A fork in the road?
I guess maybe I’m a bit slow sometimes. It takes me a while to get around to thinking about stuff – especially when it’s so infernally hot outside, all I can think of is icebergs and cold cold sweet tea with lemon! *wink*
Earlier this week, the thought hit me out of the blue – WHY on earth is this horse NOT an elephant with as much feed as I am pouring into him daily? He is getting approximately 4 gallons (GALLONS!!) of the best feed I can find a day. He is on very lush bermuda grass that I have been cutting to the perfect height for his lack of teeth (yes we mow his pasture for him!!), and has been wormed so many times that he should be glowing by now from all the chemicals. Any other horse on earth would be the size of a hippo if not an elephant on that diet. My next thought was, I wonder if he’s got a hyperactive metabolism? You know, some people (like my son) can eat and eat and eat but never seem to put on a pound. I began to turn this over and around in my mind and wondered if maybe just maybe there could be something in this direction that we haven’t checked – thyroid, etc. SO, I called Amanda and had her ask Dr. Adams if it is possible. He told me that we could do a blood panel and start from there.
This morning I got up bright and early and hauled Buck to Dr. Adams office. A blood sample was pulled, and they also did a fecal. The fecal was absolutely negative for any type of worms. (yeah I knew that! lol) But the blood work showed some interesting numbers. He was just a tiny bit dehydrated, sodium and calcium levels are a teeny bit low. Nothing to be terribly worried about or very surprising considering the heat, but something to keep in mind. Red blood cell numbers were good, enzymes and other body function numbers were good. BUT his white blood cell count was really low. Strange – huh? Dr. Adams thinks that it is probably that the horse has a chronic tick born blood illness – not Lyme or spotted fever but another one that I hadn’t heard of before. He is going to take the numbers and do some research this weekend to figure out the best form of attack. Most likely antibiotics, but we want to be absolutely sure that they will be the correct treatment. So now we hit a fork in the road to his recovery. I don’t know which way we will take, but I’m putting my trust in Dr. Adams that he will figure out the best course to take. I am SO relieved that it didn’t show up to be something major, although this is bad enough, I don’t think it’s short term life threatening.
So all of you who have been rooting for him along the way, keep your fingers crossed that we will finally have an answer to the question of WHY and will find the correct treatment plan that will put some weight back on him for one and for all. 🙂
I’m planning to take him with me on our camping trip next week, can’t wait to see how he does in the water.