Pepper’s Journey – Customer Testimonial from George Gibson

Pepper’s Journey – Customer Testimonial from George Gibson

GAIN customer George Gibson bought Pepper as an unbroken 3yo in 2014. Pepper wasn’t in the best condition and George decided to contact Anne Priestman (her local GAIN representative) for advice. George fed Pepper GAIN Prep ‘N’ Condition and Sugar beet for a period of approximately 2 years and once she reached optimal condition, Pepper’s diet was re-adjusted to GAIN Opti-Care Balancer and Sugar beet.

George and Pepper regularly competed for Darlington rc both individually and in teams, at all levels with regular wins and placings!
Saturday 27th Feb – Pepper completed a very pleasing online dressage test and on Sunday morning she was turned out as normal, bouncing about feeling good about life. However, George received a call from the livery yard owner later that day concerned that Pepper was showing signs of colic and as George works for Durham Equine practice she immediately contacted Lester Grant, one of the vets.
When Lester arrived she was showing signs of pain and had a systolic heart murmur, but she was passing droppings. He was concerned this was not a straight forward episode of colic and after pepper did not improve after pain relief and tubing of fluids, the decision was made to refer her to rainbow equine hospital.

Whilst travelling back from dropping Pepper at the clinic George received a call from Jonathan Dixon (vet) advising that her colic signs were ok but asked if she had ever shown signs of aggression, as they had found a mass where her ovary should be, which they thought was a tumor. Various tests were done over the next 24 hours and it became clear that this was most likely a GCT – Granular cell tumor.
Pepper had to be starved for 36 hours prior to surgery to ensure that her intestine was empty. Surgery was carried out via standing procedure and a 22cms GCT was removed with her left ovary using a laparoscopic retrieval bag, this was found to have been compressing her spleen due to its size!


After surgery Pepper was gradually re-introduced to food starting with a soaked mash. Shortly afterwards Pepper was back onto normal feed. After a few days she was allowed back home. George was expecting to collect a thin tucked up horse but no! She came bounding down the yard as if nothing had occurred and looking very well.Lester Grant – Peppers vet, came back out to give her a check up a few days later, his first comment was look at the shine on her coat! Then when another vet came to remove her staples, he was also very surprised how well she looked! She has coped with box rest very well with 3 small feeds of GAIN Opti-Care Balancer, bran and sugarbeet – which have been gradually increased, along with regular, small, dampened hay nets throughout the day and a walkout in hand for a small amount of grass on an evening. Pepper has not lost any condition or topline throughout, and still looks as good as ever. Only another few days and she will be back out in the field and then back into work and competing again! George still finds it hard to believe that she showed no signs of having a tumor at any point and is so thankful she was referred to rainbow that night!