Degenerative valvular disease in older horses - DVM
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Degenerative valvular disease in older horses
Performance issues vary depending on stage, severity


During the early stages, it is not necessary to treat horses with DVD. If DVD is acquired in a 15 year-old horse, and it lives to 35, it might catch up to him as a geriatric. At an advanced age, by the time the horse gets symptoms necessary to treat, it is probably already retired and unable to perform. It becomes a decision for the owner to treat a horse that is now a pet or euthanize it. In addition, many of the drugs that can be used for dogs are difficult to use in horses just because of the cost and the formulations. The alternative is the case of the stallion, where an owner wants to get another year or two of breeding from it. It can be treated with an annual treatment of medication to carry it through a few more seasons so it doesn't go into heart failure.

Dr. Kane earned his doctorate in equine nutrition and physiology from the University of Kentucky in 1978. He works within the animal-feed industry with a specialty in horses.


Source: DVM360 MAGAZINE,
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