Thursday, 29 October 2015
At the end of April (2014) we noticed one of our Mares just wasn’t right, we emailed Cathy and Eric and they said it was colic and advised what remedies to give. A couple of days pasted and we saw a slight improvement and then she went downhill fast, it was like she was walking on hot rocks, she was playing with water and not swallowing, being spooked and not wanting to be touched.
We were all at wits end as to what was going on, and then the second horse started getting the same symptoms. Working very closely with Cathy and Eric I was updating morning and night and constantly giving remedies, then just in the nick of time they tested positive for botulism…….
What’s botulism? It’s a bacteria that grows on dead carcass with little to no oxygen around them, often found in baled hay, grains and so on. It can also be in the ground. Horses get botulism? It was a learning curve for us all, Australia doesn’t have much information available about botulism, Cathy and Eric had never dealt with it in horses before, or knew if they could get it nor did we.
It was research time, I spoke with the top equine vets, universities and Dpi and they all wished me luck as there was nothing they could do, and animals often get put to sleep due to botulism being mistaken for Hendra!! There is no horse vaccines or antitoxins for botulism in horses in Australia and there is not just one type of botulism, it is very common in America! So as the days went by horse after horse started showing symptoms, we ended up with all 5 of our horses extremely sick and when Cathy said “we are doing all we can” and not the usual “They will be much better in a few days” I knew it was bad, I also knew these amazing people where all we had to beat this fatal bacteria, constantly I had people saying do blood, do soil tests, get a vet……I had eliminated all these options, there was nothing anyone could do apart from Heal With Ease!!
Now 5 weeks in we have had a lot of ups and downs and are still doing our morning and night emails and talking to Cathy and Eric when we needed, we are seeing a light at the end of the tunnel now but still have a little way to go, I believe that it is botulism we have been dealing with and am amazed that Cathy and Eric have managed to save all 5 horses and I think they have even amazed themselves working this miracle.
We have been through a lot over the last 3 years with Heal with ease and managed to come out the other side better than anyone expected with ourselves and our animals. We will never be able to thank Cathy, Eric and there amazing children enough for all that they do. xo Sarah, D. Airlie Beach, Qld