with what you are but lost 2 of my horses within 9 months of each other. My old horse died of a sudden heart attack and that was devastating I had raised him from a colt and he was 18 years old. Then 9 months later my yearling that I had helped come into the world died from colic while I was at the hospital with my dad. He got down in his stall and by the time I got home he was gone. I buried them side by side next to my barn. I cut part of each of there manes and put them in a frame with a picture so that I would always have a part of them with me. Any time you lose a beloved animal it is hard but when you have raised that animal from a baby it is even more difficult. You and your horse are in my prayers. I know you don't even want to think about having him euthanized but you should talk to your vet and know all your options. I wish I could have had that option, at least then I could have been there for them instead of walking in and finding them.
Nancy, I'm so sorry you're going through this.
I know you're hurting and it will take some time to get through this.
Just remember all the wonderful memories you've had with him.
You both are in my prayers.
I am sorry you are having to go through this. I lost a mule a few years ago to cancer. She didn't get sick. She colicked suddenly and wouldn't respond to treatment. They found a large abdominal mass and we decided against surgery. Her age and the distance, expense, and recovery chance was not in her favor. Even though it may be very hard, if you feel he is having more bad days than good, you are there to help him and may need to choose euthanasia for him. If we can help you at all, let us know.
Nancy---I'm so sorry to hear about your horses illness. I'll pray that he'll slip away quietly, peacefully and painlessly. I understand your pain, as I lost a dear horse a few years ago. We finally determined that it was botulism, but it was too late. I just wanted to share the following quote: "My treasures do not clink together or glitter; they gleam in the sun and neigh in the night." You'll always have your memories. Maybe the greatest kindness would be to hold him in your arms while he's being euthanized. I know it would be a tough decision, one that only you can make for him.
First let me start by saying I am so sorry. And I have infact alot of experience with Imflamatory bowel Disease. My sisters horse had it and he was on probiotics, bio sponge steriods and countless other meds. I urged her to put him down but she just couldn't. After 1 and half years of him having bouts of the runs and on and off feed. She finally put him down. She spent thousands. They suspected cancer also. My advice is to put him down so he dosen't suffer.
I know this is hard but looking back my sister wishes she would of put her guy down earlier on.
Good luck again I am sorry.
Sorry to hear you're going through this! My wife lost her horse early this winter to a similar condition. We know what you're going through. We went through three vets, the ups and downs of weight and pain. On our last referral to Lexington, a tumor the size of a softball was found in the intestines.

I understand your pending loss but please consider your horse has well. Yes, he is likely in extreme pain or will be. Horses can be severely injured and not show their pain. I am an infrared thermal thermographer and I see their pain even when they exhibit no signs for a veterinarian to use in their diagnosis.

I have had one horse go down under saddle from an aneurysm and had to put one down due to navicular disease when he could no longer stand on three legs to have his therapeutic shoes removed. Their suffering in the end will never leave your memory!

15 years is a long time friend!
It's very difficult, but please consider the well-being of your longtime friend in the end. As we all know Bute eats up the intestine. Discuss this with your veterinarian before using it.

I have learned to never diagnose anything over the Internet. I would leave this up to your veterinarian, but it sounds that things have substantially progressed. I'm sorry that this will not lift your spirits today, but I encourage you to consider your horse. You will feel that you did the right thing for him the rest of your life.

Sincerely, DA
Oh Nancy, I am so sorry. My fiance and I had to make a decision to put a horse down last year and it was one of the hardest things I have ever done. He was a member of our family, as yours is to you, I am sure. The turning point for us was when a very dear friend asked if we were keeping him here because it was more comfortable for him or more comfortable for us. We knew the heartbreaking decision we had to make at that point. There is a great website called Hoofbeats in Heaven that really helped me cope through the grief. Those who don't own horses don't necessarily understand the emotions. Please know my thoughts and prayers are with you and your boy.

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