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Coral Wings
My little welsh x mare has a huge crest that I am unable to get rid of. I have heard that there is a rug that you can use to sweat the crest away, has anyone ever used of heard of these rugs? Also, does anyone have anyother advice as to how to get rid of the crest??

Thanx in advance.
Nadj al Nur
I have done a bit of resaerch on this subject, since I have a mare who is insulin resistant, and although she is not, and has never been, overweight, she has at times, been rather cresty. Quite by accident, I discovered that it was related to the sugar content in the hay. In a dry year, grass goes into shiock and stores sugar, much like our bodies store fat when we go on a crash diet. If you soak the hay, and I don't mean just wet it, but, put it in a net and totally submerge it, for at least 20 minutes, then hang it for the water to drain out before you feed it, this will remove a lot of the sugar.
If you PM me with your email address, I will send you some information on this subject.
How old is she?

It could be cushings or insulin resistance, especially depending on age. How old is the mare?
This could be a low thyroid problem. Have her thyroid checked with a simple blood test. If it is low, or low normal, we put them on Thyro-L.
It is an inexpensive way to treat the problem.
Coral Wings
This mare is only 12.
Corral Wings
For updated information about Cushing (aka Pituitary Pars Intermedia Dysfunction) go to and click Register Now for FREE access to all 10,900+ articles . Check out Article #1595 Cushing's Disease And Laminitis-- Not Just For Old Horses as it has photos .

Also check out Article 8963 Equine Metabolic Syndrome Versus Cushing's Syndrome

Does your pony have fat deposits above her eyes ?

Nadj al Nur
Info has been sent.
Actually, insulin resistance and cushings, are being seen in increasingly younger horses, and according to some research, it can be directly linked to our "over feeding" practices. We think we are being good to them when we are, in reality, causing them a lot of problems.
Our 10 yr old purebred arabian gelding has either the start of Cushings or EMS
He has the cresty, neck, fat deposts above the eyes, fat deposits in the sheath & has one light bout of founder.

From now on we monitor what he eats, his excircse & turn out time on grass which is limited to 2 hrs or less per day. This horse doens't mind living in a stall .

There is also good research that supplementing feed with 6-10 grams of Magnesium helps the horses metabolise the sugars and reduces the crest. I did this with a mare when she was only 9 - but had been cresty even though not particularly overweight. After about 45 days, there was a noticeable reduction in the crest and the little fat pads and has continued (and I continue to give her an extra 4 g per day of Magnesium) - the chelated version works better than the magnesium oxide, but both will work, and its not expensive.

Cassiosum Acres Arabians
Could be a thyroid problem have a blood test run! I have a mare with that and she recently foundered on me too....big cresty neck, very obese etc....We are finally getting the weight off slowly it does take awhile and now with the lameness it is even harder to do. She is on meds and a strict diet of just a bit of hay
My welsh mountain pony also had a crest, not a large one but hard, when I got her, and had foundered previously - she had a mild founder when I first brought her home. I also put her onto a lower carbohydrate diet (it is called Triple Crown Low Starch and you can find information on it on the internet if you do a search) and on the suggestion of my vet, put her on a supplement called Quiessence. It contains chromium picolinate, which is believed to help the body utilise sugars more efficiently, and it certainly did break down my pony's crest, she is sound, her feet are great and although she has a muzzle on when the grass is green, otherwise she is just a happy, healthy little pony. I will attach a photo of her that Carol Maginn took, about six months after she had been on Quiessence.

Anne-Louise (absolutely in love with that pony...)
The Triple Crown Low Starch feed is wonderful! Anne Louise has influenced my thinking on this product and am now feeding to all of my herd ... various older ages ... remarkable differences in the ways the mares have reacted to low starches in their diet. Even my older mares act like younger mares showing great levels of energetic enthusiasm about life in general. My younger stock are fed the Triple Crown Complete ... a little higher in starch content ... for added nuitrition of a younger's needs in growing and development. After feeding for a short time, there's an extreme difference in how the mares show me they are feeling ... which is great!!

Magnesium was my mares problem. I got a product name Quientence. From FOX DEN. I'm not sure on the spelling.. will check the web sight and let you know..
DID THE TRICK.. that's for sure.. she was a founder waiting to happen. I don't mind paying good dollars for something that works and this product did.

It was 14 pounds for $80.00 US and well worth the money.. lasted quite a while.

Anita, can you tell me what you used if cheaper?

That's it Anne-Louise.. Quiessence

All kinds of good information on this site too!

I've used several sources for Magnesium, finally settling on products from Uckele ( They have plain magnesium oxide - very cheap. The catalog has a 2 lb. jar for $10, but they also have a 10lb bucket (price not shown - I think about $30). The second form of magnesium is"Bioplex Magnesium" - this is the proteinate form which is better absorbed and utilized than magnesium oxide. A 10 lb. pail is $46 (you feed 1-2 oz. daily). The basic feed amount is 5 gms magnesium. When I feed this, I add Chromium, which they sell as "G.T.F. Chromium - a 2 lb. pail is $30. The combination is more effective (as Anne-Louise has pointed out). Quiessence has both magnesium (its primary ingredient) and Chromium, plus some other vitamins.

Uckele has a similar product that also has more minerals and amino acids than Quiessence; its called "Glycocemic-EQ". It has 8.8 grams magnesium, plus 5 mg chromium (more of both) per 1 oz.
Other minerals: selenium, zinc, copper, phosphorus, iodine
Other amino acids/vitamins: Taurine, L-Tyrosine, Niacinimide, Alpha Lipoic Acid, L-Carnitine, Thiamine (B1), Pyrodoxine (B6), Iodine, and Vit. E.
Other ingredients, which reccent research shows have beneficial effects on managing blood glucose are: Ginger, Cinnamon, and Ginseng.

It is $135 for 10 lb compared to $80 for 14 lb of Quiessence.

Note: The info for Quiessence says the magnesium is "elemental" which doesn't tell you what form its really in. There is, apparently, a true difference in the bioavailability of the proteinate form vs. oxide.

For my money, I'd buy a 2 lb. container of the Bioplex and some Chromium and use it for at least 6 weeks and see what happens. I'd use Quiessence with a horse that is showing tendencies to being insulin resistant. If you have definite resistance and/or any history of laminitis, I'd use the Glycocemic-EQ product. The Quissence is about 35 cents per day - the Uckele heavy hitter is about twice that. I'm for the least cost that does the job, but its worth the money to help a horse that really needs all the ingredients.

Hey Anita,
thanks for all the info to weigh (no pun intended).

I bought the 14 lb of Quiessence and a smaller lot of Lin-Pro, which may be
the additional ingredients, as the more expensive you mentioned. To get over
the $100 limiit to get free shipping.. I'd rather have more product, than pay for shipping. Anyway, it lasted my 2 horses (even with the loading amoung)
probably about 90 days. I gave the other mare less after the loading, as she just didn't have the signs my one did.

After that 90 days, she has been fine with no additional flair ups or Crest developing. She has never been a mare that gained a bunch of weight like she did that one year. Thinking about getting another bucket as she looks to be gaining after I started putting hay out a couple weeks ago. May be lots of sugar in the hay from our drought conditions this year.

May try you cheaper combination first, as she is not to bad so far and no crest developement yet. But, I think I'm better able to see the onslot of this condition and will do something now.

Another thing I noticed is she has been sound since I fed the Quiessence,
As I do believe she had a minor grass founder the spring before.

For what it is worth, Quiessence is a great product in my book. That works.

Very good thread with lots of information. When signs are observed in the horses, or insulin resistance is suspected, do the veterinarians do blood studies, e.g., blood glucose levels, and thyroid studies. And how do they determine mineral deficiences - with blood studies?

Are there laboratories which are specifically set up to do such studies, with equine false positives and false negatives as part of the controls in such a study?
If so, can anyone tell me where such labs are located.

Years ago, I had a lot of horses exposed to either ground water or toxic soil problems, with the result that many of them had skeletal fractures and structural collapse. I used the Veterinary School in California, and was getting laboratory data which may or may not be correct, but was completely misinterpreted by the clinicians getting the data.

Misinterpretation of the data is not limited to veterinaries, human clinicians do the same, and in one of my many life time career hats, I was a clinical medical laboratory technologist, and it was not unusual to have to explain what the data meant to the clinician. However, this was in the long ago and far away, and like many other things, time and knowledge marches on - sometimes.

Nadj al Nur
Lorriee...Yes, they do blood tests, supression tests, etc. Unfortunately, if a horse actually DOES have Cushings, the supression test, most of the time, will trigger another bout of laminitis. The tests are horrendously expensive, at least up here, and they want to do the whole series twice, because of the false positives and negatives. I am not sure what lab they use, but I think it is in Vancouver.
Animed has a product called Remission which has the following ingredients
Analysis per Ounce: Magnesium 6000mg, Chromium 14mg, Biotin 20mg, Methionine 3000mg, l-Lysine 2150mg, Vitamin C 1200mg, Zinc 250mg, Niacin 40mg
It is available from
4 lbs 10.99 + shipping
10lbs $23.99 + shipping

Country Supply is also the cheapest place that I have found Ivermectin paste wormer ($2.75 with no limit on the amount of tubes you purchase) & they have excellent prices on their joint supplements

I have an Insulin resistant mare here and there are many signs which go with this. First is an almost unquenchable thirst.... My mare was drinking 100 litres a day! Excessive hunger. Huge crest that is almost as hard as a wooden fence rail. Fat pads in certain places like, on the girth area just behind the elbow, in the triangle at the base of the neck, either side of the tail head, over the back and the hollows that are above the eyes fill up with fat too.....
I have my mare on Speedibeet (which she loves), magnesium Oxide, cinnamon, Iodised salt & calcium. She gets hay as well, but you need to soak it in cold water for an hour and then let drip for 10 mins.... That will get alot of the sugar out of it.
Here is a Yahoo group that will tell you all you could possibly want or need to know about Insulin Resistance and Cushings, and what tests are needed etc.

Exercise is also very important. Also when they are Insulin Resistant, it's quite hard to get weight off them with a normal diet, even with exercise.....
Once the sugar is gone from the diet, the weight should fall off.
Here are a couple of photo's of my mare before we changed her diet, and then some pics of after...

Click to view attachment

Fat lump on the girth area...
Click to view attachment

And after.....
Click to view attachment Click to view attachment
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