Hard to stomach

Posted 18th July 2023

Harlow Luna White helps you to learn all about caring for a pony with ulcers


Studies have proved that performance horses have a higher chance of being affected by gastric ulcers, but did you know that any pony can suffer from the condition? This is why it’s important to understand what ulcers are and how to look after a pony suffering from them.

The science bit!

What are gastric ulcers?

Equine gastric ulcer syndrome (EGUS) is a disease that affects the lining of a pony’s stomach. The ulcers are often painful and can vary in shape, size and severity.

What causes them?

Ponies need acid to break down the food they eat, but if their stomachs aren’t lined with protective mucous, ulcers can form. Long periods without food, stress, certain medications and diets low in forage are all factors that can contribute to the development of stomach ulcers.

Did you know?

The only way to diagnose gastric ulcers is by gastroscopy – for this, a pony is sedated and has a camera passed down his throat into his stomach. If a pony is diagnosed with ulcers, he will usually be treated with medication and the vet will advise feeding and management changes.

Poorly Popcorn

Harlow says:

“When Popcorn started to become sensitive around his girth area and grumpy when he was tacked up, we called our vet who then diagnosed him with ulcers after he was scoped. Now, we always make sure he has some hay or a small, chaff-based meal before exercise to help prevent his ulcers coming back.”

Find out how to care for a pony with stomach ulcers and how you can spot the symptoms in September PONY! Grab your copy from the PONY shop today!

Your Comments

One response to “Hard to stomach”

  1. Alesha says:

    Can ulcers start at any age of a horse and when popcorn had then it was soo sad

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