What is Equine Headshaking Syndrome
Equine Headshaking syndrome
is a medical condition recognized by veterinarians who to date
any one cause for the syndrome. In other words, there are no lab
tests to confirm that your horse has Headshaking Syndrome. There
is normal head shaking behavior in horses, such as a reaction to
flies; however, Headshaking Syndrome is more severe and predictable.
Your veterinarian will determine that your horse has headshaking
syndrome, by ruling out the medical and mechanical reasons for
shaking. These medical reasons would be middle ear disorders, ear
mites, cranial nerve disorders, guttural pouch infection, or head
trauma. Mechanical reasons could be poor fitting tack, sharp teeth,
rough hands in riding, etc. If your horse predictably starts head
shaking when entering certain environments during certain time
periods he may have Headshaking Syndrome.
Equine Headshaking Syndrome,
or photosensitive head shaking is a condition where a horse will
his head in
reaction to sunlight, wind, movement, stress, etc. The horse can
display mild annoyance to the sensations, or he may exhibit sheer
panic and extreme pain. There are some head shakers who will hit
their heads against walls due to the deep pain in their heads.
horses will strike at their noses with their forelegs because of
the biting or burning sensation. Others may simply scratch their
noses on everything they can find. This behavior can also include
extreme nose blowing, snorting, and coughing. They may exhibit
of photophobia, or they may not. The horse may put his nose under
another horses tail or dunk his nose in his water bucket. Some
may refuse to move forward and will rear if forced. Owners should
be aware that their horse may be suffering terribly and should
be forced to work in pain. Headshaking Syndrome is painful and
debilitating and should be treated as you would treat any serious
The symptoms of equine Headshaking
Syndrome are predictable. They may go away when they sun goes
or when the horse is ridden in an indoor arena. Symptoms may go
away when a nose net is worn or a mask with dark lenses. Symptoms
may disappear when temperatures drop below 40 degrees, or they
may last year round. Symptoms often disappear over the winter
return in the spring with the warmer temperatures and brighter
days. Some horses will display symptoms on a winter days where
suddenly rise above 40 degrees. This would lead us to believe Headshaking
Syndrome is not exclusively allergy related.
Prior to the release of CAPSTAR, the limited treatment options
- Drug therapies, which may have negative side effects and which
merely suppress symptoms.
- Acupuncture, which has varied success.
- Devices such as nose net and face mask.
- Facial neurectomy that offers limited success and may lead to
Capstar is a homeopathic supplement
that is helpful to horses that exhibit symptoms such as those
with Headshaking Syndrome. It is safe, non-toxic, and is not a
banned substance so it will not be detected in any drug test.
safe to be used even while the horse is in competition. Capstar
offers hope to owners of horses with Headshaking Syndrome. Your
horse should first be diagnosed by a veterinarian as having equine
Headshaking Syndrome prior to purchasing Capstar.