Sweet Itch in horses is caused by an allergic reaction to bites from the Culicoides biting midge. (There is another rarer variation (occurring on the neck and belly midline) which can be caused by a parasite, Onchocerca, but we aren’t dealing with that here.)
How do you deal with this problem? My suggestion is a multi-pronged approach:
Your normal fly sprays probably aren’t going to help keep the midges at bay here. Rather use Eucalyptus oil diluted about 100:1 in water. You can also cover the effected spots with a heavy cream ... Read More
33 year old Shelly Gilbert from Devon, has been a professional groom for over 10 years working for Lucy McCarthy nee Wiegersma and Irish event rider Padraig McCarthy. Shelly's attention to detail and high standard of turnout has seen her groom at numerous national and international events ranging from BE 90 to the most prestigious 4*in the world along with grooming for the British Junior Team. Shelly is now a freelance groom and will be bringing EWW readers her top tips for meticulous turnout and care of your event horse.
If you have any questions for ... Read More
A horse’s diet definitely influences his chances of staying sound. And, as in most things to do with horses, the answer to a healthy horse is a delicate balance between performance, condition and soundness. One major way we can easily influence all three of these variables is by feeding for soundness.
I believe we need to focus on these 5 areas:
Healthy growth in youngsters
Health musculoskeletal system
Feeding the Youngster
Young horses often develop a bone and joint disorder called DOD (Developmental Orthopaedic Disease). This is ... Read More
We often use the term “maintenance requirement” believing its meaning to be well understood by most horse people. We might, however, speculate as to what extent this is true. Today most horses are owned, used and fed by people with little or no connection to farming practice or theoretical knowledge about their horse’s nutritional requirements, and how this is to be calculated.
Maintenance requirements can be described as the nutrients needed to maintain a body in a steady state. This means that the animal should no longer be growing nor be pregnant or ... Read More
It is only in the past number of years that horse owners have been using fat or oil in their horse’s diets. As fat is relatively rare in forage for horses it may seem to many an unnatural source of energy. But recent research has noted the nutritional benefits for the equine athlete. With many conditions been associated with starch laden diets i.e. tying up, gastric issues, cushing’s, laminitis and joint problems in young horses. Other means of fuelling the horse for performance was undertaken.
It is accepted universally the advantages of feeding ... Read More
We have always known that Rooibos was healthy. But, honestly, the benefits that research is now showing Rooibos to have are surprising everyone. Most of these studies are human, animal or in vitro studies, but there is nothing that shouldn’t carry over to horses.
Rooibos, aka Aspalathus linearis, is unique to South Africa. The Khoi tribes in the mountainous Cedarburg region of the Western Cape were the first to brew it into a tea. Since then, South Africans have continued to enjoy this tea and lately, Rooibos has become a vibrant ... Read More
Looking after our horses is vital to their and our success, Horses are not designed to be ridden
although many of them adapt surprisingly well and selective and careful breeding over the years has supported this.
Getting to know our horses, learning to spot any potential issues and teaching our horses to work in a correct manner that enables them to work and support the rider effectively. By learning to identify our horses vital signs we can help keep them happy, healthy and even prolong their careers in what ever discipline we choose.
Horses have ... Read More
Courtesy of VioVet’s Hannah Dyball…
As a horse owner, you may sometimes wish you had the ability to speak the equine language to decipher what your horse is trying to tell you. But actually, understanding their body language is enough, as horses rely on very sophisticated body language to communicate with us and also with each other.
There may be the occasional neigh, whinny or snort but on the whole, horses don’t vocalise as we do. Instead they pin back their ears, flare their nostrils, and generally change their body posture when they are ... Read More
As they say, a Lady cannot have too many pairs of shoes. Indeed, this is now the case for horses, as in the expanding market, more and more products are now available to protect your horses precious legs. Such developments are crucial to the competitive sport, but also to the typical owner, whom wants to avoid extortionate vet bills and the horror of box rest. A horse only has one pair of legs; well two if we’re being technical, but it is pivotal to protect them whilst still having fun hopping hedges and the occasional white board, though this tends ... Read More
Courtesy of VioVet’s Hannah Dyball…
We all want our horses to have sound joints but due to the nature of modern riding and competing, joint
health isn’t always guaranteed. Repetitive action places unnatural stress on bones and joints, which can lead to degenerative diseases and sudden traumas.
Poor joint health can be the result of many things, from unbalanced shoeing and improper saddle fit, to over-working young horses and the simple wear-and-tear of old age. Quite often inadequate nutrition has a part to play, which is why supplementation can be beneficial.