Introduction to what to do for horses with epilepsy
A horse’s health and performance is one of the top priorities to every horse owner. You will do all you can to make sure your horses lead a healthy and productive life. Giving them nutritious foods, regular practice sessions, and even some additional food supplements for that extra boost.
But even then, sometimes bad things can still happen. An unexpected disease can still come and ruin their health. And one of the diseases that can suddenly attack your horses is epilepsy. It may be just a nuisance at first, but if you leave it untreated, it can threaten their life.
So what should you do about it? What are the things that you can do or give to your horses when they are struck by epilepsy? But before you get to the answer to those questions, you should know about epilepsy first. So read on to find all the essential things that you need to know about epilepsy.
What is epilepsy and what causes it?
Although epilepsy can seem to affect the whole body, at its core, epilepsy is a neurological condition. It is essentially a problem in the electrical activity within the nervous system. And when epilepsy attacks, the most notable physical symptom is recurring seizures.
Seizures itself is a sudden and involuntary convulsion that happens throughout the body. Epilepsy will certainly involve seizures, but there are also other things that can cause seizures. So if your horse happens to have seizures, you have to first make sure whether or not it is epilepsy.
Because one of the most frustrating things about epilepsy is the fact that more often than not, the cause is unknown. Some experts have attributed epilepsy to brain injury, brain structure, metabolic problems, and even genetics. But your horses can be free from all of that and still have epilepsy.
How does Epilepsy affect horses?
Epilepsy in horses works in a very similar way to that of humans. It has to do with the problems in the nervous system. And just like with humans, sometimes there is a clear cause to epilepsy. But most of the time, even the vet isn’t really sure what causes the epilepsy on your horse.
Because the fact of the matter is, there are still mountains of things that we don’t know about this disease. It is one of the vicious diseases that comes unannounced and there’s really no effective cure for it. So what you as a horse owner need to do is stay vigilant and look for the symptoms.
The most common symptom of epilepsy is also similar between humans and animals. The biggest and most obvious one is definitely the seizures. If your horse has epilepsy, they will suddenly collapse and start convulsing. The shakes will usually happen for a couple of minutes. After that, different horses may need different time to cope and get back on their feet.
What to do for horses with epilepsy?
As mentioned before, the very first thing that you need to do is stay vigilant and look for that first seizure. If they have experienced that initial seizure, then the first thing to do is take them to your trusted vet. Because you need accurate information about your horse’s condition.
After all, there’s a chance that the seizure is not an epilepsy. There may be a clear explanation as to why it happened. And a vet is the only one that can give you that information. You might even need to let your horse stay under their care for quite some time.
After that, most vets will suggest a long-term care plan involving therapy, medicines, and other kinds of treatment. At this point, you can look into other alternative methods that can help your horse dealing with their epilepsy. And one of those alternatives is CBD.
Using CBD to treat epilepsy in horses
Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the members of the family of compounds called Cannabinoid. As the name suggests, CBD comes from the plant cannabis. But the mass-produced CBD products usually come from hemp. Scientists have found that CBD can help treat all kinds of ailments on humans and animals alike. And one of those ailments is epilepsy.
Numerous researches have been conducted on this particular effect of CBD. Studies found that CBD gains the ability to affect the nervous system by binding itself to the Endocannabinoid System (ECS). ECS is a neural network that encompasses numerous essential parts of the body, including the nervous system.
Research has been done on people who suffer from various kinds of epilepsy. They found that giving CBD to participants regularly can significantly reduce the frequency of epilepsy. Some studies even found as much as 44% reduction in epileptic episodes when using CBD.
These positive findings are what ultimately lead to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to approve Epidolex. Epidolex is a CBD-based medicine that can be used to treat epilepsy. For animals such as horses, there are numerous CBD-based products that can be used to treat their epilepsy. Such as CBD oil, CBD pellets, CBD paste, and many others.
Conclusion to what to do for horses with epilepsy
Epilepsy is one of the types of disease that can come out of nowhere and ruin your horse’s life. The cause of the disease can be unclear but the effects can definitely affect their everyday life. If epilepsy comes to your horses, you should immediately take them to your trusted vets and follow their suggestion. There are different medicines that you can give to them. But one of the best alternatives is using organic CBD-based products. If you are looking for more information, please take a look at this study that examines the relationship between CBD and epileptic animals as there seems to be some very positive results.