Thursday, June 29, 2017

Q&A: Which diet best suits an endurance horse? - Full Article

My 16-hand (163-cm) Anglo-Arabian is in good weight for his sport, just below optimal body condition. He’s in training year-round for competitive endurance riding, working towards 100-mile rides. He’s fed 2 lb (0.9 kg) of senior feed, 1 lb (0.45 kg) unmolassed beet pulp pellets, 0.5 lb (0.23 kg) whole flaxseed, 1 lb (0.45 kg) timothy pellets, one flake (3 lb, 1.4 kg) of quality hay, and free grazing. He was diagnosed with insulin resistance and hypothyroidism two years ago, but we manage that with diet control and exercise. Other than this, his health seems fine except for some hoof issues. He’s been a bit lackluster under saddle lately. I am worried about his electrolyte balance as we begin to step up the distance. I use a combination of electrolyte and homemade lipid-coated salt, but I would like to know more about calcium, magnesium, and selenium in relation to our region and supplementation.

Your current feeding program is not providing sufficient quantities of certain trace minerals–namely selenium, copper, and zinc–to meet recommendations for endurance horses. The senior feed is a sound source of nutrients, though it is formulated to provide the correct amount of vitamins and minerals when fed at a feeding rate higher than 2 lb (0.9 kg) per day, resulting in the current diet providing suboptimal nutrition. Adding a ration balancer to the current diet will provide additional vitamins and minerals to fulfill dietary requirements without significantly altering the amount of digestible energy in his diet.

However, because you are training for long-distance competition and noted that your gelding has been underperforming, I have suggested an alternative diet for your consideration. The following diet provides a similar total calorie content but a greater proportion of these calories come from dietary fat...

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Wednesday, June 28, 2017

How to Keep Your Horse Safe During the 4th of July - Full Article

By Wendy Krebs, DVM
Jun 29, 2016

Q. My new horse and fireworks don’t seem to mix. A local display spooked him on New Year’s Eve, and now I’m worried about how he’ll react to fireworks on the 4th of July. Do you have any tips on how I can manage him?

Anonymous, via email

A. Fourth of July firework shows are an exciting highlight for many of us humans but can definitely be more of a lowlight for some of our equine friends. If you know your horse has a history of fearful behavior in relation to fireworks, prepare in advance by talking to your veterinarian about whether acepromazine (often referred to as “ace”) might be a reasonable sedative/anxiety reliever for your horse...

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Legging Up with Limitations — Iggy’s Story - Full Story

by Patti Stedman | Jun 22, 2017

Three months ago, we bought Iggy, an 11 year old Arabian who had done a couple of 25 mile rides and a moderately paced 50 miler at age 6 or so. He’d been purchased, but life got in the way with his new owner, and he didn’t have a full time (or even part-time) job for the last few years.

Me, on the other hand, well, I have two full-time jobs right now.

I’m continuing to work steadily with my long-standing training and consulting business, while working feverishly on establishing and growing the new one, a web-based training business, just a year old.

I don’t think my conundrum is the least bit unique. Most endurance riders with horses they are legging up struggle just like me, finding the time (and sometimes the energy) to train and condition.

So here’s the good news about Iggy:

He’s got good bone structure, a solid education, and an unflappable nature. He loves to eat. (And yes, that is actually a very big deal.) He’s an excellent traveler and found camping at a ride to be a non-event.

Here are some of our challenges:

Iggy’s work ethic is dubious. He’s a little barn sour. I’ve worked on this in some traditional ways. I’ve insisted on him moving forward (whip and a few leg thumps), left him alone (militantly legs off, seat quiet) when he’s traveling along freely or offers to go forward after hesitating or balking. I’ve done the come back to the barn but then do a little ring work, or come back to the barn and head right out for the driveway for a little jaunt, so that coming home doesn’t always mean dismount, untack, get turned out...

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Monday, June 19, 2017

Observations from the vet line - Full Article

June 15, 2017 Posted by Melinda

Last weekend I had the pleasure of vetting another endurance ride. I would be hard pressed to decide what I enjoyed more – vetting or riding. Both are rewarding, hard work, long days, and come with lessons learned.

Oh yes, I learn as much from working the vet line all day as I do out on the trail.

Here are the things that Mel-the-vet wants Mel-the-rider to do differently at rides (or continue to avoid) based on what she’s seen on this side of the line – and maybe there’s some things that resonate with you too.

(Note I’ve been meaning to write this post for a couple of years, so not all “lessons learned” are from this weekend).

Trot out

Leaving a good impression in the vet line boils down to 2 really simple things – trot out well, stand still for the rest...

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Saturday, June 03, 2017

Mississippi's Story - Full Story

Posted by WW on May 30, 2017

Pine Lodge Mississippi is a 1998 NZ gelding, bred by Keith Galpin from the purebred Arabian Australian imports Bremervale Serena, and the sire Bremervale Legacy.

n 2001, Donna Fox went to Galpin’s stud to look for a riding horse, but he had nothing suitable. As chance would have it, Galpin was ‘passing by’ Donna’s place a few weeks later, and he had Miss on board, convinced that the unbroken 3yo was the horse for Donna! Galpin was travelling south, and said that if she really didn’t want him, he’d pick him up again on the way home. Mississippi was a striking individual from an early age, so there’s no Sherlock awards being handed out for guessing that the horse stayed put! He was too pretty be a gelding hence his name was shortened to Miss, and true to form he quickly established himself as the best boy!

I’ll let the rest of his story run in Donna’s words. Her respect and pride in him shine out, and we can’t imagine how devastated she was to find he’d being chucked on the scrap heap.

‘All my Arabian horse friends said he would be too much for me, and he was. Way too much horse. However, he did not have a dirty bone in his body and I only ever experienced one buck when his tail got wet crossing a river. He never threw me off but we did crash and burn a few times. He never kicked or bit or had any vices other than he completely believed he was royalty and should be first in line for everything. He took the attitude right from the start, that he knew it all and if I only I would just sit there and let him get on with it – hence the odd crash.

Miss was like a Border Collie, he was born to work. He just wanted to get out there and do it, skip, all the fancy educating and get on with the job. He was very quick and easily bored. Mentally he had to be engaged all the time. Left to his own devices he would think he knew it all and take shortcuts. He was a horse that you had to have a full riding partnership with, you could not go to off in a daydream. He was very easy to read, and when happy would blow thru his nose at every stride, in this odd sort of soft puffy snort. He was a talkative horse...

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