Monday, March 03, 2008

Three H words giving me the blues

It's been days since I've given an update on Kaswyn, but I just haven't had the heart to do it. I'm worried and stressed about the whole thing and didn't want to sit down and write it all out, but here goes.

Turns out I spoke too soon when I said Kaswyn was free of hives. One pack of dex takes away about 95% of the hives and significantly shrinks the ones that do hang around, but in 48 hours they are back. I think the change in hay is helping because they aren't as bad as they were before, but I think he's got other environmental issues. There is not much more I can do except change the bedding, but I really don't think that's his problem given where the hives are located.

I'm keeping him on one pack of dex every other day and that is seriously worrying me. I've had three vets tell me that this is a safe dose for him, especially since I'm only doing it until the hydroxyzine kicks in, but it seems like I'm giving him a lot of steroid. And the hydroxyzine could take up to ten days to really start working, so I don't feel like I can decrease his dex until that time (which will be Saturday, March 8th). You never know what's going to send a horse into laminitis. I just hope we're not approaching that threshold.

I'm also stressing about getting more hydroxyzine. I got one bottle of 100 capsules from Dr. B, but Kaswyn is getting 20 caps a day so that bottle us now gone. It's not something my vet usually stocks, so they told me to find it online and they'd write me a prescription for it so it would get sent right to me and I wouldn't have to pick it up. I ordered it last Thursday and they said it would be up to seven business days before I'd have it. I asked for the fastest shipping method, but she said they don't do overnight or anything, so I'd just have to wait and hope that priority mail is fast enough. I called the gal with the hivey horse and she said I could have some of her leftover hydroxyzine. I took all but 20 of her caps and that will last me until Thursday. I hope my order comes by then.

Lastly, I've got a hay issue. The previous barn owner was really nice and sold me six bales of her hay at her cost - $6 a bale. When I called the hay guy he said that if I wanted a small load (anything less than a full load of 280 bales, essentially) that I'd have to pay a fuel surcharge and the bales would probably be $7.25 to $7.75 per bale. If I picked up the hay myself (with the help of Susan and her truck) it would be $6 a bale, but he's about 75 minutes away, and if you figure in a tank of gas then it would be right up there at $7 a bale. So either way I'll be paying more.

And I could deal with that because I have no other choice, but I'm getting short on hay. Susan works, and so do I, plus if we pick it up the hay guy has to be there to load the hay for us. I've tried to get all three of our schedules to mesh and so far it hasn't worked. We also have to factor in the weather conditions, because we're not going to go pick up a load of hay and then drive back with it in a nasty snowstorm. I think I have three and a half bales left, which will last me about one week.

Hives. Hydroxyzine. Hay. At least Laminitis, Lameness, and Colic don't start with H.


haffiegirl said...

Poor Kaswyn (and poor you!)!

Mystery illnesses are horrible, and you've had to deal with more than one recently. That must be really difficult. I hope things get better soon!

Reading about your difficulties with Kaswyn's health makes me a little worried about buying a horse :)

-julia (from the med student blog - I started a new anonymous one so that my mom won't find out I'm buying a horse!)

jdp said...

I'm so sorry you and Kas are going through all of this stress - this has been such a difficult year for the two of you! I wish I could offer more than sympathy but I don't know anything about hives/allergies. I hope to hear a good update soon.

Wiola said...

How annoying this hay issue :( As if you didn't have enough worries as it is :(
I really hope all turn out to be better soon.
(H)ealing vibes for Kaswyn!

20 meter circle of life said...

Oh I am so sorry. That all just sucks. Maybe the Three H's are you last thing to deal with. I sure hope so

Beth said...

ooh...I am so sorry. I was soooo hoping that things were on the up swing.

I have a masters in animal nutrition, but my emphasis was in small animal. Let me look in my text books and see if I can come with something that might compliment what you are doing....

Rising Rainbow said...

Oh my, I hate to say I was thinking that was a pretty quick turn around on the hives, but I was. Poor Kaswyn......sometimes I think that he and Dandy's are connected in some cosmic way, they seem to run into the same kinds of problems, poor boys.

I hope this chapter is over quickly, the medicine arrives and the hay issues resolve. I thought you had enough on your plate just dealing with the footing.

Cara said...

Hives can be mysterious indeed. My current horse is hive free for years. He has reactions to soap, so I don't bath him in anything but water, and I use almost no soap on his pads. He was getting nice saddlepad shaped hives, but the cause was obvious. He has bronchial allergies which were helped by years of allergy shots and a change of hay. I buy wheat hay at 13.00 a bale and drive 2 hours round trip to get it. He also gets alfalfa at the boarding stable.
Waiting for UPS to bring much needed meds is the pits. The UPS guy sees me sometimes around town and asks about my horse!

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