Friday, February 28, 2014

How Do Dietary Fat and Starch Affect Tying-Up in Horses? - Full Article

By Kentucky Equine Research Staff · February 6, 2014

Recurrent exertional rhabdomyolysis (RER) occurs in fit, nervous Thoroughbreds fed diets high in nonstructural carbohydrate (NSC). Clinical signs are diminished by feeding low-NSC, high-fat diets; however, the mechanism is unclear. This study was performed to determine if the glucose, insulin, and cortisol responses to isocaloric diets varying in fat and NSC availability differ in fit vs. unfit Thoroughbreds with RER...

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Monday, February 24, 2014

New Technique Speeds Diagnosis of Lyme Disease in Horses - Full Article

By Kentucky Equine Research Staff · February 6, 2014

Like some other equine maladies, Lyme disease is somewhat difficult to diagnose because signs are vague, confusing, or nonexistent in some infected horses. Common signs such as weight loss and low-grade fever might suggest a generalized infection; poor performance, sporadic lameness, muscle tenderness, and arthritis seem to indicate musculoskeletal problems; and behavioral changes and skin hypersensitivity are compatible with neurologic disease.

Lyme disease has been reported in horses from the eastern United States as well as California and Texas. The disease is spread to horses when biting ticks pass on Borrelia burgdorferi spirochetes. Some horses may develop antibodies after exposure, but never develop clinical signs of illness; others develop signs several months after they are exposed. Early detection of Lyme disease allows treatment to begin sooner, speeding recovery...

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Saturday, February 22, 2014

Diagnosing Unusual Hock Lameness - Full Article

By Nancy S. Loving, DVM
Feb 17, 2014

With six bones articulating in close range and multiple tendons and ligaments controlling extension and flexion, the hock, or the horse equivalent of the human ankle, has many moving and shock-absorbing parts. Add to those the animal’s weight and the fact the joint is almost always in flexion, and you’ve got a recipe for a perplexing number of injuries. And, because each hock lameness case is as unique as the horse it beleaguers, it isn’t always easy to define the cause of the lameness, one veterinarian says...

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Thursday, February 20, 2014

Brass As My Teacher

Karenshorsetales Blog - Karen Bumgarner

February 19 2014

This is not an easy blog to write, yet it is one that I must try share. A year ago when I saw the movie "Buck", he said that what one would learn through horsemanship would overflow into your life and relationships in a way you never knew possible. I have considered this many times and thought I understood. I did sort of but not really - until..........

Monday - President's Day. A day off work. Glorious weather. The slick mud was drying out. It was time to get The Big Brass out in the hills, which we hadn't done since the December snows and deep freezing weather began. And since it had been two months, I was excited to get out but also a bit apprehensive wondering how much of this green horse's training had come undone with a long break. Yes I had ridden him in the round pen and pasture, but that's not the same as out in thousands of acres.

Right from the get-go Brass had an attitude. He hesitated about coming up to me for the halter. He hesitated about loading in the trailer. I am sure he could sense my small insecurity. Once on the trail we were doing great. After a few miles we came to some slick sticky footing and I was off leading. I had intended to go straight out to the road but the footing on this little downhill looked good so I decided to try it. You know, I know that look in a horse's eyes when he says 'Really?" But I went anyway, thinking if he slips a little it'll be good for him, he has to learn how the feet work. He slid a few steps but nothing bad in my eyes. (Mistake one...)

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Are You On A Mentor Hunt?

Enduranceintrospection Blog - Patti Stedman

February 19 2014

AERC has a formal method for matching up new riders and mentors. The Mentor Program lists, by region, individuals who have considerable experience in our sport and have reached out to the Education Committee or their Regional Director to volunteer to mentor new riders or riders who may have questions:

However, I must admit that many riders have hooked up with their mentors in a much more informal way. My husband and I competed without a formal mentor for a handful of years I’ll bet — and it showed. We made all sorts of mistakes, but we leaned on one another, and eventually met up with the folks that today make up our “network...”

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Friday, February 14, 2014

Back Country Horsemen of America Works With Other Trail Users to Build a Bridge on the Pacific Crest Trail

February 13, 2014
By Sarah Wynne Jackson
Back Country Horsemen of America protects our right to ride horses on public lands, maintains countless miles of trails for all users, and completes improvements that just aren’t getting done. They look for opportunities to build strong relationships with other user groups, so we can work together to keep trails open for everyone. The bridge project on the Pacific Crest Trail at the Upper Bumping River is one good example.
A Call to Action
Several years ago, the bridge washed out where the Pacific Crest Trail crosses the Upper Bumping River at Goodwin Meadows in the William O. Douglas Wilderness in Washington State. Hikers used a foot log while equestrians were forced to navigate a river that could be deep and difficult at times.
Bernie Stratton, Director of the Lewis County Chapter of Back Country Horsemen of Washington, rides that area often and approached the US Forest Service Naches Ranger District about replacing the old bridge. The district sent out a trail manager to look at the proj­ect, then applied for a grant and acquired partial funding.
Back Country Horsemen of America commends the Naches Ranger District for doing a great job of organizing a coalition of trail user groups and volunteers to take on the project. The US Forest Service provided their technical experts Jeff Leisy and Kurt Langlois, Earth Corps working with the Pacific Crest Trail Associa­tion supplied much of the labor, Cas­cadia and the Washington Trails Associa­tion contributed to the labor pool, and BCHW lent pack support for the entire project. The BCHA Education Foundation awarded a $1,000 grant to purchase the bridge decking.
The Original Horsepower
Once again, horses proved invaluable for working in a wilderness where motorized and mechanized equipment are prohibited, including carts, wagons, chainsaws, wheeled vehicles, and landing aircraft. All the decking, tools, material, spikes, rigging, and camp support for trail crews staying at the site had to be packed in by horses and mules, a trip of seven miles from the nearest trail head.
Pam Swigert and “Slim” Mardock, of the Lewis County Chapter, set up camp at the trailhead for a month to provide pack stock to haul in the cargo. The 4 inch x 10 inch x 6 inch cedar decking planks required 27 pack loads. Another 25 pack loads were needed to bring in the other cargo. In all, five and three-quarters tons of cargo and supplies were hauled to the volunteers’ Bumping River bankside camp.
Skilled Labor
Constructing the bridge took planning and expertise. Tom Mix and Del Sage of the Peninsula Chapter of BCHW headed up the rigging crew, who set up skyline rigging to place the bridge headers on the banks and the stringers across the river. The stringers for the 45-foot bridge span were cut from nearby spruce trees; 34-inch diameter logs that were peeled before being set in place.
The Earth Corps workforce placed the decking and built the approaches to the bridge. After completion of the project, Back Country Horsemen of Washington’s horses and mules hauled another 20 pack loads of tools and cargo back to the trailhead.
Appreciated Efforts
In today’s times of limited budgets and busy schedules, this project demonstrates that cooperation from a variety of trail advocacy groups gets wilderness projects done. Pacific Crest Trail through-hikers stopped at the construction site and thanked the crews for their volunteer efforts. Several hikers mentioned this was the most significant undertaking of infrastructure improvement they had seen during their entire hike.
Back Country Horsemen of America thanks Backcountry Horsemen of Washington and all the groups and individuals who worked on the various aspects of this project to make the new bridge a reality.
About Back Country Horsemen of America
BCHA is a non-profit corporation made up of state organizations, affiliates, and at-large members. Their efforts have brought about positive changes regarding the use of horses and stock in wilderness and public lands.
If you want to know more about Back Country Horsemen of America or become a member, visit their website:; call 888-893-5161; or write PO Box 1367, Graham, WA 98338-1367. The future of horse use on public lands is in our hands!
Peg Greiwe

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Eblouissante Benefits from Dressage Training - Full Article

February 12 2014
by Leslie Knauf

When Eblouissante returns to the racetrack for her 2014 debut in a Feb. 13 allowance race at Santa Anita Park, one wouldn't necessarily recognize a dressage background in the 5-year-old half sister of champion Zenyatta. But while retraining Thoroughbreds for competitve careers in the sport horse world is a positive trend, preparing a young Thoroughbred for racing using classical dressage principles is an equally valuable approach.

Fans who search for videos of this Bernardini filly or see her at the races may be curious to see how closely she resembles her famous half sister, who routinely demonstrated signature prancing movements of her own before each outing. While not as emphatic in her "dancing," Eblouissante accepts the bit and moves in a lovely frame that clearly demonstrates the principles quietly applied by her capable exercise rider.

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Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Prepurchase Examinations: Don't Forget the Eyes - Full Article

By Erica Larson, News Editor
Feb 06, 2014

Clean legs? Check. Healthy heart? Check. Strong back? Check. But before you sign the papers for your new horse, don't forget to have your veterinarian look the horse in the eye.

"An important yet commonly overlooked portion of the prepurchase is the ocular examination," explained Nicole Scherrer, DVM, an ophthalmology resident at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine New Bolton Center, in Kennett Square...

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Resolve to Prepare in 2014 - Full Article

6 Feb 2014

I hope you enjoyed the Holidays with friends, horses and family! Happy 2014 and “Year of the Horse” (which officially kicked off on Jan. 31) to all of you. Let us hope that 2014 will bring brighter futures for horses and people around the world.

As I write this a huge snowstorm “Hercules” is bearing down on the Northeast, preparing to dump snow and ice on more than 100 million people here in the United States, and this is on top of a large storm last week that knocked out power to thousands. Over the internet we have been watching communities struggle to provide just fresh water to their horses under these conditions of frigid below-freezing temperatures for weeks, and sadly several barns have been burned to the ground while their well meaning owners struggled to heat water to above freezing.

I want to make a case for you to resolve to increase your personal- and your horse-level of preparedness in 2014. Ensure you have made better arrangements than to wait until the last minute to react when disasters threaten. The first step is admitting there is a possibility of a problem that could affect you...

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Monday, February 10, 2014

Back Problems Common in Ridden Horses - Full Article

By Kentucky Equine Research Staff · January 6, 2014

Back pain in horses may be more common than their owners or caregivers think, according to a survey and evaluation conducted by researchers from French and Canadian universities. The researchers queried staff members who cared for horses at 17 riding schools in France about back health in a total of 161 horses. The caregivers reported that 19 horses, about 12%, had some pain in their backs...

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Sunday, February 09, 2014

Prevent Shipping Fever - Full Article

By Joan Norton, VMD, Dipl. ACVIM
Feb 03, 2014

As the winter approaches, many horse owners are preparing to migrate south to warm weather spots like Aiken, S.C., or Ocala, Fla. These regions can offer comfortable temperatures and well-ventilated barns even in the dead of winter--a great advantage to your horse’s respiratory health. However, traveling to these locales can put your horse’s lungs and airways at risk.

Shipping fever is a well-described pulmonary disorder appearing in animals shipped long distances. If left untreated, cases of this pneumonia type can become severe enough to require hospitalization and even endanger a horse’s life...

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Friday, February 07, 2014

What Causes Fizzy Behavior? - Full Article

By Kentucky Equine Research Staff · January 21, 2014

Hyperactive, hot, fizzy.

There are numerous ways to describe a horse that has too much energy and is being difficult to manage. Worse yet, this behavior generally occurs at the most inopportune times, such as at an event or outing, when you want the horse to behave the most. What causes this and how can horsemen effectively manage the horse and its diet to avoid it? To answer this question, a closer look at the different energy sources available to the horse and the energy response each causes is necessary.

Horses derive energy from three primary sources: carbohydrates, fats, and to a lesser degree, protein. Carbohydrates are the predominant energy source and consist of two groups, structural and nonstructural. Structural carbohydrates should be the largest part of the diet...

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Don't Ignore Your Horse's Hooves this Winter and Spring - Full Article

By Colorado State University
Feb 04, 2014

As many horse owners know, mid-winter brings snow and other forms of precipitation that often continue through the spring—and that can mean wet and muddy conditions for our equine companions.

For horses living outside, these conditions can lead to mud clods and ice balls in the hooves. Prolonged wet conditions can cause very soft feet that are susceptible to more serious problems, including hoof wall separation, thrush, and sole abscesses...

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Thursday, February 06, 2014

Thermoregulation in horses in a cold time of year - Full Article

by Natalija Aleksandrova

Heat in the horse's body is continuously generated as a by-product of metabolism, and a healthy animal has significant internal sources of heat from the metabolic processes (Bicego at al., 2007). To control internal heat loss during the cold time of year, the horse is provided by Nature with complicated and extremely efficient anatomical, physiological and behavioral thermoregulatory mechanisms. In order that the mechanisms are used in the most efficient way, or at all, the horse requires conditions equaling species appropriate lifestyle environments...

In order for a mammal to survive, internal body temperature is kept within a very narrow range. If the temperature exceeds these limits either above or below, the chemical reactions on the cellular level function improperly. Or they stop functioning at all. Fluctuations outside of the normal temperature range result in health problems or death of the animal. Mature horses maintain their internal body temperature at a range around 38℃. Foals, rapidly growing youngsters, pregnant and lactating mares have a higher norm of their internal body temperature (Hines, 2004). Most horse owners are aware of the damage and crisis inherent with fever states. Few horse owners realize how well adapted horses are to deal with cold when certain aspects of their lifestyle are in place for them.

Over thousands of years, the wild horse has spread over the entire world. Whatever place in the world they live, the horse was exposed to constantly changing temperature — through a day/night rhythm or a seasonal rhythm. Yet even today wild and semi-wild horses, as well as domestic ones, provided with species appropriate living conditions, survive perfectly any conditions Nature exposes them to. Whether it is the north of Europe, or Australian deserts, the horse is exposed to all of Nature's changing elements — wind, sun, rain, snow, fluctuating temperature, etc. Never in nature seeking such excessive enclosed shelters as man-made stables and barns nor caves, never in nature seeking ways of covering themselves with fabric. The horse has naturally evolved ways of thriving...

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Tuesday, February 04, 2014

Got Ulcers? - Full Article

By Christa Lesté-Lasserre
Feb 01, 2014

Sixty percent of performance horses might have gastric ulcers, according to researchers who’ve peered inside stomachs to determine incidence. Fifty percent of foals could have them, and among racehorses the figure can be as high as 93%. In one study, more than one-third of leisure-riding horses exhibited at least mild ulcers and, in another, as many as 75% of Western pleasure horses developed gastric ulcers within eight days of moderate training. And you can’t just wish them away: Only 4 to 10% of equine ulcers heal naturally without treatment...

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Monday, February 03, 2014

Racehorse Drug Policies Questioned at HBPA Convention - Full Article

By Tracy Gantz
Jan 27, 2014

When is a scientific study not a scientific study? That was a question posed by several panelists during a two-hour session on medication Jan. 25 during the National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association (HBPA) winter convention in Pasadena, Calif.

Panelists and audience members suggested that questionable studies might be the basis for medication policies that affect horsemen and racehorses...

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Winter Horseback Riding Tips - Full Article

By Pennsylvania State University
Jan 28, 2014

There might be times when you wish you could ride your horses more during the winter months, even in the coldest of weather. When conditions are not slippery, riding can be excellent exercise for rider and horse.

What to Remember

• If you are riding in cold weather, you must take special care when cooling out horses, or you will be guilty of inflicting another form of winter stress...

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Sunday, February 02, 2014

Eight Things Everyone Should Know About the New EasyShoe

Easycareinc Blog - Full Article

Tuesday, January 21, 2014 by Kevin Myers

After more than two and a half years of development, the new EasyShoe will be available worldwide starting in mid-February, 2014. The entire EasyCare dealer network has the opportunity to place pre-orders starting this week, which means every member of the distribution channel can get boots to their customers at the same time. There are eight things everyone should know about the new EasyShoe. Read up - we might just decide to give you a pop quiz on them next month...

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Saturday, February 01, 2014

Broncos’ Thunder Takes Manhattan Via NBC and FOX

JANUARY 29 (AURORA, COLO.) – Tuesday might have been the Super Bowl’s media day in the ‘Big Apple,’ but now the star of broadcast airwaves will be a flashy, Arabian gelding and his favorite rider and trainer. Acclaimed Denver Broncos’ mascot, Thunder and his rider/trainer, Ann Judge-Wegener will make an early appearance on both the NBC’s Today Show and FOX’s morning show, FOX & Friends on Friday morning, January 31, 2014.
Clip-clopping through the streets of Manhattan, the duo will be decked in navy and orange, spreading Super Bowl tidings on the East Coast and beyond. Be sure to tune into your local NBC and FOX affiliates early Friday morning to catch Thunder and Ann in live, broadcast action.
Hoping to play an active role in rallying Broncos’ fans on Super Bowl Sunday, this grey mascot and his smiling rider have an infectious energy that will spark a sense of Broncos team unity in MetLife Stadium.
Making history in the 2014 ‘Year of the Horse,’ this purebred, Arabian and his valiant rider will lead the Denver football team out of the tunnel and onto the field on Sunday, Feb. 2. The gallant ride will be a first in Super Bowl history for Thunder and for the National Football League. Additionally, after each Bronco’s score, Thunder and Ann will parade the end zone, eliciting cheers from an expectant crowd of Denver fans.
Hoping to bring home a ring and the title, the Arabian horse community’s favorite celebrity horse and rider, and Broncos’ fans’ symbol of victory will play a huge role in bolstering excitement - no matter the outcome of the game.
AHA is a major equine association serving 85,600 Arabian, Half-Arabian and Anglo-Arabian horse owners across North America. AHA registers and maintains a database of more than one million Arabian, Half-Arabian and Anglo-Arabian horses and administers approximately $3 million in annual prize money. AHA produces championship events, recognizes over 550 Arabian horse shows and distance rides and provides activities, education, and programs that promote breeding.

Contact Information:
Arabian Horse Association
10805 East Bethany Road
Aurora, Colorado 80014

Trace Minerals: Do They Make a Difference in Diets for Horses? - Full Article

By Kentucky Equine Research Staff · January 3, 2014

A diet based on forage and boosted by a fortified feed product should provide all the nutrients necessary for health in most horses.

While forage can supply the majority of an idle horse’s nutritional requirements, horses in some situations may need a supplement source of nutrition that increases the intake of some trace minerals in a highly bioavailable form. Pregnant mares, exercised horses, equines recovering from disease or injury, and those with poor coat or hoof quality can often benefit from supplementary minerals such as zinc and copper. Chelated forms of minerals—those in which the mineral is bound to an amino acid—are absorbed most easily and are the best choice for delivering a nutrient to the body structure where it is needed. Chelated minerals are also referred to as organic forms of minerals...

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How Much Weight Can Horses Comfortably Carry? - Full Article

By Christa Lesté-Lasserre
May 17, 2013

Horses might be strong, but the riders horses carry can be heavy—sometimes too heavy for the horse to carry comfortably. But new Japanese research has revealed a reliable method for ensuring our horses aren’t getting overloaded.

By measuring gait symmetry—the evenness of a horse’s left steps to its right during various gaits—scientists are able to gather significant information about loading, or the weight horses can carry on their backs. Gaits that get sufficiently out of sync, they say, are a strong indicator of how much is too much...

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