Feeding the Asthmatic Horse
A: Respiratory health is crucial to your horse’s well-being and performance ability. In fact, the respiratory system is a major limiter of performance due to the fact that relatively limited improvements in respiratory function can be made through training. Therefore, it is of utmost importance to care for a horse’s respiratory system.
First of all, you need to work with your horse’s veterinarian to monitor the condition and ensure that it’s not getting worse. Recurrent airway obstruction (RAO, a form of equine asthma syndrome and previously referred to as heaves) is never really cured but in many cases can be managed effectively to reduce clinical signs. If left untreated damage to the lung tissue becomes irreversible.
Since RAO is most commonly triggered by molds, dust, and pollen, effective management starts with limiting your horse’s exposure to these allergens. Given the time of year that you are noticing issues I suspect that dust and mold are bigger problems for your horse than pollen. However some plants do release pollen in the fall and you should work with your vet to narrow down exactly what your horse’s specific triggers
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