Friday, March 5, 2010

HYPP-othetically Dangerous or Not? Day 2

Yesterday I went over the basics of HYPP, and showcased one ad of a gelding that was H/H who's owners/sellers were trying to sell him as a youth horse.

I can rant and rave and scream until I'm blue in the face about HYPP and what it can do, but for most people the reality comes when its shown to them. The reality of HYPP is something that most horse owners one time or another will come across, no matter what discipline you are in.

So I went and searched on youtube to see what I could find. 

This video was one of only a few on you tube showing what a HYPP attack really looks like. This mare is experiencing a mild attack, as its not forcing her to be laying fully paralyzed on the ground, just making her muscles twitch like I discussed yesterday.

As you can see, the spasms are not completely incapacitating this mare - she can move around somewhat freely. You can also see the heavily muscled hip/hindquarters so typical of these Impressive bred horses. The comments on the video show how much misinformation and just NO information there is out there about this disease. 

The comment: "actually my horse is out, well a grandaughter of Impersive. she is a halter horse and she is N/N but u can not show horses in the AQHA shows if they are HYPP P/P!!! and for bethdhoffman there is no cure for HYPP your best luck is to put them down.....sadly..." by quarterhorse42057 also proves how much some people believe the myths surrounding the disease.

AQHA DOES allow HYPP POSITIVE  horses to show, and not just allows them to show but those horses are WINNING. (just see the prior post!)  She also gets the status wrong (P/P) vs the correct H/H, or N/H - well actually two of the posters get it wrong. 

Here is a video that shows a much more severe attack. This video is from the website The mare in the video was literally down on the ground partially or fully paralyzed for an hour. The clip is approximately a minute. Notes on the video. The notes state that they could not remove the foal from the mare as she would then become even more stressed and upset. Leaving the foal with the mare at least kept her somewhat calm. The attack happened while she was in a monitored veterinary equine center, and the techs that were attending the mare were in contact with the vet at  all times during the attack. At the end of the video you can see the bandage around her neck from the IV they had to give her. Unfortunately this mare went on to have several more severe attacks, and finally died from them. During this video she suffered several lacerations, bruises, a large swelling on her chest, and several other mild to moderate injuries from her struggles to get up. 

This is the harsh reality of HYPP. This is what it does. More info from the awesome HYPP website regarding common myths.

Unfortunately, only some horses that have this incurable disease are given the care they need and that home that understands that they do need to be on a special diet, and very strict management. 

So when this ad came to my attention so soon after the one from yesterday, It made my eyes literally pop out of my head. 


The ad screams: 

1994 AQHA halter mare - TAKING OFFERS NOW!!! - $1 (clarksville pa)

MISS ASHLEY BE 1994 chestnut mare. Ashley stands 15.0 hands and is HYPP N/H. Ashley is broke to ride and jump but hasnt been schooled in several months. She is very eager to please and would only be able to be used for light occasional riding due to her age. if ridden often she would most likely need joint supplements. Ashley also has been shown at congress and took 12th as a weanling in halter. She also was shown in WV and earned 1/2 point in open halter. This mare could have gone far but due to the previous owners issues was not shown continueously. Ashley has awesome conformation and is flashy with 3 white socks. Ashley is also a great mother to her foals and foals easy. Ashley has no vices and loads, bathes, clips, and ties well. Ashley is UTD in all shots and wormings. Ashley is great in the field with other horses and tends to get along with everyone. Ashley also does great with 24/7 turn out with a blanket. The weather months tend to dry out her skin so i add corn oil to her feed to enhace her coat and skin. She is an easy keeper and isnt picky about her feed. I am only selling because I will not be breeding for several years due to college and this mare shouldnt go to waste. TAKING ALL OFFERS!! TRADES WELCOME! PLEASE NO HORSES! WILL CONCIDER COWS AND PIGS....ETC..


*sigh* NOT ONCE besides the initial N/H mention does she say if this mare has had any signs of the disease. Whats worse is she's been bred. Several times to boot. The person selling her needs to be sat down and shown picture after picture, made to read story after story, watch video after video of HYPP horses that have shown no signs of the disease, then suddenly after or during the VERY FIRST ATTACK die because either they get so stressed out or their neck muscles stiffen so much they suffocate!

Whats worse, is the seller is down to accepting PIGS(?) in payment for this horse that they had listed on this site for $3000! The only good thing I can say about this ad is that at least the mare is being sold unbred. 

I'm so sad for these two horses because if the breeder had simply chosen to not breed their H/H or N/H horse this wouldn't be an issue. 

But as promised, I'm not done yet. 

Fingers get pointed at owners for purchasing these horses as show animals, creating the market for them. Fingers get pointed at the AQHA for continuing to allow the breeding of these horses. Fingers get pointed at breeders for creating the foals in the first place. 

The owners of Invest N Vital Signs is now offering with any full price breeding to their stallion (at their cost) the additive of an extender to his semen. 

This 'magic' formula has been patented as X-Extender, and the idea behind it is this: "A substance and process for preventing reproductive cells containing a genetic defect from being passed onto offspring by creating conditions, such as by adding a particular substance to extra-cellular fluid, that triggers or activates the particular disease associated with the genetic defect in defective reproductive cells, rendering those cells incapable of fertilization, implantation or embryonic development, but without significantly impairing healthy reproductive cells from producing offspring. The invention is particularly suited for channelopathies, and more particularly, for application with sperm from a Quarter Horse that is heterozygous for hyperkalemic periodic paralysis (HYPP). A solution of potassium chloride is added to a sperm extender to produce a potassium concentration of about 0.71 mg/ml. Sperm is introduced to the resulting modified sperm extender for at least five minutes, then is artificially inseminated into a mare. The high potassium concentration activates the disease solely within the sperm containing the defective gene, resulting in leakage of sodium-ion channels that under the increased potassium concentration floods the cytoplasm with positive ions, preventing repolarization of the cell membrane, immobilizing the defective sperm. The potassium concentration does not prevent repolarization in healthy sperm, which retain motility and are capable of fertilizing the egg.Link. 

Basically, they think they can stop the sperm with the defective gene in it from fertilizing the mare. Apparently they have been testing this idea, and has 'shown amazing results'. Whatever that means. If they can actually get this stallion to throw 100% N/N babies, I will be the first person to support this product for all stallions. As a result, they offer a HYPP Guarantee that says if you want to breed to their stallion, you have to have a mare that has been tested N/N. Basically if the foal turns out N/H, the X-Extender didn't work! But guess what, you get a free RE-BREED. That means "lets make MORE N/H babies!!". Cause its not like we don't have enough of them out there as it is! 

Invest N Vital Signs's owners, are also offering a $200,000 World Show Bonus Program. If the 2013 2 Year Old Western Pleasure AQHA World Champion is sired by their diseased stallion, the owner gets half, the exhibitor gets half. How many foals will be born N/H just because their breeders will have visions of getting some of that money?

Now do you believe that the HYPP industry is all about the money?

One generation of not breeding any N/H or H/H horse would nearly stop this entire disease in its tracks. Thats all it would take. 

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