Following the sad death of “De Novo News” travel sickness is suddenly very much in the news. So what is the disease and how can you prevent your horse from catching it?
Travel Sickness or Shipping Fever is a bacterial pleuropneumonia which results in damage to the lungs and a build up of fluid in the chest cavity. This disease requires rapid and aggressive therapy often involving prolonged spells in hospital and frequent drainage of fluid from the chest. Even with the best and most prompt treatment at least 10% of horses affected with travel sickness will die and a further ... Read More
I remember sitting in a Biochemistry lecture many years ago. The lecturer was explaining how Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid) boosted immunity. She explained how white blood cells called monocytes and others called granulocytes actually carry large amounts of Vitamin C around, and then release it at the site of infection. From there, it boosts the immune response in a number of different ways. I remember thinking how beautiful and how clever this was – so simple, so effective.
It also caused me to look with great interest into what ... Read More
Specialist knowledge in the use of Valoya LED lighting to improve the performance of plant growth has led to successful trials in LED therapy on two of racehorse owner Phil Kirby’s most promising runners, thanks to the involvement of Exhibition Seeds and HydroGarden.
Trials began in March when Valoya LED B-series Full Spectrum lights were introduced to two of the boxes at Phil’s Sharpehill Stables in Middleham, North Yorkshire, following a suggestion by Keith Foster, owner of horticultural and seed specialists, Exhibition Seeds, and Stephen Fry, commercial sales manager for Coventry-based hydroponic manufacturers and wholesalers, HydroGarden.
Recent studies in Singapore and Italy ... Read More
How complicated is hoof biochemistry? Very. I was just on Facebook, looking at a query about how to improve hoof quality in horses. ‘Feed herbs’ was the one response. ‘Biotin’ was the next response. I agree with both people, but there is more to it.
Farrier Science lecturer, Jenny Andreani explains: “Hoof quality is about balance. The horn and sole must be neither too hard, nor too soft. Hooves that are too dry are brittle. If they are too moist, they can be weak and prone to infection.”
How ... Read More
It might be something you learnt about years ago at Pony Club, but with the vast array of nosebands available nowadays (and more emerging all the time!), it’s all too easy to forget which nosebands do what! There might be noseband fashions to contend with but, as Julia Andrews from Kate Negus Saddlery explains, the key is to pick what’s right for your horse and to ensure that it fits correctly.
Fit is a really big deal to us at Kate Negus Saddlery. This applies to every aspect of the horse’s bridle. Read More
Managing Director of FMBs Therapy Systems, Serena Hickson, talks to us about the benefits of massage, and how there’s more than one way to provide this very useful type of therapy.
Massage has been used for a very long time to help tone muscles, improve circulation and for general relaxation. Human athletes have massages as part of their training regime to help keep them in the best possible condition, and sports massage is used by a range of people to help overcome ailments and issues. Many people think of massage as having to be applied by a person, as in, having ... Read More
Adequate pre, during and post competition hydration can be crucial to both the health and success of the event horse. Dehydration can not only cause serious health conditions such as collapse, exhaustion and even death, but subtle degrees of dehydration can affect performance, such as willingness and ability to jump, concentration and recovery.
Signs of dehydration and checking for dehydration
Small degrees of dehydration can be difficult to spot but recognising these early signs can prevent further worsening dehydration and potentially improve the performance and welfare of the horse.
Signs of dehydration:
Delayed skin pinch test
Dullness in the eyes
Lack of urination and/or defaecation
Dry/tacky ... Read More
As horsey people, we are always using the word ‘topline’, it’s a term banded about with monotonous regularity. But what does it really mean and why do horses need it? And most importantly, how do we achieve it?
Horses, like people, come in all shapes and sizes. We’re all familiar with the lean TB type with an ewe neck, and the chunky cob with a crest like a stallion, however all horses need to BUILD topline, they don’t achieve it by standing in the field.
Recent breeding techniques have gone some way to creating a horse who is designed to have a ... Read More
Tryptophan has recently had a large amount of bad press as regards its use as a calmer for horses. For example, a friend recently sent me this review of L-Tryptophan as a calmer for horses: http://bit.ly/1A8hRaS.
Although I think this article is very well researched (and the authors must’ve spent weeks gathering all this info together), I do disagree fundamentally on some of its points.
Firstly, a bit of background information. This is how Tryptophan (an essential amino acid) works:
Tryptophan >>>>>> 5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) >>>>>>>>Serotonin
Tryptophan is converted into 5-HTP which passes into the brain and is then converted into Serotonin, the calm and ... Read More
Managing Director of FMBs Therapy Systems, Serena Hickson, talks to us about Pulsed Electromagnetic Field Therapy (PEMF), how this works, what it does and why many leading riders use it as part of their horses’ daily regime.
Alternative therapy takes many forms, and one that’s certainly on the rise is PEMF, which uses magnetic pulses created using electrical energy. This type of therapy involves passing electrical current from a battery over a number of copper coils. The frequency of which the current is sent is controlled by the control box and varies depending on why the therapy is being applied, whether ... Read More