V11I5 (Oct/Nov 2016)

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Herbs for



nutrition ON THE RUN Traction Control in BAREFOOT









theLAST CHANCE CORRAL Providing nurse mare foals with a soft place to land

$5.95 USA/Canada

October/November 2016

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COLUMNISTS & CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Susan Albright, DVM Valeria Breiten, NMD Matt Dickson Joyce Harman, DVM Wendy Hofstee, BVSc, MRCVS, FRGS Alexandra Kurland Jessica Lynn Jessica McLoughlin, REMT Lola Michelin Clay Nelson Wendy Pearson, PhD Sherri Pennanen Dana Shackelton, DVM Amy Snow Anna Twinney Nancy Zidonis

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EquineWellnessMagazine.com Equine Wellness Magazine (ISSN 1718-5793) is published six times a year by Redstone Media Group Inc. Publications Mail Agreement #40884047. Entire contents copyright© 2016. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted by any means, without prior written permission of the publisher. Publication date: September 2016.


COVER PHOTOGRAPHY Copyright Sue Morrow Productions, LLC “Wild at Heart” (Wilder) is a beautiful Thoroughbred cross colt with a certain joie de vivre. He had a rough start at life as a nurse mare foal and was quite ill when he arrived at the Last Chance Corral, but now he’s ready to strut! He is living happily in GA with his pal “Culpepper” (also an orphan) and is part of a youth Equine Ministry. To read more about the Last Chance Corral and the great work they do, head on over to page 30.

Equine Wellness


Conte 22


Contrary to popular belief, the welltrimmed barefoot horse can have outstanding traction for all disciplines and levels of riding.


We’re notorious for often obsessing over our horses’ diets, but neglecting our own. As part of the equation for a successful athletic team, your health is just as critical as your horse’s. Here’s how to get better at eating well, even when on the go!



A new take on managing and maintaining hoof quality in health and disease.


Is your horse sleep deprived, or narcoleptic? Here’s what to watch for, and how to make sure he gets proper sleep.


Equine Wellness



Horses performing specific movements or tasks require maintenance to keep them happy and healthy in their work. Here are some discipline-specific “problem areas” to be aware of.

Equine health professional laws and regulations vary widely depending on where you live, and that makes it difficult to determine who can practice which therapies. Here are some general guidelines and tips to help you select the best professionals to work on your horse.

30 THE LAST CHANCE CORRAL Nurse mare foals are not always given much of a fighting chance at a good life. Victoria Goss of the Last Chance Corral is working to change the future for these little lives.



A riding vacation doesn’t have to be a far-off dream – get started on planning your trip with these tips from the pros!

38 TARGET TRAINING FOR HOOF HANDLING If your horse needs help with hoof handling manners, clicker training can create positive associations and responses in a safe and calm manner.



Whether you see them or not, your farm is home to many creatures besides you and your horses. Let’s take a look at how you can encourage beneficial animals, and discourage pests in a humane manner.

nts 18 COLUMNS 8 Neighborhood news 45 Business profile: Making Waves

DEPARTMENTS 6 Editorial 25 Product picks 41 Heads up

49 Green acres

50 Equine Wellness resource guide

52 Holistic veterinary Q&A

57 Book review

54 To the rescue

58 Marketplace

56 Acupressure at a glance

60 Events

57 Minute horsemanship

61 Classifieds

62 Herb blurb


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hoof, no horse

There is a common saying in the horse world: “No hoof, no horse”. This is basically a snappy way of saying that if your horse doesn’t have healthy feet, you will likely spend more time sorting out soundness issues than riding and enjoying your horse. Many people think that good feet start and end with proper trimming or farrier care. If only it were truly that simple! While your trimmer or farrier certainly plays a vital role in shaping your horse’s hooves, there is so much more that goes into developing and maintaining solid, healthy feet – everything from how much time your horse spends outside and what your fields look like, to what you feed him or apply to his feet topically. If your saddle doesn’t fit or your horse’s body isn’t aligned properly, it will affect his gait and his feet. If there is an imbalance with his hormones, it can also affect his feet. As you can see, good feet require a “whole horse” approach to health and wellness. The whole horse approach is what we are all about, so we’ve got a number of articles in this issue to support your horse’s feet from all angles. If you’ve ever been told that your barefoot horse needs shoes to perform in various disciplines such as jumping or barrel racing, you’ll want to check out Sherri Pennanen’s article on traction control and the equine hoof on page 10. Dr. Wendy Pearson joins us on page 18 to share a new take on equine hoof health and nutrition. And both Anna Twinney and Alexandra Kurland offer tips and insight on how to work with your horse through proper horsemanship (page 57) and clicker training (38) to develop better hoof handling techniques and manners. The better your horse is at having his feet handled, the more effective you and your trimmer or farrier can be in attending to his hoof care needs. Plus, farriers love horses that stand nicely to have their feet done – you’ll become their star client! Our cover story on page 30 features the Last Chance Corral and the amazing work that they do with nurse mare foals. Many people are blind to this area of the horse industry and we hope to shed some light on this controversial practice and its consequences. Thankfully there are wonderful people like Victoria Goss and her volunteers at the Last Chance Corral to help these little lives thrive and give them a second chance.


Kelly Howling 6

Equine Wellness





Unfortunate news. The FEI has announced that it is working on an alternative host for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2018. This follows a mutual agreement between the FEI and Canadian Comité organisateur des Jeux Équestres Mondiaux 2018 (COJEM), the organizing committee for the Games in Bromont, to terminate the contract to host the Games, due to ongoing financial issues. “We are sad that the Bromont organizing committee is no longer in a position to host the Games in 2018,” FEI President Ingmar De Vos said. “We have been working very closely with the COJEM Board and all levels of the organization…and have known for some time that the Bromont team was facing major financial difficulties.” The 2018 Games were allocated to Canada by the FEI Bureau in June 2014, after the bid committee provided confirmation that it had substantial government backing at the local level. However, the financial plan for the Games included sourcing federal government funding, and Carla Qualtrough, the Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities, confirmed last week that no funding would be forthcoming from the Canadian federal government.


equestrian events

The support of young equestrians is vitally important because they are the lifeblood of our sport. Thankfully, after some uncertainty, the Committee on Women’s Athletics has confirmed its support for equestrian events to remain on the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s Emerging Sports list. In the fall of 2014, the CWA recommended that equestrian events be dropped from the Emerging Sports list due to limited growth in the number of teams sponsoring them. Multiple updates on the progress of the sport from the NCEA leadership offered a new perspective on equestrian events and convinced the CWA to reconsider its earlier action. The National Collegiate Equestrian Association, in collaboration with the NCAA, oversees the sport of equestrian while under the Emerging Sports umbrella. With renewed focus on expansion of the sport, the NCEA has provided the foundation for a stronger support base for the sport to remain viable within the collegiate setting. “Our initial efforts to reorganize our resources and implement a sound strategic plan for growth and expansion have been recognized by the NCAA,” said Dr. Leah Fiorentino, executive director of the NCEA. “We are encouraged by the support we’ve received from the NCAA leadership as well as our colleagues involved with the other Olympic sports. With the continued support of the NCAA, we look forward to ensuring that equestrian will be part of the effort to maintain meaningful educational opportunities for women through athletics.” 8



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It’s a huge milestone for Brooke’s global animal welfare and advocacy work. The World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) has, for the first time, announced a set of welfare standards for working horses, donkey and mules. Over the past three years, Brooke, an international animal welfare charity, has been supporting the OIE in the development of these standards, providing expertise and technical input. A total of 180 countries will commit to undertaking the recommendations, which were approved at the World Assembly of OIE Delegates in Paris. Standards for animal welfare already exist for other animals, such as those used in food production, but until now, working horses, donkeys and mules have been largely overlooked by governments and policy makers. Recommendations relate to food and water provision, shelter, prevention and treatment of disease, handling, equipment, behavior and general workload. They even extend to care at the end of their working lives. Governments all over the world will be responsible for enforcing the new standards alongside the OIE’s other standards for animal welfare. “We often say that the horses, donkeys and mules of the world are the invisible workers, because in terms of their welfare, there is little being done at a government or international level”, says Karen Reed, Head of Animal Welfare Capacity at Brooke. “These standards will help us to change that.” Read the full set of standards at oie.int.




wild horses


Keeping your horses safe from disease is a crucial concern. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), in partnership with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), Equine Canada and its equine sector organizations, has developed a National Farm and Facility Level Biosecurity Standard for the Equine Sector. Horse owners and custodians can use this new guidance document as a cost effective way to limit the risk of a disease outbreak on farms and other facilities where horses may be kept.

Three saddle-trained wild horses from the inmate wild horse training program at Northern Nevada Correctional Center (NNCC) in Carson City are going to a new home. They’ve been selected by the U.S. Forest Service Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest to work as pack string horses for their trail crews.

• Multiple methods to enhance horse health, welfare and productivity

The three wild horses will join other horses and mules to form pack strings on the Rocky Mountain Ranger District in Montana, and will be used to transport people and supplies into backcountry areas to maintain trails. The District has 1,100 miles of trail, some of which are in wilderness areas where people are not allowed to use motorized vehicles. Throughout the winter, the horses may be used for snow surveys and various other projects on the District.

“The CFIA has seen a great amount of success with national biosecurity standards for the avian, bee, cattle, dairy, goat, mink, and sheep industries, says Lawrence MacAulay, Canada’s Minister of Agriculture. “Having these guidelines in place for the equine industry will better equip those who own or care for horses to further protect Canadian horses from diseases. This achievement was made possible by collaborating with other government departments, horse owners and the equine industry. When we work together, we continue to expand Canada’s capacity to better safeguard our animals.”

The Bureau of Land Management and Nevada Department of Corrections – Silver State Industries have been working together for over 12 years to saddle-train wild horses and burros to make them more adoptable. Recently, state and federal agencies such as the California Department of Fish and Game and the U.S. Border Patrol have shown interest in utilizing wild horses to accomplish their missions.

It provides: • Guidance on effective biosecurity practices to minimize the transmission of diseases • Ways to reduce the frequency, scope and impact of disease outbreaks

Equine Wellness



equine hoof


Equine Wellness

Contrary to popular belief, the well-trimmed barefoot horse can have outstanding traction for all disciplines and levels of riding. By Sherri Pennanen Have you been told your horse needs shoes to jump or hunt because he needs better traction? Don’t believe everything you hear. It is very possible to follow your equestrian dreams with a barefoot horse. Let’s explore traction control – barefoot style!

THE HEALTHY HOOF We need to start from the basic premise that a healthy hoof which is working as it was intended will, in fact, have far better traction than a shod or studded hoof. For centuries, horses have traversed mountains, rocks, water, mud, snow, ice and hard ground without any difficulty – and without any interference from us. So how can we continue this natural tradition and take advantage of the traction the barefoot horse can offer? The first step is to have the hoof take on its most natural form by applying a balanced barefoot trim. We need to “help our horses along” by performing this routinely because they generally do not travel the distances or access the varied terrains that horses in the wild enjoy. Similarly, when we let our horses live a natural life, we can improve their overall health and well-being as well as their hoof form. In other words, horses are made to be outside, to graze and move around freely. Putting a horse in a stall will not do anything to further his hoof’s natural form or his overall well-being. Similarly, restricting his hoof with shoes may contribute to traction problems rather than solve them.

NATURAL HOOF STRUCTURE Much of what affords a barefoot horse his excellent traction centers around creating a concave sole and supporting structures. If we were to look at a hoof that was “naturally worn”, we would see the walls of the heels and the bars of the hoof being elevated above the concave sole, though not to the same Continued on page 12. Equine Wellness


THE BAREFOOT TRANSITION If your horse is a “tenderfoot” and has been shod for years, a solid trail boot may assist with the transition to barefoot riding. Many have a “traction pattern” on the ground surface that mimics the natural hoof. Find a boot that will meet your purpose and fit your horse well. Other horses may not require a boot. It is largely individual. A rapid change from a shod to barefoot state can result in a sore horse.

Continued from page 11. level as the hoof wall. So where the bars and heels meet, there is a “traction device”, much like the pattern on an all-season radial tire, that allows it to “grab” the ground in difficult terrain. This area works by allowing the hoof to dig in for starting and stopping and limits the potential for sideways slippage. The hoof should also be allowed to have a “cone” type shape so that the hoof wall meets the ground at an angle. This enhances traction. The conical hoof works like a wedge, helps when the ground is slick or very soft, and aids in pushing off, as well as with ground control. A hoof with a balanced barefoot trim contacts the ground with the frog, bulbs and heel. All these structures will be at the same level. When the horse bears weight on the hoof wall and it expands under that weight, the contact between these structures and the ground create a “suction cup” effect, which will limit slipping and promote self-cleaning of the hoof. To see this principle in action, watch a horse walk on ice. As he sets his foot down, you will see it expand under his weight and slide just a little forward before it grabs hold of the surface with the supporting structures. As the horse shifts his weight forward, the heel lifts and the whole foot can be lifted when the seal is broken by the movement. Your horse does not struggle to negotiate slippery conditions. He is as secure as can be!


It is easy to become frustrated and give up if the horse is sore, but commitment to this change in course is critical. Think about the benefits of not having to worry about loose or lost shoes on your next trail riding adventure. Even better, think about how your horse’s traction may actually be dramatically improved, and his overall health serviced, by a more natural existence. Also be aware that transition from a pasture trim or shod hoof to a barefoot traction machine is not accomplished in a single trim. It is a process that may take several trims along with some lifestyle changes. Your barefoot farrier can guide you through the stages. 12

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Now consider how a metal shoe will impact how these natural mechanisms work. A shoe can actually lead to less security in difficult situations, restricting the hoof wall from expanding under weight-bearing action. Studs will not help significantly. Heels, frogs and bulbs can become contracted with restricted movement and contact, and the result is reduced function and the potential for conditions such as abscesses or thrush. The same horse on ice that we noted above would be dependent largely on the surface of the shoe to keep him from slipping. Borium or other various studs can help, but the shoe will inhibit the “natural suction cup” action and the horse may have more difficulty maintaining security on the ice. Equines in all disciplines of riding accomplish great things as naturally-trimmed barefoot horses. Whether hunters, jumpers, cross country or trail horses, they enjoy soundness and balance with excellent traction. If you think a natural barefoot trim is for your own horse, discuss it with a skilled barefoot farrier. Your best “all season radials” may be just around the corner!

Sherri Pennanen is the owner of Better Be Barefoot Natural Trim, Rehabilitation, and Education Center in Lockport, NY. She has been certified as a natural trim specialist for almost 20 years and has over 45 years of horse experience. She is committed to herd-based living for horses in a chemical-free environment. betterbebarefoot.com

Equine Wellness


Rider Nutrition on the run By Valeria Breiten, NMD

We’re notorious for often obsessing over our horses’ diets, but neglecting our own. As part of the equation for a successful athletic team, your health is just as critical as your horse’s. Here’s how to get better at eating well, even when on the go!

o you give as much time and thought to your food choices as you do your horse’s? The answer is probably no. This is a universal problem with caregivers of all kinds; they neglect themselves, forgetting how essential they are to success.


I once had a patient who decided to solve her nutrition problems by eating protein bars for all her meals. This met her basic requirements for calories, protein, fat and carbohydrates, and was easy for her on-the-go lifestyle. She was working out regularly, but she noticed she was feeling a lot of fatigue, at which point she was sent to me for a nutritional evaluation. After hearing her current eating plan, we discussed other options. She did not cook and was almost afraid of cooking. I listened to her food likes and dislikes, and then we created a plan that she thought was doable, incorporating fresh fruits, vegetables, meats and eggs into an easy-to-prepare format. She made fresh smoothies and precooked some foods for future meals. She and her coach were both amazed at the rapid increase in her energy 14

Equine Wellness

levels that came from taking the time to eat fresh instead of processed foods!

Processing processed foods Processed foods have a lot of preservatives in them to keep them from spoiling. They have added chemicals that interfere with the ability of natural enzymes to break down food. When a food can sit on your counter for a week or month without any breakdown, it’s also very difficult for your body to assimilate it. You have to remember that your digestive system is an amazing tube running from your mouth to your bottom, and once past your mouth, it has no teeth to break down, smash or further reduce what you eat. Acid, pH, enzymes, and bile are doing the work. Our system does an amazing job of reducing and absorbing the nutrients it needs, but if the food is loaded with preservatives or has been treated to be so shelf stable that it doesn’t go bad even when sitting unpackaged on the counter, then your body is going to have difficulty doing anything with it. Fresh foods may spoil easily, but are much easier for your system to benefit from.


to eat by


Prepare your own meals as much as possible from

fresh ingredients. Take a cooler along. Include organic nuts,

Taking the time to eat The other important aspect of digestion is taking the time to eat. Sitting quietly gives the body a chance to send to the stomach the acid needed to break down proteins; to send to the small intestines the enzymes and insulin necessary to reduce carbohydrates; and for the gall bladder to send down some bile for emulsifying fat for absorption. Chewing thoroughly gives the food a good start. If you are running along throwing popcorn in your mouth, chances are you aren’t chewing it well, your stomach is not getting enough acid, and the pH might not be appropriate for the enzymes to work properly when it gets to the intestines. A poor meal quickly becomes even more of a problem for the body, because it can’t absorb it properly. Continued on page 16.

cheeses, hummus, salads, dips, eggs and meats, along with fruits and vegetables.

2 3

Minimize packaged, chemically-preserved,

processed bars or foods. Take time to eat and digest your food. Even 15

minutes of relaxing and chewing make a difference for your body.

Equine Wellness


Dr.Valeria Breiten practices Naturopathic medicine and nutrition in the Phoenix, Arizona area. Learn more about her and purchase her book, Naturally Healthy at Home, at


Continued from page 15.

Eating on the go If you are looking for meal options on the go, it is possible to consume healthier “fast foods” and combine them with fresher foods. • Many food chains offer salads and wraps. I like to substitute lettuce for all the bread on a lot of wraps or sandwiches at these places – most will do that now. Preparing a double meal for dinner the night before, and taking half along as leftovers the next day, also works for a lot of people. • A trick I learned a long time ago was to take an apple, cut it in half and core it. I fill the middle with nut butter, put the two halves back together and place it in a sandwich bag. It does not need refrigeration and is easy to eat when I am ready for it. It is also very satisfying. Sometimes I do celery with my nut butter. • I also will do cucumber slices, cherry tomatoes, carrots and hummus (though hummus should be kept in a cooler with ice). • Sometimes I make cabbage bowls where I shred the cabbage, add other vegetables like cucumber and tomatoes, and then top it off with egg, tuna salad or meat. The cabbage holds up well with a dressing over it until you are ready to eat. My favorite cabbage salad dressing is grapeseed mayonnaise, Wasabi mayonnaise and pickle juice mixed together and poured over top! • Smoothies and juicing are more popular than ever – I am a fan of blending vegetables and fruit to retain the fiber and all their benefits. Mixing in various protein powders and good fats like nut butters, avocado, coconut oil and olive oil makes the smoothie better balanced between carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Low-fat diets have done a serious disservice to our health. It is important to eat clean, organic, fatty foods for good health. So throw your fruits and vegetables in the blender, add some protein powder and nut butter, and take it along with you. Just remember to slow down a little and let your body digest it when you drink it. Eating better doesn’t have to be difficult, and can provide great benefits to your health and wellness. If your horse deserves a properly balanced diet, then you certainly do as well! Dr. Valeria Breiten is an Arizona licensed naturopathic physician and registered dietitian. She uses primarily homeopathy, nutrition, botanicals and Scenar at her practice in Chandler, Arizona. Her book Naturally Healthy at Home is available on Kindle and at DrValeria.net.


Equine Wellness


MANAGING WINTER LAMINITIS Now that the warmth of the summer months is behind us and the air is chilly and damp, it becomes clear that the freezing cold of winter will be upon us shortly. So it really isn’t too early to think about protecting your horse from winter laminitis. If your horse has had a bout of laminitis in the past, it is likely to recur.

Protecting your horse In addition to severe pain and discomfort, repeated occurrences of laminitis can permanently damage the vascular supply to your horse’s feet. Winter laminitis can strike horses without any prior history of it. This may be due to reduced circulation to the feet in cold weather, and the effects of cold stress. Here are some suggestions to help minimize the risks for your horse: • Provide adequate shelter that protects your horse in wet and severely cold temperatures. • Be sure to have blankets, leg wraps and lined boots ready for use when bad weather sets in.

• Remember to use generous amounts of Sturtevant’s Veterinary Antiseptic Powder on your horse’s frogs and soles. Doctors have used this product for years in supplementing treatment for laminitis. It is believed that the ingredients used in Sturtevant’s large animal formula help promote the natural production of vascular nitric oxide, which supports blood delivery to the extremities and feet. The F.C. Sturtevant Company produces a related product for use in hospitals to treat and prevent decubital ulcers on the feet and ankles of people with diabetes-related circulatory complications. Remember, protection against the cold is the first step in combating winter-related hoof pain. Be prepared to provide the proper care for your horse when Old Man Winter returns this year. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.


Equine Wellness



Hoof Health By Wendy Pearson, PhD

A new take on managing and maintaining hoof quality in health and disease.


onsider the faithful old hoof care product. Most of us remember a time when we thought biotin was the only thing we had to feed our horses to look after their hoof needs. How times have changed! Good science mixed with good sense has crafted a whole new generation of nutritional hoof care products.

Growing a healthy hoof This shift in thinking has been spurred by an increasingly inclusive approach to rebuilding hooves. Far from being just four lumps of biotin on the end of a horse’s legs, hooves are made up mostly of protein (around 93%, especially methionine and cysteine), B vitamins (including biotin, choline and inositol), and minerals (including zinc, copper and calcium). Back in the day, hoof care supplements only needed to contain biotin to make us believe we were taking care of hoof needs. And this is not entirely unfounded – some good research in the late 1990s demonstrated that you could accelerate hoof growth by up to 15% by feeding supplementary biotin. The problem is, as soon as biotin supplementation stops, around 70% of hooves return to their pre-supplementation brittleness and poor structure. So clearly, the biochemical complexity of equine hooves goes beyond just feeding our horses extra biotin.

Amino acids and minerals The inclusion of amino acids in a hoof care supplement is critical, particularly when you consider hooves contain primarily protein. The limiting amino acids in hoof growth and structure are cysteine (located mainly in cells that manufacture hoof tissue; called “keratinocytes”) and Continued on page 20.


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EQUINE METABOLIC SYNDROME AND ADIPOSE TISSUE The precise mechanism by which laminitis develops is an uncomfortable question mark for scientists, since they still struggle to understand its pathogenesis. However, there are a few theories out there, a major one being a link to equine metabolic syndrome (EMS). EMS is a complex syndrome in horses characterized by obesity, insulin resistance, and frequently, laminitis. This is a rather fashionable area in equine research, and most of what we know about this syndrome has been learned within the last five years. While the pathogenesis of EMS is, in many ways, as mysterious as laminitis itself, adipose tissue appears to be part of the problem. Adipose tissue (or “fat”) is actually an organ, like the liver or brain. It produces hormones (adipokines) that behave a bit like cortisol and produce clinical signs similar to Cushing’s disease. Adipose tissue also produces a chemical called “resistin” that encourages cells to “ignore” the presence of insulin. Insulin is essential for transporting glucose into cells; if cells cannot detect the presence of insulin, the body tries to compensate by making even more insulin. As insulin levels go up, and glucose levels don’t go down, the perfect storm for inflammation of the hoof laminae is created. Some scientists believe that insulin itself is the reason EMS horses tend to develop laminitis. So to control the laminitis, it is necessary to keep insulin levels as low as possible. Thus, feeding a diet that has a “low glycemic index” (i.e. produces a small insulin response) is necessary to prevent laminitis in these horses. A diet like this might consist primarily of hay that’s soaked to deplete sugars, beet pulp and a vitamin/mineral balancer. It can also be very useful to include feed ingredients that normalize insulin signaling. The most studied of these are fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum) and cinnamon (Cinnamon sp). Fenugreek has the added benefit of reducing feed intake in horses, which is always a good thing for our “fluffy” equines!

Equine Wellness


Continued from page 18. methionine (located mainly in the stratum basale and in the stratum spinosum of the matrix; see below).

primrose altered the fatty acid composition of part of the hoof. But the oil had no net effect on hoof growth, and the clinical significance of the altered fatty acid composition is unknown. Thus, as far as the evidence currently goes, there is little we can do with hoof growth or composition with herbal feed additives. Where herbs may play a more important role in hoof health, however, is in the management and/or treatment of hoof diseases such as laminitis. Also known as “founder”, laminitis is among the most troublesome of all equine ailments. It is an acutely painful condition of the hoof laminae, and is stubbornly persistent once it has occurred. Laminitis is a rather puzzling condition in which the coffin bone within the hoof capsule rotates downward towards the sole of the hoof, tearing the sensitive laminae in the process. The closest human analogy might be accidentally tearing your fingernail off the end of your finger. Ouch! The difference is that your fingernail will grow back within a couple of weeks, and happily, you don’t have to walk on it while it’s healing.

While there is little research describing the effects of methionine supplementation on equine hoof growth, a series of studies in the 1980s demonstrated significant hoof growth in dairy cows fed a diet containing supplementary methionine. It is interesting that methionine can be biochemically converted to cysteine by the horse, and both amino acids appear to play critical roles in hoof tissue structure. The final major piece of the puzzle in good hoof care is minerals, particularly zinc, copper and calcium. A diet deficient in copper and zinc results in poor hoof wall structure, and calcium is also reported to prevent the sloughing of cells that make the hoof matrix (an effect biotin did not have). A great way to increase calcium levels in a horse’s diet is to add alfalfa pellets or meal.

Herbal help for hooves – managing laminitis While most research on the dietary manipulation of hoof growth rate and composition centers around amino acids and B vitamins, there is great interest in going beyond macro- and micronutrients to improve hoof quality and growth rate, and this includes herbal and nutraceutical products. There has been very limited research investigating the effects of these feed additives in horses. A study in the Equine Veterinary Journal (1998, supplement 26) reported that oil from evening 20

Equine Wellness

Once the dreaded diagnosis has been made, prevention is off the table. Now the best a horse owner can hope for is to manage the pain and promote healthy circulation to the hoof. Most veterinarians recommend conventional pain management with phenylbutazone (aka “bute”), but this is not particularly well-suited to long term use owing to its inclination to produce stomach ulcers and cartilage thinning. People caring for laminitic horses (in cooperation with their vets) are well advised to seek alternatives for the longerterm management of the disease. Herbs that are useful for managing chronic pain include some varieties of mint (Mentha spicata), turmeric (Curcuma longa), devil’s claw (Harpagophytum procumbens), meadowsweet (Filipendula ulmaria) and white willow (Salix alba). You can also offer herbs with a circulatory effect, including cayenne pepper (Capsicum annuum), ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba) and dandelion (Taraxacum officinale).

Know better, do better Like many things in contemporary horse management, conscientious hoof care is not as simple as it used to be. An increased knowledge and awareness of hoof biochemistry and structure has perhaps confused our thinking about what’s best for optimizing form and function. But our elevated understanding can lead to overall better hoof care for our equine friends.

Dr. Wendy Pearson is an Assistant Professor of Equine Physiology in the Department of Animal Biosciences, University of Guelph. Her research focuses on developing an advanced understanding of musculoskeletal inflammatory disorders in horses, and the role of nutritional and nutraceutical interventions in improving clinical and physiological outcomes.

Equine Wellness


Sleepdeprivation &




ust as with humans, proper sleep is important for your horse. The average horse will devote approximately three to five hours a day to sleep. Despite anatomy that allows horses to nap standing up, they will lie down for periods of deep sleep every day. If this deep sleep is avoided for a significant period, excessive drowsiness and periodic collapse can occur, and that can be a scary thing to witness!


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These horses are often thought to have narcolepsy, a sleep disorder causing abrupt onset of a sleeping episode. Narcolepsy has been described in the horse, but is exceedingly rare and typically breed associated (i.e. Miniature horse). It is much more likely that the majority of horses displaying these symptoms are simply suffering from sleep deprivation. The causes of sleep deprivation vary widely, and can be physical or environmental.

WHY ISN’T YOUR HORSE SLEEPING? Physical factors that can result in poor sleep for your horse can run the gamut from cardiovascular and respiratory abnormalities to neurologic disorders and metabolic derangements. Pain can also cause excessive wakefulness – no one sleeps well when they are experiencing discomfort. Musculoskeletal pain as well as neurologic conditions may prevent a horse from being able to lie down or get up, resulting in a lack of deep sleep. In these cases, a short course of analgesics or treatment of the underlying neurological condition may result in an improved ability to get up and down. If your horse has another issue that is causing him significant or chronic pain, you will need to work with his health care team to determine the cause and develop a treatment plan. Environmental factors may prevent sleep in a number of different ways. For example, a dominant horse may not sleep enough because he’s constantly on the alert for threats; Continued on page 24. Equine Wellness


Continued from page 23. conversely, a horse that is lower in the pecking order may not sleep enough if his herd mates constantly harass him. Lone horses may also suffer sleep deprivation if they feel too vulnerable to sleep deeply. Excessive noise and a lack of adequate bedding can also contribute to sleep deprivation. Sudden environmental changes such as moving your horse to a different facility or a rigorous show schedule can lead to periods of sleeplessness in your horse. Thankfully, environmental factors can be much easier to resolve than physical ones, and solutions like separating or moving certain individuals, providing a friend (such as a goat or another horse), providing deeper bedding and eliminating noisy disruptions can allow the affected individual to get some rest, resulting in an alleviation of clinical signs.

UNDERSTANDING NARCOLEPSY Although narcolepsy is extremely rare in the horse, it’s important to have an understanding of it when dealing with a horse suffering from periodic collapse. Narcolepsy is multifactorial, the specifics of which are poorly understood. It is usually associated with cataplexy – loss of motor control often resulting in collapse, and preceded by a period of excitement. This excitement is usually positive, such as that associated with playing or feeding time. It is rare that a horse will suffer from a narcoleptic episode while working under saddle, but anecdotal evidence suggests it can happen. It is thought to have a genetic component and there is a strong familial association of the disorder in Miniature horses. Clinical signs of sleep deprivation may include “rub” sores on the knees and fetlocks from falling, and periodic episodes of falling asleep during grooming, with subsequent collapse. Some individuals present with trauma to the nose, teeth and lips from hitting their faces during collapse episodes. Pain while the horse is working and other clinical signs such as a poor appetite or difficulty eating may provide clues to your veterinarian.


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A comprehensive physical exam and requisite blood work, in addition to a thorough medical and behavioral history, is the best place to start.

COMING TO A DIAGNOSIS Given that narcolepsy in horses is not widely understood and is relatively rare, it can be difficult to determine whether your horse is struggling with this condition, or has simple sleep deprivation. If you feel he may be suffering from either sleep deprivation or narcolepsy, it is very helpful to videotape him in his normal environment for 24 to 48 hours. This will allow you to figure out when and how often your horse’s episodes occur. Determine whether these episodes are preceded by external stimuli such as playing or feeding. Evaluate the paddock to identify sources of excessive noise or disruption. If you have multiple horses, determine whether the affected horse is dominant or submissive. All this information will help your veterinarian formulate an accurate diagnosis. Your veterinarian will also want to perform a full physical exam and possibly use blood work to help rule out medical conditions. A horse that is unsteady on his feet or falling to the ground can be scary to see. These are large animals and have the potential to injure themselves or the people around them in such situations. If your horse is displaying any symptoms that lead you to believe he might be suffering from sleep deprivation or narcolepsy, begin working with your veterinarian right away to try to determine the cause and develop a solution.

Dr. Dana Shackelton is a mixed animal veterinarian practicing at Middletown Animal Hospital. Her interest in animals, particularly horses, started at a young age. At 15 she started volunteering for the Horse Patrol in Yosemite National Park. Through this job her interest in pack mules, backcountry camping and emergency medicine gained a foothold. Her passion for veterinary medicine was solidified during time spent working as a veterinary technician on the Big Island of Hawaii. She attended veterinary school at UC Davis, specializing in a combination of horses and small animals. After vet school she completed a one-year internship at Pioneer Equine Hospital, honing her skills as an equine veterinarian. Middletownvet.net


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and the performance horse By Jessica McLoughlin, REMT

Horses performing specific movements or tasks require maintenance to keep them happy and healthy in their work. Here are some discipline-specific “problem areas� to be aware of.


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an and horse have had a close working relationship for centuries. We all know our horses aim to please, so when we ask them to recreate what are essentially natural movements, such as sliding stops, spins, jumping, and piaffe, we are setting the stage for potential problems. In domesticating the horse, we have developed a need for more maintenance than they would require in the wild.

RIDING STYLES AND MUSCLE TENSION Throughout my career as an equine massage therapist, I have become aware of how different styles of riding affect the equine muscular system. Even horses ridden in a balanced, symmetrical manner develop unwanted muscular tension. I have been fortunate enough to treat many different horses training in various disciplines and at various riding levels. What I have concluded from my findings is that all styles of riding create some level of tension through different areas of the horse’s body, regardless of training level.

On the flat Horses that are training on the flat are required to propel forward using the hind end, extend over the topline, lift the abdomen and collect on the bit. When the horse is correctly engaging the hind end and pushing forward, it is natural to

assume that the large muscle mass of the hind end holds tension. However, I find that the smaller muscles through the neck, poll and shoulders often hold the majority of the deep-seated tension. These muscles are required to shorten and remain in a contracted state over varying lengths of time, creating muscle fatigue. It’s not until the horse is released on a long rein that these muscles are able to elongate from their contracted state. Which is why it is imperative that you allow your horse to stretch his neck down after working on the bit, regardless of the discipline you’re in.

Over fences Horses trained in hunter, stadium jumping and eventing are asked to propel over fences, collect in between fences, lengthen and shorten their stride, and often quickly change direction. There is very little symmetry maintained throughout the horse’s body when he is asked to perform these tasks. On a short-term basis, this typically does not create a problem. The horse’s muscles will recover from the insult. However, if the horse is ridden consistently in this manner, over an extended period of time, expect the muscles to eventually develop asymmetrically due to chronic tension. When treating a horse that is trained in hunter or stadium jumping, I almost always find that the majority of his tension Continued on page 28.

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Continued from page 27. is maintained through the lumbar and sacroiliac region, as well as the neck and poll. When looking at the skeletal makeup of a horse, you’ll see that the only bony structure holding the hind end to the forehand is the vertebral column. The short section of vertebrae located in front of the pelvis is referred to as the lumbar vertebrae. This section is comprised of six vertebrae, held together by tight bands of ligamentous tissue. Because the lumbar region of the horse’s back lacks bony structural support, it is primarily supported by muscle and surrounding soft tissue. Consider that the hind end is the motor and the lumbar region of the back is the transmission propelling the power forward. Now consider how much power is needed to successfully lift a 1,000-pound animal from the ground, over a fence and down on the other side. It stands to reason that the lumbar region of a hunter-jumper would hold excess muscular tension.

are required to stop dramatically, sprint forward, spin quickly, and rein back, among other things. Unlike dressage or jumping, however, reining is performed with a long loose rein. The horse is maintained in a balanced position as though the reins are non-existent. The muscles through the neck and poll are not consistently contracted and therefore typically do not hold deep tension. However, for anybody who has ever been witness to a sliding stop, we see that the horse is asked to gallop a straight line to gain momentum, and halt his back feet while striding forward with the forehand. The group of muscles that span down the horse’s rump parallel to the tail is collectively referred to as the hamstrings. When horses perform these movements, the hamstrings, regardless of the level of training, experience great forces resulting in muscular tension.


Cattle work and reining Reining is a discipline derived from cattle ranch work, and is now the newest Olympic equestrian sport. Horses trained in reining


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Of course there are many different disciplines not covered here, and many different factors that affect muscular tension. Grouping them into riding disciplines is not entirely fair. All horses are

In domesticating the horse, we have developed a need for more maintenance than he would require in the wild. All styles of riding create some level of tension through different areas of the horse’s body, regardless of training level. built differently – their conformation plays a huge role in muscle development. A correctly fitting saddle and tack is imperative. A close colleague and fellow Registered Equine Massage Therapist, Anna Drygalski, says: “Massage will not make a lasting difference if the horse is ridden in a poorly fitted saddle.” And a wellconformed horse with correctly fitting tack is only as good as his rider. If the rider is unbalanced, then the horse may develop unbalanced muscles as well. As riders, it is important that we are aware of the effects our training has on equine muscles and their development. It is important that every ride consists of a long warm-up and cooldown period. Construct a stretching routine that can be performed daily to optimize the health of your horse’s muscles. Be sure to offer frequent breaks throughout a training session, which allow your horse to elongate his neck and stretch out the shortened muscles. Finally, incorporating hacking and days off into your regime will allow you and your horse to recover both physically and mentally. Above all, continue to make riding enjoyable.

Jessica McLoughlin graduated from D’Arcy Lane School of Equine Massage Therapy in London, ON in 2003. She is an active member of the International Federation of Registered Equine Massage Therapists and completed a four-month internship, followed by a one-year work term, at the Kentucky Equine Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation Center (KES MARC) in Lexington. Jess returned to Nova Scotia as an enthusiastic advocate for equine rehabilitation. She established Atlantic Equine Massage in 2007, and serves Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick. (902) 275-7972

Equine Wellness



Nurse mare foals are not always given much of a fighting chance at a good life. Victoria Goss of the Last Chance Corral is working to change the future for these little lives.

By Kelly Howling


he horse world is full of “dirty little secrets” – things most people would rather turn a blind eye to. In many cases, they’re defended as the cost of doing business in such a risky and wavering industry. The nurse mare industry is one of those blind spots. Each year, hundreds of foals are born, only to be orphaned in order to provide a more “valuable” foal with milk, and to allow that more “valuable” foal’s mother to be taken off to be bred again. “A nurse mare foal’s job in life is over when they are born,” says Victoria Goss of the Last Chance Corral (LCC). “Most of our foals are one to three days old when we purchase them. About one fifth of them are induced-labor (premature) foals.” These orphaned foals, called nurse mare foals, are primarily a by-product of the Thoroughbred racing industry. However,


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the Thoroughbred industry is certainly not the only one that uses this practice.

BY-PRODUCTS OF THE BREEDING INDUSTRY When it comes to Thoroughbreds, the broodmares are only allowed to be bred by live cover. Some breeders want to send a mare off to be bred again as soon as possible after foaling in order to have her produce a foal each year. The foal cannot travel with his mother while she is being bred, resulting in the need for nurse mares. Nurse mares are kept in foal for the main purpose of providing milk to more “valuable” foals than their own. As with anything, there are some breeders who do right by their nurse mare foals. “Not all nurse mare farms are horror shows,” says Victoria. “There are good and bad – as with any industry.

Photos courtesy of the Last Chance Corral


that are simply a byproduct of the breeding industry are lucky that places like Last Chance Corral exist. Without such organizations, many of these orphaned foals would simply be euthanized.

FILLING A NEED – CARING FOR NURSE MARE FOALS Victoria started the Last Chance Corral in the early 1980s. “Initially working as a trainer, I took in behavioral problem horses that people had given up on,” she says. “Over time, I became aware of just how many horses were ‘at risk’ and began taking more and more of them into my barn.”

At this point, I deal with three farms. The ‘farmers’ are kind and caring – I have a relationship with them that spans 26 years.” Nurse mares can be a lifesaver in situations where a foal has lost or been rejected by his mother. However, nurse mare foals

LCC now places its focus on nurse mare foal rescue, and has become well known for its knowledge and care of these foals. Orphaned foals have special needs and often require round-the-clock care in the beginning stages of life. “When I found out about the nurse mare foals my life was forever changed,” says Victoria. “We now represent the largest equine neonatal facility in the country. Our facility has undergone many changes in design and materials while becoming what we jokingly refer to as

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Photos courtesy of Sue Morrow Pr oductions, LLC

The horse that started it all One horse in particular pushed Victoria to start the LCC. His name was Buck. “He lived a few miles from my home,” she says. “I was watching this horse slowly starve to death every time I drove by. Using the available system, I called the authorities who seemingly did little for this poor animal. All that happened was that he was moved to the other side of his shed where he was not visible to passersby. “After months of frustration with the ‘system’, I made a decision. Under cover of darkness, I crept onto the property – halter and lead rope in hand. I had parked my trailer about a quarter of a mile down the road. I slipped around the corner of the shed to find old Bucky in a heap. It was too late. My shame in not doing something sooner forced me to make a promise – that I would never knowingly allow a horse to suffer again. And I’ve kept my word.”


Equine Wellness

the ‘horse-anage’ [like ‘orphanage’]. I would also like to say, because I’m pretty darn proud, that our mortality rate is less than 3% – unheard of at most hospitals dealing with these kinds of patients.” With the number of foals LCC takes on each year, it is no wonder they are experts! “We take in 150 to 200 orphaned foals annually,” says Victoria. “Placing our focus there has cut back on our ‘bigs’ (grown horses and ponies), but we still average about 50 to 75 of the latter per year. At any given time, we are equipped to house up to ten grown horses and 30 foals. We generally do not use foster homes because of the specific set of skills and commitment the babies require.”

RAISING ORPHANED FOALS The lucky foals picked up by Victoria and her crew at LCC are cared for and available for adoption once they are healthy. “When foals arrive at the LCC, they are treated for an array

A documentary called Born to Die is being produced by Sue Morrow, and is about Last Chance Corral’s work with nurse mare foals. To see a trailer for the film, go to: borntodie.org or facebook.com/borntodiefilm.

of conditions, depending on what they display,” she says. “When they are healthy enough to go to homes they are offered up for adoption. Some will be ready in a day or two – others may take a month. The first days are the difficult ones. We spend our days and nights running IV fluids, feeding tubes, blood transfusions, oxygen, and washing poopy bottoms.” When you see pictures of the adorable foals that have come through the gates of the LCC, it is hard to understand how and why these lives could be discarded so easily. Many LCC foals go on to lead amazing lives – some have even been adopted by mounted police forces and compassionate horse people like Stacy Westfall. It is hoped that over time, breeders will become more responsible, and more organizations like the LCC will exist to help these little souls. If you’d like to learn more about LCC, how you can help, and the foals they have available, visit LastChanceCorral.org. Equine Wellness


Planning your

Equestrian Vacation

By Wendy Hofstee


any of us dream of vacationing at a warm and exotic locale, complete with beautiful horses to ride across sandy beaches and breathtaking terrains. While such a vacation may sound exclusive and difficult to plan, it doesn’t have to be! Let’s take a look at some of the things you’ll need to consider, and tips to get you started.

vacation to choose. You probably don’t want to switch things up too much on vacation – trying to ride in an unusual saddle for hours at a time each day will only make you sore! Western riders often have a hard time adapting to English tack – vice versa is much easier. The Latin American gaucho styles are very similar to western.

What is your riding ability? Determining your riding ability and how much riding you actually want to do on your trip will be one of the most important things to think about. No one wants to be miserable in the saddle for days on end. Remember that vacations based in one location give you the opportunity to have a day off if you need it, whereas point-to-point trail rides mean you need to keep going. Some of the more adventurous trails may require you to walk beside your horse for portions of the ride, or you may be riding at altitude, which can affect stamina. Be sure to check if help is available to mount and dismount, if you need it.

Consider if you would like to ride a certain type or size of horse – for example, many people dream of riding Andalusians, Quarter Horses, or even a gaited horse. Local breeds are most frequently utilized, as they are best adapted to local conditions.

The pace of the ride can often be deduced from the number of miles you’ll be expected to cover in a day – the longer the ride, the more reasonable the pace (generally). If you can, try to speak with someone who has gone on the same riding vacations you’re considering, and read as many reviews as possible to gauge the actual challenge.

Accommodation level Check to see if you will be camping or staying in guesthouses/ hotels. When choosing a vacation, there is usually a full range of accommodations available, from five stars to basic, in both camping and hotels – there is no need to go without a hot shower at night! Ask what sort of bathroom facilities will be available (including while on rides), and whether you will be moving accommodations each day or staying put. If you are doing a point-to-point ride with long hours you will not spend as much time in your accommodation, and requirements can often be dialled down a notch. If you are staying put at one location and just riding a bit each day, you may want your accommodations to have more amenities.

Riding style and horses Any reputable riding vacation should have good, wellschooled horses available. The discipline you are accustomed to may also affect your decision when determining which

When and where to go? There are so many destinations to choose from for riding vacations that it can be hard to pick one! To help narrow it down, consider the time you have available. Destinations Continued on page 36.


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Kenya, Africa.

A riding vacation doesn’t have to be a far-off dream – get started on planning your trip with these tips from the pros!

Equine Wellness


Selecting a travel company The most important factor is making sure you get good advice and choose the right travel company before paying up front for a holiday. Be aware that the Internet has made it easy for companies to make claims that are hard to verify. Choose a travel agency that visits and selects destinations personally, and that can understand your needs, match you to a suitable holiday, and guarantee quality. Questions to ask: • Are they equestrian vacation specialists? • Do they check out all their vacations and know them personally?


Equestrian Vacations



KENYA – Masai Mara Ride with a large and incredible variety and quantity of wildlife across the plains of the Masai Mara while staying in five-star tented campsites each night. Experienced riders, English style.

CHILE to ARGENTINA – Across the Andes The ultimate adventure – cross the Andes at the foot of Mt Aconcagua via the historic route

• Do they offer the full vacation package (flights and sightseeing as well as horseback riding)? Is there an emergency number you can call if you have problems while away? • Is their website and pricing information current? • Will you receive full documentation including packing lists? • How long have they been in business? • Are they bonded and insured? • Can you pay by credit card? • Is the price guaranteed once booked or might the price change when paying the balance due to currency fluctuations? Red flag – Beware if the company has no reviews/bad reviews only, does not allow you to pay by credit card, or if the prices and dates on their website are not current.

Across the Andes Continued from page 34. with easy flight connections near your home are ideal if you only have a short time. Generally speaking, Europe is at its best in the summer, with a shorter season in the middle of summer for Scandinavia and Iceland. Some parts of the Mediterranean are very hot in July and August. Safaris in southern Africa are at their best from May to September, with dry, sunny days and cold nights. Kenya has rains in April but makes for a good Christmas vacation destination. In South America (Chile and Argentina), the best season is from October to April as it is too cold the rest of the year. Peru has a rainy season from December to April, the opposite of Mexico, which is at its best from October to April.

Tuscany, Italy 36

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Working cattle ranches in North America do the majority of their cattle work in the spring and autumn, with northern mountain destinations like Canada and Montana being best in the summer. Southern states like Arizona, New Mexico and Texas are at their best in winter. It can be complicated to figure out optimum travel times for parts of the world you

St Martin took when liberating Chile. Basic camping, western style gaucho saddles, fit for novices onwards.

3. 4. 5.

URUGUAY – Estancias and Beaches Cultural exploration of Uruguay with beautiful haciendas and fine food. Intermediate riders onwards, western style gaucho saddles.

ITALY – Castellos of Tuscany and Toscana Cucina Explore this culturally rich part of Italy and stay in luxury historic accommodation. Good riding, exceptionally warm and knowledgeable guide, and fine food and wines.

SPAIN – Catalonia Ride on Andalusian horses and see the real Spain. Choose from a variety of culturally interesting itineraries with good local food and fun guides. English style for intermediate riders onwards.

are unfamiliar with, so make sure you get good advice to ensure the experience you want is available when you go! Travel companions If you are travelling with a non-rider, consider destinations with a number of other activities or cultural sightseeing nearby. A rental car will greatly increase a non-rider’s range of possibilities. Some destinations will arrange for non-riding guests to go on hikes, jeep safaris or cycling trips that meet up with the riders each evening. Families and children typically enjoy the bonding that sharing an activity vacation brings. However, days with six or more hours in the saddle and point-to-point trail rides are usually too tiring for children under 12. Riding lessons, brief trail rides and swimming pools are more ideal for kids, as are a range of other activities onsite. Children are usually fascinated by nature and wildlife on safaris, as well as any ranching or farming activities. With a little thought and planning, you and your travel companions can have the equestrian vacation you have always dreamed of! Wendy Hofstee is a veterinarian who became obsessed with travel on horseback after spending five months riding across Ecuador in 1996 with two friends. In 1998 she founded Unicorn Trails, a company dedicated to bringing riding experiences to as many people as possible worldwide. Unicorn Trails is now one of the largest equestrian vacation specialists worldwide and have a dedicated team who give impartial advice on a large range of quality horseback vacations worldwide. unicorntrails.com

Equine Wellness


! k c i l C

TARGET TRAINING for hoof handling By Alexandra Kurland

If your horse needs help with hoof handling manners, clicker training can create positive associations and responses in a safe and calm manner. 38

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t’s been almost 25 years since I first went out to the barn with my pockets full of treats and a clicker in my hand. At the time, my horse was laid up with abscesses in both front feet. I was curious about clicker training, and wanted to keep my very fit, very active Thoroughbred entertained during his layup. His feet hurt so much he could barely walk, but he could touch things with his nose, so that’s where I began with the clicker. I held a dressage whip up in front of his nose. When he sniffed the end out of curiosity, I clicked and handed him a treat.

TARGETED TRAINING In clicker parlance, we call this targeting. My horse was orienting toward an object. Simple. It felt like a cute party trick. I was interested in beautiful balance, not silly games, but he was so lame it was all he could do. So I held the target up again, and again he investigated it with his muzzle.

A few clicks and treats later and the action was clearly deliberate. Both of us were enjoying this new game. He had discovered a “magic button”. All he had to do was bump the dressage whip, and he could get me to reach into my pocket and hand him a treat. What could be better than that! He was in control, and so was I. I was choosing the behavior that would earn treats. Snuffling around my pockets didn’t work. Touching the dressage whip did.

SHAPING BEHAVIORS Behavior is determined by its consequences. Often we think it’s what comes before that makes behavior happen. We say “sit”, and our dog sits. The link seems direct and clear. But what about the next time you say “sit”? What determines if your dog will sit again? If you smacked him when he sat because you’re angry that he chewed your favorite shoes, the next time he hears you say “sit”, he may run away. “Sit” has become a predictor of bad things. It’s something to be avoided. But if you smile and give him a treat because he’s such a clever dog for sitting, the next time you say “sit”, he’s going to be eager to sit again. The verbal cue “sit” has become a predictor of good things. It will trigger the behavior you want because your dog knows it will be followed by good things. Consequences drive behavior.

TARGETING FOR BASIC HOOF HANDLING We can use this basic understanding to teach great hoof care manners. We can also use our newfound targeting skill. When I first started clicker training, I thought targeting was little more than a trick. I now know better. Targeting is embedded in just about everything we ask of our horses. And a great way to teach or reteach basic foot care manners is through the use of targeting. Continued on page 40.

GETTING STARTED For more information about clicker training, visit theclickercenter.com and theclickercenterblog.com. There you’ll find the resources you need to get started with clicker training. Equine Wellness


Continued from page 39.

HERE’S THE LESSON: I’m going to assume your horse will stand still for you. That’s our starting position. If that’s not the case, you’ll need to work on that first. We’ll start with the left front foot.


Standing to the side of your horse, cup your hands around his elbow and gently move the skin slightly upward. You are feeling for any shift of balance that lightens his weight on that foot. Click and treat as soon as you feel even a minute change.


Repeat. Your horse will now be bringing his knee up into the palm of your left hand, and then he will be trying to place his hoof in your waiting right hand. Both hands are targets that you are asing him to orient to.





Note the sequence A. I ask my horse to lift his foot B. He responds to my cue C. Instead of clicking at this point, I ask him to target his knee to my hand.




A. This horse is standing very politely on a mat. The mat is also a target for his feet. B. As I touch his elbow, he lifts his foot. Click! C. I reinforce the behavior by offering him a treat.

2 3 4 5

Repeat. As you do, you will find that your horse will be unweighting his foot more and more, and may even start to lift it off the ground. Now you’re going to teach him to target his knee to the palm of your hand. Cue him to lift his foot. As he does, his knee will come forward. Reach down and cup his knee in your hand. Click and treat. Repeat several times. Gradually have him lift his leg up a little higher to find your waiting hand. Now he has to bring his knee up to your hand. You are no longer moving your hand to him.


You can begin to withhold your click slightly so he lifts his knee into the palm of your hand and holds it there. Click and treat.

This horse is bringing his knee to my waiting hand. Click! And offer a treat.

7 40

As he lifts his knee higher and higher to find your waiting hand, his foot will also be lifting up more off the ground. Now we’re getting to the fun part. As he lifts his knee into your waiting left hand, touch the bottom of his foot with your right hand. Click and treat as your hand makes contact with the underside of his foot. Equine Wellness

D. With his foot coming up level with his opposite knee, it is easy for me to reach down and have him target his foot to my hand. Click and treat. I want him actively bringing his foot to my waiting hand. Caution: During this phase DO NOT take a firm hold of your horse’s foot. You are asking him to target to your hand. You want him to trust that it is safe to rest his foot in your hand. Especially for horses who have had bad experiences and become very defensive about their feet, this is very important to understand. Resist any temptation at this stage to hold the foot. You can use a similar approach for the hind feet. Stand at your horse’s hip and ask for a weight shift. Click and treat. When he is consistently unweighting his foot and bringing it slightly off the ground, use your foot as a target. See if you can touch the underside of his foot as it lifts off the ground. Click and treat. Develop this in small increments just as you did the front feet.

SAFETY FIRST One of the advantages of this approach is you never have to lean down to try to pick up your horse’s foot. You aren’t putting yourself in a vulnerable position. Instead you are remaining upright. Also, for both the front and back legs, if you don’t feel comfortable using your hand or your foot as a target for his foot, you can use a target on the end of a long dowel. This is a very safe way to teach a horse to pick up his feet. It’s also a lot of fun. And it has the added benefit of bypassing a lot of past history during which your horse may have been pushed, shoved and frightened into picking up his feet. The kind of escape and avoidance behavior this creates works against you. Instead, using targets and the positive consequences of a click followed by a treat help create cooperative hoof handling. Alexandra Kurland is the author of “Clicker Training for your Horse”, “The Click That Teaches: A Step-By-Step Guide in Pictures”, “The Click That Teaches: Riding with the Clicker” and “The Click That Teaches Video Lesson Series”. Kurland earned her degree from Cornell University where she specialized in animal behavior. She has been teaching and training horses since the mid-1980’s. A pioneer in the development of humane training methods, Kurland began clicker training in the early 1990’s. She very quickly recognized the power of clicker training for improving performance, for enhancing the relationship people have with their horses, and for just plain putting fun back into training. theclickercenter.com; theclickercenterblog.com


By supplementing with Recovery EQ, veterinarians and horsemen alike safely and effectively prevent and reverse many lameness-related conditions while improving the quality and rate of recovery after trauma. It contains Nutricol®, a proprietary mix of proven ingredients purified from grapes, and green tea (de-caffeinated). Nutricol® decreases trauma – from chronic lameness, surgery, injury and over-training – by both increasing cellular resistance to damage and improving their ability to repair damage. Recovery®EQ will not test and so is safe to use with any performance horse.


KEEP HIM BALANCED Horses today are exposed to a number of stressors that can negatively impact performance and their digestive, immune, and musculoskeletal systems. Enviro Equine’s GastroBalance features a unique combination of Bentonite clay, unrefined salt, and trace minerals to provide hydration, gastrointestinal and growth support, and detoxification. This sugar free all natural blend will help your horse manage his stomach acid content, increase his water consumption, support bone growth, and includes a balanced blend of minerals to support vital metabolic functions.




A CLEANER STALL A healthier horse environment is the result of a clean stall! With the stall cleaner from Duffering Bedding Material: · Clean and aerate all of the bedding in your stall in just 5 minutes · Save 70% of your present bedding costs · Reduce your compost by 50% The DBM Stall Cleaner not only does all of that, but the “aeration” process removes harmful bacteria and leaves the bedding fluffy and dry and ideal for reuse. Only $1,995. Fall promo discount of 15%.

dufferinbeddingmaterial.com 1-844-941-6868

ORIGINS OF GAITED HORSES Centuries ago, when horses were the main form of transportation, it was important to be able to stay comfortable in the saddle for long periods. Gaited horses filled this requirement. So perhaps it’s not surprising that a study from the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research in Berlin found that gaited horses most likely originated in 9th century medieval England, according to a ScienceDaily article. The ability to perform gaits beyond the walk, trot and gallop arises from a mutation in the DMRT3 gene. Scientists looked for this mutation in the remains of 90 Copper Age horses dating from 6000 BC to the 11th century AD. The mutation was discovered in two medieval English horses, but was most prevalent in Icelandic horses dating from the 9th to 11th centuries. This suggests gaited horses originated in medieval England and then were taken to Iceland by maurading Vikings who plundered the English coast. Equine Wellness




health industry

regulations By Kelly Howling

Equine health professional laws and regulations vary widely depending on where you live, and that makes it difficult to determine who can practice which therapies. Here are some general guidelines and tips to help you select the best professionals to work on your horse.


ur horses are precious to us. They are our companions and competitive partners, and we invest a great deal of time, energy, and resources into maintaining them and making them happy. So when it comes time to find someone to do your horse’s teeth, make a chiropractic adjustment, or give him a massage, choosing a practitioner can be a little daunting. Naturally, you want the best! But how do you know what to look for? Who is qualified to do what? How much education should they have?

Getting to know your local laws It is important for you to familiarize yourself with the latest regulations where you live, in terms of who can practice which therapies. “The details can vary considerably and can change without notice,” says veterinarian and American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association representative Dr. Joyce Harman. “Most states restrict acupuncture to vets and many states restrict chiropractic, osteopathy and spinal manipulation to vets. However a number of states allow human practitioners to perform these therapies, usually if they have had additional specific animal education. Massage is generally less regulated, although a few states have attempted to include it 42

Equine Wellness

as veterinary medicine, and acupressure will fall under massage therapy, unless a person is making a medical diagnosis.” Homeopathy, it seems, falls into a gray area, because it may not be specifically defined in a state practice act. “If a practitioner is diagnosing and treating a medical condition, it could be considered practicing veterinary medicine,” explains Dr. Harman. “If lay practitioners are suggesting remedies in the context of a wellness nutritional consult, it may be allowed.” In an effort to create higher standards and professionalism in the animal massage and acupressure world, the National Board of Certification for Animal Acupressure and Massage was formed in 2008. “As animal massage and acupressure evolve as a profession, it becomes more and more important to have groups such as NBCAAM that promote a standard that not only creates a level playing field, but encourage practitioners to strive for a higher level of education and practice,” explains Vice Chair Lola Michelin. “More and more states are looking at proper ways to regulate animal therapies and ensure that providers are not simply throwing out a shingle, as was often the case in the past,” she

Choosing a professional

Legislation in

Canada Each province in Canada has its own Veterinary Profession Act (VPA), which defines “veterinary medicine”. If a non-veterinarian practices any of these defined modalities, it is illegal and punishable by law. Most provincial VPAs include a general statement that covers all modalities of Complementary Equine Therapy as “veterinary medicine”. The only provinces that have not yet included this general statement in their VPAs are Quebec, Ontario (Ontario has a position statement) and Alberta. Dentistry is defined as “veterinary medicine” in B.C., Ontario, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland, so it must be performed by a vet; however, some provincial Veterinary Acts allow Complementary Equine Therapies to be provided by a non-vet who is practicing directly under veterinary supervision or delegation. In this case, the animal is first examined by a veterinarian, who can then choose to delegate to the non-vet practitioner. continues. “For example, in Washington State, animal massage practitioners are licensed by the State Department of Health as health care professionals. States such as Colorado, Oregon and Arizona require training programs to meet certain criteria in their curriculum to be approved. And a task force was established in California to determine the role of animal health care providers in the field of animal rehabilitation.”

So once you have browsed the regulations for your area, what should you look for in a professional? When it comes to equine bodywork, Lola advises: “I would not hire a provider to perform bodywork on my horses with less than 200 hours of training specific to their modality, preferably more, and I would want that individual to express to me through conversation or their materials that their Scope of Practice did not include diagnosis, treatment or prognosis of veterinary conditions.” Asking for a referral from a veterinarian, trainer or other professional in the field is another good way to find out what experiences former clients have had with a provider and whether or not the provider acted professionally, adds Lola. “Practitioners should also carry liability insurance and be able to provide that information if asked.” Dr. Harman advises us to use common sense. “Be suspicious of anyone who guarantees the outcome, since nothing in medicine is totally predictable,” she warns. “Be very suspicious of people who pressure you into anything you are uncomfortable with, be it multiple sessions, expensive supplements, rough adjustments, or promises that do not seem to be happening.”

Reporting unqualified practitioners Regardless of how many amazing professionals there are in the world, there will always be “bad apples” – people with little knowledge and education just trying to make a quick dollar. If you come across such a person, there are a few ways to handle it. “A State Board of Veterinary Medicine exists in every state,” says Dr. Harman. “They are most responsive to animal owners who complain or who have had bad experiences. If the practice being reported falls under the practice of veterinary medicine, they usually will respond and try to stop a person from practicing.” Lola recommends that you refuse to let anyone working outside of the Scope of Practice to work on your horse. “You can also share your concerns with other horse owners and professionals, and report that individual to a governing body such as the veterinary board or the Board of Unlicensed Practice Acts in their state,” she adds. Of course, it is important to know the definitions and regulations in your state before accusing someone of unqualified work. A practitioner could suffer duress, loss of income, legal expenses Continued on page 44. Equine Wellness 43

Continued from page 43. and irreparable damage to his or her reputation if falsely accused – as could you, as the accuser.

Equine dentistry controversy Equine dentistry and who can practice it has long been an ongoing controversy in the horse world. There are a few points that determine who can provide which services to a client. For horses that require sedation for dental work, it can only be administered by a veterinarian, or the horse’s owner. “Vets are licensed and trained to give sedation drugs and are trained and equipped if there is a reaction to the drugs,” says Dr. Harman. “Sedation drugs are quite safe in most horses, but occasionally there is an adverse reaction. State laws define that a vet must administer drugs, and liability laws will only support the vet giving the drug. Any person is allowed to sedate their own horse (but they usually have to get the drugs from a veterinarian).” The main controversy comes down to who can and should perform the actual dental services. Some veterinarians feel they should be the only ones working on horses, since they’re also trained to perform oral exams, and licensed to sedate patients, as required. Equine dentists believe they’re better suited to the work, since they are focused solely on dentistry, day in and day out. Others on both sides recognize the dentists’ expertise but would like to see it performed under the supervision of veterinarians. The bottom line is that equine dentistry requires not only knowledge but a high level of strength and fitness. Lay dentists tend to stay very fit, since their job depends on it. Power tools can make it easier but require a high level of skill to use them. “Many if not most states limit equine dentists’ work to non-motorized tools, which is safer for the horses,” explains Joyce. Vets, meanwhile, may be permitted to use power tools but that’s not always the best solution either. “Many vets do not do dentistry on a daily basis and power tools make it easy to overdo the floating job,” explains Dr. Harman. “I have seen many cases that are overdone, with some serious consequences for the horse.”

Veterinarians and bodyworkers – creating a wellness team It is vital that the members of your horse’s healthcare team all work well together, so try to find good professionals who work together and recommend each other. Veterinarians can often be a bit wary of bodyworkers, as they’ve often heard of and experienced cases in which a “professional” abused their powers or overstepped their bounds and education. “I can appreciate the concerns expressed by many in the field of veterinary medicine,” empathizes Lola. “I am a former veterinary technician and I have practiced massage for over 30 years. In the past, there was such a range of quality in provider and training that some veterinarians had good cause to be concerned.” One concern from the veterinary community in the past was that people offering these services lacked education and overstepped their boundaries, potentially steering animal owners away from proper veterinary care. However, in Lola’s experience, there exists a great opportunity for the bodyworker and veterinarian to create a collaborative relationship that supports the horse owner, lengthens the horse’s career and improves health and well-being. In other cases, there are obvious reasons why only veterinarians are typically allowed to perform certain therapies, such as acupuncture and chiropractic. “The training required to perform many of the therapies is currently only given to veterinarians,” explains Dr. Harman. “Acupuncture involves inserting needles into the horse’s body, and while this is normally a very safe procedure, accidents can happen. Needles have been broken off and in some cases require surgery to remove. It is considered an invasive procedure. Spinal manipulation in its various forms is the most abused of all the modalities, and the most harm is done by incorrect work.” In many cases, the horse can sadly be permanently damaged by rough manipulation.

Buyer beware Since equine dentistry varies so much across the country, it’s best to check in with your state regulations to see what applies in your area.

For a summary of equine dentist laws by state (these can and do change), visit: • equimed.com/health-centers/dental-care/articles/equinedentist-laws-by-state • avma.org/Advocacy/StateAndLocal/Pages/sr-cavmexemptions.aspx 44

Equine Wellness

At the end of the day, we are our horses’ guardians, and it is our responsibility to do our research and find the best professionals we can to work on our horses. Be sure to support those who provide exemplary service and recommend them to your fellow equestrians. Lola advises: “By doing our own due diligence when choosing a bodyworker, trainer, veterinarian, farrier, or any other service provider, we can effectively eliminate those who would practice ‘under the radar’ or outside their scope, and encourage those who show dedication and skill in continuing to provide the highest level of care possible.”


Making waves in equine health The use of essential

“There is a dynamic infrastructure in place for support and



education in the proper use of essential oils [at YLEO],” Dr.

health isn’t new,

Albright adds. “As a practicing veterinarian, having a trusted

but it’s becoming

resource at hand to further my knowledge and integration of

increasingly widespread. Many vets and veterinary practices

essential oils and essential oil infused products into my patients’

are adding this integrative option to their lineup of services and

healthcare plans is of utmost importance.”


modalities. Making Waves, which is run by holistic veterinarians Dr. John Hanover, Dr. Deborah Rykoff and Dr. Susan Albright,

Young Living Essential Oils began in 1989, when Gary Young

has incorporated this modality into their practice as an adjunct

grew and cultivated a patch of herbs on his small farm in

to the other integrative therapies they offer, such as acupuncture,

Washington. The company was formed in 1994 by Gary and

chiropractic, herbal therapy, homeopathy, Reiki and more.

Mary Young and has now grown to be a worldwide leader in essential oils. Young Living is continually working on research

“Essential oils are very powerful tools for helping patients,”

and development projects all over the world in an effort to bring

Dr. Hanover says. “They are a safe and easy way to support

new, quality products to the human and animal markets.

an animal’s health without side effects. Essential oils are very effective alone, but are also extremely synergistic with many

Both Gary and Mary have a special affinity for animals, and as

other holistic modalities, including chiropractic, acupuncture,

such the company has always had a focus on offering products

applied kinesiology, homotoxicology, herbs and glandulars, as

for companion and performance animals. “Animals are dependent

well as allopathic treatments.”

on us for help and we must give them the opportunity for a healthy life,” says Mary. “Making the lives of the animals better

Making Waves only uses Young Living Essential Oils in their

in a way that they cannot do for themselves is a joy – it is most

practice. “I am putting the health of my patients, as well as my

rewarding.” ylpetsandvets.com

reputation, on the line, so I need to be certain I am using the best products available to me,” Dr. Hanover explains. “Young Living has over 20 years of experience and is dedicated to quality, so I know I can use their oils on my patients without fear of contamination. The company has eight farms on four continents, and that enables them to control every aspect of growing their premium botanicals, along with the botanicals of others they co-op and partner with.” Equine Wellness


COEXISTING with critters on your farm By Clay Nelson

Whether you see them or not, your farm is home to many creatures besides you and your horses. Let’s take a look at how you can encourage beneficial animals, and discourage pests in a humane manner.


esides you and your horses, many other animals live on your farm. Most are welcome neighbors, but some are often labeled nuisance animals or pests. This does not inherently imply a need to eradicate them, but there are places on the farm, such as in and around the barn, where we do not want these critters to roam. Alternatively, there are other 46

Equine Wellness

animals we may welcome in and around the barn due to the beneficial services they provide. Examples are barn swallows and owls, which help control insect and rodent populations. Fortunately, a variety of environmentally-friendly farm planning and management strategies will keep unwanted critters out of

DETERRING LARGER VISITORS If larger animals such as coyotes or deer are being a nuisance, electric fencing may be a deterrent. Such fencing, however, needs to be more substantial than what is commonly used to contain horses, since coyotes and especially deer can easily jump over fencing less than six feet in height. While deer may not be thought of as a nuisance by most, in some parts of North America they can be a major cause of over-grazed horse pastures. Around the barn and paddocks, mesh or no-climb fencing can make it difficult for small critters to pass through.

our barns and sheds, or encourage beneficial animals to take up residence.

KEEPING UNWANTED CRITTERS AT BAY All animals, whether insects or mammals, seek three things –shelter, food and water. The farm, therefore, should be planned and managed in a way that minimizes these attractions for critters and pests around barn areas. Pest and nuisance animal management should focus first and foremost on prevention strategies rather than pest control. Pest prevention strategies are more environmentally-friendly and effective than many pest control practices, which include the use of pesticides or traps. Put simply, it is easier and more effective to prevent unwanted critters from creating a nuisance in the first place than it is to try to control or manage the situation once it has occurred.

INSIDE THE BARN Many pests, such as mice and rats, prefer dark damp habitats. A well-lit and ventilated barn will not be as appealing to these creatures. Natural forms of lighting and ventilation are best, and your horses will also be happier and healthier in such a barn. Other critters, such as opossums and skunks, also do not like well-lit areas. Because many of these animals are most active at night, motionactivated lights around barn entryways will help deter them from entering your barn. Continued on page 48.

Equine Wellness


Continued from page 47. Inside your barn, grain and other feed should be stored in metal containers with secure, tight-fitting lids, since many rodents can chew through wood or plastic storage bins. Even with proper storage, grain can be easily spilled during feeding time. Regularly sweeping barn aisles and cleaning stalls will also help minimize food attractants. Keep trash bins securely covered too.

AROUND THE BARN Areas around your barn and sheds should be free of debris, woodpiles, and overgrown vegetation. These areas provide safety and shelter for unwanted critters, encouraging them to take up residence near the barn. If you have a nearby compost bin, consider covering it, especially if you compost food scraps in addition to manure and bedding. Be sure to also remove any sources of standing water around the barn. The water can not only attract unwanted animals, but is also a breeding ground for mosquitos. Clean any outdoor watering troughs near the barn at least once a week. A variety of environmentally-friendly deterrents can be used to discourage unwanted critters from entering your barn. Cayenne pepper, for example, is a known skunk repellant. Boil a mixture of cayenne pepper, jalapeĂąo and yellow onion, strain, and spray the mixture around the perimeter of the barn as a natural deterrent. Bags of cat or dog hair placed around

the barn perimeter can deter opossums. Keep in mind that many of these natural deterrents must be reapplied frequently to remain effective. These are just a few examples. You can search online to find many other natural deterrents for specific nuisance critters you may be dealing with.

ENCOURAGING DESIRABLE ANIMALS Many animals perform valuable pest control services around your farm, and the same thinking used to deter unwanted pests can be applied to encourage desirable animals to hang around. Since the food sources for desirable critters, namely insects and rodents, are the very things we are trying to manage, our efforts to encourage beneficial animals should focus on shelter. Placing bat houses around the barn, for example, is an excellent mosquito control practice. Horse or pet hair hung from small mesh nets can encourage insect-eating birds, as the hair provides nesting material. Placing birdhouses along fence lines is another great strategy. Your local agriculture extension office can help you choose the best forms of shelter for the birds, bats and owls native to your area.

SETTING ASIDE SOME LAND FOR WILDLIFE From a broader land management and stewardship perspective, it is equally worthwhile to conserve and manage some portion of your land as a safe sanctuary for all critters. These areas are best located near the perimeter of your property, as far away from the house and barn as reasonably possible. From a management perspective, there is little you need to do here other than keep the area undisturbed and allow nature to take its course. Protecting areas along the perimeter of your property help create a habitat corridor between your land and surrounding properties where wildlife can travel and exist in harmony with humans. Clay Nelson is an expert on the planning, design and management of sustainable, eco-friendly equestrian facilities through his organization Sustainable Stables, LLC SustainableStables.com. 48

Equine Wellness

GREEN As we discussed in the last issue, Biobeds are highly effective at collecting and decontaminating pesticides. They are seen as an ideal, inexpensive and easy-to-use tool for reducing pesticide point source contamination. Biobeds consist of a biomixture in a pit or container. This biomixture is made of one part soil, two parts lignocellulosic material (most often straw), and one part organic substrate (most often compost). This combination of materials has been well studied to favor microbial activity and maximise pesticide degradation.

Biobeds to prevent pesticide point source contamination

PART 2 2.

By Matt Dickson

Biobeds can be built as drive-over or offset systems. A drive-over Biobed, true to its name, means that all pesticide handling, mixing and equipment cleaning is done above it. A ramp and drive-over grid are required to support the weight of the equipment and prevent compaction. An offset or indirect Biobed is one in which all liquids from pesticide handling, mixing and equipment cleaning are collected and directed to the Biobed.

A Biobed should be adequately sized to contain all pesticide point source contamination spills. If the intention is to just handle and mix pesticides, a general rule of thumb is that the Biobed be the size of the equipment plus at least one meter all the way around. If the intention is to handle and mix pesticides, plus wash down equipment, the Biobed should be sized appropriately to handle the increased volume of liquids. Biobed size should also be a consideration of several other key variables, including but not limited to precipitation, working environment, and anticipated future equipment.

Once the Biobed is created, a grass layer is used to cover the surface. This layer of grass helps regulate moisture, maintain good oxygen levels for microorganisms, and enhance the degradation capacity of the Biobed. During hot dry spells, Biobeds require watering, and dead or damaged grass should be replaced. The biomixture itself should be replaced every five to eight years. Once removed, the spent biomixture should be stored to allow for the degradation of possible pesticide residues, before being land applied as topsoil.

Biobed options and considerations There are two key differences between Biobeds.


The first involves the lining – they can be either lined or unlined. Unlined Biobeds have no impermeable synthetic layer to isolate them from the ground. Instead, the bottom of the Biobed is a layer of clay. Lined Biobeds have a synthetic impermeable layer (plastic, concrete, tarpaulin, etc.) that isolates them from the ground. This design allows for the collection of drainage water that can be sampled or re-circulated for further treatment if necessary.

The cost of Biobeds can vary greatly, from $5,000 to $50,000, depending on several factors. If you are thinking of installing one, it is always wise to consult a knowledgeable professional.

Matt Dickson is the Managing Director of Hallbar Consulting, a Vancouver-based company with a wealth of renewable energy and agricultural expertise. Through partnership with the Swedish Institute of Agricultural and Environmental Engineering, Matt and his team provide clients with independent, impartial advice for renewable energy and agriculture projects and technologies in Canada’s agriculture sector and beyond. Hallbarconsulting.com

Equine Wellness


RESOURCE GUIDE • Associations • Barefoot Hoof Trimming • Chiropractors

• Communicators • Integrative Therapies • Massage

• Saddle Fitters • Schools and Training

• Thermography • Yoga

AS SO C I AT I O N S Equinextion - EQ Redcliff, AB Canada Phone: (403) 527-9511 Email: equinextion@gmail.com Website: www.equinextion.com

Anne Riddell - AHA Barrie, ON Canada Phone: (705) 427-1682 Email: ariddell@csolve.net Website: www.barefoothorsecanada.com

Canadian Barefoot Hoof Association - CBHA Renfrew, ON Canada Phone: (613) 432-3620 Email: info@cdnbha.ca Website: www.cdnbha.ca

Barefoot Hoofcare Specialist Kate Romanenko Woodville ON Canada Phone: (705) 374-5456

American Hoof Association - AHA Ventura, CA USA Email: eval@americanhoofassociation.org Website: www.americanhoofassociation.org Association for the Advancement of Natural Hoof Care Practices - AANHCP Lompoc, CA USA Phone: (805) 735-8480 Email: info@aanhcp.net Website: www.aanhcp.net Pacific Hoof Care Practioners - PHCP Ventura, CA USA Email: sossity@wildheartshoofcare.com Website: www.pacifichoofcare.org Equine Science Academy - ESA Catawissa, MO USA Phone: (636) 274-3401 Email: info@equinesciencesacademy.com Website: www.equinesciencesacademy.com Liberated Horsemanship - CHCP Warrenton, MO USA Phone: (314) 740-5847 Email: BruceNock@mac.com Website: www.liberatedhorsemanship.com

BAREFOOT HOOF TRIMMING Gudrun Buchhofer Judique, NS Canada Phone: (902) 787-2292 Email: gudrun@go-natural.ca Website: www.go-natural.ca Lost July Natural Hoof Care Nina Hassinger Bridgetown, NS Canada Phone: (902) 665-2151 Email: nina@lostjuly.ca

Barefoot with BarnBoots Johanna Neuteboom Port Sydney, ON Canada Phone: (705) 385-9086 Email: info@barnboots.ca Website: www.barnboots.ca Natural horse care services, education and resources Certified Hoof Care Professional Miriam Braun, CHCP Stoke, QC Canada Phone: (819) 543-0508 Email: Hoofhealth13@yahoo.com Website: www.chevalbarefoot.com Natural Horse, Natural Hoof Sarah Graves Boone, CO USA Phone: (719) 557-0052 Email: msbarefootequine@yahoo.com Cynthia Niemela - Barefoot Hoof Trimming Minneapolis, MN USA Phone: (612) 481-3036 Website: www.liberatedhorsemanship.com Better Be Barefoot Lockport, NY USA Phone: (716) 432-2218 Email: sherri@betterbebarefoot.com Website: www.betterbebarefoot.com Jeannean Mercuri - The Hoof Fairy, LLC Long Island, NY USA Phone: (631) 434-5032 Email: neanpiggy@me.com Website: www.neanpiggy.com, PHCP Mentor & Clinician, AHA Certified Member, Area Served. Margo Scofield Tully, NY USA Phone: (315) 383-6429 Email: thehoofchick@hoofkeeping.com Website: www.hoofkeeping.com

50 Wellness ViewEquine the Wellness Resource Guide online at: EquineWellnessMagazine.com 50 Equine Wellness

Natural Barefoot Trimming Emma Everly, AANHCP CP Columbiana, OH USA Phone: (330) 482-6027 Email: emmanaturalhoofcare@comcast.net Website: www.barefoottrimming.com ABC Hoof Care Cheryl Henderson Jacksonville, OR USA Phone: (541) 899-1535 Email: abchoofcare@msn.com Website: www.abchoofcare.com The Veterinary Hospital Nancy Johnson Eugene, OR USA Phone: (541) 688-1835 Email: thevethosp@aol.com Horsense Natural Hoof Care Cori Brennan Sharon, SC USA Phone: (803) 927-0018 Email: brombie1@yahoo.com Charles Hall Elora, TN USA Phone: (931) 937-0033 Hoofmaiden Performance Barefoot Hoof Care Elizabeth TeSelle, EQ Leipers Fork, TN USA Phone: (615) 300-6917 Email: hoof_maiden@hotmail.com Website: www.blue-heron-farm.com/hoofmaiden Kel Manning, CP, Field Instructor, NTW Clinician Knoxville, TN USA Phone: (865) 765-9632 Email: naturalhoofcare@me.com Marie Jackson Jonesborough, TN USA Phone: (423) 753-9349 Mary Ann Kennedy Fairview, TN USA Phone: (615) 412-4222 Email: info@maryannkennedy.com Website: www.maryannkennedy.com Icicle Equine Services Katie Garrett Leavenworth, WA USA Phone: (425) 422-4799 Email: Kegarrett88@yahoo.com

Equine Wellness



C H I RO P R AC TO R S Dr. Bonnie Harder, D.C. Ogle, IL USA Phone: (815) 757-0425 Email: drbonniedc@hbac4all.com Website: www.holisticbalanceanimalchiro.com

Equinology, Inc. & Caninology Gualala, CA USA Phone: (707) 884-9963 Email: office@equinology.com Website: www.equinology.com


Tallgrass Animal Acupressure Institute Amy Snow & Nancy Zidonis Larkspur, CO USA Phone: (303) 681-3033 Email: acupressure4all@earthlink.net Website: www.animalacupressure.com

Claudia Hehr Animal Communicator To truly know and understand animals. Georgetown, ON Canada Phone: (519) 833-2382 Website: www.claudiahehr.com

Virginia Natural Horsemanship Training Center Blacksburg, VA USA Phone: (540) 953-3360 Email: sylvia@NaturalHorseTraining.com Website: www.NaturalHorseTraining.com

The Oasis Farm Cavan, ON Canada Phone: (705) 742-3297 Email: ibrammer@sympatico.ca Website: www.animalillumination.com Animal Energy Lynn McKenzie Sedona, AZ USA Phone: (928) 282-9800 Email: lynn@animalenergy.com Website: www.animalenergy.com


Healing Touch for Animals Drea Robertson Highlands Ranch, CO USA Phone: (303) 470-6572 Email: drea@healingtouchforanimals.com Website: www.healingtouchforanimals.com Double Check Inspections Inc. Ottawa, ON USA Phone: (613) 322-3682 Website: www.doublecheckinspections.ca


T HE RMOGRAPHY RMOG RAPH Y Equine IR Bonsall, CA USA (888) 762-2547 Phone: info@equineIR.com Website: www.equineIR.com Thermal Equine Eric Flavin New Paltz, NY USA Phone: (845) 222-4286 Email: info@thermalequine.com Website: www.thermalequine.com

YO G A SADDLE FITTERS Happy Horseback Saddles Vernon, BC Canada Phone: (250) 542-5091 Website: www.happyhorsebacksaddles.ca


Yoga with Horses Pemberton, BC USA Phone: (604) 902-4556 Email: yogawithhorses@gmail.com Website: www.yogawithhorses.com

Action Rider Tack Medford, OR USA Phone: (877) 865-2467 Website: www.actionridertack.com

The Happy Natural Horse Lorrie Bracaloni Boonsboro, MD USA Phone: (301) 432-6216 Email: naturalhorselb@gmail.com Website: www.happynaturalhorse.com

View the Wellness Resource Guide online at: EquineWellnessMagazine.com


your business in the


Equine Wellness Equine Wellness 5151

HOLISTIC VETERINARY Q&A Talking with Dr. Susan Albright Dr. Susan Albright (University of Illinois Veterinary Medicine, 1985) has practiced in Chenoa, IL for over 30 years, using integrative modalities to provide many healthcare options to her clients and their pet families. Essential oils were introduced into her practice in 2001 and have become an integral part of her work to facilitate optimal health for her animal patients. Dr. Albright has lectured throughout the United States on the appropriate use of quality essential oils, and encourages fellow veterinarians to learn about this exceptional adjunct to traditional veterinary medicine. Send your questions to: Holistic veterinary advice. email: info@equinewellnessmagazine.com. Our veterinary columnists respond to questions in this column only. We regret we cannot respond to every question. This column is for information purposes only. It is not meant to replace veterinary care. Please consult your veterinarian before giving your horse any remedies.


Can clover cause founder?

A: Founder is the commonly-used term for “laminitis”. When inflammation occurs in the folds of tissue (laminae) that connect the pedal bone (P3) to the hoof wall, a serious and painful condition results. Worst case scenarios happen when the pedal bone rotates downward through the sole, due to the lamina separating and being unable to support the proper positioning of P3 within the hoof. While often seen in the front feet, as signified by the characteristic “rocked back” stance, all four feet can be affected.

The word “inflammation” describes the end result of many causative factors or situations. Some common causes of “inflammation” that can affect the feet include: rich, lush pasture at certain times of the year, metabolic disorders, postcolic or infection, medication reactions, retained placenta, sole trauma, and lameness resulting in abnormal weight-bearing on the limbs. With these causes in mind, clover may fit into the pasture and/or metabolic categories. Clover can be a good source of protein, energy and fiber for horses. Like grasses, clover can have a high soluble sugar content, especially during rapid growth times in the spring and sometimes again in the fall. The sugar content in clover usually decreases as the plants mature, so limiting pasture time during the spring may be considered. Avoiding grazing areas with a high clover population until later in the season may be an option.


Equine Wellness

Clover can be afflicted with several kinds of mold, resulting in undesirable consequences including “slobbers” and even liver damage. Certain temperature and humidity conditions may promote any clover baled in hay to mold, increasing the risk for adverse reactions. Most horses will tolerate clover well, but you need to know your horse and be mindful of his health and hoof histories. To avoid problems, know what is in your pasture throughout the grazing season, and watch for any moldy clover sections in hay.


What does marbling a mare involve, and does it actually help prevent heat cycles?


“Marbling” a mare refers to putting a glass marble (“shooter size”) into her uterus to fool her body into thinking she is pregnant. Having a mare “think” she’s pregnant without actually breeding her may be desirable for many reasons. Is she one of “those” mares you don’t want to be around when she’s in heat? Is there a show schedule to keep? Is an owner unable/not wishing to use drugs to keep the mare on a more even keel from a behaviorial standpoint? Does she scald herself with excessive urination during her heat? When a mare is in heat, her cervix is open. A sterile 35mm glass marble is inserted just after she ovulates. Various studies have been done to determine how effective this is and if there are any changes to the uterine tissue that may hamper future breeding and conception. One study showed that only 8% of mares ceased cycling after having a marble placed into the uterus, while another study showed 42% didn’t return to having heat cycles. Results are inconclusive for conception problems after the marble is removed.

While this can be an inexpensive method to keep a mare from cycling, here are some things to consider: • The mare may expel the marble and return to cycling. • Retrieval of the marble is not always as easy as it may seem. • Introducing a foreign body into the uterus comes with the possibility of complications from an infection or scar tissue formation. I had a personal experience in which a breeding farm called me in to examine a mare that had been repeatedly bred and was still cycling. The mare had not been palpated during the times she was bred. Imagine the owner’s surprise when I could feel “something round, hard and moveable” and visualize a perfect circle on the ultrasound exam! He had purchased this mare from the track with an unknown breeding history, considering her to be a maiden mare. The marble (as a foreign body) was creating an environment in her uterus where implantation could not take place. I did not detect any other abnormalities during the exam and as it was late in the season, he chose to take her home and work with his veterinarian to remove the marble at her next heat cycle. Moral of the story – buyer beware!

horse’s past and current work history. Previcox will help decrease his pain level and the polyglycan will help with the normal building and repair (maintenance) of his joints. There may be some special shoeing or barefoot options that may be helpful. Other things to consider include chiropractic and acupuncture treatments. With many cases, essential oils and Chinese herbs can also be beneficial in addition to these other suggestions, and combine well with traditional treatment protocols. Working with an integrative holistic veterinarian can be a plus for your horse and help him be more than a pasture ornament.


My horse has been having some intermittent lameness issues and we recently discovered (via x-rays) that he has quite advanced changes in his hocks for a horse his age (11). My vet wants to put him on Previcox and polyglycan for the rest of his days, and even then he may not be sound enough to do much more than be a pasture ornament. Is there anything else I could be doing for him?

A: Sometimes relatively “young” horses can have radiographic issues in their joints that affect performance and overall comfort levels. The changes your vet is seeing may be related to your Equine Wellness



CLEVELAND AMORY BLACK BEAUTY RANCH Equine Wellness will donate 25% of each subscription purchased using promo code EWA206 to Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch.

YEAR ESTABLISHED: “Cleveland Amory, a lifetime leader for animals, founded The Fund for Animals in 1967,” says Noelle Almrud, director at the ranch. “Amory and his Fund for Animals bought the first 85 acres of Black Beauty Ranch in 1979 as a permanent home for 544 burros rescued from the Grand Canyon; the burros were facing extermination by the Bureau of Land Management.”

LOCATION: Murchison, TX TYPES OF ANIMALS THEY WORK WITH: “We care for more than 40 species including bison and cattle, horses and burros, exotic deer and chimpanzees, baboons and gibbon apes, camels and llamas, bobcats and tigers. All have permanent, safe homes at the sanctuary.”

STAFF/VOLUNTEERS/FOSTER HOMES: 22 staff members and 75 volunteers/interns

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FAVORITE RESCUE STORY: “On January 13, 2016, we assisted Dallas Animal Services with the rescue of eight neglected horses from a cruelty situation (59 dogs were also removed from the property). “The horses who are adoptable were sent to Doris Day Equine Center, an innovative facility on the grounds of Black Beauty that rescues and rehabilitates abused and neglected horses, and ultimately helps place them with adopters who can provide them with safe, permanent, loving homes. “The horses are receiving training at the center and will be adopted out to forever homes. The elderly horses that would not make good adoption candidates are being provided lifetime sanctuary at Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch.”

FundForAnimals.org 54

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BEAR VALLEY RESCUE Sundre, AB Rescue Code: EWA038 www.bearvalleyab.org

JOURNEY’S END RANCH ANIMAL RESCUE Kingman, AZ Rescue Code: EWA021 www.jersanctuary.org

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FORGOTTEN HORSES RESCUE INC Homeland, CA Rescue Code: EWA056 www.forgottenhorsesrescue.org NATIONAL EQUINE RESOURCE NETWORK Encinitas, CA Rescue Code: EWA030 www.nationalequine.org THE GENTLE BARN Santa Clarita, CA Rescue Code: EWA180 www.gentlebarn.org DREAMCATCHERS EQUINE RESCUE Fountain, CO Rescue Code: EWA059 www.dcerinc.org SUSAN G. KOMEN FOR THE CURE Farmington, CT Rescue Code: EWA067 www.KomenCT.org HORSE RESCUE RELIEF & RETIREMENT FUND INC. Cumming, GA Rescue Code: EWA060 www.SaveTheHorses.org

OUR MIMS RETIREMENT HAVEN Paris, KY Rescue Code: EWA184 www.OurMims.org RAINHILL EQUINE FACILITY INC Bowling Green, KY Rescue Code: EWA095 www.rainhillequinefacili.wix.com BLUE STAR EQUICULTURE St. Palmer, MA Rescue Code: EWA027 www.equiculture.org EQUINE RESCUE NETWORK Boxford, MA Rescue Code: EWA093 www.equinerescuenetwork.com GENTLE GIANTS DRAFT HORSE RESCUE Mount Alry, MD Rescue Code: EWA094 GentleGiantsDraftHorseRescue.com SAND STONE FARMS RESCUE EFFORT Ortonville, MI Rescue Code: EWA062 www.sandstonefarm.info SAVING GRACE MINIATURE HORSE RESCUE Emmett, MI Rescue Code: EWA196 www.sgminihorserescue.com

PASO BY PASO EQUINE REHABILITATION Bend, OR Rescue Code: EWA055 www.pasobypaso.org L.E.A.R.N. HORSE RESCUE Ravenel, SC Rescue Code: EWA190 www.learnhorserescue.org FERRELL HOLLOW FARM Readyville, TN Rescue Code: EWA054 www.ferrellhollowfarm.org CROSSFIRE RESCUE Bacliffe, TX Rescue Code: EWA052 www.crossfirerescue.org EQUINE CANCER SOCIETY Mansfield, TX Rescue Code: EWA182 www.equinecancersociety.com THE PEGASUS PROJECT Ben Wheeler, TX Rescue Code: EWA002 www.mypegasusproject.org CENTRAL VIRGINIA HORSE RESCUE Brodnax, VA Rescue Code: EWA058 www.centralvahorserescue.com

BIT O’ LUCK HORSE RESCUE Huntersville, NC Rescue Code: EWA053 www.bitoluck.org

PAINTED ACRES RESCUE & SANCTUARY, INC Winchester, VA Rescue Code: EWA075 www.paintedacresrescue.web.net

STAMP OUT STARVATION OF HORSES INC. Clarksville, GA Rescue Code: EWA033 www.sosofhorses.com

LIVE AND LET LIVE FARM RESCUE Chichester, NH Rescue Code: EWA187 www.liveandletlivefarm.org

SERENITY EQUINE RESCUE & REHABILITATION Maple Valley, WA Rescue Code: EWA028 www.serenityequinerescue.com

BLACK HILLS WILD HORSE SANCTUARY Hot Springs, ID Rescue Code: EWA085 www.wildmustangs.com

HORSE RESCUE UNITED Howell, NJ Rescue Code: EWA049 www.horserescueunited.org/

SOCIETY FOR HOOVED ANIMAL’S RESCUE & EMERGENCY Champaign, IL Rescue Code: EWA018 www.s-h-a-r-e.net/ SOUTHERN WINDS EQUINE RESCUE & RECOVERY CENTER Udall, KS Rescue Code: EWA010 www.southernwindsequinerescue.org

AMARYLLIS FARM EQUINE RESCUE Bridgehampton, NY Rescue Code: EWA005 www.amaryllisfarm.com ANOTHER CHANCE EQUINE RESCUE Columbia Station, OH Rescue Code: EWA022 www.acerescue.org



THE DAVEY JONES EQUINE MEMORIAL FOUNDATION Seattle, WA Rescue Code: EWA064 www.djemf.com SPIRIT HORSE EQUINE RESCUE Janesville, WI Rescue Code: EWA083 www.spirithorseequinerescue.org HEART OF PHOENIX Shoals, WV Rescue Code: EWA096 www.wvhorserescue.org

Equine Wellness


Four acupoints

ACUPRESSURE AT-A-GLANCE By Amy Snow and Nancy Zidonis

for autumn health

When autumn winds herald the arrival of colder weather, it’s time to start doing more to support your horse’s health. This is the time of year that impacts equine health the most. The shift from warm to cold requires horses to make significant physiological changes. They have to grow thick coats and add or maintain a good weight to keep their bodies warm during the winter.

midline in the eighth intercostal space, which is in the soft area just below the back of the withers.


Conception Vessel 17 (CV 17) is considered the “Influential Point” for the entire respiratory system. This acupoint strengthens the lungs and supports the horse’s immune system. It is found on the ventral midline at the level of the caudal border of the elbow.

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, autumn is when it’s important to pay attention to the immune system, and more specifically the lungs. This seasonal transition can adversely affect the lungs because they’re the organ system most vulnerable to environmental change. Chinese doctors observed that wind and cold often invaded the body via the lungs during autumn. This invasion could lead to respiratory illness, thus compromising health overall. If a horse’s body is compromised in any way during the fall, he won’t be able to effectively prepare himself for the winter months.

Lung 9 (Lu 9) is known to provide essential, vital energy to the lungs. This point enhances lung function and promotes the lungs’ capacity to withstand wind and cold from invading the body. Lung 9 is located in the middle of the medial aspect of the foreleg between the first and second row of carpal bones just in front of the accessory carpal bone.

Governing Vessel 4 (GV 4) brings vital energy to the horse’s body. By stimulating GV 4, you will be supporting powerful balancing energy that serves to boost the immune system. This point is thought to be where all the original energy of the body emanates. It is located along the dorsal midline in the depression between the second and third lumbar vertebrae. The four acupoints included in this autumn acupressure session will help your horse build lung function and strengthen his immune system. This is just what he needs to contend with fall weather and prepare for the winter – thanks to you!

ACUPRESSURE POINTS FOR AUTUMN HEALTH Four acupressure points will help fortify your horse’s lungs and general health this fall. You can stimulate these “acupoints” during every grooming session. Each of the following points needs to be stimulated with light thumb or gentle palm pressure on both sides (bilaterally) of your horse’s body: Bladder 13 (Bl 13) is the go-to acupoint for any respiratory issue; when stimulated, it provides direct energy to the lungs and improves their function. In Chinese medicine, the lungs are key to protecting the body from pathogens. Bladder 13 is located about a hands-width lateral to the dorsal Amy Snow and Nancy Zidonis are the authors of Acu-Horse: A Guide to Equine Acupressure, Acu-Dog: A Guide to Canine Acupressure and Acu-Cat: A Guide to Feline Acupressure. They founded Tallgrass, offering books, manuals, DVDs, apps and meridian charts, as well as a 300-hour hands-on and online training program worldwide. It is an approved school for the Department of Higher Education Vocational Schools through the State of Colorado, and an approved provider of NCBTMB and NCCAOM Continuing Education. 303-681-3030, animalacupressure.com, tallgrass@animalacupressure.com 56

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It is never the farrier’s job to train our horses for trimming. This seems like common sense, but it can easily be forgotten until the moment the farrier shows up. It is our responsibility as guardians to make sure our horses are suitably prepared. As highly trained and talented as your farrier might be, he is not a trainer, and the way he may choose to deal with a misbehaving horse may not be what you had in mind, or fit into your training philosophy. If you begin working with your horse at a young age and teach him manners and protocol, he will be ready by the time he needs to meet the farrier. Sounds easy, but it takes a lot of preparation and patience! If you are looking to create and nurture a trust-based partnership with your horse, you have to learn to ask and not tell – acknowledge every “try” and remain compassionate in your communication. You want a willing and relaxed participant, not one that’s terrified and in pain.


PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT If you want to gently influence your horse’s feet, create leverage, be more effective with less effort, help desensitize your horse to all lower extremity needs, and make working with his feet easy and enjoyable, a simple rope is your best tool (I like my ROTH Equine Education Rope). Using the rope, practice: • Moving your horse’s leg in all directions, safely, while staying out of the kick zone. • Desensitizing your horse to the feeling of the rope all over and around his legs. • Replacing instinctive fight or flight reactions with calm, relaxed responses. • Educate your horse to yield to pressure, enhancing his understanding and willing participation. This method is helpful for horses of all ages and experience levels, from foals and green or unhandled horses, to those that require some retraining after a trauma or accident. With a little time and practice, your horse will become a star for leg and hoof handling. Best of all, it will keep you in your farrier’s good books, and that is an important place to be! Anna Twinney is the founder of Reach Out to Horses® – the most unique and comprehensive equine training program in the world. She is known around the globe for her highly acclaimed work as an Equine Specialist, Natural Horsemanship Clinician, Animal Communicator and Karuna Reiki Master. Anna has an extensive library of instructional DVDs and offers exclusive equine experiences at ReachOutToHorses.com.

BOOK REVIEW TITLE: The Five Roles of a Master Herder

AUTHOR: Linda Kohanov In a world where dominancebased leadership is creating an increasingly chaotic environment, Linda Kohanov introduces another intriguing book that explores nonpredatory leadership roles and hierarchies, gleaned from observing herd animals such as horses. “Charles Darwin’s work suggests that it’s not the strongest or the most intelligent of the species that survive, but the ones most responsive to change,” shares Linda. “The sedentary, hierarchical, dominance-submission models of leadership the ‘civilized’ world has relied on for the last few thousand years have outlived their usefulness.”

The Five Roles of a Master Herder explores how we perceive leadership and power as a species, and how a shift towards emotional intelligence and non-predatory leadership skills may be our saving grace. The five roles, as explained in the book, are Dominant, Leader, Sentinel, Nurturer/Companion, and Predator. As a “Master Herder”, one learns to flexibly apply each of these roles as necessary in their daily interactions with both people and animals. “The ‘Five Roles of a Master Herder’ make sense of previously confusing group dynamics, while helping people to develop a mature, balanced, mutually empowering approach to leadership and social intelligence: at work, school, home, and in larger cultural contexts,” explains Linda. “This model helps us navigate change, handle conflict, and support innovation that serves the individual as well as the group, and perhaps most importantly, the health and well-being of all species and countless generations to come.”

PUBLISHER: New World Library Equine Wellness




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EMAIL YOUR EVENT TO: info@EquineWellnessMagazine.com Large Animal Class: Sunday / 9:00am The Mane Event October 21-23, 2016 – Chilliwack, BC - 6:00pm This is an event you won’t want to miss! Tickets include admissions to 81 + hours of Clinics from Barrel Racing to Reining & Dressage as well as Demo’s, the Trainer’s Challenge and the Saturday Night Equine Experience. For more details on featured clinicians, exhibitors and show hours, please visit our website. For more information: (844) 578-7518 info@maneeventexpo.com www.maneeventexpo.com

Cathy Drumm Western Dressage Clinic October 29, 2016 – Guilford, VT This day is all about improving the horse, regardless of your goals. Western Dressage will be discussed, what it is and why it is important for all horses. The day will begin with participants riding in small groups while Cathy guides them through exercises designed to improve the horse beginning with the walk. Plenty of quiet work to start with such as; balance of horse & rider, length of stride, transitions and collection. Lunch is followed by a question/discussion period and finishes with private 30 minute sessions for each rider. The individual rides can be to work on specific areas or practice riding a test. This clinic is limited to 8 riders and unlimited auditors. To learn more about this Western Dressage Clinician visit: http://cathy-drumm.squarespace.com/ For more information: Heidi Potter www.heidipotter.com

Healing Touch for Animals® Level 1 Course October 29-30, 2016 – Philadelphia, PA Introduction to Healing Touch: Friday / 6:00pm - 10:00pm This class is a prerequisite of the Small Animal Class. Small Animal Class: Saturday / 9:00am - 6:00pm This class is a prerequisite of the Large Animal Class.

This class is required in order to apply to become a Healing Touch for Animals® Certified Practitioner. Working with the horses’ large energy systems benefits students with greater energetic awareness and a well-rounded experience. Registrations & payments in full must be received and/or postmarked by October 2, to qualify for the Early Bird Tuition prices. For more information: Cindy Baker (484) 459-8049 Philadelphia@HealingTouchforAnimals. com www.healingtouchforanimals.com

National Horse Show 2016 November 1-6, 2016 – Lexington, KY This prestigious show returns to the Alltech Arena at the Kentucky Horse Park to feature a full array of Junior Hunters, Amateur-Owner Hunters, and the High Performance Hunters, Green and Regular Working Hunters and the Conformation Divisions. Each year, the top hunters from around the country are invited to compete during the National Horse Show, America’s oldest indoor horse show. For more information: (859) 608-3709 cindy@nhs.org www.nhs.org

AQHA World Show 2015 November 3-19, 2016 - Oklahoma City, OK American Quarter Horse owners and exhibitors will not want to miss this amazing event! Featuring exhibitors from around the world who must qualify for the event by earning a number of points to compete in each of the classes representing; Halter, English and Western disciplines. More than $2.5 million in awards and prizes is up for grabs at this year’s event. The show will feature a variety of new events and activities in and out of the arena for competitors, friends, family and spectators.

For more information: (806) 376-4811 www.aqha.com/worldshow

The Royal Winter Fair November 4-13, 2016 – Toronto, ON The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair is the largest combined indoor agricultural fair and international equestrian competition in the world. This is a Canadian event where International breeders, growers and exhibitors are declared champions and where hundreds of thousands of attendees come to learn, compete, shop and have a great time with friends and family. For more information: (416) 263-3400 info@royalfair.org www.royalfair.org

Equine Affaire November 10-13, 2016 – Springfield, MA Equine Affaire’s legendary educational program forms the cornerstone of the event. Soak up information and advice at more than 230 clinics, seminars, and demonstrations on a wide variety of equestrian sports and horse training, management, health, and business topics. Enjoy one-stop shopping at Equine Affaire’s huge trade show with more than 475 of the nation’s leading equinerelated retailers, manufacturers, service providers, and organizations. For more information: info@equineaffaire.com www.equineaffaire.com

Novi Equestrian Expo December 2-4, 2016 – Novi, MI This year’s expo promises to be bigger and better than ever! Come on out to see world class clinicians, take part in family activities, check out the animal displays and much more. To learn more about how your Non-Profit Organization can be part of the Novi Equestrian Expo and raise money to support your group, contact us! For more information: info@NoviEquestrianExpo.com www.noviequestrianexpo.com

WANTED Rescues & Shelters. We want to give away $100,000

through our Ambassador program. REGISTER NOW! Kyle@RedstoneMediaGroup.com 60

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MASTERSON METHOD - Is an integrated, multi-modality method of equine massage. It is a unique, interactive method of equine massage in which you learn to recognize and use the responses of the horse to your touch to find and release accumulated tension in key junctions of the body that most affect performance. It is something you do with the horse, rather than to the horse. This participation and interaction is what makes the method fascinating for those who use it. In fact, if you do not allow the horse to participate, it does not work! (641) 472-1312; www.MastersonMethod.com TRANQUIL COMPANION – I am a Healing Touch for Animals® and ART Reiki practitioner, as well as a Certified Equine Iridologist. I do both distance and hands-on work. I use non-invasive modalities and healing therapies that address chronic and acute issues like emotional and physical stress, behavior problems, pain and injuries. My therapies can be used alone or as an adjunct to regular veterinary programs. (618) 972-8267; tranquilcompanion7@gmail.com; www.TranquilCompanion.com

ASSOCIATIONS INTERNATIONAL ASSOC. OF ANIMAL MASSAGE & BODYWORK/ ASSOC. OF CANINE WATER THERAPY – Welcome trained practitioners of Animal Massage & Bodywork. The IAAMB/ACWT supports and promotes the practitioners of complementary care for animals through networking, continuing education, website, online referrals, newsletters, insurance, annual educational conferences, lobbying and credentialing of schools. www.IAAMB.org

EQUINE INSURANCE BLUE BRIDLE INSURANCE – Shopping for equine insurance? Consult with professional agents that specialize in this field and can identify with your special needs. Blue Bridle agents have the knowledge and experience that matters! www.bluebridle.com

NATURAL PRODUCTS GREEN HORSE ORGANICS - Hand crafts outstanding equine products Powered by Mother Nature. Go Green from head to tail for a healthier horse. Home of Total Horse Protection - The Finest Natural Fly Spray on Earth. Visit: www.GreenHorseOrganics.org

RETAILERS & DISTRIBUTORS WANTED EQUINE LIGHT THERAPY – Many veterinarians and therapists offer their clients the healing benefits of photonic energy with our Equine Light Therapy Pads! Contact us to learn more about the advantages of offering them through your practice! According to “Gospel”…Equine Light Therapy/Canine Light Therapy. www.equinelighttherapy.com, questions@equinelighttherapy.com, (615) 293-3025 THE PERFECT HORSE™ - Organic Blue Green Algae is the single most nutrient dense food on the planet with naturally-occurring vitamins, minerals and amino acids; all are provided in The Perfect Horse (E3Live® FOR HORSES) Our product sells itself; other make claims, we guarantee results. Join a winning team at www.ThePerfectHorse.net • (877) 357-7187 • sales@e3liveforhorses.com

SCHOOLS & TRAINING EQUEST EQUINE FIRST AID – We are dedicated to helping horse owners and lovers improve the health and safety of horses by providing emergency first aid training to individuals, clubs and organizations across both Canada and the States. Equine First Aid is the first response support treatment available to a horse before a veterinarian can attend to the animal. Our courses provide you with hands on training preparing you to handle equine emergency situations while waiting for your veterinarian’s arrival. Participants will receive a certificate of achievement upon completion of the course. equestequinefirstaid@hotmail.com; www.equestequinefirstaid.com



EQUINE ACUPRESSURE FOR HEALTH & PERFORMANCE – Learn to assess & resolve your horse’s issues – Tallgrass Animal Acupressure Institute training programs, Books, DVDs, Meridian Charts, & Apps. www.animalacupressure.com, tallgrass@animalacupressure.com EVAMAR FARMS EQUESTRIAN CENTRE – This is a quiet, family run equestrian centre focused on providing high-quality services and horse satisfaction. Lessons are offered from beginner to advanced riders with an emphasis on correct balance, and quiet, effective aids. Clinics are held bi-monthly on the premises with external clinics and dismounted workshops available. (705) 654-4781; evamarfarms@hotmail.com; www.evamarfarms.com

WHOLE EQUINE – Is your online resource for natural horse care products and equipment. We are proud to offer an array of natural horse care products, including supplements, first aid, cleaning, equipment and other items that help horses reach their optimal physical and mental health. (884) 946-5378; info@wholeequine.com; www.wholeequine.com

NUTRITION & SUPPLEMENTS DANAMAY SUPPLEMENT COMPANY – Every product was designed to improve the most commonly known abnormalities of the Horse. For improving the digestive tract function with the Preventcol™ to maintaining the integrity of the skin, coat and hooves with the POWER HORSE® Montmorillonite. These are the supplements that everyone can count on, when expecting the results that other products promise, but don’t deliver. (877) 648-9451; danamay@sympatico.ca; www.danamaysupplementcompany.com MAD BARN – is your best source of nutrition and supplements for horses: probiotics, performance supplements, digestive enzymes, equine minerals vitamins. Some equine issues require extra attention, and Mad Barn makes it easy to address these through diet. Pre-packaged for simple use, our Special Care Formulas are ready to add to existing feed to give your horse the boost needed to improve specific points of concern. Completely customized formulas for your horse are available by contacting Mad Barn directly. info@madbarn.com; www.madbarn.com

HORSE CARE BARNBOOTS – Dedicated to equine wellness from a balanced and holistic approach. Offering Barefoot and holistic horse care, natural resources and networking. www.barnboots.ca, info@barnboots.ca

NEED MONEY FOR YOUR RESCUE? Contact@RedstoneMediaGroup.com Equine Wellness


HERB BLURB By Jessica Lynn

TOP THREE cold weather herbs As we shift our thoughts to fall and winter, we should also look at the herbs that will help our horses get through the cold nights and the change of seasons. For me, fennel, ginger and comfrey are the top three that come to mind, so I make sure I have them on hand. Tummy troubles are always a concern during weather and seasonal changes, and horses that are stalled more during cold weather can experience stiffness from lack of movement. FENNEL Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) is a hardy perennial with yellow flowers and feathery leaves. It can be seen growing along roadsides, creek beds and in pastures across much of the US and southern Canada. It has an anise or licorice-like fragrance. Most horses really love the smell and taste of fennel added to their feed. The fresh leaves, which can often be found at health food stores, can be chopped and added to your horse’s feed, and the seeds made into a tea for any colic or gassy stomach conditions. Fennel has naturally-occurring gas-relieving and gastrointestinal tract cramp-relieving agents in its leaves.

GINGER ROOT As we head into the fall and cold winter months I always make sure I have fresh ginger in my fridge. I will sometimes grate some into my horse’s night bucket feed, or will 62

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on occasion make a tea of some sliced ginger root and add the warm brew to the night bucket. Ginger is an immune booster, but is also an anti-parasitic agent as well. It is a flavorful natural way to help soothe and calm many stomach ailments in both humans and horses.

COMFREY Comfrey (Symphytum officinale L.) has powerful antibacterial and antifungal properties. It can be given as a tincture or made into a tea and is known to reduce swelling and inflammation. It can also be made into a liniment tincture, or poultice with bentonite clay. Studies have found that comfrey is beneficial in treating ulcers, so it can be fed to your horse in the dry, cut and sifted form. Comfrey is known to help heal bone, cartilage and soft tissue injuries. Traditionally, it has been used as a remedy for rheumatism and arthritis. It contains naturally-occurring allantois, which stimulates cell production and encourages wound healing both internally and externally. It is also an excellent source of B12. Jessica Lynn has written more than 25 articles for various national and international horse publications on horse health, over the past 15 years. She is an equine nutritionist, and the owner of Earth Song Ranch, a feed additive and supplement manufacturer based in Southern California that uses herbal blends, probiotics and digestive enzymes for horse immune health, and distributes Horse Tech and Mushroom Matrix Products. Jessica has been involved in alternative health care, herbs, homeopathy and nutrition for animals and humans for almost five decades. She is available for nutritional consultations – jessica@earthsongranch.com, 951-514-9700, earthsongranch.com.

Equine Wellness