Saturday, May 23, 2020

Protect your horse from choke - Full Article

The risk for developing a blockage of the esophagus is higher in winter, but it's wise to take precautions all year round.

UPDATED:APR 29, 2020

Unlike choking in people, which can lead to suffocation within minutes, choke in horses is more of a slow-motion disaster. A blockage of the esophagus rather than the airway, choke occurs when a horse tries to ingest inadequately chewed feed, a large chunk of carrot or something else he cannot swallow properly.

Choke does not inhibit a horse’s breathing but it can be so unpleasant that he becomes anxious or panicky, and if the blockage persists the resulting esophageal damage may seriously compromise his health in the long run.

Fortunately, most episodes of choke clear on their own. Even as he strains to relieve the blockage by stretching out his neck and coughing, a horse continues to produce saliva, which lubricates the esophagus and may eventually enable the mass to pass to the stomach. It’s a good idea to call a veterinarian anyway...

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Thursday, May 21, 2020

3 things you (probably) didn't know about beet pulp - Full Article

Although the popularity of this fibrous feedstuff continues to grow, misconceptions about it remain.


Chances are you’re pretty familiar with beet pulp. Most of us have scooped and soaked our fair share of this sugar-industry-byproduct-turned-equine-feed. The remains of sugar beets used in the manufacture of sugar, beet pulp is high in digestible fiber and a good source of “safe” structural carbohydrate-based calories, making it a popular horse feed throughout the country and around the world.

Straight from the bag, beet pulp is dried and shredded—almost resembling tobacco—or pressed into solid pellets. Soak either form in water for about a half-hour, and you’ll have a soft, soggy mash.

Yet as simple and easy as beet pulp is to feed, it has long been the subject of myths and misunderstandings in the horse world. Some of these misconceptions are harmless, but others could lead owners to needlessly rule out beet pulp as part of a horse’s diet or, conversely, rely on it too heavily and for the wrong reasons...

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Sunday, May 17, 2020

Feeding Horses for Performance - Full Article

Equine athletes have nutritional needs specific to their discipline, workload, and lifestyle. Take a closer look at the subtleties of performance horse diets in this article excerpt from the May 2020 issue of The Horse.

Posted by Lucile Vigouroux | May 16, 2020

Guidelines for fueling the equine athlete

What does it take to win with your horse? A reputable coach, world-class training facilities, and high-tech equipment will all give you an advantage, no doubt. But for your horse to feel and perform at his best, you’ll need to start at a more fundamental level and consider what kind of fuel you’re pumping into him.

Equine athletes have nutritional needs specific to their discipline, workload, and lifestyle; for optimal performance, you must address them.

“Fundamentally, the difference between the diet of an equine athlete and that of a horse at maintenance lies in the amount of energy, the quality of protein, and the balance of electrolytes required,” says Lynn Taylor, PhD, professor of equine science at Centenary University, in Hackettstown, New Jersey, and owner of a private equine nutrition consulting business...

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Managing Your Equine Facility During the COVID-19 Pandemic ~ Updated 5/13/20 - Full Article

At ELS, we have received a steady stream of questions from barn owners related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The original version of this article, published on March 30, 2020, received more views than any other article ELS has ever published. Based upon the feedback and questions ELS receives, we are continuing to update this article as the COVID-19 pandemic evolves.

Many equine facility owners who closed their barns to prevent the spread of COVID-19 are under intense pressure from their customers to reopen. These customers point to the many equine facilities that stayed open (often in violation of state stay-at-home orders), as well as those that have reopened and are now conducting activities at pre-pandemic levels. This pressure from customers, coupled with the grim financial reality of remaining closed, is causing many equine facility owners to reopen and resume their businesses.

​Here’s the current state of the COVID-19 pandemic:...

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Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Equestrian Air Vests: What You Need to Know - Full Article

by Leslie Potter | May 12, 2020, 12:31 PM EST

While most equestrians are well aware of the potential for head injuries that comes with riding, riders run the risk of other types of injuries when involved in a fall. Eventers have been wearing body protectors on the cross-country course for decades to mitigate some of that risk, and in recent years, self-inflating air vests have become a common item of supplemental safety gear.

Riders in other disciplines have taken note, and air vests are starting to show up in the show ring as well as on the cross-country course. Like all safety gear, air vests are only effective when used correctly and cared for properly. We spoke with Danielle Santos, Director of Sales and Partnerships for Charles Owen, and Dr. Mark Hart, USEF’s Team Physician and Chair of the Fédération Équestre Internationale Medical Committee, to find out what equestrians need to know about air vests...

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Monday, May 11, 2020

AAEP Updates Vaccination Guidelines

May 8 2020

Routine vaccinations considered essential during COVID-19 pandemic

The Infectious Disease Committee of the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) has issued revised guidelines for the administration of selected core and risk-based vaccines to horses.

The recommendations are based on the age of the horse and its previous vaccination history and are meant to serve as a reference for veterinarians. Reviewed guidelines include the core vaccinations Eastern Equine Encephalomyelitis (EEE), Western Equine Encephalomyelitis (WEE), and Rabies; and the risk-based vaccinations Anthrax, Botulism, Equine Herpesvirus (EHV), Equine Viral Arteritis (EVA), Equine Influenza, Leptospirosis, Potomac Horse Fever Rotaviral Diarrhea, and Venezuelan Equine Encephalomyelitis (VEE).

Among important modifications to the Vaccination Guidelines for Horses:

The Adult Horse Vaccination and Foal Vaccination charts have been updated to match changes made in various vaccination guidelines and vaccine manufacturer label recommendations. Changes to the foal chart also include updates to the Rabies vaccination recommendations for vaccinated vs. unvaccinated mares. Changes to the adult horse chart include updates to the broodmare section to recommend vaccinating those mares pre-partum with a “respiratory EHV” product in addition to the abortion product.

The Anthrax guidelines indicate that the disease can be contracted in an endemic area via vector-borne transmission. Further recommendations have been added for horses during an outbreak (e.g., vaccinate afebrile horses not showing clinical signs).
The EEE and WEE guidelines encourage veterinarians to consult with vaccine manufacturers for their geographic region and to consider the region's case frequency for the current year and in recent years.
The Equine Influenza guidelines include recommendations for horses that have recovered from natural infection. It also notes that some facilities and competitions may require vaccination within the previous 6 months to enter.
The EVA guidelines indicate that the occasional stallion may shed very low concentrations of vaccine virus in its semen for several days following first-time EVA vaccination and the recommendation to confirm negative status prior to vaccination.
The Leptospirosis guidelines incorporate recommendations for foals as young as 3 months of age and emphasize that the licensed vaccine is safe for pregnant mares at all stages of parturition.
The Rabies guidelines provide guidance for how to approach a horse that has been exposed to a confirmed rabid animal.

The Infectious Disease Committee stresses that veterinarians, through an appropriate veterinarian-client-patient relationship, should use the recommendations, coupled with available products, to determine the best professional care for their patients. Horse owners should consult with a licensed veterinarian before initiating a vaccination program.

"The goal of the guidelines is to provide current information that will enable veterinarians and clients to make thoughtful and educated decisions on vaccinating horses in their care," explained Infectious Disease Committee Chair Dr. Katie Flynn. "The impact of infectious disease has been felt across the equine industry in recent years, and the committee hopes that these guidelines will be a useful tool in preventing or mitigating the effects of equine infectious disease."

The committee also emphasizes that routine vaccinations are considered essential during this COVID-19 pandemic, and overdue vaccinations should be completed to help prevent disease in horses. Duration of immunity for some vaccines might be limited to 6 months; therefore, maintaining a routine vaccination schedule is critical for horses at high risk of developing these diseases, and vaccinations should be scheduled as soon as reasonably possible to ensure the health and welfare of the horse. In all cases, veterinarians should consider local conditions and current state-imposed regulations to determine when vaccinations can be completed safely during this unprecedented time.

The committee, comprised of researchers, vaccine manufacturers, regulatory veterinarians and private practitioners, regularly reviews these guidelines and provides updates online, with in-depth reviews occurring every three years. The complete guidelines, along with easy reference charts, are available at

About AAEP

The American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP), headquartered in Lexington, Ky., was founded in 1954 as a non-profit organization dedicated to the health and welfare of the horse. Currently, AAEP reaches more than 5 million horse owners through its over 9,000 members worldwide and is actively involved in ethics issues, practice management, research and continuing education in the equine veterinary profession and horse industry. Visit

Horses Recognize Pics of Their Keepers - Full Article

By Susanne Bard on May 5, 2020

Horses picked out photographs of their current keepers, and even of former keepers whom they had not seen in months, at a rate much better than chance.

We recognize our friends’ faces. And we’re not alone. Many social animals can identify individuals of their own species by their facial features. That’s important, because they need to be able to adjust their behavior depending on who they encounter. And research has shown that some species of monkeys, birds and domesticated animals can even distinguish among different faces by looking at photographs alone.

Scientists have also wondered whether domesticated animals that have coexisted with people for thousands of years can recognize different human faces. For example, we’ve shared more than 5,000 years of our history with horses. Plus, they can live up to 30 years and may need to retain a great deal of information about us throughout their lifetimes.

Ethologist Léa Lansade of the French National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food and Environment did an experiment to find out how well horses can recognize individual people in photographs...

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Saturday, May 02, 2020

Discover... the Criollo - Full article

02 May 2020
Words by Patricia Salem

Visitors to Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, or Uruguay may have seen the beautiful Criollo horse in action.

This breed has a long history in the South American pampas, the grassy eastern plains where both native dwellers and European settlers have long had ranches and livestock.

Here’s a look at this venerable breed, known for its hardiness and stamina...

History of the Criollo
The Criollo comes from early Andalusian horses brought to the Americas by conquistadors. These horses were closely related to the Spanish Barb, which had Moorish origins. During the early years in South America, there was likely some mixing with other horses of the region, including the Peruvian Paso and the Venezuelan Lllanero.

Originally bred for war in North Africa and Europe, the Criollo’s bloodlines gave it a compact, sturdy body and tremendous endurance. Able to thrive on little food and water and to survive in both heat and cold, the Criollo was a natural at handling the vast reaches of the pampas to help plantation owners cover ground in tending the fields and herding farm animals...

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Friday, May 01, 2020

How to build a trustworthy trail horse - Full Article

Three seasoned trail riders offer strategies for overcoming the most common spoilers of the great-outdoor horseback experience.

UPDATED:MAR 10, 2017

Ah! A nice, relaxing trail ride on a pleasant summer day: What could be better to break the tedium of ring work and soothe the stresses of show training? Just head for the hills, the woods, the rolling meadows on horseback, alone or in congenial company, and all your troubles will melt away. Yeah, right... until your horse refuses to cross the creek or runs in terror from an innocent boulder or takes up a bone-jarring jig that puts you both in a lather for the duration of the ride.

When horses and their riders are unprepared for the out-of-arena experience, a simple walk through the woods turns into a series of frustrating or frightening confrontations. The disconnect between expectations and reality often begins with the choice of mount.

"Most people don't select horses for trail riding," says Montana horseman Dan Aadland, an avid backcountry rider and author of several books on the topic. "I get tired of hearing, 'Well, she's not good enough for the show ring, but she'll make a good trail horse.' Why should trail riding be relegated to a secondary job for a horse? If you want to trail ride exclusively, buy a horse who excels at it, not one who can't do anything else."

Compounding the problem, says Aadland, is a tendency to overlook the importance of a trail-riding education: "We train horses for very specific arena jobs but expect them to just automatically know how to handle the trail. Then we get frustrated when they don't. Horses need to be taught to trail ride just like they are taught reining, roping or any other skill..."

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Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Relationship between Resting and Recovery Heart Rate in Horses

EquineScienceUpdate blog - Full Article

Thursday, April 23, 2020

It would be better to base heart rate recovery tests in endurance competitions on each individual horse’s resting heart rate, according to the authors of a recent study.

Veterinary check points (vet gates) are set up at various points along the route of an endurance race, to ensure that each horse is fit to continue the competition.

Horses are held at the vet gate and checked for heart rate recovery, metabolic status, gait and general condition. The heart rate must have fallen below a specified value before the horse can continue. The required heart rate is the same for all competitors.

It has been assumed that horses with low resting heart rates would reach the required limit for continuing more quickly. Now research by Arno Lindner and colleagues has shown that is, indeed, the case...

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Tuesday, April 28, 2020

14 Tips to Keep Yourself Safe From COVID-19 When Trail Riding - Full Article

A veteran trail rider shares practical tips to keep yourself healthy and maintain social distancing while still enjoying time on your horse.

Posted by Alayne Blickle | Apr 24, 2020

Here are some tips and ideas for keeping yourself safe while hitting the trails and getting fresh air and exercise for you and your horses—sourced from a cadre of thoughtful, experienced equestrians:

1. Consider not riding if you live in a highly affected area with a maxed-out health care system.

2. The “trail less traveled” is a good adage to keep in mind for today’s social distancing world. As much as possible, research and choose trail riding locales with fewer crowds. Consider less-popular locations as well as days or times when fewer people are likely to be riding. Be prepared to change your plans if when you arrive at your destination you find your presence will crowd others...

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Post-Coronavirus Travel: The Ultimate Equestrian Escape In Patagonia (Not For The Faint-Hearted)

Stefan Morel photo - Full Article

Elizabeth BroomhallContributor
I cover travel and wellness, writing about everything from adventure trips to yoga

I stood alone in a strange desert, surrounded by luggage and dust, as I waited for a lady called Sylvanna to arrive with horses.

I’d come to volunteer at my second estancia in Argentina — a remote place I knew only as “Ranquilco”, located somewhere in northern Patagonia.

After a long drive from Neuquén airport, I was dropped off as close as we could get to the lodge by car and asked to help bring over the luggage.

We’d driven down one of the steepest and rockiest roads imaginable, so I was grateful to be out of the vehicle. I only wished I didn’t have this enormous suitcase.

When Sylvanna arrived with two horses and a mule, I was surprised.

How would we get all this stuff to the ranch with just one mule? As we loaded him/her up, I kept asking Sylvanna if the mule would be ok, to which she smiled and told me not to worry, it would be fine.

But the real shock was yet to come...

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Monday, April 27, 2020

Heart-rate recovery system in Endurance may not be fair, researchers suggest - Full Article

April 27, 2020

The pre-determined arbitrary heart-rate recovery values seen in Endurance may not allow for fair competition, according to researchers.

Arno Lindner and his colleagues set out in their study to explore the relationship between resting and recovered heart rates in horses.

Their work has particular relevance for the discipline of Endurance, given its major focus on heart rates in competing horses.

As the authors point out, veterinary checkpoints are established at certain distances within Endurance races to ensure the health of the competing horses. Heart rate is one of the parameters investigated.

Horses can continue racing only after reaching a pre-defined and arbitrary heart rate, providing all other parameters are also in good order

The researchers, reporting in the open-access journal Animals, found that the time until the pre-defined heart rate is reached is shorter when the resting heart rate of a horse is lower to begin with...

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COVID-19 Limits Public Land Access for Horseback Riding - Full Article

Public lands are managed by several local, state, and federal agencies, meaning rules and closures might vary, even within the same area. Find out if and where you can ride.

Posted by Alayne Blickle | Apr 24, 2020

Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, governments everywhere are urging citizens to stay home, except for exercising and essential activities. “Essential activities”—and exercise—for many horse owners include trail riding. However, in many parts of the country equestrians who trail ride on public lands have been impacted by trail and public land closures.
Public lands are managed by several local, state, and federal agencies, meaning rules and closures might vary, even within the same area.

“In Washington state, Governor Inslee issued the ‘Stay Home – Stay Healthy’ proclamation (in response to COVID-19), which ordered all citizens to stay home,” explained Joan Burlingame, of Ravensdale, Washington, an avid equestrian and backcountry rider...

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Saturday, April 25, 2020

Horses with Odd Jobs: This Little Black Mare is a Movie Pro - Full Article

While Storm isn’t the most majestic stunt horse in owner MarieBeth Young’s herd of equine actors, her confidence makes her safe on hectic film sets.

By: Nicole Kitchener | April 22, 2020
Storm might not be the flashiest gal on camera, but she’s a hard worker. At 27, she’s been around the block a few times and thanks to her know-how, she’s a favourite of her costars.

A solid black, 15-hand Saddlebred/Haflinger, Storm has appeared in countless film projects including movies, TV series, commercials and music videos. She is perfect for actors, wranglers and stunt people alike, no matter what their equine experience level. And she’s versatile. She can jump, pull a carriage, work around other animals, travels any terrain, doesn’t mind people hanging off her side and being (fake) shot off her back. She can also do tricks such as say yes, no, smile, shake hands, neigh and rear on request...

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Chances to compete with your hobby horse or model horse during lockdown - Full Article

Eleanor Jones
24 April, 2020 17:56

From model horses to hobby horses, to horses with the most impressive moustaches – there may be nearly as many online competitions running during the coronavirus lockdown than there would have been shows without it.

H&H has reported on the virtual Royal Windsor Horse Show, hobby horse online dressage and the virtual three-day event set to run next month, but there are more competitions, to suit everyone.

Endurance GB is running a model horse marathon on Sunday (26 April) in aid of the NHS Charities Together Covid-19 emergency appeal and in a bid to beat lockdown boredom.

EGB members and non-members are invited to enter model horses, “the wackier the better”, to undergo a series of tests “of the kind riders and crews might expect to encounter at an actual ride”...

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Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Arrhythmias in Equine Athletes - Full Article

Irregularities in heart rhythm are normal in horses; lub dub, lub dub, pause, lub dub is perfectly natural. There are some irregularities cause concern.

By: Teresa Pitman | July 24, 2012

That comes as no surprise to Ontario Veterinary College professor Dr. Peter Physick-Sheard, who has been studying how equine hearts function in his research with some other equine athletes – Standardbred racehorses. “I tell my students that if the horse’s heart is beating steadily like a metronome, step back – because he might fall over on them,” Physick-Sheard says. Irregularities in heart rhythm are normal in horses; hearing lub dub, lub dub, pause, lub dub is perfectly natural. However, there are some types of irregularities that can cause concern.

Physick-Sheard explains that each contraction or beat of the heart is preceded by electrical activity initiated in a special area of the heart (called the pacemaker) triggering biochemical changes that signal the heart muscle to contract. ECGs (electrocardiograms) detect that electrical signal. “Every wiggle on the ECG screen means a cardiac contraction,” explains Physick-Sheard. The data from an ECG can also indicate whether or not the heart muscle is healthy or whether the heart’s internal conduction system is normal, and can provide other information about heart function...

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Tuesday, April 21, 2020

*** UPDATED 4/20/2020 *** COVID-19: Should I Lock Down My Barn? - Full Article

Updated as of April 20, 2020

At ELS, we are receiving a steady stream of questions from barn owners about closing their barns to boarders and visitors. The original version of this article, published on March 30, 2020, has received more views than any other article ELS has ever published. Based upon the feedback and questions ELS has received, we have updated this article, and will continue to do so as the COVID-19 pandemic evolves.

Many equine facility owners want to close their barns to prevent the spread of COVID-19, but are worried that if they do, they will lose business, they will have to lay off employees, their customers will be very upset and some might even sue them. Some have already closed their barns and are facing questions and pushback from boarders and trainers. Other equine facility owners want to keep their barns open to keep their business from going under, keep their employees working, and provide their understandably anxious boarders with access to their beloved horses as well as an outlet for healthy exercise, fresh air and a sense of normalcy. But these barn owners are also concerned that if they don’t lock down their barns, their facilities will contribute to the pandemic. Federal, state and local government guidance on COVID-19 has been inconsistent, and so far, there is very limited guidance specifically for equine facilities. Accordingly, ELS wishes to provide the horse community with the data and information it needs to make sound, science-based decisions...

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Sunday, April 19, 2020

Things You Should and Should Not Put on a Horse’s Wound - Full Article

Is the ointment you’re using on that cut helping or hurting? Remember these tips when treating horse wounds.

Posted by Alexandra Beckstett, The Horse Managing Editor | Feb 18, 2016

Horse owners and veterinarians have been treating equine wounds for centuries. After all, horses are unabashedly practiced at the art of sustaining wounds. Over the years we’ve tried many different wound ointments and salves, cleansers and dressings, but not all of them are backed by evidence of safety and/or efficacy.

So Dean Hendrickson, DVM, MS, Dipl. ACVS, professor of equine surgery at Colorado State University, in Fort Collins, went back to basics, describing effective and ineffective wound-cleaning agents to an audience of veterinarians at the 2015 Annual American Association of Equine Practitioners Convention, held Dec. 5-9, in Las Vegas.

Although our intentions are good, “most wound-cleaning agents and techniques will cause chemical or mechanical trauma to the wound bed,” he said. “Weigh the benefits of cleaning the wound against the trauma that agent will cause...”

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Saturday, April 18, 2020

The World's Hardest Endurance Events We Absolutely Won't Be Doing After Isolation - Full Article

We won't be competing in any of these any time soon!

10:20, 17 Apr 2020

Sitting in self-isolation in our pants was meant to be easy. We were meant to catch up on all that TV we’d missed, read those books left to decay on our bookshelves, run more, do more push-ups…

Three weeks in and self-isolation is starting to feel like the toughest endurance sport there is. We’ve still not caught up on Killing Eve, the books are growing dustier by the day and our running trainers are still as clean as when we bought them.

This endurance test has been awful for all of us, but there’s definitely worse out there. Below are five of the toughest endurance events in the world that we are absolutely not going to be doing when things return to normal...

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Friday, April 17, 2020

Does Horse Manure Make Safe Compost? - Full Article

Do horse feeds made of products treated with herbicides and pesticides create contaminated compost that threatens the health of future gardens? Can deworming your horses then composting their manure lead to drug residue in your pile? Find out how to make the most of your horse’s manure.

Posted by Betsy Lynch | Apr 10, 2020

Are you begging people to come take your horse manure for free—or perhaps even paying to have it hauled away? If so, it may be hard to imagine that your stable waste could be converted into something worth $30, $200, or even $1,000 per cubic yard.

The difference depends on how you compost it, says Rhonda Sherman, a solid waste extension specialist at North Carolina State University (NCSU). It’s not just heaping manure into a big pile and waiting for Mother Nature to do her job. Sure, this works. But the compost will likely be of the give-away variety, with weed seeds, pathogens, parasites, and chemical residues potentially contaminating it.

Not all livestock dung is created equal, Sherman points out, but horses that are eating good, balanced diets should produce compost-worthy waste...

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Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Happy Trails Podcast: Ten Essential Skills for Trail Horses

Happy Trails Podcast - Listen

April 10, 2020
Jessica Isbrecht

Everyone wants a great horse; athletic, obedient, and game for anything, but it takes a lot of training to get there. It’s not easy to build the perfect horse and it certainly doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time, something that’s usually in short supply. Now that we are all quarantined and sheltering in place, this is the perfect opportunity to identify holes in your horsemanship, set some goals, and make a plan to work on your horse. In this episode, I speak with my friend Mary Schmitt about essential skills that all trail horses should have.

Mary lives in Jackson, Wyoming and runs an antique shop, Cayuse Western Americana. When not at the shop you’ll find her exploring the Tetons on horseback. She is a member of the local Back Country Horsemen chapter and the Jackson Hole Police Citizens’ Mounted Unit. She and her horses have seen it all. So, I asked her what kind of skills are essential for a trail horse to have?...

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Thursday, April 09, 2020

Coronavirus Closings: Horseback Riding Prohibited In Maryland State Parks During Stay At Home Order - Full Article

April 8, 2020

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — If you’re wanting to get outside for some fresh air, there’s one more thing on a long list of things you can’t do during the state’s stay at home order: go horseback riding in a Maryland State Park.

Maryland DNR posted the clarification on their social media accounts Wednesday morning.

” In accordance with Governor Hogan’s emergency actions to protect public health during the COVID-19 pandemic, horseback riding is prohibited in Maryland State Parks,” DNR stated...

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Wednesday, April 08, 2020

Lush Grass: Good or Bad? - Full Article

March 6, 2019
By Kentucky Equine Research Staff

Horse owners and farm managers frequently use the word “lush” to describe the state of pasture forage as it begins to grow rapidly in the spring. Just exactly what does “lush” mean? Is this new grass good for horses, or dangerous for them to graze?

In defining “lush,” the dictionary uses words like “growing vigorously; lavishly productive; thriving; plentiful; delicious; savory.” Lush pasture, then, is a grazing area with plenty of abundant green forage that tempts horses to graze enthusiastically for hours on end.

Lush new spring grass, mature summer grass, and dried autumn grass contain the same basic ingredients–water, vitamins, minerals, protein, starch, and structural fiber among other things—but the proportions of these ingredients are far different depending on season. Spring grass grows very rapidly, containing a large proportion (up to 80% or more) of water. This grass is generally soft and easy to chew because the amount of indigestible fiber is less than in mature grass.

Because there is so much liquid in new spring grass, all the other components are found in lower proportions compared to mature grass, so the horse gets less starch per mouthful of grass than when grazing in the summer. However, because this soft grass is so palatable, horses tend to ingest a larger overall volume of forage, so their intake of all nutrients may actually be fairly similar in spring, summer, and early fall...

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Tuesday, April 07, 2020

Science could help eliminate tiring Endurance horses earlier, say researchers - Full Article

April 7, 2020

Science could ultimately deliver an automated risk calculator to identify Endurance horses on a path to elimination much earlier, according to researchers.
The calculator would be driven by algorithms developed through data collected from the FEI database and veterinary cards, on which veterinarians record the condition of horses before each race, and as they progress through each loop.

However, at present, the majority of such cards are filled out by hand, which makes processing the valuable data they contain more laborious.

“It is therefore important that the FEI Veterinary Department consider ways in which these data can be collected in digital format and immediately uploaded to an FEI database,” Euan Bennet and his colleagues at the University of Glasgow report in the Equine Veterinary Journal.

Such an initiative would make much more information available than can currently be gleaned from the FEI’s Endurance database...

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