Sunday, December 09, 2018

Learned Helplessness

GreyHorseLLC Blog - Full Article

November 9 2018

Quite a few years ago, I was idling away some time reading the then-current issue of The Chronicle of the Horse magazine (a weekly sport-horse publication). While skimming a pretty dry article about the United States Dressage Federation (USDF) annual convention, I ran across a mention of a guy named Andrew McLean who had been invited to speak to the attendees about the possibility that a thing called “learned helplessness” might be causing “dullness in dressage horses.” I didn’t think another thing of it, skimmed the rest of the magazine and threw it out.

A year later, I found myself in much the same position, at the same time of year, skimming articles in The Chronicle. There was another article about that year’s USDF convention, and another mention of Andrew McLean. But this time, reading between the lines, it sounded like they’d invited him back to take back what he’d said the year before about learned helplessness in dressage horses. NOW they had my attention!

I spent that weekend madly Googling learned helplessness (LH) and Andrew McLean (he’s from Australia). Once I’d gotten a handle on that, I continued to read about LH and think about how it might or might not relate to hundreds of horses I’d seen over the years. I did more research, and more reading.

Now, according to an equine behaviorist I consulted, it is not necessarily scientifically sound to assume that LH occurs in horses. This has not been scientifically proven by scientists, in studies. The seminal studies on LH were done with dogs, and scientists agree it occurs in humans, so scientists would agree that it can occur in dogs and humans. But studies on horses have NOT been done. So strictly speaking, we are going out on a bit of a limb assuming that horses can experience LH. Even so, I think it’s a useful exercise.

So before we can go any further, it’s best if you go read the Wikipedia entry on Learned Helplessness, which is still about the most efficient and succinct definition that I have found so far. If you skip this step, none of the rest of this article will make any sense, so please now read this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Learned_helplessness

Okay, you’re back! So basically, when a being is in a state of LH, they feel like there is nothing they can do to improve their situation in the moment or “make it stop”. So they give up. Like the dogs in the study, they figuratively and literally lay down and take it. They don’t fight, they don’t try to escape, they surrender, which can look like “agreement” or “submission” or “obedience” to some folks...

Read more here:
https://greyhorsellc.wordpress.com/2018/11/09/learned-helplessness/

Rings and Ridges: What Horse Hooves Reveal

KER.com - Full Article

May 25, 2017
By Kentucky Equine Research Staff

Just as coat condition serves as an indication of health status in horses—sheen and dapples suggest vitality, whereas dull, rough, or half-shed coats imply unthriftiness or disease—changes in hooves may provide clues to a horse’s historical well-being.

The hoof wall is subject to any number of imperfections, and it is commonplace for horses to be beset with shallow or deep cracks, chipped toes, or flares, especially if they are not under the scheduled care of a professional farrier. These flaws are obvious. More subtle changes in the hoof wall, including horizontal rings and ridges, tell more about a horse’s health than the regularity of hoof care.

Hoof rings and ridges sound synonymous, but they are not. In fact, one is a normal feature of even the best-managed hooves; the other, though, is a sign of pathology and potential toxicity...

Read more here:
https://ker.com/equinews/rings-ridges-horse-hooves-reveal/?utm_source=KER+Newsletter&utm_campaign=53b730c445-Focus_December18_HoofHealth&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_0d95781dfc-53b730c445-11166&mc_cid=53b730c445&mc_eid=6283eb0e4a

Saturday, December 08, 2018

10 Plants and Chemicals That are Toxic to Horses

TheHorse.com - Full Article

Learn about 10 common plants and chemicals your horse should never eat.

Posted by Lindsay Day, REMT | Oct 20, 2018

Review these substances your horse should never eat
There are many things horses should never eat. Certainly, toxic plants rank high on the list of things to avoid, but other substances, organisms, and chemicals can pose risks as well. While poisoning in horses is relatively rare compared to other causes of ill health, when it does occur the consequences can be dire.

“People often assume that horses know what to eat and what not to eat, but that’s just not true in a lot of cases,” says Cynthia Gaskill, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ABVP, associate professor and veterinary clinical toxicologist at the University of Kentucky Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory. From a curious nibble of a tree branch to accidental consumption of a contaminated grain meal, there are a number of ways horses can ingest toxic substances that put their health—and lives—at risk. Here are our top 10:

Read more here:
https://thehorse.com/148667/10-plants-and-chemicals-that-are-toxic-to-horses/

Friday, December 07, 2018

8 Ways to Be a Good Trail-Riding Buddy

Thehorse.com - Full Article

We all want to be the kind of person other trail riders enjoy being around. Use these eight simple techniques to be a fun and safe riding buddy on the trail.


Posted by Kim McCarrel | Nov 29, 2018

You’re out on a pleasant trail ride with several other riders. Without a word, one of the riders suddenly urges her horse forward and gallops off down the trail. The left-behind horses frantically try to follow. The riders struggle to control their mounts. Pandemonium ensues.

This kind of thoughtless behavior on the trail is no fun to deal with and could cause someone to get seriously hurt. Clearly, leaving your fellow riders in the dust isn’t what you’d expect of a good riding buddy. “Never again!” you say to yourself. “I’ll never ride with her again!”

We all want to be the kind of person other trail riders enjoy being around. By using the eight simple techniques below, you can be a good riding buddy who is fun and safe to ride with on the trail...

Read more here:
https://thehorse.com/163124/8-ways-to-be-a-good-trail-riding-buddy/

Wednesday, December 05, 2018

Feeding Before Exercise

Fiber-fresh.com - Full Article

By Dr Nerida Richards B. Rur Sc PhD (RAnNutr)

The question of whether you should feed a horse before exercise is one that is commonly asked. Most of us were told over and over again by our parents not to swim for 30 minutes after eating or we would get a muscle cramp, so we generally tend to think that eating before exercise is not a wise thing to do. But is this the case for horses? The answer is yes and no…

Empty stomach or full stomach before exercise

The horse is a monogastric and a continuous grazer, so logic says that a horse’s stomach should never be empty. Having a full stomach is important for the horse as it stops gastric acids from the lower part of the stomach splashing around and irritating the upper sections of the gastrointestinal tract. This acid splash that occurs in horses exercised on an empty stomach is thought to contribute to the development of gastric ulcers.

Therefore, if a horse is stabled without constant access to forage, or if it has been more than 2 hours since the horse last grazed or fed, you should feed your horse before exercise. A small feed will protect a horse from gastric ulcers in 2 ways. Chewing the feed will stimulate saliva production and saliva acts as a buffer in the stomach. And the feed will fill up the stomach and prevent gastric acids from splashing around (for more information on Gastric Ulcers you should read FeedXL Newsletter #8 Preventing Gastric Ulcers).

What should you feed before exercise?

What you feed before exercise is very important...

Read more here:
http://www.fiber-fresh.com/equine/feeding-before-exercise/

Tuesday, December 04, 2018

Looking back at one of the UAE's earliest film shoots with Revel Guest

TheNational.ae - Full Article

Chris Newbould
December 2, 2018

Nowadays, it’s a regular occurrence to see international film and TV production crews on the streets, dunes and rooftops of the UAE. The past few years have seen major shoots from Hollywood, Bollywood, Korea, France, China, Finland and beyond land on these shores, with Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Tiger Zinda Hai and two instalments of the Mission Impossible franchise among the biggest names to set up shop here.

Twenty years ago, that was not the case, and veteran filmmaker Revel Guest was among the first international crews to touch down on these shores in 1998, when she made two documentaries – one an episode of the popular American Travel Channel show Trailblazers, and the other an episode of the 26-part documentary Horse Tales which looked at the stables of Sheikh Zayed, the Founding Father, and especially the work of horse whisperer Ali Al Ameri, as they prepared for the 1998 Endurance World Cup in Dubai...

Read more here:
https://www.thenational.ae/arts-culture/film/looking-back-at-one-of-the-uae-s-earliest-film-shoots-with-revel-guest-1.798304

Monday, December 03, 2018

Impact of Abrupt Diet Changes in Horses

KER.com - Full Article

February 1, 2018 By Kentucky Equine Research Staff

Due to the risk of laminitis, horses should not be subjected to abrupt feed changes. The rapid ingestion of unfamiliar concentrates or other feeds high in starch can induce the painful, life-threatening disease, which is characterized by the separation of the hoof wall from the coffin bone.

“Aside from the potential for laminitis, the sudden addition of feeds rich in dietary starch may cause an alteration in the intestinal microbiome,” explained Kathleen Crandell, Ph.D., a nutritionist with Kentucky Equine Research.

The microbiome includes bacteria, fungi, and other microorganisms that help digest fiber and maintain the health of the intestinal tract. That population of microbes forms early in a horse’s life and fluctuates based on diet, transport, stress, exercise, weight loss, and disease state, among other factors.

“In the case of sudden diet changes, that microbiome will also change and not always in a positive way,” Crandell said. “Alterations can adversely affect digestive health and lead to diarrhea, colic, and other forms of intestinal upset...”

Read more here:
https://ker.com/equinews/impact-abrupt-diet-changes-horses/?utm_source=KER+Newsletter&utm_campaign=3f30f42216-KER_Equinews_2_21_18&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_0d95781dfc-3f30f42216-11166&mc_cid=3f30f42216&mc_eid=6283eb0e4a

Friday, November 30, 2018

Scientists are now trying to clone the 40,000-year-old baby horse found frozen in Siberia

BGR.com - Full Article

Mike Wehner @MikeWehner
September 6th, 2018

It was just a couple of weeks ago that the discovery of a frozen baby horse began to spread. The animal, which is thought to be as old as 40,000 years, was found frozen in Siberia, and the well-preserved remains offered researchers a glimpse at a species of wild horse that has long been extinct.

Now, with such a pristine specimen in their possession, scientists are attempting to sample the horse’s cells for material they can use to clone it. Yes, they are actually attempting to bring an extinct species back from the death… or are they?

The Siberian Times reports that the researchers are hard at work hunting for cells that would facilitate the cloning process. The team, made up of scientists from Russia and South Korea, plan to harvest an egg from a modern horse in order to artificially manufacture a cloned embryo of the ancient foal. That embryo would then be placed in a surrogate mother who would carry it to term and, if all goes well, give birth to a creature that hasn’t set foot on this planet in thousands of years.

The team seems remarkably confident that they’ll be able to pull off this remarkable series of accomplishments. They even go so far as to suggest that this is really just a stepping stone to an even more monumental achievement: cloning a woolly mammoth...

Read more here:
https://bgr.com/2018/09/06/ancient-horse-clone-south-korea-woo-suk/

Arabians: The Ultimate Trail Horse

ArabianHorseLife.com - Full Story

November 13, 2018
Emma Kersey-Doherty

The Arabian horse is the perfect candidate for a trail riding partner. Their endurance is well known, and their bravery, surefootedness, and willing nature all serve them well going down the trail. Breed characteristics such as dense bone, large nostrils, deep heart girth, and solid construction make it no surprise that the Arabian is a steadfast partner for riding over a distance. This was first proven by the Bedouins in the desert and continues to be that way today as many explore the world from the backs of their Arabian horses.

Barbara Lowell, who is in her mid-thirties, currently resides in Texas, though she moves often as her husband serves as a U.S. Marine. The pair have three Purebred Arabians that they endeavor to ride through as many National parks as possible, Sera (SA Seraphim), Reggie (Silvern Idol) and Manny (Baha Crescent). “We have ridden our horses at the Grand Canyon, Bryce, Yosemite, and Olympic National parks as well as countless more,” Barbara shares. “We also compete in AERC (American Endurance Ride Conference) and NATRC (North American Trail Ride Conference) events.”

For Barbara, it’s the people-oriented nature and willingness to work with his rider that makes the Arabian horse the ultimate choice of trail horse. “They’re a partner,” she explains. “I’ve had a couple different breeds, but have never had a trail horse as good as my Arabians. In my experience, they are an intelligent animal who asks questions and accepts my answers. They’re soft, willing, and happy to explore. They take care of us..."

Read more here:
https://www.arabianhorselife.com/single-post/2018/11/13/Arabians-The-Ultimate-Trail-Horse

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Strangles Vaccine Breakthrough

Equinescienceupdate.com - Full Article

It has been a long time coming, but now an effective vaccine for strangles may finally be on the horizon.

Strangles is one of the most common bacterial infections of horses. Streptococcus equi, the organism responsible, causes horses to suffer from large pus-filled abscesses in their throat and neck. It is found throughout the world.

The disease causes significant economic losses due to the prolonged recovery time and the quarantine measures needed to restrict the spread of the disease.

Although vaccines have been available before, they have not been universally effective and have often produced unacceptable side effects. Reported problems have included abscesses at the site of injection, and clinical disease in vaccinated horses. An additional problem is that the immune response to current vaccines cannot be differentiated from that of infected animals. This complicates the management of outbreaks.

Now scientists at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, the Karolinska Institute and Intervacc AB, and the Animal Health Trust (AHT), have developed a new protein-based vaccine to protect horses from strangles...

Read more here:
http://www.equinescienceupdate.com/articles/svb.html

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

FEI Terminates Cooperation Agreement With NRHA & AQHA

Quarterhorsenews.com - Full Article

November 20, 2018 by Molly Montag

Reining classes for older horses and medication regulations were among the sticking points that led the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) to end a cooperation agreement with the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) and National Reining Horse Association (NRHA), officials said.


Although many details are still unclear, officials say FEI-approved reining events are expected to continue in the United States in spite of the termination.

The FEI announced the termination Monday, Nov. 19, during the FEI General Assembly in the Middle Eastern country of Bahrain. A statement posted at FEI.org said the organization’s secretary general informed delegates the two U.S. groups had breached the terms of their agreement and, as a result, the cooperation agreement was terminated...

Read more here:
https://www.quarterhorsenews.com/2018/11/fei-terminates-cooperation-agreement-with-nrha-aqha/

Sunday, November 25, 2018

More Evidence to Support Manuka Honey Use in Horse Wounds

Thehorse.com - Full Article

Manuka honey contains biologically active compounds that appear to help horse wounds heal, particularly hard-to-treat wounds on the lower limbs.

Posted by Stacey Oke, DVM, MSc | Mar 11, 2018

It can take a frustrating amount of time and energy to ensure some horse wounds—especially those in challenging locations—heal. Veterinarians and owners alike are often willing to try an array of salves, sprays, and biological dressings to facilitate a positive outcome. But a researcher recently reminded equine practitioners to reach for a particular product, one that created some “buzz” a few years ago.: Honey, particularly manuka honey, can also help wound healing.

“Manuka honey comes from honeybees that collect nectar from this manuka bush’s flowers,” said Albert Tsang, BVSc (Hons.), a research student at the University of Sydney School of Veterinary Science, in New South Wales, Australia, during a presentation at the 2017 American Association of Equine Practitioners Convention, held Nov. 17-21, in San Antonio, Texas. “This type of honey has antibacterial and immunomodulatory effects, and recent studies support the use of manuka honey on wound healing in the equine distal (lower) limb—a notoriously challenging location to treat effectively and economically...”

Read more here:
https://thehorse.com/155607/evidence-support-manuka-honey-use-horse-wounds/

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Composting Toilets

Trailmeister.com - Full Article

Adventures with Composting Toilets.

November 14 2018

One of our earliest questions with the Trailer project was how were we going to handle the “facilities.” You know, poop happens. Horses do it. Birds do it. And children of a certain age find the subject fascinating. Here’s my scoop on poop.

Most of the places where we venture are devoid of any hookups, and many don’t have toilet facilities, sometimes when they do they aren’t something that you’d want to use. Although the Forest Service often refers to vault toilets as “Sweet Smelling Toilets” or SST’s. The first “S” is frequently not so sweet.

Also, as dry campers, a huge concern is stretching our fresh water supply. We want to stay at remote trailheads as long as possible, anything that helps with that is a plus.

Our main concerns with a lavatory for the trailer were:

Reduce Water usage – Fresh water usually isn’t available when boondocking so we wanted to conserve as much as possible.
Eliminate holding tanks – Forest Service roads in the west are notoriously rough. I’ve seen first-hand where holding tanks and sewage pipes have met rocks and left a calling card of green goo trailing behind.
Avoid RV dumps – In the west, full service facilities are few and far between. On extended trips having to find an RV dump every few days seemed like a hassle.
I found three different types of commodes that address these concerns:

Bucket Toilets – Ultra cheap – Fills quickly
Cassette Toilets – Fills quickly – The horrors of dumping.
Dry or Composting Toilets – No Smell – 3 to 4 weeks between unloading solids...

Read more here:
https://www.trailmeister.com/composting-toilets/

Friday, November 23, 2018

Queen Elizabeth, 92, Went Horseback Riding This Weekend—What Did You Do?

HarpersBazaar.com - Story and Photos

The monarch has way more energy than all of us.

By Amy Mackelden
Nov 19, 2018

For many of us, the weekends are a chance to kick back, unwind, and recover from a busy week at work. For Queen Elizabeth, it's the perfect opportunity to go horseback riding.

The Queen has long been a fan of horseback riding, and has often been photographed with horses throughout her long reign. But it's particularly impressive that Queen Elizabeth spent her downtime this past weekend just chilling on a horse alongside her son, Prince Edward. After a busy week celebrating son Prince Charles' 70th birthday, the Queen still found time to live the equestrian life...

See cute photos here:
https://www.harpersbazaar.com/celebrity/latest/a25218760/queen-elizabeth-horseback-horse-riding-photos/?utm_medium=40digest.ad25.20181120.home&utm_source=email&utm_content=&utm_campaign=campaign

Saturday, November 17, 2018

All Breeders’ Cup Equine Drug Tests Come Back Clean

Thehorse.com - Full Article

Breeders’ Cup’s extensive out-of-competition and pre- and post-race testing program at this year’s World Championships involved testing 289 horses.

Posted by Edited Press Release | Nov 9, 2018

There were no positive drug tests—on out-of-competition and pre- and post-race—at this year’s Breeders’ Cup World Championships, the organization announced Nov. 8.

Breeders’ Cup completed an extensive out-of-competition and pre- and post-race testing program at this year’s World Championships, held Nov. 2-3 at Churchill Downs, in Louisville, Kentucky, which included the testing of 289 horses.

This year the organization continued its expansion of its most comprehensive testing program. Out-of-competition testing began in June with all Breeders’ Cup Challenge winners and other targeted possible starters in both North America and overseas and continued right up until the Championship races.

Breeders’ Cup engaged an out-of-competition testing coordinator, William Farmer, DVM, who worked with regulatory associations and with testing laboratories around the world, including the British Horse Racing Authority’s Lab LGC, France Galop’s official Lab LCH, and the Kenneth L. Maddy Equine Analytical Chemistry Laboratory at the University of California, Davis. All three labs are certified by the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA). The executive council of the IFHA also specifically endorsed the updated protocols of the Breeders’ Cup which were put in place in advance of last year’s World Championships...

Read more here:
https://thehorse.com/162669/all-breeders-cup-equine-drug-tests-come-back-clean/

What to look for in a horse trailer

Trailmeister.com - Full Article

October 31 2018
by Robert Eversole

As published by Saddle Up Magazine

A horse trailer is a big investment and comes with a lot of big decisions to ensure that we make the right choices for us and our mounts.

Let’s break down these decisions into the main factors to consider. Here are my top considerations for what to look for in a horse trailer.

Size is Important – Does the trailer fit both your animals and you?

horse and mule by trailerYour horse or mule doesn’t get to decide on whether it’s going for a ride so we need to make sure that they’re as comfortable as possible. If the space is too small, he’ll will be cramped, likely unhappy, and may decide that he doesn’t like trailers in the future. Measure your horse from nose to rump (height, length, and width) before going trailer hunting. And consider how many horses you’ll be hauling.

The right trailer is not only comfy for your horse(s), it should be the right size to tow safely behind your vehicle, and hold all the gear you need for your riding and camping adventures. Size is one of my first considerations in what to look for in a horse trailer...

Read more here:
https://www.trailmeister.com/what-to-look-for-in-a-horse-trailer/?utm_source=MailingList&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Nov2018-general

Thursday, November 15, 2018

100-Mile Musings

GoPony.me - Full Story

NOVEMBER 13, 2018 / ASHLEY WINGERT

I don’t spend a ton of time on Facebook discussion groups, endurance-related or otherwise. I tend to “lurk” — I read and pay attention, but don’t often chime in, mostly because I’ve always tended to keep a fairly low public profile and social media, and use it more for direct interaction with friends and people I know. But I digress. Long story short, a thread on one of the endurance groups popped up in my newsfeed this afternoon and caught my attention.

The gist of the topic? What is stopping people from doing 100s?

Good question. Wish I knew the answer. Especially because I could probably be the poster child for a skeptical eyebrow raise of “Why do you keep doing this?” with all of the ups and downs I’ve experienced along the way. Maybe I’m just a slow learner, because I still have a love affair with wanting to try 100s. I got into endurance with the specific wish and desire to do 100s. Especially Tevis, but all of the 100s (particularly the “buckle” 100s) have appeal to me and are on my “I hope I don’t have to wait until the unforeseeable future to get to do them” list. With my current set-up as a catch-rider, the 100-mile goal becomes that much more elusive, but it doesn’t stop me from hoping/wishing/scheming...

Read more here:
https://gopony.me/2018/11/13/100-mile-musings/

The Unsung Heroes of WWI

FEI.org - Full Artice

9 November 2018

As we mark 100 years since the Armistice Day of November 11, 1918, we look back at the important role that horses and mules played during World War I…

The animals were used as the primary means of achieving military mobility during the First World War.

Mechanisation was in its infancy; so there were few trucks or lorries available and they were mechanically unreliable and road-bound. Every branch of service – infantry, artillery, cavalry, engineers, logistics - was dependent on equids.

They were employed either as riding animals (primarily, but not exclusively, in the cavalry) or, in greater numbers, as draught animals, so they fulfilled both a combatant role in battle, and in supporting logistics.

In fact, the scale of animal use was extraordinary, with the British army alone boasting 510,000 horses by 1918...

“We always think of modern wars as being ‘mechanised’ but in fact the scale of animal use during both world wars was unprecedented. Never before have so many animals been mobilised for military service – unless we recognise this, we fail to understand how modern wars were actually fought,” Gervase Phillips, Principal Lecturer in History at Manchester Metropolitan University, told FEI.org.

Phillips said the greatest single demand was probably for gun-teams to haul artillery pieces. North American mules and North American light draught horses proved especially useful to the British in this role and tens of thousands were brought across the Atlantic.

Throughout the conflict, the British Army deployed more than a million horses and mules, though there weren’t enough horses in Britain to meet demand, so over 1,000 horses a week were shipped from North America...

Read more here:
https://www.fei.org/stories/unsung-heroes-wwi

Sunday, November 04, 2018

Spotting Lameness: The Game Plan

HorseNetwork.com - Full Article

REBECCA DIDIER

Every horse person with a couple of years under her belt has some sense of when a horse looks “off” or “not quite right,” but even when your eye can spy the hitch or hesitation, determining the source of the problem is a challenge few can conquer. Acknowledging that even veterinarians tend to rely more on expensive (and often inconclusive) diagnostic tests rather than well-trained perception to identify lameness and trace it to its origin, Dr. Bob Grisel has written a guide intended to simplify the process. His book Equine Lameness for the Layman instructs all in the fundamental knowledge that can make “seeing” what’s wrong, and what the likely cause is, second nature, ensuring happier, healthier horses. Here he outlines his basic game plan.

***

We visually assess our horses with the intention of recognizing potential lameness and surmising the likely source(s) of the problem. Satisfying our ambition is relatively painless when the horse is noticeably “off”; it can be considerably more difficult when gait abnormalities are visibly faint. Fortunately, we can make lameness more conspicuous by:

• Improving our ability to see it.
• Maximizing the horse’s expression of it.

Choosing the best approach, gait, and setting for our assessment will decidedly support our efforts...

Read more here:
https://horsenetwork.com/2018/10/spotting-lameness-game-plan/?fbclid=IwAR1ACSxyLx6lN_9UPeVAuQ37j7iNi4TvDkSd6DP1FAtsQ-ixjHjdPIQPPoI

Friday, November 02, 2018

Trail Riding Safety Essentials

Thehorse.com - Full Article

Ten things that could save your life when you’re on the trail with your horse.

Posted by Kim McCarrel | Nov 1, 2018

I’ve been a trail rider for a long time, and I’ve experienced my fair share of trail emergencies. I’ve seen injured riders, injured horses, and damaged tack. I’ve fallen off and been hurt, been cold and hungry, and run out of water on a hot day. And I’ve taken a wrong turn and gotten lost.

I’ve learned from those experiences that having the right equipment with you and being prepared can make the difference between a mild misadventure and a disaster.

Experts advise hikers to carry the “10 Essentials for Survival,” including waterproof matches, a flashlight, extra food and water, and a mirror for signaling rescuers. These are important items for horseback riders to carry, too. But we also need a few other things hikers don’t, so here’s my version of the 10 essentials for horseback riders (some might be good for hikers, too):

Read more here:
https://thehorse.com/162195/trail-riding-safety-essentials/

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

What’s All the Hype? Feeding the Energetic Horse

Thehorse.com - Full Article

Find out how some simple diet changes might help calm your hyperactive horse.

Posted by Kristen M. Janicki, MS, PAS | May 21, 2018

Some simple diet changes might help calm your hyperactive horse

He’s impossible to catch in the pasture when out with his herdmates. He’s jigging about while you tack him up. And he eyes every blade of grass beside the arena suspiciously, as if one might reach out and grab a fetlock at any moment.

Some might say he’s “feeling his oats,” pointing at nutrition as the cause of his hyperactivity. Could a simple grain change bring this four-legged kite back down to earth? Let’s find out.
Pinpointing the Cause

Many factors can influence a horse’s hyperactivity, including genetic predisposition, experience and learning, management, and nutrition. In most cases multiple factors play a role in this behavior and, without a complete understanding of each, it’s easy to single out nutrition, specifically concentrates, as the main culprit...

Read more here:
https://thehorse.com/19645/whats-all-the-hype-feeding-the-energetic-horse/

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Researchers Study Inflammatory Markers in Endurance Horses

Thehorse.com - Full Article

Drs. Allen Page and David Horohov have studied inflammatory markers in racehorses since 2012. This was their first opportunity to measure those markers in nonracehorses,

Posted by University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment | Oct 26, 2018

Much of the research conducted by scientists at the University of Kentucky (UK) Gluck Equine Research Center, in Lexington, takes place in and around Central Kentucky—after all, it’s been dubbed the “Horse Capital of the World.” But sometimes the researchers get to take the show on the road.

Earlier this year, Allen Page, DVM, PhD, researcher and veterinarian at the Gluck Center, who works with David Horohov, PhD, director of the Gluck Center and chair of the Department of Veterinary Science, traveled to the 63rd annual Tevis Cup endurance ride in northern California for a research project.

Page, Horohov, and colleagues have spent the last several years looking at inflammation in racehorses and the utility of inflammatory marker testing to quantify fitness and possibly detect brewing injuries before they become serious. Inflammatory marker testing measures multiple genes responsible for the inflammatory response in horses. As the Thoroughbred industry works together to improve the safety and welfare of racehorses, Horohov and Page have seen the potential for a significant impact in this work through their research efforts, an ongoing project since 2012...

Read more here:
https://thehorse.com/162068/researchers-study-inflammatory-markers-in-endurance-horses/

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Equine Stomach Health: Omeprazole, Diet Changes, and Ulcers

KER.com - Full Article

September 5, 2018 By Kentucky Equine Research Staff

Omeprazole is the only medication proven to heal gastric ulcers in horses, but veterinarians and nutritionists often recommend diet changes to help combat equine squamous gastric disease (ESGD). Little research has been done to affirm or refute the notion that these diet changes actually help affected horses.

To determine if dietary changes help horses with ESGD, researchers found 34 animals with an ESGD grade of 3 or 4. A score of 3 signifies a large single or extensive superficial lesions, while a score of 4 denotes extensive lesions with areas of apparent deep ulceration. The grading scale goes from 0 (normal) to 4. Each animal was paired with another that had the same ulceration grade and that resided on the same premises, on the same diet, and with approximately the same workload.

After initial gastroscopy (scope 1), one of the horses was assigned to a diet composed of restricted starch, while the other in the pair was maintained on the diet familiar to it. All horses were treated with omeprazole for four weeks. Another gastroscopy (scope 2) was performed on all horses after the four-week omeprazole period. Horses were then taken off omeprazole for six weeks, and a third and final gastroscopy (scope 3) was performed. The horses remained in work throughout the entire trial...

Read more here:
https://ker.com/equinews/equine-stomach-health-omeprazole-diet-changes-ulcers/?utm_source=KER+Newsletter&utm_campaign=14d8eeaea4-Seasonal_Spotlight_Fall_2018&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_0d95781dfc-14d8eeaea4-11166&mc_cid=14d8eeaea4&mc_eid=6283eb0e4a

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Why Do Horses Eat Dirt?

Equiforce.com
 
One of the most frequently asked question from my clients is “Why does my horse want to eat dirt?  Is she missing something in her diet?”  Well, the question can be answered several ways, as there is not one particular reason why horses engage in this perfectly natural activity. Horses are supposed to eat a certain amount of dirt on a daily basis.
 
1. Dirt is a natural part of the equine diet.  It contains minerals in bio-available form that the horse needs for various metabolic functions.  Some of the minerals, iron for example, are more utilizable from the soil than when added to feeds or stored in forages.  Horses that are constantly stabled and deprived of minerals naturally found in dirt may develop deficiencies even when supplied with those minerals in processed feeds. 
2. Dirt also contains microbes that the horse’s digestive tract can benefit from.  Some microbes are located in plant roots so the horse may dig through the dirt to get at the roots of these plants.
3. Dirt contains water and salt which can both help a thirsty horse stay hydrated.  However, it is always better to make sure horses are supplied with fresh drinking water and salt at all times.
4. Horses that do not have access to dirt on a daily basis may gorge on it when it is suddenly available.  Again, it is perfectly natural ingredient in the equine diet so allowing the horse access to dirt every day is recommended.
5. Dirt has course particles that will help naturally grind down the horses teeth.  Horses kept in stalls do not get this added benefit of eating dirt and must have their teeth floated more often than those out on pasture.
6. A horse with nothing to eat will eat dirt due to hunger and boredom.  This is a very common cause of dirt consumption in horses.  It is imperative that horses in dry lots or paddocked on sand be given forage on a continuous basis to avoid overconsumption of dirt due to hunger or boredom.  Such a situation is dangerous as it can set up the digestive tract for impaction colic very quickly.  Always have forage available when horses are stabled or paddocked with no grass.
7. A horse with an upset stomach may seek out and eat dirt or clay. According to Dr. Christine King, “Clays in particular contain very absorbent particles which can bind up bacterial toxins, organic acids such as those produced by sugar fermentation, certain viruses, and other potentially harmful substances in the gut. The bound toxins are then harmlessly removed from the body in the manure”.
8. Soil contains fiber from leaves, bark and stems and can provide bulk fiber to a horse that is deficient in structural fiber.  Again, horses that are stabled or paddocked on dirt or sand must be given free access to forage to adequately supply the hindgut with enough fiber.  Horses deficient in fiber will eat sawdust, shavings, straw, fences, stalls planks, trees and dirt or whatever they can find to satisfy this requirement.
 
So for the health of the horse, please allow some daily access to dirt.  It’s healthy, nutritious and natural!
 
Renowned equine nutritionist Dr. Amy M Gill has formulated a line of nutrient targeted therapies for horses that are affected by growth, metabolic, exercise and immune disorders by providing them with targeted levels of specific nutrients. Equi-Force products are novel, proprietary formulations based on solid clinical and field research. Dr. Gill’s formulas contain therapeutic dosing and when used correctly, will help exert a positive physiological effect by providing the raw nutrients the horse needs to get and stay healthy. She can be reached at 859-229-2447 or drgill@equiforce.com

Dear Greenbean

MelNewton.com - Full Article

October 22, 2018
Posted by Melinda Newton

Hey you, trying to get your horse up to a trail ride of double digits for the first time. Yes, you in the corner who did a long ride last weekend in the stunning time of…3 mph. Do you feel an eternity away from the miles and pace of an endurance ride?

I’m here to reassure you that you are on the right track. I’m writing this to remind myself that *I’m* on the right track too.

You see, it’s been a long long LONG time since I brought along a newbie horse in this sport.

I forgot just how “baby” those baby steps are in the beginning.

I did a ten mile loop on MerryLegs last week. It was a moderate difficulty single track loop. It took FOREVER.

I understand why people make an LD a two or three year plan because OMG, at this point that’s how long I feel like it’s going to take me to get this horse past ten miles at 3 mph...

Read more here:
http://melnewton.com/2018/dear-greenbean/?fbclid=IwAR1QeIm6lifpQ.