View Full Version : Tying up
11th Mar 2002, 03:13 AM
Hi, im just starting up a green horse that recently tyied up the last time i rode her (about 3 months ago) . I was wondering what really causes this to happen and how fast should i restart her training?
11th Mar 2002, 11:11 AM
tying up is caused by too much protein for the amount of work being done. it used to be called monday morning disease, from working horses that had the weekend off but were fed the same as during the week - they would tie up on monday when they started work again. it can be avoided by cutting the amount of hard feed down to the absolute minimum, and not giving hard feed when the horse isn't working. it's also called azoturia and exertional equine rhabdomyolysis, you might get results from an internet search for those terms. it doesn't usually cause permanent damage unless it's a really severe case, you can tell because their urine is dark red. this is caused by the body breaking down muscle tissue as a reaction to the amount of protein in the system.
11th Mar 2002, 11:55 AM
I believe it is a build up of lactic acid in the muscles, which then stops the oxygen from reaching the muscles, thereby causing severe 'muscle cramps'.
As Es replied, it is normally caused by too much hard feed and too little work. Normally in horses stabled 24/7, not so much in those which have daily turnout.
11th Mar 2002, 12:00 PM
Tying up (azoturia) can be a recurrent problem and can cause permanent damage to the muscles and kidneys. Need to get your vet to check the enzyme levels are back to normal before starting to work them. Build up the work very slowly, avoid getting them overly hot and sweaty, be very careful cooling them down after work. Getting chilled can trigger attacks. Feeding Vitamin E supplements can be helpful in preventing further attacks, if they are hot and sweaty feed electrolyte supplements as well.
For diet try to use as little as possible in the way of feeds, if the horse can manage grass and hay only stick to that. If you have to use feed try and avoid barley and oats in large quantities.
Azoturia is a serious problem, I used to train a mare for the owner of the yard where I keep my own horses. She was working at FEI level dressage and apparently had an attack of colic for which she was treated. The colic recurred after 10 days when she was coming back into full work. The vet fortunately got suspicious when it occured a third time and checked her enzyme levels - sky high. Apparently azoturia can sometimes present like colic and is in fact referred to in some vet texts as pseudocolic. She had three months off work before her enzyme levels returned to normal. By following the above management she is rideable and is used in the riding school. The downside - the damage to her muscles has prevented her returning to her previous level of work because she finds it difficult to engage now. Any attempt we have made to try and improve this through her work has triggered a minor attack. In addition because of her problems the sad decision has been made not to breed from her - even more so for me as I had first refusal on the foal.
Don't want to be too pessimistic, horses do recover without problems and have no further attacks, we have had two who did - I hope your horse joins this happy band.
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