Saffy is 22 years old and she’s a hearty and independent pony, despite being diagnosed with Cushing’s disease and a soft palate deformity of the roof of her mouth which can lead to a risk of choking.
Her conditions can be carefully managed and she is thriving thanks to the daily specialist treatment she receives at South Manor.
Cushing’s disease is prevalent amongst older horses and ponies, causing excessive production of hormones in the pituitary gland which can cause increased coat length, laminitis, lethargy, increased sweating, weight loss and excessive drinking.
The condition can be managed with medication, but more difficult is her palate deformity which, if not closely monitored, can cause food debris to enter her lungs causing infections like pneumonia.
Groom Lindsey Stride said: “We have to make sure her hay and feed is well soaked to make it easier for her. She loves being out in the fresh air and she’s fine to eat grass, so we make sure she is out in her paddock as much as possible.