Dear Springtime,

It's one of those moments a horse owner dreads. You go out to bring the horses in for the night, but, someone is missing. Where is Gypsy, my eight year old miniature? I search the darkness and start yelling her name. I see a faint shadow, something is wrong. Gypsy is moving very slowly. As she gets closer I hear her loud breathing and see her barrel is sinking in and out as she struggles to breath. A year earlier she had been diagnosed with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary disease, commonly known as Heaves. Heaves is a respiratory ailment that results in cough, shortness of wind and exercise intolerance. She had had spells before but, this was bad.

I frantically headed to the house to call the emergency vet, who seemed more interested in scolding me for not having extra medication than helping me. Fortunately, I did have one packet of medication; I gave her a dose and called my vet the next day. Two days later I saw no improvement and asked her to stop by.

"She's really working hard" the vet said as she examined Gypsy. I could feel myself working into a panic. What if she needed to be put down? I didn't want her to suffer. The vet gave her a shot of high dose steroids. The treatment could have some serious side effects and cost $300.00. You start asking those questions that you don't want to think about. How much can I afford to put into my ailing horse and how much will I allow her to suffer? The next few days I watched over her closely, spending extra time with her, grooming her, walking her and just sitting under a tree watching her eat. Terry had bought Gypsy, at an auction. Nine months later she had surprised us with a beautiful foal who we named Cheyenne. She had given us so much, I just couldn't lose her.

But, Gypsy proved that although she was small she was tough. She experienced no side effects and the treatment seems to have helped. But, what about next time? I knew I had to find answers and a way to help my little horse. I recalled a catalog I had received called "Springtime". A huge supporter of alternative medicine in humans I decided to see what it could do for my horse. I started Gypsy on two products, the Breather Powder and DMG 5,600. The Breather Powder improves oxygenation and heart and lung function. The DMG 5,600 enhanced energy production, reduces lactic buildup, strengthens the immune response and supports oxygen utilization. I kept her stall dust and mold free and only use wood shavings. It has been almost a year since her last spell. Gypsy has put on weight and is a picture of good health. When I see her running with the herd I get a lump in my throat. I'm glad that I was able to find something that helped my little horse have a better life so she can just enjoy being a horse.

Jowana Lamb, Delaware
Country Time Creations Blog