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Learning label-ese Pasture laminitis
What the new research says
Natural treatment for HYPP
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The green, green grass of home
The latest on avoiding pasture laminitis
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How to figure out what’s in the product you’re buying
understand your horse Understanding and respect are keys to a trusting partnership
Vaccination – part 2
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Smile pretty Is your horse getting the right dental care?
How to create harmonious stomach chi
Nature’s bounty How to supplement your horse naturally
Enter our 1st Ever Equine Wellness Photo Contest!
Theft! 68 Stop! How to protect your equine partner
issues 101 72 Dental A guide to the most common problems
Why equines are especially receptive to Reiki
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columns 10 Neighborhood news
28 Did you know? 40 Holistic veterinary advice
Talking with Dr. Joyce Harman
43 48 Inspirational women Your health
Volume 2 Issue 5
A natural performer Profile of a natural performer
Cover Photography: Dwain Snyder Illustration: Leanne Rosborough
Columnists & Contributing Writers W. Jean Dodds, DVM Frank Gravlee, DVM, MS, CNS Joyce Harman, DVM, MRCVS Jessica Lynn Jean McCormick Bridgett McIntosh, PhD Debi Metcalfe Kathleen Prasad Lida Sideris Amy Snow Anne Twinney Stevi Weissbach Larry Whitesell Valeria Wyckoff, NMD Nancy Zidonis
with Anna Twinney
departments 8 Editorial 31 Product picks 49 Wellness resource guide 67 Heads up!
Editorial Department Editor-in-Chief: Dana Cox Senior Editor: Lisa Ross-Williams Editor: Ann Brightman Senior Graphic Designer: Stephanie Wright Graphic Designer: Leanne Atin
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RDJ’s Duchess, a striking two-year-old Rocky Mountain Horse, has not been put under saddle yet, but she already demonstrates the smooth, four-beat lateral gait her breed is known for. This barefoot beauty loves to be pampered, especially by the grandchildren of Judy and Jim Mezzonette, the owners of Rockin’ Double J Farm in Monroe, North Carolina, where Duchess lives and enjoys full daily turnout.
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Improving the lives of animals... one reader at a time.
editorials We are what we eat!
The recent pet food recall shed light on a topic we’ve been covering in both Animal Wellness and Equine Wellness since we founded the magazines – good health begins with good nutrition. Of course, genetics and lifestyle play important roles, but the old adage “garbage in, garbage out” has never been more significant. In this issue, we bring you some wonderful articles on nutrition, including the latest research on the connection between spring pasture and laminitis (“The green, green, grass of home”, page 14), which will give you some insights into how to plan your feed management next year. We’re sure you’ll find some powerful information in all these articles. While we’re on the topic of diet, I’m pleased to announce that we’re also launching a special interest publication called The Pet Food Report in late September. We know many of you have dogs and cats, and this one-time publication will be the definitive guide to feeding and supplementing your smaller animal companions. The foremost holistic veterinarians and animal nutritionists across North America will offer their insights into the pet food recall scare as well as provide information on how to choose the best diet, why to steer clear of GMO foods, what conventional vets really know about nutrition, how to prepare easy recipes for optimum health, and so much more. This is a timeless collection of articles you’ll refer to again and again so I encourage you to order The Pet Food Report today. See more info below. In the meantime, we hope this issue of Equine Wellness helps you meet some of your horse’s nutritional needs.
From the horse’s mouth
This issue features some fantastic articles – topics that are very dear to my heart due to personal experiences. Ten years ago, I had just acquired Rebel, my Arab, then four-and-a-half years old. Although I didn’t know much about horse teeth at the time, my gut was telling me he had mouth problems and pain. I contacted a huge, wellknown equine veterinary clinic who sent out their “dental expert”. This vet parted Rebel’s lips, moved his lower jaw a bit (about 60 seconds in total) and proclaimed, “No problems here. Call me out in six months to do a float.” Huh? Well, my first thought was, “He’s the professional so I must be wrong.” Thankfully, my intuition kicked in and I started searching for answers. I soon found there were Certified Equine Dentists – highly trained, non-vet professionals. Luckily, there was one in my area and she came out two days later. Turns out Rebel had a lot of issues and pain. Rebel had huge sharp points cutting into his cheek and tongue, and I can’t describe the horror when I felt his damaged cheeks. They were the texture of ground hamburger. Who knows how long he would have lived with that pain if I had not been empowered enough to listen to my gut. No horse should go through that, and you can read about how to avoid these problems in “Smile pretty” on page 44. This issue also focuses on another of my passions – proper nutrition – which is the foundation of everything. “Learning label-ese” (page 18) will help you weed out the good, bad and ugly while “Nature’s bounty” (page 56) can assist you in formulating a good nutritional plan.
Yours in health,
Founder and Editor-in-chief
P.S. Don’t forget to enter our First Ever Equine Photo Contest by September 30. There’s over $1,000 in prizes up for grabs and your horse could appear in the pages of Equine Wellness Magazine. See all the details on page 59.
Read on and enjoy!
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Middle Earth’s Equine Star Has Surgery Lord of the Rings fans will remember the touching scene where an unconscious Aragorn is nudged awake by his horse Brego. In fact, the bond the mysterious king-to-be shared with his horse goes beyond the silver screen; actor Viggo Mortensen grew so fond of his equine acting partner that he bought the horse, named Uraeus, after filming had finished. This past spring, Uraeus had to have two meters of small intestine removed in emergency colic surgery at Massey University’s equine hospital in Palmerston North, New Zealand. The operation was a success, and Uraeus, a warmblood stallion and former FEI dressage champion, has since returned home and is recovering well, much to Mortensen’s delight.
Photo: Pierre Vinet/ New Line Productions © 2002
Former dressage champion Uraeus played Viggo Mortensen’s trusty steed Brego in The Lord of the Rings.
Slaughterhouse Stymied On the heels of an Illinois law passed in May that makes it a crime to slaughter horses for human consumption, Cavel International, the only operating horse slaughter plant in the U.S., filed suit to challenge the legislation’s enforceability. U.S. District Court Judge Frederick Kapala granted the plant a temporary restraining order that prevented the state from prosecuting the slaughterhouse under the new law. Although the restraining order was due to expire at midnight on June 28, Judge Kapala denied Cavel’s request that the court allow it to continue to avoid prosecution under the law. Although Cavel indicates they will likely take the issue to the Court of Appeals, in the meantime, the lives of thousands of horses will be spared.
Changing Tack PetsUnited, LLC recently announced its acquisition of Stateline Tack. Formerly owned by PetSmart, Inc., the transferal of these assets and resources makes PetsUnited the leading supplier of horse tack, supplies and apparel, as well as books, videos, grooming and training equipment. www.statelinetack.com.
The latest on
So what’s up with the West Nile Virus this year? As of June 12, avian, animal or mosquito WNV infections were reported in the following states: California, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Mississippi, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia. Human cases have also been reported in Iowa, Mississippi and South Dakota. In Canada, meanwhile, no cases of WMV infection in horses were reported as of June 23, although there has been one human case in Manitoba.
Help for HERDA patients This just out. Genetic researchers at Cornell University’s College of Veterinary Medicine have developed a DNA test to detect carrier status for Hereditary Equine Regional Derman Asthenia (HERDA). This devastating skin disease is caused by a homozygous recessive mutation that weakens collagen fibers and compromises the adhesive ability of the skin. Horses with HERDA suffer from severe healing difficulties, skin tearing and disfiguring scars. The DNA test can be done with hair or blood samples and allows owners and breeders to find out if their horses might be carriers.
Most horse lovers will agree that the Arabian has a special beauty all its own. Recently, the Saudi Arabian Equestrian Federation gave $2.35 million to the Kentucky Horse Park and its international Museum of the Horse to fund “A Gift From the Desert: The Art, History and Culture of the Arabian Horse”. This landmark exhibit, which includes a onehour documentary film and is being hailed as the first major look at the role of the Arabian horse, is to open in 2010 at the park, which will also be hosting the Alltech FEI World Equestrian games that year.
Another triumph for Barbaro
Early this year, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association established the Barbaro Memorial Fund to raise awareness and money for equine health and safety research in the name of 2006 Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro, whose struggle to overcome a catastrophic injury captivated horse enthusiasts around the world. To date, more than $230,000 has been raised in support of the fund, most of which has come from the sales of blue “Riding With Barbaro” wristbands (available online at www.ridingwithbarbaro.org). The money raised will be used to support equine research projects.
Assisting those in need
There are times in some people’s lives when, through no fault of their own, financial setbacks seriously limit their ability to look after their animals properly. The Kentucky Horse Council, a nonprofit organization based in Lexington, can help with its new Equine Safety Net program. This new initiative, which excludes professional equine businesses, gives assistance to horses whose owners are temporarily unable to provide adequate feed. Successful applicants are eligible for a 30-day supply of feed for a maximum of two horses. www.kentuckyhorse.org equine wellness
Bred in Canada, eh? Equine Canada, which represents and advances equine and equestrian interests across the county and beyond, was recently given $409,050 from the government to assist in the promotion of Canadian-bred horses to international markets. “Canadian-bred horses are ‘hardy stock’,” said MP Lee Richardson on behalf of Chuck Strahl, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and the Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board. “We produce some of the finest horses in the world, and Canada’s new government is proud to help Equine Canada develop the brand and get the word out there.”
Suspension stats The Friends of Sound Horses (FOSH) recently analyzed five years of data from over 3,800 suspensions imposed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Horse Industry Organizations (HIO) since 2002. Violations of the Horse Protection Act that resulted in suspensions included scarring (49%), soring (39.5%), pressure shoeing and use of foreign substances on horsesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; legs. FOSH also analyzed the soring suspension history for Tennessee walking horses from 2002 to 2006; it found that incidents were most prevalent in Tennessee (40%), Kentucky (13%) and Alabama (8.8%).
Conserving a Special Breed The Equus Survival Trust has sent a team to South Carolina to collect DNA samples from the largest remaining herd of Carolina Marsh Tackies, which dates back to the Civil War. These small horses are descended from stock introduced by colonial Spaniards some 400 years ago; their ability to safely navigate swampy areas and tolerate biting insects made them exceptional saddle and hunting horses. The DNA samples will help reveal the markers they carry, confirming their ancestry and assuring the purity of future bloodstock.
Photo: Jane Hylton
FOSH strives to help prevent abuse of Tennessee walking horses, like the one above.
Avoiding pasture laminitis
by Bridgett McIntosh, PhD
This past spring, as I drove by emerald green pastures on my way to work, I couldn’t help but recall the words my father told me as a child. He always said my pony couldn’t be turned out with the other horses in the spring because the grass was too “lush” and she might get sick. I was always upset because Misty couldn’t go out and graze on these beautiful days with her friends in upstate New York. She was a portly little Welsh pony who got fat on air, and in addition to limiting her spring days in the lush pasture, my dad also kept her grain to a minimum. It seemed so unfair at the time. As fate would have it, though, I found out that my dad’s warning probably saved my pony from many health problems. Over lunch one day at Virgina Tech, where I was a graduate student, my advisor Dr. David Kronfeld asked if I would be interested in helping with a study on laminitis in Welsh ponies. Naturally, I agreed.
In the ponies we studied, a pre-laminitic metabolic syndrome (PLMS) that included insulin resistance was identified. We found that laminitis occurred in April and May, when pasture nonstructural carbohydrate (NSC) content was at its highest. These findings led to my PhD research further examining carbohydrate profiles in forages, and the digestive and metabolic response in grazing horses. Our objective, of course, was to find a way to avoid pasture laminitis, the condition my father was referring to when he said Misty might get “sick”. The NSC content was what made the grass “lush”. Although laminitis has many causes, nearly half of cases in the U.S. and Canada are associated with grazing pastures during certain times of the year, particularly in the spring. Hopefully by reading through the results of this research, you’ll gain some insight
Spring pastures are high in NSC because the plants are young and growing, and environmental conditions favor rapid growth and accumulation of carbohydrates.
into how to keep your horse free from this condition.
How high NSC can trigger laminitis Sugars (glucose, sucrose, and fructose) are the readily available carbohydrates in plants. Fructans are the primary storage carbohydrate in cool season grasses such as tall fescue, orchard grass and perennial ryegrass. Starches are the primary storage carbohydrate
Photo: Sue RB
green, green grass OF home
in legumes like clover and alfalfa and warm season grasses such as Bermuda grass. Sugars and starches are digested primarily in the small intestine of the
horse, but if a horse eats too much, they are rapidly fermented in the hindgut. Horses cannot digest fructans, so they too undergo rapid fermentation by hindgut microbes. Rapid fermentation of NSC in the hindgut causes an increase in lactic acid production and a decrease in cecal fluid pH. The bacteria in the cecum then release toxins (endotoxins, exotoxins or certain amines) that enter the bloodstream and trigger laminitis by reducing blood flow, oxygen and glucose in connective tissue within the laminae. Laminitis is also associated with insulin resistance. The uptake of circulating glucose by hoof tissue cells normally potentiated via insulin is reduced, leading to a poor glucose supply. Insulin resistance is often seen in very fat horses and ponies, and may be exacerbated by high intakes of sugars and/or starch.
What the research reveals The research focuses on identifying animals predisposed to developing laminitis, and on avoiding dietary risk factors. Since many cases of laminitis are associated with pasture consumption, one way to avoid the disease is to restrict access to pasture when NSC content is high, and provide alternative feeds known to be lower in NSC. My PhD research consisted of a series of 36-hour studies that took place
in April, May, August, and October 2005, and January 2006 at Virginia Tech’s M.A.R.E. Center. The studies evaluated pasture NSC content, and the digestive and metabolic variables in grazing horses compared to horses in stalls who were fed hay only. Pasture forage samples were collected every hour and analyzed for NSC. We used a new enzymatic technique to measure sugars, starch, and fructan individually, and NSC was calculated as the sum of these constituents. Every hour, corresponding blood samples were collected from the horses and analyzed for insulin and glucose (to evaluate carbohydrate metabolism and identify insulin resistance).
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Fecal samples were collected every four hours and analyzed for pH, lactate, and volatile fatty acid (VFA) concentrations (to evaluate digestive variables and potential rapid fermentation).
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The results of our study indicated that forage NSC content was influenced by time of day, season, and environmental conditions. Specifically: •Forage NSC content was highest in April and ranged from 16% to 25 % (dry matter) throughout the 36 hours. In the other months, NSC never exceeded 16% dry matter. •Overall, sugar made up 60% of the NSC content, fructan 30% and starch 10%. •Circadian (24 hour) patterns in forage NSC were evident in April, May, and August, with the most distinct pattern found in April. The lowest content was found in the early morning hours
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Varying Content in NSC
before sunrise (4:30 am), with increases observed throughout the day, reaching a peak at 4:30 pm. The circadian fluctuation was attributed to environmental conditions, which included cold night temperatures followed by bright sunny days and low humidity. In October, the low NSC content was attributed to mild temperatures, low sunlight, and rain.
Factors that influence NSC content in forages vary from season to season, location to location, within a location depending on the time of day, plant species, and the topography of the pasture. Additionally, intakes of NSC vary due to grazing patterns and the behavior of individual animals, The studies also indicated that pasture as well as the environmental conditions NSC altered digestion and metabounder which they are grazing. lism in the grazing horses. In my studies, horses spent more time grazing in April â&#x20AC;˘In April, grazing horses 10% when temperatures had higher insulin conSTARCH were cooler than centrations than horses in August when fed hay. Insulin concentrations in grazing it was hot; therehorses that month 60% SUGAR fore their intake 30% FRUCTAN were more than of NSC may have two times higher been further NSC (Nonstructural than in May, and elevated in Carbohydrate) Content more than four times the spring. higher than in August, October and January.
â&#x20AC;˘In April, some individual horses had very high insulin levels. They appeared to be more sensitive to daily increases in NSC than horses with lower insulin concentrations. â&#x20AC;˘Fecal pH and volatile fatty acids (end products of hindgut fermentation) were also highest in April, possibly indicating digestive upset due to rapid fermentation.
Are NSC levels and laminitis linked? My studies identified a potential link between forage NSC content and laminitis. Alterations in carbohydrate metabolism and digestion may increase the risk of laminitis through the exacerbation of insulin resistance and rapid fermentation in the hindgut. A notable observation was the low fructan and relatively high simple sugar content. Simple sugars, rather than or in addition to fructans, may be important in the pathogenesis of metabolic and digestive disorders such as laminitis in grazing horses.
Keep in mind that hay can also have high NSC content, so it is a good practice to have it analyzed by a laboratory along with your pasture forage. Once laminitis occurs it is extremely difficult to treat, and horses often never recover fully. If you suspect your horse or pony is prone to laminitis, avoid grazing pasture when NSC content is high, and provide hay forage and a feed that are both low in NSC. When having your forages or feeds tested by a laboratory, it is important to understand what they are measuring because analytical techniques differ between labs. Even if you know what your NSC content is, there are currently no designated cut-off points for â&#x20AC;&#x153;safeâ&#x20AC;?
levels in forages and feeds, so making specific recommendations is difficult. My childhood pony Misty is still living in New York and has never encountered laminitis in her long life. My father may not have known all the scientific reasons for avoiding lush pastures, but there was definitely something in his practical horsemanship! So if you live in an area where spring brings greener pastures, you may be wise to reevaluate your horseâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s grazing habits... and potentially keep laminitis far, far afield. Bridgett McIntosh recently received her PhD from Virginia Tech, where her research focus was on carbohydrate profiles in feeds and forages and the avoidance of equine laminitis. She is currently an Equine Specialist for Blue Seal Feeds, Inc., working directly with horse owners and sales managers to optimize equine nutrition and the application of feeding management for horses.
She is an avid
rider and enjoys competing on the hunter/
Laminitis affects the hoof Laminitis is a painful and costly disease that manifests in the hoof, many times rendering the affected animal unable to walk and confined to stall rest. It is an inflammation of the laminae (the thin folds of tissue that join the coffin bone with the hoof wall). The laminae separate during the course of laminitis and can lead to founder (downward rotation of the coffin bone away from the hoof wall). The disease is systemic and affects the whole animal, but has its greatest impact on the hoof. Usually the front feet are affected and the degree of lameness depends on the stage of the disease. Not all horses that have laminitis will develop founder.
jumper circuit, as well as foxhunting.
Learning Label-ese What’s in the product you’re buying? by Lisa Ross-Williams
“Grow a whole new hoof in 30 days!” “Formulated for all horses: foals, maintenance, performance and seniors!” “Change your horse’s color from bay to gray in just a week!”
Okay, the claims made by some feed and supplement companies aren’t quite this outrageous, but they’re pretty close. With big marketing strategies, any supplement or feed can be made out to be the next miracle product. Going by all the claims out there, we should have a world full of healthy horses. This isn’t so. Luckily, armed with some basic information, any horse guardian can sort out the good, the bad and the ugly.
equine partner a much better chance at a balanced diet. Total equine nutrition is a complex subject beyond the scope of this article, but knowledge of some basic guidelines such as ingredients, key ratios and comparison techniques will help you understand labels and make more informed decisions.
An ability to look past the fancy marketing and packaging and really understand what labels are telling you will give your
This category of products includes a feed base with added vitamins and minerals, either in sweet feed form or pellets. These
What’s really in concentrated feeds?
feeds are very common and designed for convenience. Unfortunately, due to over-processing and often second-rate ingredients or fillers, they are often not a good choice. The first step in reading a feed label is to look at the ingredient list. Watch for sub-standard filler products. Keep in mind that the first listed ingredients are often in order of the amount in the overall mix. Here are some common ingredients to watch for: •Wheat middlings: A by-product of
What about starches and sugar?
wheat milling and an inexpensive filler with little nutritional value. •Artificial flavorings: Undisclosed synhetic materials that are not overseen by the USDA. •Alfalfa meal or Bermuda straw: Filler ingredients with very low nutritional value often made from poor quality and older hay. Green dye is often added to enhance the color. •Soybean or oat hulls: The outer covering of the grain or seed left over after the nutritious portion is milled. Another inexpensive filler. •By-products: This term is more commonly seen in dog and cat food but also in some horse feeds. A by-product is left over from processing another material. There is no law governing what is considered a by-product.
Beneficial levels or not? Some concentrated feeds also contain ingredients that may be pleasing to the horse guardian’s eyes but aren’t at levels that could benefit the horse. Two common ones are MSM, a source of sulfur and a joint health aid, and probiotics. Often, the amount of MSM listed in the guaranteed analysis is way below the maintenance dose of ten grams per day. With probiotics, only one or two strains of beneficial bacteria are often added where a minimum of six or seven are needed by the horse’s intestinal track. This doesn’t necessarily rule out such products, but additional supplementation with specialty products will be needed.
A low starch/sugar diet is extremely important for easy-keeper breeds who may be prone to insulin resistance, as well as Cushing’s horses, although the “better safe than sorry” approach may be appropriate with most horses. If grain use is warranted, such as with high competition horses, a small quantity of high quality whole oats is much better than lower quality, over-processed grain materials.
Crude protein does not mean digestible protein. If protein sources are inferior and have a low digestibility, the horse will not be able to utilize them. This is especially important for growing horses. Ingredients contributing to starch and sugar in feeds include grains and also molasses, which can wreck havoc on a horse’s glucose levels. Molasses is often added to concentrated products to make it palatable to horses. It’s high in sugar and over-taxes the liver. Some companies aiming for a low starch/ sugar diet are using the strategy of including inferior grain ingredients such as middlings or hulls; although low in starch, these are also low in nutritional value. Quality companies are using rice bran, flaxseed and/or beet pulp.
What effect does overprocessing and storage have? Most concentrated feed products are highly processed mechanically and by heat. This destroys beneficial enzymes equine wellness
The presence of an imbalance in these ratios in a Hair Mineral Analysis can indicate stress, metabolism type, sensitivity to stress/sugar and immune system levels.
Comparing products With so many choices and variations in formulas, it’s easy for any horse owner to throw up her hands in frustration. There is no easy answer and there is no miracle product that will be appropriate for every horse. Numerous factors come into play such as age, discipline, other feedstuffs, environment and even the horse’s individual metabolism.
One thing that makes it hard to compare products is the units of measure used in the guaranteed analysis. Some minerals are listed as a percentage, some as ppm (parts per million), grams or milligrams. To further complicate things, these can be based per pound, ounce or serving size. In order to compare various products or look at key ratios, common measurements must be used (see sidebar).
•Copper: zinc: manganese 1: 3: 3 •Copper: iron 1: 6 •Potassium: sodium 4: 1
Basic conversion table: 1 lb = 16 oz = 453.6 grams 1 mg = 1,000 mcg 2.2 lbs = 1 kg = 1,000 grams 1 oz = 28.35 grams
Be aware of key ratios
1 gram = 1,000 mg
Mineral balance is a very complex issue because so many minerals interact with each other. For instance, an excess of one can lower the absorption of others, as with calcium and magnesium. When reading a guaranteed analysis, be sure to look at the following key mineral ratios, aiming for a close but not often a perfect match. Horses are tolerant of small variances in these ratios so perfection is not necessary and can be tweaked if needed.
Ppm = mg/kg
•Calcium: phosphorus: magnesium 2: 1: 1
Are natural sources different from manmade? Many holistic experts agree that nutrients from natural sources or in basic forms are assimilated and metabolized by the body more efficiently than their synthetic counterparts. Pat Coleby, author of numerous books on eco-farming and holistic health for animals, states in
Photo: Brandon W. Mosley
as well as some of the vitamins and minerals originally added to the product. These nutrients can further decrease over time (shelf life) and by interacting with all the other ingredients.
Conversion formula T
hese formulas convert guaranteed analysis per pound (common measurement) to mineral measurements in milligrams per ounce.
Percentage per pound to milligrams per ounce, using 7% phosphorus as an example
Convert % to lbs of phosphorus by dividing by 100 Eg. 7 divided by 100 = .07 lbs phosphorus per 1 lb mix
Convert lbs to grams of phosphorus by multiplying by 453.6 .07 lbs x 453.6 = 31.75 grams phosphorus per 1 lb mix
To convert to grams per ounce, divide by 16 31.75 divided by 16 = 1.98 grams per oz of mix
To convert to mg per oz, multiply by 1,000 1.98 grams x 1,000 = 1,980 mg phosphorus per oz of mix
Parts per million (ppm) per pound to milligrams per ounce, using 1,500 ppm copper as an example
Convert ppm to lbs of copper by dividing by 1,000,000 Eg. 1,500 ppm divided by 1,000,000 = .0015 lbs copper per 1 lb mix
Convert lbs to grams copper by multiplying by 453.6 .0015 x 453.6 = .68 grams copper per 1 lb mix
To convert to grams per oz, divide by 16 .68 divided by 16 = .04 grams copper per oz of mix
To convert to mg per oz, multiply by 1,000 .04 grams x 1,000 = 40 mg copper per oz of mix
Natural Horse Care, â&#x20AC;&#x153;1 mg of organic selenium (as in kelp) is equal to 4 mg inorganic selenium in terms of utilization.â&#x20AC;? Therefore, if more natural sources are used in a supplement, the guaranteed analysis may seem low compared to a product containing synthetic or chelated minerals. The results on whether this is true then rest on the horse, his physical state and perhaps a Hair Mineral Analysis.
If feeding amount is 3 oz per day, the totals at left are multiplied times three for daily intake. Equine nutrition is very important for a happy, healthy horse. Without the proper nutrients in the correct amounts and ratios, no horse can reach his full potential. By having the basic tools to read a feed or supplement label, you can make an informed decision based on fact, not fancy packaging or multimillion dollar marketing.
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Performance Products Performance is an all natural combination of seven strains of host specific bacteria, five digestive enzymes and active yeast, scientifically formulated to improve your horse’s health and aid his food digestion. For the best results, make Performance part of your horse’s daily ration. When your horse is stressed-after worming, transporting or competing – add the gel for a more concentrated dose. Remember to get Performance – Feed Performance. 1-800-458-2302 or 1-951-258-5118.
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your horse by Stevi Weissbach
Have you ever felt you and your horse should be able to form a better partnership? Do you want him to look on you as someone he can trust with his life, as well as a buddy, partner, and creative individual who does â&#x20AC;&#x153;fun stuffâ&#x20AC;? with him?
There are many ways to do this, but you should first have a basic intuitive understanding of the nature of horses – what they look for in a leader, for example, and how they react to potentially dangerous situations. We create better relationships with our horses if we try to understand their intentions.
1. Become a true leader Most horses are looking for a leader who will take care of them. A horse is not willing to hand his life over to “just anyone”. The individual who assumes this responsibility needs to be someone who can take care of the herd. A leader respects the likes and dislikes of the herd while guiding them in areas they have trouble coping with. The horse is so concerned about his survival that he will test a person who claims she is “boss”. To accept you as leader, the horse needs to trust you, your judgment, and your respect for him. When he tests you, it is for survival purposes. This is where you can earn a lot of respect. Will you lose your temper or give up on him? If you do not follow through consistently, he’ll know he needs to be the leader. His life depends on it!
HINT Keep in mind that some emotions, such as anger and uncertainty, are threatening to a horse. It will help a great deal if you pay attention to how your horse deals with your emotions.
2. Be truthful to earn respect
Truth is a quality that horses respect. How many times have you heard “leave your problems at the gate”? Other people may not know when you do this, but your horse, who is very sensitive, senses you are hiding something. He will not know what to expect and may not trust you. Show him what you are feeling inside; he might even want to help you work through your problems.
3. Use pressure fairly and effectively
Horses try to escape pressure and learn from the release of pressure. This is part of their survival skills and can be used in training. In order to communicate, pressure is put on the horse, whether it’s guidance from a halter or a dressage whip. When the horse moves in the right direction, the pressure is taken off. The quicker the release, the faster the horse will learn that it is a good thing to do.
4. Offer your heart Offer the horse your heart and tell him of your spirit, your dreams and equine wellness
Have you have ever seen a horse with a “glazed over” or completely panic-stricken look? This often arises from dissociation. The horse is a simple animal, built, bred and brought up to survive. If she feels threatened, she will do everything possible to leave the situation, either physically or by dissociating emotionally. Humans do the same when they feel so deeply threatened that they don’t want to be present in their bodies because the trauma cannot be handled – rape or physical abuse are examples. The horse is a very sensitive animal and should never be pressured to the point where she needs to dissociate. It’s your responsibility to give her the safety, guidance and respect she needs. She will then stay in the present because she trusts you to keep her safe. what you want from the relationship. In turn, he will tell you what he seeks if you’re listening quietly. Horses are meant to be our equals, companion spirits journeying in a world we have to share. We need to take the time to truly convince our horses that we too can “play”, with trust, respect, and fun. On this two-way street,
we can form the most amazing relationships ever dreamed possible.
Stevi Weissbach uses and teaches natural horsemanship as well as a more spiritual and energy based approach to connect with animals. She has found that horses respond best when their behaviors are seen as a potential for growth, respect and trust.
For more information, visit
Call: 1-800-522-5537 today to order & get $10 off your horse’s first month supply!
In this issue of Equine Wellness Magazine, Dr. Dodds discusses some of the vaccines used for common diseases in horses, their benefits and potential side effects, and available information on results of titer testing for these vaccines.
SHOTS! Vaccination – part 2
by W. Jean Dodds, DVM In the first part of this series, we discussed the benefits and potential side effects of vaccinations, which provide an important means of protecting animals and people from clinically important infectious diseases. We also introduced the changing paradigm of vaccinations in veterinary medicine. What impact has this change had over last decade on the way we approach this preventative health measure? A recent survey of the profession indicated that some veterinarians were initially apprehensive about the recommendation to extend the time frame for boosters from one year to every three years or even less frequently. While clinicians wanted to offer what was best for the animals, they were concerned about the lost incentive for clients to visit them annually when vaccinations were not needed. However, partly because of the emerging documentation about adverse reactions associated with routine vaccinations, especially in dogs and cats, veterinarians accepted that they needed to address these concerns with their clients. Today, a decade later,
the public has generally embraced the concept of having their animals seen annually for wellness examinations as well as during periods of illness. The availability and growth of veterinary pet insurance has also helped bring people into the clinics on a regular basis. But while this paradigm shift has been well accepted in small animal practice, relatively little emphasis has been directed towards horses. Hopefully, increased efforts will be made to incorporate the newer science and concepts about vaccination into equine medicine. But in the meantime, it’s more important than ever for caretakers to become as informed as possible about their horses’ vaccine requirements. Let’s take a closer look at what the clinical studies say about equine herpes, influenza and encephalitis viruses, keeping in mind that very little research has been done on the effectiveness of titers to help prevent overvaccination.
Equine herpes viruses Five distinct herpes viruses (EHV) are known to infect horses. Two of them,
EHV-1 (also known as equine abortion virus) and EHV-4 (also known as equine rhinopneumonitis virus), are major causes of abortion and respiratory disease. Recent outbreaks of EHV-1 infection have caused neurological disease at raceways, horse shows, farms and clinics in several areas of North America, with many cases of illness and a few deaths. In addition to abortion in infected mares, EHV-1 strains can cause respiratory disease, although many times horses incubating the virus will only exhibit fever. The virus can be shed from nasal secretions, and stress can precipitate illness. That’s why it’s not unusual to see outbreaks where horses feel stressed, such as at racetracks. Horses exhibiting neurological signs often harbor high viral loads in their blood and nasal secretions, and can transmit the disease to other exposed horses. To control the disease, it is crucial to separate and isolate the sick animal from the rest of the herd. Diagnostic testing for EHV-1 using the PCR (polymerase chain reaction) is useful to establish exposure in the presence of clinically relevant disease. equine wellness
Did you know?
by Dr. Frank Gravlee, DVM, MS, CNS If your horse has trouble maintaining weight or energy levels, you can feed vegetable oil at the proper rates to increase calorie density. But how you do it is very important. Since your horse does not have a gall bladder, he is unable to digest large amounts of oil in the small intestine. Oil given in excess amounts at one time causes the feed material to rapidly move through the GI tract resulting in loose stools and less absorption of the vitamins and minerals in the cecum and large intestine. Under these conditions many nutrients could be adversely affected. There should be no problem in using one cup of oil per 1,000 pounds of body weight per day when mixed evenly with the regular diet of your horse. Horses have been given much more vegetable oil than the one cup recommendation with no apparent adverse effects, provided the feeding level has been built up over a period of weeks rather than days. The possible explanation of the horse adapting to the excess oil is that the micro-organisms in the cecum and large intestine “learn”, over a period of time, to digest the excess oil passed from the small intestine. Dr. Frank Gravlee graduated from
Auburn University School of Medicine and practiced veterinary medicine for several years before attending graduate school at
During a three-year residency in nutritional pathology he received a masters degree in nutritional biochemistry and intermediary metabolism. In founded
Life Data Labs to determine
equine nutritional deficiencies through laboratory testing, and developed individualized feeding programs to correct the deficiencies he discovered.
ten years of research, he launched
Farrier’s Formula. www.lifedatalabs.com
Both activated (killed) and modified-live (MLV) herpes virus vaccines are available, as single or combination (EHV-1 + EHV-4) vaccines. As mentioned in Part 1 of this series, a recent comparison of killed and MLV EHV-1 vaccines found that the latter offered superior protection when tested in an aerosol challenge. Because of the severity and endemic spread of EHV, many equine veterinary groups recommend serial vaccination for EHV in pregnant mares, and booster vaccinations every six to 12 months. I would recommend weighing your mare’s risk of exposure and serious disease during a viral outbreak before following this course of action.
EHV vaccine titers Vaccine titers for EHV-1 and EHV-4 are available. Existing data indicates that serum antibody levels in vaccinated horses can last six to 12 months, especially if an MLV product is used. You can also arrange for a serologic titer to assess levels of residual antibody if your horse recovered from a natural case of EHV infection.
Equine influenza virus They are two types of equine influenza virus (EIV): H7N7 (subtype 1) and H3N8 (subtype 2). The horse influenza viruses evolved from avian influenza viruses, and the recent appearance of clinically significant canine influenza apparently resulted from a mutation of the equine H3N8 virus.
Equine influenza is endemic throughout North and South America and Europe, and is considered to be the most important viral respiratory disease of horses. Disease is characterized by fever, depression, coughing, and a nasal discharge, which develops one to five days after infection, and is sometimes complicated by secondary bacterial infections that may lead to pneumonia and death. Due to the short incubation period and resulting persistent cough, the disease can spread rapidly. In the past two decades, all major outbreaks of EIV have involved the H3N8 subtype.
EIV vaccines The continually mutating influenza viruses in people and animals, including horses, means we regularly need to update the vaccines in order to maintain their efficacy. Researchers say this “antigenic drift” is partially responsible for the previous failures of equine influenza vaccines to protect horses. So what’s changed to improve the efficacy of the vaccine? Until recently, influenza vaccines were the inactivated type. These produce relatively short-lived immunity and poor protection that rarely lasts beyond six months. As well, a critical lag time (immunity gap) between the completion of the initial two doses of vaccine and the recommended booster at 12 months resulted in vaccine failure. Newer approaches to vaccination were obviously needed and resulted in the development of the MLV intranasal
Factors that may affect vaccination
Ask yourself these questions before finalizing a vaccination program for your horse. She may need fewer vaccines than you think!
1. Is she a performance horse that attends a lot of shows/events, or more the “stay-at-home” type? 2. Do you have your own acreage or is your horse boarded at a big facility where there’s more exposure to risk?
3. Do you support your horse with a natural diet and supplements so she has a better chance of fighting off infection?
4. What is your horse’s age? 5. How is her overall health? 6. Which diseases are prevalent in your area?
and recombinant viral vectored and naked DNA vaccines. The advertised intranasal MLV vaccines state efficacy for up to six months, with a decrease in the severity of disease after challenge at one year. Recent studies with recombinant canarypox vectored (rCP-EIV) vaccine showed that two boosters protected ponies from viral challenge and that a third booster dose provided immunity for at least one year thereafter. Thus, rCP-EIV vaccine effectively closes the immunity gap between the initial and one-year booster time frame. Once again, you need to consider your horseâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s exposure to this potentially fatal disease. Performance horses will undoubtedly be more at risk, while â&#x20AC;&#x153;backyardâ&#x20AC;? horses with strong immune systems will most likely be better equipped to recover naturally, especially if no secondary infection develops.
Influenza vaccines are available as single vaccines or in combination with herpes virus, encephalitis, and/or tetanus vaccines. While some manufacturers state that these polyvalent vaccines are safe for horses, ponies, pregnant mares, sucklings, weanlings and yearlings, vaccination of pregnant and very young animals should be done with caution and preferably only in the case of disease outbreaks. The prevalence and severity of equine influenza has prompted many vets to routinely vaccinate. However, in older horses, vaccination has been associated with producing a vasculitis and purpura (bruising), as well as dysbiosis (disruption of normal body functions leading to colic, laminitis, and founder) so it is important to carefully consider the pros and cons of vaccinating an older horse. equine wellness
EIV vaccine titers While serum titers for EIV are available, the short-lived duration of immunity from vaccination or natural disease makes their measurement of little use.
Equine encephalitis viruses Eastern encephalitis virus (EEE), Western encephalitis virus (WEE), and Venezuelan encephalitis virus (VEE) are all mosquitotransmitted viruses that occur in North and South America. These viruses spread rapidly and cause epidemics of neurological disease that require effective prevention and control strategies.
Vaccine titers for all three types of equine encephalitis are available and offer a good indication of the immune status of your horse. Being aware of the common infectious diseases that affect horses, and what your equineâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s risk factors and options are, is your best line of defense against unnecessary overvaccination.
Dr. W. Jean Dodds received her DVM degree from the Ontario Veterinary College
Equine encephalitis virus vaccines Available vaccines are of the inactivated killed virus type, as well as more recently developed MLV vectored vaccines. General recommendations are to give two doses of combination encephalitis vaccine 30 days apart followed by annual or biannual boosters. Dr. Madalyn Ward, a holistic equine veterinarian, recommends giving the two combination encephalitis/tetanus vaccinations at five to six months of age followed by a booster every three years, or sooner in the face of an outbreak. Dr. Ward also recommends using caution when vaccinating older horses, in particular those over 15 years of age.
Equine encephalitis virus vaccine titers
1964. She accepted a position with the New York State Health Department in Albany and began comparative studies
of animals with inherited and acquired bleeding diseases. In the mid-80s,
Dodds moved to Southern California to establish Hemopet, the first nonprofit national blood bank program for animals. In 1994, she received the Holistic Veterinarian of the Year Award from the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association (AHVMA). Dr. Dodds is also a recognized authority on adverse reactions in vaccines. She has lectured at AHVMA conferences, written many articles for veterinary journals on this topic, and is a co-founder of the
Rabies Challenge Fund.
Boone TJ. Respecting equine herpes virus-1. Calif Vet 61(2):18-19, 2007. Desmettre P. Diagnoses and prevention of equine infectious diseases: present status, potential, and challenges for the future. Adv Vet Med 41:359-375, 1999. Goodman LB, Wagner B, Flaminio MJ et al. Comparison of the efficacy of inactivated combination and modified-live virus vaccines against challenge infection with neuropathogenic equine herpesvirus type 1 (EHV-1). Vaccine 24:3636-3645, 2006. Minke JM, Toulemonde CE, Coupier H, et al. Efficacy of a canarypox-vectored recombinant vaccine expressing the hemagglutinin gene of equine influenza H3N8 virus in the protection of ponies from viral challenge. Am J Vet Res 68:213-219, 2007. Rosenthal M. Practitioners concerned about safety, embracing new vaccine recommendations. Product Forum & Market News, Spring 2007 Tizard I, Ni Y. Use of serologic testing to assess immune status of companion animals. J Am Vet Med Assoc 213: 54-60, 1998. Townsend HG, Penner SJ, Watts TC, et al. Efficacy of a cold-adapted, intranasal, equine influenza vaccine: challenge trials. Equine Vet J 33:637-643, 2001.
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Omega in a wafer Essential for coat, hoof and immune system health, Omega 3 fatty acids are lacking in food sources so must be added as a supplement to your horse’s diet for optimum wellness. Majesty’s Omega Wafers are made from flax flour, which has a much longer shelf life than flax seed or fish oil. They also contain rolled oats, cane molasses, apple sauce and other tasty, healthful ingredients. Each wafer provides 1,800 mg of Omega 3 and 800 mg each of Omega 6 and 9. $21.95 per bag www.majestys.com
Save his mouth Walking on comfort
Why shouldn’t your horse’s living quarters be attractive as well as comfortable? ComfortStall’s Deco-Flex Rubber Tile Surfacing is not only functional, but also good-looking and environmentally friendly. The flooring comes in bricks, square-yard tiles and pavers and is available in a range of colors. It’s ideal for slippery concrete aisles or to cover dirt pathways; because it’s made from rubber, it’s flexible and can withstand extremes of temperature and weather. $3.92 to $9.92 per square foot www.comfortstall.com
If you’ve seen how young horses react when they first have bits put in their mouths, you’ll know they don’t like it. Bits can cause pain and stress, interfere with training, and even damage your relationship with your horse. The No-Bit Bridle from Nurtural Horse does away with these issues. This unique bitless bridle controls the horse’s head in a manner similar to a rope halter. Among other features, it includes a patented Circle-X that holds the reinstraps securely under the chin so they stay on the fat part of the horse’s cheek for maximum turning control. Leather: $179.99 Nylon: $69.99 www.nurturalhorse.com equine wellness
POOP PAT R
Non-horse neighbors don’t quite know what to think. “What is she doing over there?” they ask each other as you lean over and poke a manure pile with a stick. Even more confusing is when you lean even closer to take a deep smell. The neighbors might not understand, but savvy horse people do – manure can give you insight into the health of your horse.
Get to know your horse’s “normal” Horses are individuals in many ways and stools are no exception. Certainly, the size of the horse influences the size of the manure balls, but even this is no hard rule. Color will vary depending on the current diet but an ideal consistency is soft, formed balls. Manure is passed
an average of ten to 12 times per day, possibly more often with horses allowed adequate movement 24/7. Changes in manure can be a good indicator of an issue, so guardians should become good “pooper snoopers” and get to know their equine partner’s “normal”.
Consistency is key Once a horse’s “normal” is established,
a change in consistency, whether dry or wet, can be a warning. •Dry, very firm manure may indicate constipation. Often passed in small amounts, the balls may slightly bounce when they hit the ground. They’re often smaller than normal and may be covered with mucus. The mucus hardens as it dries and looks like a lacquer finish. This is cause for concern. •Loose, semi-formed stools should not be confused with diarrhea. Horses who are stressed or starting a diet change may show short-term looseness. It is also common when horses are first turned out to fresh spring grass, and in mares who are starting heat. As long as it is short-term, does not smell foul, and the horse is otherwise acting normally, it’s probably not cause for concern. •Diarrhea is very liquid and often explosive. It should be cause for alarm.
Photo: Kenny Williams, If Your Horse Could Talk
How to tell if there’s too much sand? Sand buildup can cause chronic loose stools. Here’s a simple test. Using a small glass jar, add five to six fecal balls, fill the jar halfway with water and shake or stir until dissolved. Wait ten to 15 minutes and observe the amount of sand in the bottom. An alternative method is to use a rubber veterinary glove, follow the instructions above, hang the glove upside down on a fence, and again wait ten to 15 minutes for the sand to settle into the fingers. More than a tablespoon of sand may indicate a need for lifestyle changes to decrease sand ingestion.
It could be a sign of infection, ingestion of a toxic substance, or other illness. Movements are frequent, may be very foul smelling and soil the legs and tail. Any sign of blood may indicate “infectious colitis”. Get the help of your vet.
Manure can tell you about your horse’s dental balance. Watch for large hay pieces and excessive whole grains. These warrant a visit from a certified dental practitioner. Some medications can also cause extremely loose stools. Long term use of NSAIDS (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) such as Bute or Banamine may produce chronic diarrhea by reducing the blood supply to the colon and cecum. Antibiotics may cause acute diarrhea due to the disruption of beneficial gut bacteria. Be sure to provide a good probiotic product during and after antibiotic use. Don’t worry what your neighbors think. Get out there and become a super pooper snooper! Your horse’s health depends on it. equine wellness
Classic moves 9
training tips for the gaited horse
by Larry Whitesell
As I travel around the country teaching clinics, I often see people trying to make gaited horses gait way before they’re ready. Instead of giving the horse a proper foundation, they try to artificially reproduce this type of engagement by using their leg to push the horse into a bridle (or some other piece of intimidating equipment that keeps him from running off). Not surprisingly, problems usually crop up for these horses.
braces throughout his body, the energy traveling from the haunches can flow forward. He then finds forward impulsion less of an effort. This controlled forward impulsion is what generates gait.
If you have a gaited horse, it’s worth the time to build a good foundation. Understanding and following these basic tips can go a long way to eventually achieving effortless, natural gaits.
Forcing your horse to gait with his head up creates problems.
Focus and relax. This allows the horse’s joints and muscles to become more flexible. When he becomes softer
and more supple, he can obtain the deeper engagement necessary for proper gait. This engaged frame, with the back raised, allows the horse to transfer his center of gravity from the forehand to the area beneath the rider, and ultimately obtain selfcarriage. When we educate the horse classically, removing all tension and
Educate your horse to the bridle and understand he only wants to know one thing: “What do I need to do to keep your hands out of my mouth?” When he learns that the answer is in how he responds with his feet, he will do what
Above and below: The rider uses shoulderin to teach the horse’s left hind leg to come under from her left leg. Notice she does not lean or pull on the face.
you want very generously. If you are pulling on the reins as you say “whoa”, he has no chance. Some riders pull the head to the right to get the horse to turn; if he doesn’t, they pull more. When you pull the head around, the horse is out of balance, and it is hard for his feet to take the body the right way. Your horse needs to know that if you use the bridle, you’re talking to his feet and not his face. Don’t pull on the face for gait. This forces the horse into a false frame – neck up but back dropped, and the hind legs working behind the balance. Most gaited horses can gait this way, but the horse creates defenses such as pacing, rushing the bridle, and becoming herd sour. We need to cure the cause and not just fix the symptoms. The real problem is that the horse’s body is full of tension and braces because he does not understand the bridle, or the rider
does not know how to use it. By increasing suppleness and strength, we remove tension and stiffness.
Remember that the head and neck are key to the horse’s balance system. When you force the neck up before teaching the horse to redistribute his weight, you jeopardize his balance. Developing the muscles to redistribute the weight is important. A young horse doesn’t have equine wellness
the muscles to carry a rider in a collected frame. A horse always pulled out of balance by the bridle becomes anxious or worried and is not safe to ride.
Use the bridle as a preparatory cue; it is not what turns or stops the horse. You should do no more than close your fingers on the rein to let him know you want to turn. He turns because he follows your seat and shoulders. Just close your right hand, turn your shoulders so the horse will turn his, then ride forward
A horse constantly pulled out of balance will have a harder time finding gait because it destroys the rhythm of his feet. A trotting horse can more easily maintain trot while being pulled on, but a four beat gait is more fragile.
so the hind legs drive the front feet through the turn. By closing your fingers on the rein to signal the horse, he will gather himself into a frame to turn right. Many riders just pull to turn, which surprises the horse and causes him to turn out of balance By relaxing, your horse becomes more flexible and obtains a better gait. because he doesn’t have a chance to prepare himself. Others wait until they Work on your riding. The number are at the spot where they want to stop one problem gaited horses have to say “whoa” as they pull on the mouth. is that riders spend most of their time The horse has no chance to reposition his working on their horse instead of their weight and feet, so it takes him several riding. Horses that have the genetics to strides to stop. You don’t wait until you gait would do so if the rider would not are right at a stop sign before braking interfere so much. If we pull on him, lean your car, so it is not fair to expect a in turns, or sit unbalanced, the horse thousand-pound animal to stop in one spends all his time rebalancing. When or two strides without warning. working on circles and reverses, spend
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Sometimes a horse will gait very well when he becomes alarmed or when you turn back to the barn. If he gaits better in situations like this than he normally does, it is because he is motivated to go and therefore has better engagement of the hind legs. Since he is doing this without being cued, he is more or less running away.
more time working on your riding, and your horse will get better at turning.
Remember left and right equals balance. We all agree that whatever we teach our horse on the right side, we have to teach on the left. Yet many believe they can teach collection by holding both reins and driving with both legs. Like everything else, collection has to be taught one side at a time. There are many lateral exercises that can teach a horse to step under with his inside hind leg when you put your leg on: turn on the forehand, leg yield, shoulder in, etc. When you work right side, then left side, the horse learns from your leg cue to step under with the hind leg.
Watch your leg position. It is very common to see riders hold their lower leg off the horse or ride with their feet way forward. It is the lower leg that takes the horseâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s hind legs to the bridle. If the rider holds his leg off or gigs the horse to drive him, then he becomes
Being a good rider doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t just mean you can stay on; it means you can get the most from your horse with the least interference from your equipment, your seat, hands, and legs. Strive for no braces in your horse or yourself. reactive to the leg instead of collecting. If the lower leg is held off, the muscles of the riderâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s inner thigh are tightened, encouraging the back to drop, just as squeezing the seat muscles cause the horse to hollow. Putting the lower leg on encourages the horse to lift his belly, which raises his back and brings the hind legs forward. By sitting on your pockets with your feet in front of you, your pelvis cannot move with the horse and this restricts his movement and flow of energy. Anything that restricts forward impulsion is going to make it tougher for a horse to gait.
COLD THERAPY benefits your horse by PREVENTING... Genetics does make a difference. Some horses will gait easier or sooner than others. Breeders have a responsibility to protect the integrity of the breed by keeping the gait, disposition and breed standard in mind and not being sidetracked by the latest fad in the show ring.
When looking for support, remember all horsemen are trainers but not all trainers are horsemen.
Veterinarians state the most effective and certainly least costly method of physical therapy for the equine athlete is routinely applying cold therapy to the horse’s leg following schooling, a cross country run or a show event. Inflammation is a normal event after physical exercise. This inflammation is like a small brush fire which, if not snuffed out quickly, will rage into a major blaze and become more difficult to control.
and TREATING... Ice horse cold therapy can aid in recovery after orthopedic surgery as well as help reduce: • pain • swelling • inflammation • muscle damage • heat in other tissue
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holistic veterinary advice
Talking with Dr. Joyce Harman
Joyce Harman, DVM, MRCVS, graduated in 1984 from Virginia Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine. She is certified in veterinary acupuncture and chiropractic and has completed advanced training in homeopathy and herbal medicine. Her practice in Virginia uses 100% holistic medicine to treat all types of horses. Her publications include The Horse’s Pain-Free Back and Saddle-Fit Book – the most complete source of information about English saddles – and The Western Saddle Book is on its way. www.harmanyequine.com. Send your questions to: Holistic veterinary advice. email: email@example.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.
What kind of treats can I give my horse with Insulin Resistance or Cushing’s? The key is to find foods that have a low glycemic index (GI). The glycemic index ranks foods according to how much they raise blood sugar levels after eating. Foods with a high GI are rapidly digested and absorbed while low-GI foods, by virtue of their slow digestion and absorption, produce gradual rises in blood sugar and insulin levels. To learn more, visit www.glycemicindex.com.
sweeteners such as Agave syrup, which have very low GI counts. Check your local health food store for Agave and other low-carb sweeteners.
How do you stop cribbing without a cribbing strap?
Treats for a horse that’s sensitive to sugar or glucose include many vegetables and even apples. Yes, apples are sweet, but the sugar in them is mostly fructose which does not trigger insulin. Carrots are much higher in the wrong types of sugar. Slice the apples up so your horse thinks there are many treats.
Cribbing is an addiction in horses, similar to smoking in humans. It releases endorphins that are natural body opiates, like those that make you feel good after exercising. Cribbing can be a learned behavior or an inherited one (though if Mom was a cribber, she might be teaching the youngster rather than passing it along in the genes). In many cases it begins when horses that are stuck in a stall all day get bored. This is especially common with young racehorses that have lots of unsatisfied play energy. Other causes are pain and abdominal discomfort.
Oat-based baked horse treats made without sweeteners are hard to find, but worth the try. Hilton Herbs makes a no-sugar treat called Herballs, and I am sure there are other companies, including very small local places, making sugar-free treats. For some recipes, you can substitute natural
The first thing to do is be sure the horse has plenty of access to the outdoors and friends to play with. Many horses will not bother to crib when outside, or will just do it at feeding time or when all the horses are hanging out next to the fence. If there is no possible access to pasture
and play time, it may be impossible to change the cribbing habit. Next, check your horse to be sure there are no underlying ulcers; these can cause chronic discomfort and make a horse want the endorphins to help relieve the pain. Any pain can contribute to the problem, so check for back pain as well. You will need an acupuncturist or chiropractor to treat musculoskeletal pain, though you can do some massage, check your saddle fit, and perform stretches to help out. Homeopathics, Chinese herbs and western herbs can all be excellent aids to treating ulcer pain, but if you do not change the horse’s environment (turn-out, play, fun riding time), these remedies will not totally fix the problem. Lastly, you can run electric wire along your outside fences. Once the horse knows the wire is there, he will not touch it. Some dedicated cribbers will try to work around it, go to the lower boards of a fence, try trees, buckets or any other surface in a shed or stall. Inside, place buckets on the floor (you can put a screweye in the wall to hang a bucket on the
floor), use a rubber feed tub, and cover all flat pieces of wood with something slippery like metal. Some people put an electric fence wire around the edge of the stall, but you have to be careful to teach the horse about electric fences outside first, so you do not scare him out of his stall. Horses are very respectful of electric and most of the time you can leave it off; just turn it back on when he seems to have figured out it was off.
I have a quarter horse with HYPP. Are there any natural approaches that could help? HYPP can be managed with dietary means, many of which you may already know about. Additionally, a qualified homeopathic veterinarian who practices classical homeopathy should have some success in helping your horse. A homeopathic prescription will be based on your horse’s symptoms. Several of the remedies I have used are derived from potassium or sodium, but there too are many variations of these mineral remedies to pick one without taking the horse’s complete history. Since this is a genetic defect present from birth, remedies may have to be given over the lifetime, as it is not generally possible to change something at the genetic level. But we can manage it and support the horse quite well. HYPP horses do not do well with stress and changes in routine or weather extremes, so be sure you pay attention to these details, even if you are working with a homeopath. Feed changes should be made slowly, especially if the new feed has higher levels of potassium. Exercise schedules should be kept regular, and if you cannot ride regularly, ensure your horse gets plenty of turnout or other exercise time. Keep a good water supply, even while traveling, and have salt available free-choice. Do not use electrolytes with potassium or any of the “light” salts since they are made with potassium chloride. The research says that about 33 gm potassium per meal is the safest, and this can be obtained by frequent small meals rather than one large one. Foods low in potassium are pure fats and oils, beet pulp, corn, oats, barley, wheat and grass or grass hay. Most processed grain feeds contain fairly high levels of potassium, which has been shown to aggravate the condition. If a feed is made specifically for HYPP horses it may be fairly low, but watch how much you need to give the horse. If he is eating three to five pounds of feed, multiply out the amount of potassium by the pounds of feed he eats. Foods that contain medium amounts of potassium should be fed in moderation. These include oats, Kentucky bluegrass, coastal Bermuda grass hays and rice bran (you only need small amounts of this). Foods that are higher in potassium include Timothy and alfalfa, which are known to aggravate HYPP. Clover, fescue and brome hays also creep up to the higher end of the safe level, depending on the source you read.
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Molasses contains a lot of potassium and there is no need to ever feed it. If you use one of the higher potassium feeds, the key is to see how your horse handles it, not what the literature says.
My 23-year-old mare, formerly 100% sound, developed a minor hoof abscess. The vet insisted she be on SMZ (antibiotic) and that she have a tetanus booster. Despite my insistence not to administer a combination vaccine I later learned from the clinic’s billing statement she had actually been given a 3-way vaccine. It is my understanding that horses’ hooves have little circulation, making antibiotic use for abscess of little use. With no other changes in feed, health or environment, this mare had a laminitis attack in both forefeet within 24 hours. I discontinued antibiotics and did all the holistic management things I could learn of. Two years later she is pasture sound and otherwise healthy. Is there any evidence of vaccines, especially coupled with antibiotics, causing a severe laminitis attack? I’d like to prevent something like this occurring again.
This is an example of what can happen with vaccinations. Many horses appear to be fine with multiple vaccines, but many others have reactions that range from mild swellings all the way to death. Laminitis is a common one. In your case, since the laminitis occurred within 24 hours, there can be little question that the vaccine precipitated the problem. In other cases, the laminitis may take several days or even a week to develop, so many conventional veterinarians disagree about the cause. There may have been several additional factors that contributed to the laminitis in your mare. An older horse’s hormonal system is often weak. They may be in some stage of Insulin Resistance (IR) or Cushing’s (which I feel is just a progression of IR). IR horses are often on the verge of laminitis and it does not take much to tip them over the edge, in this case a vaccine. Antibiotics by themselves may not induce laminitis, though they do disrupt intestinal flora. When the gut becomes less healthy, the bacterial toxins that precipitate laminitis can cross over the intestinal wall into the bloodstream. In general, the best holistic treatment for an abscess is to soak the foot in an Epsom salt/water mix and give six to eight tablets of the homeopathic remedy Silicea (in any low potency – 30, 12, 6 X or C) once a day for a few days to help it come to a head and drain well. You can put tea tree oil or oregano oil into the drainage hole created by your vet or farrier, or around the coronary band if the abscess came out there.
Dear Readers: The brand names recommended in this column are suggestions only. There are other brands with similar formulas. As with any product, it’s important to buy a brand you can trust.
Chewing the fat by Dr. Valeria Wyckoff, NMD
Diana, a patient of mine, was amazed when I recommended she add flax meal to her diet. “I give it to my horse - do you mean I should take it too?” I explained that flax meal contains fiber and is a marvelous source of Omega 3 fatty acids; it reduces inflammation, contains soluble and insoluble fiber to help with bowel elimination, has a mild estrogenic effect and is very important to the brain and its development. Eating good fats is one of the most important factors for optimum health. But there’s a lot of confusion and misinformation out there. Is it better to eat no fats? Are all solid fats are bad? What about trans fats, saturated fats, and medium chain triglycerides? How do you translate all this?
Organic meats, dairy foods and cooking oils are a healthier choice.
Watch toxin laced fats The heart prefers fat as its first choice of food. When you eat something with fat in it, your body absorbs it from the intestines into the lymphatic system and straight up to the heart. Then it travels through your body before it gets to the liver for detoxification. Knowing this, you can see why many people feel better on fat-free diets – they’re no longer eating all those pesticides, hormones and toxins stored in the fats of the animals we eat.
Trans vs. saturated fats
What can you do?
Trans fats are the mirror image of the good fats our bodies need. They are created when oils are heated to high temperatures. Our bodies don’t know how to use trans fats, so I recommend avoiding them.
•Include fish, nuts and seeds (especially sunflower and flax seeds) regularly in your diet. If you consume a large amount of fish or fish oils, make sure they are as clean as possible
Saturated fats are solid at room temperature and some, including coconut oil, cocoa butter and palm oil, are reported to be very beneficial for health. The medium chain triglycerides in coconut oil are helpful for the intestines and the heart, coconut milk makes a delicious milk substitute on cereal or in puddings and custards, and the cocoa butter in dark chocolate has been shown to have marvelous heart-healthy properties.
Fish can be good and bad Last but not least are fish oils. People especially benefit from eating wild, cold water fish. Farmed fish does not have the same level of good fatty acids. My concern is that our oceans are very polluted, so fish is not ideal to eat all the time. Fish oils have to be cleaned with chemicals because there really isn’t a good organic fish anymore.
As far back as 500 A.D., King Charlemagne recognized the benefits of flax seed and required every person in his kingdom to eat it daily.
Pregnant and nursing women and those with multiple children need extra omega 3 fatty acids. If you know someone experiencing a mental fog, high doses of flax meal (ground flax seed) for a couple of months can reverse the condition. •Eat only organic meats and dairy products. •Cook with olive oil, coconut oil or organic butter. •Take a basic vitamin packet with clean fish oil twice a day. As you can see, fats aren’t all bad. Many are crucial to your health. You just need to know the good guys from the bad guys. Dr. Valeria Wyckoff
a naturopathic physician and registered dietitian with a practice in
Chandler, Arizona. She is also a Radio Doctor with a weekly talk show (wwwRadiodoctors.net) broadcast in the Phoenix area and on the internet. www.DrValeria.net. equine wellness
Smile Pretty Is your horse getting the right dental care? by Lisa Ross-Williams
When Mary’s veterinarian offered to float her gelding’s teeth as part of his spring check-up, she readily agreed. The vet spent the next 15 to 20 minutes filing off a couple of sharp points, while Mary breathed a sigh of relief, believing her horse’s mouth was taken care of for another year. Unfortunately, what Mary didn’t know was that there’s much more to equine dental care than just a float.
time eating a variety of feedstuffs, using their incisors to tear up native grass, weeds and herbs. Various barks demand the use of their powerful incisors and extensive grinding naturally wears down the molars. Because teeth erupt continuously, this wear is essential. Foals also partake in these practices so baby caps fall out at the appropriate times, allowing the permanents to erupt normally.
If your horse’s mouth is still a bit of a mystery, there’s good news. Gaining a basic understanding of what to look for and what you can do to help is relatively easy and may save your horse the pain and frustration of dental imbalance.
Horses who eat only hay, pellets or cubes, however, or are on a soft monograss pasture, do not use their incisors the way nature intended. Without proper dental care, the incisors become too long, preventing molar occlusion (alignment). Soft or chopped feeds do not require extensive grinding, resulting in unbalanced molar surfaces. This in turn
Why do domestic horses need dental care? In the wild, horses spend much of their
causes sharp points, hooks and ramps, all of which are painful to the horse. Failure to feed at ground level also contributes to dental imbalance. When a horse is in his natural ground-level feeding position, his lower jaw slides forward into the proper grinding position. When fed at shoulder level or higher, he is forced to chew with his molars not properly aligned, resulting in partially chewed food and other issues.
Get to know your horse’s mouth For many people, the horse’s mouth is a mystery. Most are surprised at how big it is – in average horses, it can be as much as one foot deep. It would be impossible to conduct a complete exam or do dental work without a full mouth speculum holding the mouth open. •The lower jaw is narrower than the upper. This results in a very efficient grinding table. Horses chew in a circular motion rather than up and down. If the molar table gets unbalanced, the chewing pattern is hindered. The horse loses his ability to properly grind his food, and his digestion is affected.
Many owners don’t equate performance/behavior problems or body soreness with dental issues and pain, and instead blame the horse for acting out. If repeat visits are required by bodywork professionals such as chiropractic or massage therapists, a dental imbalance may be to blame. •Much like humans, horses have two sets of teeth in their lifetime. The baby or deciduous teeth start to come in at about seven to ten days old. Around two-anda-half years (three-and-a-half for minis), these caps begin to shed and are replaced by permanents. This process is normally finished around five years of age. •Although horses can have up to 44 teeth (12 incisors, 12 premolars, 12 molars, four canines, and four wolf teeth), males usually have 40 to 42 while females have between 36 and 38. Mares normally don’t develop canine (fighting) teeth but occasionally one is found.
•Horses’ teeth continuously erupt until they are between 18 and 20, depending on previous dental care. This extra tooth is stored in deep pockets within the jaw and erupts to the point of occlusion (until it hits another surface, normally tooth). If the opposing tooth is missing, damaged or mis-worn, the stronger tooth will grow too long because there’s nothing to stop it. This can cause other issues, and in bad cases, perforation of the opposite gum tissue and possibly the nasal cavity.
How you can promote dental health •Become knowledgeable about the basics of equine dental care. •Feed at ground level. This can also reduce respiratory issues since the horse won’t be directly inhaling dust and hay particles. •Offer free-choice or multiple feedings of various coarse grass hays. This helps the horse wear down his molars with frequent grinding.
•Is the face symmetrical? Eyes, ears, and nostrils should be level. •Is the cavity and muscle above the eye larger on one side than the other? If so, he may be chewing on only one side for some reason. •Are the incisors level?
Signs and symptoms of dental issues Most horses show some physical signs of dental issues, some more obvious than others. Common symptoms include: •Dropping feed •Excess saliva •Weight loss (not in every case) •Head tilting •Frequent mild colics •Bad breath •Quidding (balled up hay) •Head tossing •Eating too slowly •Hard to bit •Bucking or rearing •Head shyness •Choke •Poor attitude
Lesser known signs include: •Provide trees, shrubs and natural logs if possible. This allows the horse to use his incisors for tearing as well as providing additional minerals he may need. •Have a trained dental professional exam your horse’s teeth once a year Although this doesn’t replace a full exam by a qualified dentist, the following basic check-up can help you spot dental imbalance: •Is chewing circular or up and down? It should be circular.
•Mouth or nose discharge •Dunking food in water •Large hay pieces in manure •Inability or reluctance to pick up leads •Neck, back, or hock pain •Eating hay before grain or pellets •Chewing on sand or rocks (sand colic issues) •Head tilt when turning There are always a few stoical horses who seem to endure dental pain without a complaint or skipping a beat. Ensure your horse has an annual dental exam whether you see signs of a problem or not. equine wellness
Your horse’s age and breed can affect his needs •6 months -1 year: An exam to check for possible defects and ensure the mouth is developing properly. •1-2 years: Wolf teeth are normally removed. Sharp points can develop faster in baby teeth because they are softer; these should be removed along with any hooks, ramps or waves. •2½ - 5 years: Frequent checks for retained caps and sharp points. •5 - 18 years: Annual exams and work if needed. •18+ years: Seniors start to run out of tooth reserves and therefore become deficient in tooth surface. Decreases their ability to chew coarse food and may require a special diet. Proper dental care from an early age can help horses have strong, healthy teeth later in life. •Minis: More at risk for over-crowding or displaced teeth because of smaller heads. •Draft horses: Due to very large teeth, may have issues with proper permanent tooth eruption.
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•Feel softly along the side of the face where the molars are. Does the horse jerk away?
Finding a qualified dentist Many horse owners assume their veterinarians have been completely trained in dental care, but this isn’t the case. Most U.S. veterinary colleges do not teach equine dentistry and it is not required for graduation. Some colleges are now offering an elective, but even this is only a very basic course. You wouldn’t go to your family doctor to have your teeth done unless you were dealing with an infection or a broken jaw. It’s the same for horses.
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done dentistry causes more pain, lameness and neurological imbalance than any other injury and poor management practice. – Judith Shoemaker, DVM Fortunately, there are qualified certified equine dentists who have attended intensive programs through one of the U.S. equine dental schools. These practitioners not only receive in-depth study in dentistry but also anatomy, conformation, horse handling and more. To find listings of these practitioners, visit www.equinedentalacademy.com or www.equinedentistry.com. Once you find a CED, get some references and call them. Not only is his level of dental competence important but so is the way he handles horses. Finding someone you can mesh with and who will help you learn and understand is also very important. This practitioner will become part of your horse care team, so a good relationship is essential. Just like appropriate feeding, fresh water and hoof care, proper dentistry is a necessity for a happy, healthy horse.
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inspirational women Giving back is a way of life for
by Jean McCormick
“The purpose of life is to live a life of purpose.” These words are etched on the very heart and soul of Melanie Sue Bowles, and it is the philosophy by which she lives. The youngest of six children, Melanie and her siblings were raised to find something to be passionate about and give back to the world around them. Melanie has done just that. Along with her husband, Jim, she is the founder of Proud Spirit Horse Sanctuary, one of the longest existing, privately run sanctuaries for horses in the United States. Over 150 abused, neglected, elderly and unwanted horses have come here to live out their lives in peace and safety. But Proud Spirit is not just any sanctuary. It is a place where horses rediscover everything that man and domestication has taken away. The horses at Proud Spirit live as natural a life as the Bowles can give them. They have the freedom to roam and move and run – something they so desperately need to thrive. And they function as a herd, safe in the companionship of other horses – something they desperately need to be happy. It all began when Melanie and Jim were living in Florida, entrenched in the stress of their jobs as fire fighter/medics. They moved to the country in the hopes of finding a peaceful life away from work. Melanie knew very little about horses, but she decided there was room for one on their newly purchased five acres. She bought a Thoroughbred who revealed behavioral problems and couldn’t have been a worse match for a novice. But rather than giving up on the difficult mare, Melanie was driven to educate herself about communicating with horses. It changed her life on a very profound level, and it was then that she made the life-altering decision to create this unique, award winning sanctuary. In the spring of 2005, Jim and Melanie relocated the sanctuary to 320 acres in Arkansas. They are currently caring for 54 rescue horses. When asked about the unyielding responsibility of caring for so many, Melanie responds with
a smile, “I get so much more from these horses than they get from me.” And of the monumental financial commitment, “We live simply,” she says. “Having these horses in my life is far more rewarding than vacations or accumulating ‘stuff’. Making a difference is what matters.” Melanie is the author of two books, The Horses of Proud Spirit, an inspirational true story about the start-up of the sanctuary, and the soon to be released Hoof Prints: More Stories from Proud Spirit, which picks up where the first book left off. Both are a must read for any animal lover. A PBS producer was so moved when she read Melanie’s stories that she filmed a documentary about her work with the sanctuary. The special, entitled “The Horses of Proud Spirit”, recently won an Emmy and is currently airing nationwide. The accompanying notoriety is something Melanie is unaccustomed to. This inspiring woman has always believed that we are happiest when we take the focus off ourselves and instead find ways to give back. And she continues to do so with extraordinary grace. For more information about Melanie and Proud Spirit Horse Sanctuary go to: www.horsesofproudspirit.org
Wellness Resource Guide
EQUINE WELLNESS MAGAZINE
Wellness Resource Guide Inside this issue: • Acupuncture • Barefoot Hoof Trimming • Communicators • Holistic Healthcare • Integrative Vets • Laser Therapy • Natural Product Manufacturers & Distributors • Schools & Training View the Wellness Resource Guide online at: www.equinewellnessmagazine.com
Equimass Anthony Paton. CEMT Campbellford, ON Canada Phone: (705) 924-9289 Acupuncture and massage therapy
Barefoot Hoof Trimming ALABAMA
Danny Thornburg Shelby, AL USA Phone: (205) 669-7409
Richard Drewry Harrison, AR USA Phone: (870) 429-5739 The Horse’s Hoof James Welz Litchfield Park, AZ USA Toll Free: (877) 594-3365 Phone: (623) 935-1823 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.thehorseshoof.com Advertise your business in the Wellness Resource Guide 1-866-764-1212
JT’s Natural Hoof Care AANHCP Certified Practitioner & Instructor Scottsdale, AZ USA Phone: (480) 560-9413 Email: email@example.com
Dr. Sugarshooz Farrier Services & Natural Hoof Care Sunland, CA USA Phone: (818) 951-0235
Michael Moran Sunland, CA USA Phone: (818) 951-0235
Christina Cline Abbottsford, BC Canada Phone: (604) 835-1700 Diane Brown Lumby, BC Canada Phone: (250) 547-6391 Dave Thorpe Vernon, BC Canada Phone: (250) 549-4703
Hoof Savvy Folsom, CA USA Phone: (916) 201-7852 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Hoof Help Tracy Browne, AANHCP, PT Greenwood, CA USA Phone: (530) 885-5847 Email: email@example.com Website: www.hoofhelp.com Serving Sacramento and the Gold Country
Softtouch Natural Horse Care Phil Morarre Oroville, CA USA Phone: (530) 533-7669 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.softouchnaturalhorsecare.com
Serving southern CA
Jolly Roger Holman Professional Farrier/Natural Hoof Care Templeton, CA USA Phone: (805) 227-4835 Specializing in natural trims and BLM Wild Mustangs
Cindy Meyer Carbondale, CO USA Phone: (970) 945-5680
Fred Evans North Granby, CT USA Phone: (860) 653-7946 Phyllis Gregerman North Stonington, CT USA Phone: (860) 599-8766 Sarah F. Block Shelton, CT USA Phone: (203) 924-5644
Dawn Willoughby Wilmington, DE USA Website: www.4sweetfeet.com
Wellness Resource Guide
Barefoot Hoof Trimming
Sound Horse Systems Anne Daimier Deland, FL USA Phone: (386) 822-4564 Website: www.soundhorsesystems.com
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Coreen Harris Emmitsburg, MD USA Email: email@example.com
Brett Barteld Havana, FL USA Phone: (850) 391-4733 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Gwenyth Santagate Douglas, MA USA Phone: (805) 476-1317 Website: www.barefoottrim.com
Hoof Nexus Daniel E. Hofford Ocala, FL USA Phone: (352) 502-4384 Email: email@example.com Website: www.hoofnexus.com
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Frank Tobias AANHCP Practitioner Palm Beach Gardens, FL USA Phone: (561) 876-2929 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.barefoothoof.com
Cynthia Niemela Duluth, MN USA Phone: (218) 721-3094
Jeff Farmer, AANHCP Certified Practioner 927 Abe Chapel Rd. Como, MS USA Phone: (662) 526-0821 Email: email@example.com
All Around Horses Andrew Leech Also serving West Tennessee & East Arkansas Dahlonega, GA USA Phone: (706) 867-4890 MONTANNA Website: www.geocities.com/andrewsallaroundhorses/ Bruce Nock Warrenton, MO USA ILLINOIS Phone: (314) 740-5847 Mackinaw Dells II Website: http://homepage.mac.com/brucenock/Index.html Ida Hammer Congerville, IL USA NEW HAMPSHIRE Phone: (309) 448-2212 Luke & Merrilea Tanner Website: www.mackinawdells2.com Milford, NH USA No Hoof - No Horse Phone: (603) 502-5207 Cheryl Sutor, M.H.G. Website: www.lmhorseworks.com Kirkland, IL USA Phone: (630) 267-0357 NEW JERSEY Website: www.NoHoof-NoHorse.com Carrie Christiansen Yvonne Moorhouse, AANHCP PT Hoof Care Practitioner Marengo, IL USA Phone: (815) 923-6950
Hensley Natural Hoof Care Randy Hensley
Orient, IA USA Phone: (641) 337-5409 Former Farrier - Now specializing in barefoot rehabilitation - Certified Practitioner
Sharon Sanford Campbellsville, KY USA Phone: (270) 469-4481 Ann Corso London, KY USA Phone: (606) 878-0466 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Triple S Farms Julie Sanders Altamont, MB Canada Phone: (204) 744-2487
Browns Mills, NJ USA Phone: (609) 992-3889 Lisa Markowitz High Bridge, NJ USA Phone: (908) 268-6046
Natural Trim Hoof Care Hopatcong, NJ USA Phone: (973) 876-4475 Email: email@example.com Website: www.naturaltrimhoofcare.com Serving NJ, central to eastern PA, and lower NY state
Better Be Barefoot Sherri Pennanen Lockport, NY USA Phone: (716) 434-0146 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.betterbebarefoot.com Natural balance trimming, rehabilitation, and education centre.
Amy Sheehy - Natural Hoof Care Professional IIEP Certified Equine Podiatrist Pine Plains, NY USA Phone: (845) 235-4530 Email: email@example.com Website: www.naturestrim.com Specializing in natural trimming and rehabilitation of all hoof problems.
Margo Scofield Tully, NY USA Phone: (315) 383-6429 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.hoofkeeping.com Natural Concepts Joseph Skipp Wynantskill, NY USA Phone: (518) 371-0494 Email: email@example.com Website: www.naturalhoofconcepts.com
Natural Hoof Care Lisa Dawe, AANHCP Practitioner Oriental, NC USA Phone: (508) 776-6259 Email: Lisa@ibarefoothorses.com Website: www.ibarefoothorses.com Natural barefoot hoof care; specializing in pathologic hoof rehab
Bruce Smith Raleigh, NC USA Phone: (919) 624-2585 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.father-and-son.net
Lost July Natural Hoof Care Nina Hassinger Bridgetown, NS Canada Phone: (902) 665-2151 Email: email@example.com Gudrun Buchhofer Margaree Forks, NS Canada Phone: (902) 248-2235 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.go-natural.ca
Steve Hebrock Akron, OH USA Phone: (330) 644-1954 Emma Everly AANHCP CP Columbiana, OH USA Phone: (330) 482-6027 Email: email@example.com Website: www.barefoottrimming.com AANHCP Certified Practitioner
Sherry Eucker Cuyahoga Falls, OH USA Phone: (330) 928-1912
Becky Goumaz Tulsa, OK USA Phone: (918) 493-2782 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Serendales Farm Equine Hoofcare Services Brian & Virginia Knox Campbellford, ON Canada Phone: (705) 653-5989 Email: email@example.com Website: www.serendalesmorgans.com
Barefoot Hoof Trimming - Communicators
Natural Barefoot Trimming, Easycare Natural Hoof Advisor, Natural Horse Care Services
Barefoot Horse Canada.com Anne Riddell, AANHCP, Hoof Care Practitioner Penetang, ON Canada Phone: (705) 533-2900 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.barefoothorsecanada.com Natural barefoot trimming, booting & natural horsecare services.
Kate Romanenko Woodville, ON Canada Phone: (705) 374-5456 Website: www.natureshoofcare.com
Mary Ann Kennedy Fairview, TN USA Phone: (615) 412-4222 Email: email@example.com Website: www.maryannkennedy.com
Natural Hoofcare Services Anne Buteau, AANHCP Certified Practitioner Shipman, VA USA Phone: (434) 263 4946 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Trac Right Indian Mound, TN USA Phone: (931) 232-3071 Email: email@example.com Website: www.tracright.com
Have faith in the healing powers of nature
Quality Barefoot Hoofcare in Middle Tennessee.
Marie Jackson Jonesborough, TN USA Phone: (423) 753-9349
ABC Hoof Care Cheryl Henderson Jacksonville, OR USA Phone: (514) 899-1535 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.abchoofcare.com Certified hoofcare Professional Training, Rehabilitation, Education & Clinics
Conde Pantoje Molalla, OR USA Phone: (503) 502-1102 Email: email@example.com Website: www.betteroffbarefoot.us Windhorse Creations Mavis Pas Oakridge, OR USA Phone: (541) 782-3561 Website: www.windhorse-creations.com
Bellwether Farm Katrina Ranum Morrisdale, PA USA Phone: (814) 345-1723 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.ladyfarrier.com Walt Friedrich Nescopeck, PA USA Phone: (570) 379-2964
SOUTH CAROLINA Cori Brennan Sharon, SC USA Phone: (803) 927-0018
Horsense - Hoof/Horse care that makes sense Cori Brennan, AANHCP, PT Sharon, SC USA Toll Free: (704) 517-8321 Phone: (803) 927-0018 Email: email@example.com Natural barefoot trimming serving the Carolinas
Charles Hall Elora, TN USA Phone: (931) 937-0033
Rebecca Beckstrom Weyers Cave, VA USA Phone: (540) 234-0959
Pat Wagner Rainier, WA USA Phone: (360) 446-8699 Leslie Walls Ridgefield, WA USA Phone: (360) 887-0529 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Maureen Gould Stanwood, WA USA Phone: (360) 629-5153 Email: email@example.com Website: www.forthehorse.net
The Veterinary Hospital Nancy Johnson Eugene, OR USA Phone: (541) 688-1835 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Wellness Resource Guide
Back To Basics Natural Hoof Care Services Carolyn Myre AANHCP Hoof Care Practitioner Ottawa, ON Canada Phone: (613) 262-9474 Email: email@example.com Website: www.b2bhoofcare.com
Eddie Drabek El Campo, TX USA Phone: (979) 578-8913 Website: www.drabekhoofcare.com
Cameron Bonner Wauna, WA USA Phone: (360) 895-2679
G & G Farrier Service London, TX USA Phone: (325) 265-4250
Mike Stelske Eagle, WI USA Phone: (262) 594-2936
27 years exp. as Farrier and I promote Natural hoof care. I am a field instructor and clinician for AANHCP in Texas
Anita Delwiche Greenwood, WI USA Phone: (715) 267-6404
Gill Goodin London, TX USA Phone: (325) 265-4250 Lone Pine Horse Ventures Bruce Goode, AANHCP Practitioner Vernon, BC Canada Phone: (250) 549-2209 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: c/o www.aanhcp.org Non-invasive natural hoof care; Custom hoof boot fitting services
Scott McConaughey Houlton, WI USA Phone: (715) 549-6380 FHL Horse Care Mark Stuber Ridgeland, WI USA Phone: (715) 949-1002 Email: email@example.com Website: ww.fhlhorsecare.com
Triangle P Hoofcare Chad Bembenek Rio, WI USA Phone: (920) 992-6415 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.trianglephoofcare.com
The Natural Hoof Monica Meer Waukesha, WI USA Phone: (262) 968-9499 Email: email@example.com Website: www.thenaturalhoof.com
Autumn Mountain Sue Mellen Danby, VT USA Phone: (802) 293-5260 Erin Pearson Castleton, VA USA Phone: (540) 987-9507 Flying H Farms Susan Hedenberg Equine Hoof Clinic & Wellness Center Fredericksburg, VA USA Toll Free: (888) 325-0388 Phone: (540) 752-6690 Website: www.helpforhorses.com Barefoot Trimming, Hoof Clinic & Equine Wellness Center
Elizabeth Swank Harrisonburg, VA USA Phone: (540) 434-5286 Lei Ryan Mount Jackson, VA USA Phone: (540) 477-2489 Ann Buteau Shipman, VA USA Phone: (434) 263-4946
Animal Energy Lynn McKenzie Sidney, BC Canada Phone: (250) 656-4390 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.animalenergy.com International animal intuitive offers nationwide consultations in animal communication and energy healing
Communicators - Natural Product Retailers
Wellness Resource Guide
Laser Therapy ARIZONA
RevitaVet Therapeutic Systems Phoenix, AZ USA Phone: (602) 971-4353 Website: www.revitavet.com
Natural Products -
Manufacturers & Distributors
Claudia Hehr Animal Communicator To truly know and understand animals. Toronto, ON Canada Phone: (705) 434-4679 Website: www.claudiahehr.com
Animal communication, worldwide, workshops, books
Animal Paradise – Communication & Healing Janet Dobbs Communication & healing Oak Hill, VA USA Phone: (703) 648-1866 Email: email@example.com Website: www.animalparadisecommunication.com Reiki Master Teacher, Consultations, Workshops
Integrative Vets CALIFORNIA
Caroline Goulard DVM CVA Aliso Viejo, CA USA Phone: (949) 836-3772 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.carolinegoularddvm.com Acupuncture, Chinese herbals, Tui-na
The Horse Mechanic Howard Jesse Serving the Lethbridge, Calgary area Phone: (403) 795-1850 Website: www.thehorsemechanic.com Natural balancing of horses with proper trimming of hooves, toothcare, BioScan & Bicom 2000
Natural Product Retailers CONNECTICUT WASHINGTON
Animal Herbery Greenwich, CT USA Phone: (203) 302-1991 Website: www.animalherbery.com Holistic health products for your horse and pets including Wendals Herbs, Emerald Valley, Tallgrass Acupressure media, Sore No More, The Missing Link, Earthlodge Herbals, Calm Coat, Schreiner’s, books, treats and more!
Young Living Essential Oils Yorkville, IL USA Phone: (630) 730-6608 Email: email@example.com Website: www.youngliving.com/ybimbalanced
Niagara Health Products Dynamite Distributor St. Davids, ON Canada Toll Free: (877) 423-6068 Phone: (905) 262-5036 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.dynamiteonline.com/gloriawoodruff Organic food and supplements for horses, dogs, and cats. Humans too!
Equinatural Blue Ridge, TX USA Phone: (972) 752-5598 Email: email@example.com Website: www.equinatural.com
Schools & Training
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May the horse be with you PO Box 456 Woodacre, CA 94973
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Wanted Acupressure Acupuncture Barefoot Hoof Trimmers Holistic Healthcare Integrative Veterinarians Natural Product Retailers Manufacturers & Distributors
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profile a natural performer
The trend toward natural and integrative equine care is catching on across the world, but can it apply to performance and working horses? Of course! In this column, Equine Wellness highlights performance horses from various fields and disciplines who are living a natural life.
LR Ami B-Line (Cooper) Age: 9 years Breed/Ancestry: Registered Morgan
14.1 hand chestnut gelding with flaxen mane and tail
Shelly Temple, Powhatan, Virginia How they got together: Shelly’s last horse was tragically taken by colic and she wasn’t sure she had the heart to start over again. A friend went to Wyoming to look at some horses and brought back video showing two similar geldings who might work as a driving pair. Shelly couldn’t take both so the two friends drew straws. Shelly got Cooper and they’ve been together for the past five years.
Awards and accomplishments: USEF Combined Driving National Single Pony Champion, USEF Horse of the Year Combined Driving Single Pony, FEI North American Challenge Single Pony Winner, AMHA Open Competition Program, Single Combined driving Winner. 2007: First Place at Live Oak CDE, Second place Sunshine State CDE and First Place Garden State CDE. Selected to represent the USET at the World Pony Championships in Dorthealyst, Denmark. You can track their progress at www.catalystdriving.com.
Natural care principles: Cooper is kept as natural as possible for a horse working at these levels against the toughest competition in the country. He is turned out almost 24/7, which he prefers, and isn’t blanketed unless the weather is extremely severe. Shelly wants to protect Cooper and take good care of him, but doesn’t want him to forget why he is so extraordinary. That means allowing him to keep contact with his environment and other horses.
has natural protection from the environment. He receives chiropractic and massage sessions as needed. Horses competing at the FEI levels are not permitted to use many things that are routinely allowed in other venues, so homeopathic remedies are often employed to ease the expected strains that result from such extensive workloads. Recently Shelly has started to use essential oils and LED technology, and she has used Sore No More for many years with wonderful results.
Tell us more: “Cooper is reserved, almost noble in how he conducts himself in the barn and around the farm,” explains Shelly. “I am careful to not allow him to get too heavy, but he loves his food time! About two hours before his meals, he comes in from his paddock to the gate, stands and stares down whoever is in the barn just waiting for his food to be served.” “I think the natural approach to Cooper’s care makes me more aware of his needs or subtle changes in his work or mood as I’m the person who administers much of his daily care. I think this makes us a stronger team with a very close bond between what we do and what we ‘feel’ about what we do. I think that’s an important element in our work together.”
Advice: “I believe that horses want to be horses first. Performers, yes, companions yes, but first they are comfortable being what they were born to be -- horses.”
Between shows, his ears and muzzle are not trimmed so he equine wellness
Nature’s Bounty by Jessica Lynn
How to supplement your horse naturally
In the wake of the recent pet food recall, we’re more aware than ever that cheap feed ingredients are being imported from other countries and not inspected at our ports. Have you considered that the rice bran/protein that found its way into the small pet food market may also be finding its way into the “bag feed” market for horses? More animal guardians are becoming conscious of the artificial and chemical additives not only in our own diets but that of our animals – from colorants and preservatives to synthetic vitamin complexes and highly processed oils. Many are seeking natural ways to provide their horses with vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids. You can do the same. Start by educating yourself on the nutritional needs of your horse, individualized to the region you live in, then provide natural sources. Here are just a few of nature’s gifts: •Dandelions come to life in the early spring and are a great liver cleanser
and tonic herb. This medicinal plant has been used through history for human conditions such as liver or kidney disorders, including jaundice. It is rich in potassium, magnesium, calcium, choline, iron, silica, sulfur, and vitamins A, B, C and D. Dandelions actually contain more vitamin A than carrots! When using the dried herb form, provide about two heaping teaspoons per day for a week or two at a time. Use no more than a rounded tablespoonful, and for no longer than fourteen consecutive days. You can also feed your horse small handfuls of fresh dandelions while they’re in season.
•Rose hips are one of the richest sources of vitamin C and also contain vitamin A in beta carotene form. They offer thiamine, niacin, riboflavin, and vitamin K as well. Rose hips help horses fight off infections. They also encourage hoof
growth, thanks to their biotin content coupled with flavonoids. For yearlings, use either the powder at the rate of one tablespoon per day, or cut and sifted rose hips at two tablespoons per day. For mature horses, give two tablespoons of rose hip powder or a handful of cut and sifted or whole rose hips.
Rose hip powder is beneficial for young foals during the mare’s heat cycle, when scouring is more prevalent. Use one or two teaspoons per day to help prevent loose stools. •Flax seed contains essential fatty acids, which are vital for hormone production and the absorption of vitamins A, D, E and K. EFAs are also components of very important regulatory substances called prostaglandins, which are responsible for transporting oxygen to the tissues, controlling inflammation, synthesizing hormones and maintaining cellular tissues. They have been found to help produce anti-inflammatory substances in the body
Seeking supplements When horses are lacking something in their diets, they will, if given the opportunity, seek it out in their “natural” environment. They may eat dirt, clay, or manure in order to try to replenish what they need. Wild horses have been observed eating natural clays by stream beds, and even soil if they need minerals. Stalled horses will eat manure if they need the enzymes that would normally come from tree bark, branches and leaves. that are necessary for proper immune function, collagen formation, and the prevention of some arthritic conditions. Some studies have shown EFAs will enhance the integrity of joint and connective tissues as well as bone density. Provide ¼ to ½ cup ground flax per day. •Kelp is the original source of iodine, and comes from the “brown algae” family of plants. It has been used for the natural treatment of under-active thyroid in both horses and humans. A teaspoon four or five times a week is sufficient. Some people offer it free-choice. •Garlic, a source of sulfur, is not something most North American horses would come into contact with in the wild, as it was originally native to central Asia. Garlic has been shown to have some antiparasitic properties against the roundworm Ascaris lumbricoides, the most common type of intestinal parasite.
Use garlic granules to help repel flies and gnats. The sulfur leaves a scent on the horse’s skin that we can’t smell but insects don’t like. Used along with apple cider vinegar, it not only repels flying insects but also provides additional naturally occurring minerals, helps control parasites, and acts as a digestive aid. Feed approximately one tablespoon of dried granules per day.
•Apple cider vinegar is a natural source of potassium and also contains other minerals. Feed at the rate of ¼ cup per day. Be sure to read the label as some of the apple cider vinegar being sold is “flavored” only, and is not the real thing. It doesn’t work the same! •Dolomite is a mineral made up of approximately 60% calcium carbonate (equivalent to 24% calcium) and 40% magnesium carbonate (equivalent to 12% magnesium) – the proper 2:1 ratio. Also known as magnesium limestone, it contains many naturally occurring trace minerals that are easily absorbed by horses.
Use only feed grade quality dolomite with calcium levels above 60% and magnesium around 35% or higher. Add one to two tablespoons daily to feed. Dolomite mined from the Nevada area is lower in lead than sources derived from the east. •Bentonite clay, also referred to as montmorillonite clay, is known as one of the most powerful healing clays for treating both internal and external disorders in humans and animals. Studies show that this “volcanic ash clay” was used centuries ago by some of the early Indians of the Andes Mountains, tribes in Central Africa, and the Australian Aborigines.
A good quality Bentonite clay should be a gray/cream color. It should have very fine, velveteen feel, and be odorless and non-staining. Bentonite clay’s unique structure helps it attract and soak up poisons and toxins on its exterior wall. It then slowly draws them into the interior of the clay where they are held until safely passed through the intestinal track. equine wellness
Along with its cleansing properties and its ability to remove toxins from the horse’s gut, bentonite also contains calcium and many naturally occurring micro and trace minerals. Feed one tablespoon mixed in the supplements with water a couple times per week. •Sea or natural salt, sodium chloride, is essential for the nutritional and physiological processes of all animals, including horses. It plays a big part in helping the horse’s body digest foods as well as transmitting nerve impulses that contract the muscles. Sodium is as essential to life as the air we breathe and the water we drink. In order for the cells of the body to function normally, a salt/water balance must be maintained, especially during hot weather. You can purchase naturally dehydrated sea salt with no additives from health food stores. Offer it free-choice and feed at the rate of at least one tablespoon per day in supplement feed, especially in hot weather when horses drink more water. There are many natural ingredients you can supplement your horse with. You just have to do your research, know what is lacking in your area both in the soil and water, or have your hay tested so you know what to supplement. Adding herbs, free fed trace mineral salts, or some of the above ingredients will help meet your horse’s daily nutritional needs. It all comes down to balance, and a less is more approach! Jessica Lynn is a writer and the owner of Earth Song Ranch, a licensed natural feed and supplement manufacturer based in
Southern California. She has been involved in alternative health care, homeopathy and nutrition for almost 45 years and uses it for her family, including her kids, horses, border collies and cats. She personally formulates and manufactures all Earth Song Ranch nutritional products. Contact Jessica@earthsongranch.com or 951-514-9700 or visit www.earthsongranch.com.
Dust off your cameras! Over $700 in prizes to be won in our
1st Ever Equine Wellness Photo Contest! Enter our Equine Wellness Photo Contest and you could win one of five fabulous prizes! Your photo will also appear in an upcoming issue of Equine Wellness Magazine for all to admire. What better way to pay tribute to your equine partner!
The rules are simple: 1.
Send a digital photo, scanned at a minimum of 5"x7", at 300 dpi resolution in a tif, jpeg or pdf format to: email@example.com or send a good quality hard copy original photo (not a color photocopy) to: Photo Contest, Equine Wellness Magazine, US: PMB 168, 8174 S. Holly St., Centennial, CO 80122 CAN: 164 Hunter St. W., Peterborough, ON K9H 2L2
Please remember to include your name, address and telephone number, along with your equine's name, sex and age (if known) and a short description of the photo. Hard copy photos must have contact information printed on the back of the photo.
You may submit a maximum of two photos of each horse.
All photos become property of Redstone Media Group. Redstone Media Group reserves the right to publish all photos in Equine Wellness Magazine, and on our website. We regret that photos cannot be returned.
Winners will be notified by phone or mail and winning photos will appear in a future issue of Equine Wellness.
Enter by September 30, 2007 for your chance to win!
Win one of these great prizes! 1st prize – Nurtural No-Bit Bridle™ and DVD set from Nurtural Horse
4th prize – In Balance essential oil and autographed book from
2 prize – HoofPrint silver jewelery from Pawprints (retail value $350) 3rd prize – DVD and book set from Tallgrass Animal
5 prize – Organic horse treats from WinTreats (retail value $39)
(retail value $400)
Women & Horses (retail value $75) th
Acupressure Institute (retail value $89)
Thanks to our sponsors:
Tallgrass Publishers LLC.
Digestion dilemma by Amy Snow and Nancy Zidonis
How to create harmonious stomach chi
“If Stomach Chi is good; prognosis is good. If Stomach Chi is not good; prognosis is not good.” This ancient Chinese saying could not be more apt when it comes to horses. As a grazing animal, a horse wants to eat at all times. If he doesn’t, you know he’s not feeling well. In the wild, horses can travel 30 to 40 miles a day, stopping to graze along the way. This nomadic eating regime means they can select the type of grasses and flowers their bodies need and not deplete the balance of nutrients and resources. The herd moves from location to location, directed by their inherent wisdom of knowing their natural physical requirements. Domesticated horses have to adapt to relatively limited physical activity and whatever quality or mix of grass hay is provided. Unfortunately, this often leads to problems such as colic – a word that strikes fear in every horse guardian’s heart – and other gastrointestinal issues. Without realizing it, we often compromise
the horse’s digestive process. Horses are designed to graze with their necks extended to the ground so the grass must pass through the length of throat in small quantities before ever reaching the stomach. When a horse is fed from an elevated source, he is losing most of his capacity to break down the dry grass hay before it reaches his stomach. Being enclosed in a stall for an extended period also compromises his capacity to digest his feed since horses need to move and exercise to enhance their digestion.
When a horse is demonstrating any gastrointestinal distress, consult your holistic veterinarian immediately. Acupressure is used as a complement and not a substitute for responsible veterinary care.
How acupressure can help Acupressure is based on Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and has been used for thousands of years to maintain and build equine health. From the perspective of TCM, a smooth and harmonious flow of Stomach Chi (life-promoting energy) will help the horse create healthy, nutrient-rich blood and not fall prey to stomach disorders. Each organ system has its own energetics which must be in balance for it to
function properly. The Stomach has a partner, the Spleen/Pancreas, that shares in the responsibilities of breaking food down into absorbable nutrients; this is called “ripening and rotting” and is basically a fermentation process. The nutrients derived from grass hay must be highly refined so they circulate in the blood and nourish the other internal organs, muscles, bones, and parts of the body. The Stomach and
Spleen/Pancreas must therefore work in concert to maintain a healthy horse. The challenge is to prevent any energy imbalance within the Stomach and Spleen/Pancreas organ systems. You can do this by offering your horse an acupressure session that supports the healthful function of the entire gastrointestinal tract.
CV 12 St 36
Sp 4 Sp 3
Acupoints for good digestion Stomach 36, Leg Three Miles (St 36), is one of the most powerful acupoints on the horse’s body and is known as the Master Point for the gastrointestinal system. It helps to maintain the balance of Chi for digestion. Spleen 3, Great Brightness (Sp 3), benefits Spleen Yang Chi, regulates Stomach Yin Chi, and can reduce the possibility of food stagnation along the gastrointestinal track. Spleen 4, Grandparent-Grandchild (Sp4), is the Connecting Point linking the Stomach and Spleen energetic channels; it balances the Chi between the two partners. Conception Vessel 12, Sea of Power (CV12) regulates, strengthens, and harmonizes the energy of the Stomach and Spleen/Pancreas.
Point work techniques This acupressure session serves as part of a health maintenance program for horses. Begin Point Work using the directthumb technique. Place the ball of your thumb on the acupoint at a 90° angle to your horse’s body. Apply about one to two pounds of pressure; when you feel resistance, let up on the point slightly and then apply pressure again. Keep both hands on the horse. One hand does the Point Work while the other feels the reactions such as muscle spasms, twitches and other releases. The
Harmonious Stomach Chi Point
St 36 Sp 3
One finger width from the head of the fibula, on the lateral side of the tibia.
Sp 4 CV 12
Located on the distal end of the medial splint bone. Located in a depression on the hind limb, just below the head of the medial splint bone. Found on the ventral midline, 1/2 way between the xiphoid and the umbilicus.
Horses are highly responsive to hands-on energetic work. By stimulating specific acupressure points, also called “acupoints,” you can positively affect your horse’s natural ability to maintain his own energetic balance. hand not performing the Point Work can rest comfortably on the horse.
Use partial body weight; this ensures smooth motion and protects your thumbs and wrists from stress. Repeat this session once every five or six days to maintain a harmonious flow of Stomach and Spleen/Pancreas Chi. The harmonious flow of Stomach Chi is key to a horse’s wellbeing. By making this acupressure session part of your grooming routine, you can help ensure your own equine partner enjoys good GI health.
Amy Snow Equine Acupressure: A Working Manual, The Well-Connected Dog: A Guide To Canine Acupressure, and Acu-Cat: A Guide to Feline Acupressure. They own Tallgrass Publishers, which offers Meridian Charts for horses, dogs, and cats, and acupressure videos. They also provide hands-on and
are the authors of
Point Work is generally performed from front to rear and from top to bottom of the horse. Breathe out while moving into the acupoint; breathe in when letting up on the point. Stay on the point for the count of 30 or more. If the horse seems uncomfortable with a particular acupoint, move on and try it again at the next session.
and online training courses worldwide including a Practitioner Certification Program. Call 888-841-7211, visit www.animalacupressure.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reiki Healing your horse with
by Kathleen Prasad
As treatment ends, some horses will come close for Reiki on the head. Just allow your horse to show you what positions are comfortable. You will often get a gentle nudge as a â&#x20AC;&#x153;thank youâ&#x20AC;? after the treatment.
I happened to be at the barn one day to visit another horse, when I walked by a stall and was shocked by a distraught mare literally writhing in colic pain. Apparently, the cost of surgery was too high, so the horse’s person had decided to “give her one night” to see if she could heal on her own; otherwise, she was to be put down the following morning. With permission, I took the mare out of her stall and into the arena where she could move around a bit more easily. I cradled her head with both hands as she leaned heavily and miserably on my shoulder. She was unable to stand still because of her discomfort, so we walked together. I felt the Reiki pulsing through my hands, and knew that even though they were on her head, the energy would flow like a magnet to where it was most needed. That is the nature of Reiki. After about 20 minutes, the mare gave a huge sigh and was able to stand quietly. She then passed quite a bit of gas and had a large bowel movement. She clearly felt much better and I carefully led her back to her stall and left her to rest. The next morning, she was back to her old self. What is Reiki? Reiki is a holistic energy healing system in which the practitioner channels
healing energy from the universe through the hands. It works by balancing the energy of the body, mind and spirit, supporting the process of self-healing on all levels. Reiki comes to us and the
Some horses will actually come and place the areas of their bodies that need healing into your hands. Others prefer to receive the treatment from several feet away.
modern world through the teachings of Mikao Usui, who lived in Japan in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Originally taught as a system of spiritual
development for people, Reiki is now taught throughout the world as a system of physical, emotional and spiritual healing for both people and animals. How can it help horses?
Reiki can help maintain your horse’s health, speed healing of illness and injuries, and even ease the transition between life and death. Reiki is ideal for use with horses because it is easy to learn and use, is gentle and noninvasive, and yet can powerfully address any health issue a horse may face. Because the nature of Reiki is to create and support energetic balance, it can do no harm and can be used safely on its own or as a wonderful complement to other healing therapies, both allopathic and holistic. Horses love Reiki because they are inherently sensitive and energetic beings who understand its nature. Reiki is a new and special way to deepen our interspecies bond and horses especially appreciate connecting with humans energetically. Reiki also has an irresistibly relaxing nature that just feels good! Let your equine partner choose
Reiki is different from most other holistic therapies in that it relies on the willing participation of the horse for
Tips for success 1. Offer the energy; don’t send it. 2. Allow the horse to move
freely in the treatment space.
3. Try to let go of your ex-
pectations about what will happen: Reiki always works for the horse’s highest good.
When your horse comes close for hands-on treatment, start at one shoulder, then do the other. equine wellness
Pulsating electro-magnetic field therapy Magsan is a new and revolutionary pulsating electro magnetic field (PEMF) therapy device, designed to help with various pathologies and to restore physiologic activity of tissues. made in Germany For more information:
MagSan Vet offers a treatment blanket for back problems and upper extremity disorders and different treatment wraps for tendon, joint or neck problems.
A handheld monitor lets you chose from six treatment programs depending on the nature of the problem.
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success. The practitioner “offers” Reiki to the horse in a flexible way, without forcing the treatment and without expectations of the way the session will unfold. Horses are very sensitive and wise to energetic frequencies and will immediately understand the nature of the healing you are offering. Commonly, a horse will come forward and put his nose into your hands as soon as you begin. He will then choose to take Reiki in the way he needs most.
A basic Reiki course is usually only several hours long. You will be able to use Reiki immediately, but because of its nature as a “practice”, your intention and commitment to daily use is important to deepen your understanding of the healing process.
Normally, a Reiki treatment will consist of a combination of hands-on and hands-off, depending on the comfort and preference of the horse. In rare cases, your horse may choose not to receive a treatment on a particular day; if that happens, try again another time. You will know your horse is open to the treatment by signs of rest and relaxation: licking and chewing, frequent yawning and deep sighs, and/or falling asleep. The average Reiki treatment lasts from 30 to 60 minutes, and ends when the horse wakes up from his “Reiki nap” and moves away. Most horses will even say “thank you” by putting their heads into your hands or nuzzling you before they leave. My horse Kodiak is a very healthy and hearty young paint who loves Reiki. I often offer it to him while he is relaxing in the pasture. I begin by asking permission and just “offering” the energy in his direction. Usually he
Reiki in action He was an off-the-track thoroughbred who was clearly unhappy in his stall. Extremely nervous and high-strung, he had trouble getting along with other horses and would sometimes run himself ragged in the pasture. One day, he began to kick his stall walls over and over again. People walking by would bark “knock it off!”, but other than that, no attention was paid to him. I was concerned he might hurt himself so I left my own horse, walked to his stall window and peered in. I quietly asked, “Would you like some Reiki, sweetheart?” He immediately stopped kicking and looked directly at me. I took this to mean “yes” and began to offer him Reiki from outside the stall. He immediately went over to the corner of his stall, lowered his head, and began licking and chewing. Within a few minutes, his head had dropped and he was sleeping soundly. I quietly walked away, ending the treatment after only a few minutes. Later that day, I alerted my trainer to his previous distress and the Reiki I had given. The next day, my trainer informed me that not only had he stopped kicking the walls, but that he had literally slept in the corner of the stall the whole previous afternoon, night and most of the morning, only rousing himself to eat. I assured her this was a good thing, as body and mind heal themselves best when we are at our most relaxed.
will come over and put his head in my hands for a few moments, giving a sigh or yawn as he relaxes. After a few minutes, he will often turn and graze or nap several feet away from me. He prefers to receive a short but intense treatment that is usually done after only 10 to 15 minutes. He shows me he’s had enough by rousing himself from his doze, coming over and nudging me gently as if to say, “thank you,” then walking purposefully away. Getting started
Although many holistic veterinarians around the world use Reiki to help heal their patients, its use is not yet widespread in the veterinary community. The great thing is that anyone who has the desire can learn Reiki to help improve and support
their horse’s healing and well-being. It is a very effective yet gentle healing system that animals appreciate and enjoy at all stages of life. To get started, find a practitioner in your area and get a treatment. Once you’ve experienced Reiki’s relaxing effects and powerful healing benefits for yourself, you will be anxious to take a course and learn to share this gift with the horses in your life.
Kathleen Prasad is co-author of Animal Reiki: Using Energy to Heal the Animals in Your Life. She is a Reiki teacher and founder of Animal Reiki Source, which offers a variety of animal Reiki training programs, the online course Five Power Animal Meditations, an e-newsletter, a directory of animal Reiki practitioners around the world and more. www.animalreikisource.com.
Horses need fat too Magnetic attraction
You’re probably familiar with magnetic therapy and its healing benefits, especially for arthritis, muscle injuries, and related problems. New from Germany, MagSan is a revolutionary pulsating electro magnetic field (PEMF) therapy device that can be used for a variety of equine conditions, including degenerative joint disease, tendon and soft tissue injuries, lameness, back problems and more. Choose from a PEMF treatment blanket as well as various wraps or a handheld monitor device with six different treatment programs. www.swissvet.com
Seeing the light
Light therapy has been demonstrated to have powerful healing and therapeutic effects on living tissues. Both visible red and infrared light generate at least 24 different positive changes at a cellular level. RevitaVet Therapteutic Systems’ Hoof Boot includes 18 infrared and 24 visible red diodes and is recommended for all types of hoof injuries, including navicular, founder, abscesses, coffin joint inflammation and sole bruises. This therapeutic boot also stimulates hoof growth. www.revitavet.com
Calling all young equestrians!
Registration is now open for the first annual Youth Convention on January 12, 2008, in Louisville, Kentucky. Presented by the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) and the USEF Youth Council, the convention is geared towards young equestrians. The keynote speaker will be accomplished equestrian, coach, author and speaker Jane Savoie, who will talk about competing and how to overcome the fear factor. Also included will be numerous forums held by notables such as Olympic Medalist Karen O’Conner and distinguished Arabian horse trainer Joel Kiesner. www.usef.org
Hay and processed grains don’t contain the same levels of essential fatty acids as pasture forage, which means you need to supply these important nutrients yourself. Cocosoya Oil is a blend of unrefined soybean and coconut oil. This highly palatable oil is more digestible than vegetable oil and contains lecithin and vitamin E as well as unsaturated EFAs. It helps put weight on hard keeper horses, improves coat condition, and is rich in medium chain triglycerides for energy and endurance. www.cocosoya.com
Online animal health convention
Mark September 7 to 9 on your calendar. That’s when the first online Natural Animal World Convention takes place. Founded by Animal Talk Naturally and the American Veterinary Naturopathic Association (AVNA), the event will provide a platform for online continuing education about natural and integrative animal health care. A stellar cast of presenters will share their expertise, including veterinarian Dr. Stephen Blake, Linda Tellington-Jones, Amy Snow, Nancy Zidonis, and Equine Wellness senior editor Lisa Ross-Williams. www.naturalanimalworldconvention.org
Glucosamine with punch
Not all glucosamine supplements are created equal. Some use inferior ingredients or contain fillers or binders. GLC 5500 from GCL Direct is made from pure ingredients and features an exclusive full spectrum combination of all fourbioavailable glucosamines, each with unique properties of absorption and utilization, as well as chondroitin, ascorbate, and manganese. This complete joint formula is in concentrated powder form and helps keep your equine partner at the peak of his performance ability. www.glcdirect.com equine wellness
Horse theft! How to protect
your equine partner
by Debi Metcalfe
Every day, horse thieves rip off unsuspecting owners like Robert Lyn-Kee-Chow. In Robert’s case, an open barn door was the first clue something might be wrong. He never dreamed the horses wouldn’t be in their stalls, but Brandy and Honky Tonk, prized polo ponies, had been stolen along with his truck, trailer and tack. That was in December of 2004, and Robert and his friend Lauren Crowe are still sending out flyers and making contacts in the hopes it will one day bring the girls home. After taking some time from work to find Brandy and Honky Tonk, they still find it hard to concentrate on life. “Is there something else I could do?” Lauren asks. “Someone else I can call? I hate second guessing myself like this but I feel like the girls fell off the face of the earth. How can a truck, trailer, two horses and all that tack just disappear? “We’ve investigated all sorts of people and gone on trips whenever someone called and thought they’d seen something,” she continues. “We probably know every law enforcement
officer in the South. We’ll continue to look but are at a loss as to where to go next.”
National horse theft statistics are hard to come by, but one study from the late 1990s said that approximately 40,000 horses may be stolen each year in the United States. My family knows how Robert and Lauren feel. Luckily, our stolen mare Idaho was recovered in Tennessee nearly a year after her theft. We decided to fight back with the most useful tool we know of – education. We started Stolen Horse International, Inc. (SHI) to help others recover their horses and protect themselves from theft.
Are you at risk? Horses are most commonly taken from barns and pastures, but horse shows
and busy stables where there’s a great deal of traffic can also be a “shopping center” for horses, tack and trailers. Horse thieves know what they’re looking for and they have a plan. If caught, they may face a felony charge but the penalties, anything from probation to a few years in jail, don’t frighten them. They ride the roads checking out pastures, sometimes even taking pictures for buyers who have prearranged the purchase of a specifically marked horse. In one of our cases, an Andalusian gelding was stolen from California. Three years later, the horse showed up in Connecticut, identified by the microchip in his neck. After tracing back through the owners of the horse it was found that he was sold to the first buyer before he was actually stolen from the original owner!
Help keep your horse safe The following abbreviated tips from my
book Horse Theft, Been There – Done That, will help lessen your chances of being the next target. They’ll make it a lot harder for thieves to get to your horse, and you’ll also be prepared in the event that he is stolen.
•Nearest auctions and slaughter facilities •Trainers and riding/4-H clubs •Previous owners •Law enforcement agencies •Animal control and rescue organizations
1. Identification is vital, so ID your horses now
•Current methods include freeze branding, freeze marking, microchips, tattoos, hot branding, hoof branding, DNA, blood typing, trichoglyphs (natural markings such as whirls or dimples), and signalment (detailed descriptions of distinctive features). •Start an identification program yourself. Follow tips from your state identification plan if one exists. •A picture speaks a thousand words. Keep color pictures with your records. Take photos for this season and again when the season changes. You need both sets for identification.
Does your horse lead and load on a trailer? If so, then he is an easy mark. Even if he’s “difficult”, he can become one of the missing.
2. Maintain records and keep them handy •Bill of sale •Breed registration papers •Coggins test
•State veterinarian, livestock investigator and horse council •Insurance carrier
4. Be very aware. It’s better
to investigate a suspicious situation than find out too late that you should have. •Check your horses often. •Change your daily routine so you are not predictable. •Pay attention to your horse’s patterns in the pasture and be cautious if there is a change. •Post a security sign on your property stating that your horses are permanently identified. •Start a neighborhood watch program. Educate your neighbors about horse theft. •Be suspicious of people with the wrong address or those asking questions about your horses. •Write down the license plate numbers and descriptions of strange vehicles riding through your neighborhood. Encourage neighbors to do the same. •Leave a Farm Watch notice with your neighbors when on vacation. •Include vital contact information about your trip, caregivers, police and veterinarians while you are gone.
5. Cause a delay. Thieves like
•Horse identification registration papers •Do you have any other records? Include those too.
to work quickly, so anything that causes delays in getting the horse is a deterrent.
3. Keep contact numbers
•Remove halters from horses and do not hang them by stall doors.
•Farriers and veterinarians
•Install spotlights with motion sensors around the barn.
up to date
Dona Irvin, whose school horse was taken March 10, 2007, knows how easy it is to have your horse stolen. Thieves must have known exactly what they wanted when they crept onto Black Hawk College campus in Kewanee, Illinois and stole Sizzle, an 18-year old strawberry red roan quarter horse mare. Three people were seen on a surveillance video stealing the horse. “Sizzle is the best college horse we have ever had,” says Dona. “She has been an icon of our Black Hawk Equestrian program. She jumps, does equitation, horsemanship, trail, rail and barrels. We have used her in the program for at least 13 years, and she has assisted over 500 students. There is no monetary value that can be linked to her educational value.” Luckily, Sizzle has a better chance than many of being recovered because of her unusual coloring and her ID.
•Install alarm systems in barn and on fence; post signs.
•Surveillance cameras can also be valuable in your barn.
The first 24 to 48 hours after a theft are critical. Being organized equals efficiency.
•Keep fences in good repair and use padlocks and heavy chains on your gates. •Turn the top hinge pin on gateposts down to prevent the gate from being removed easily. •Post warning and no-trespassing signs. •Keep noisy animals on your property such as a barking dog, guinea hen or donkey. •Don’t leave trailers parked near horses and have a trailer lock so it cannot be hooked up easily. If you own a horse you are vulnerable to theft, no matter where you live. Taking the correct precautions will help prevent you from becoming a victim.
of the most recognized and respected
experts in the field of horse theft recovery and prevention and horse identification, Debi Metcalfe founded Stolen Horse International and created the NetPosse network from her personal experience as a victim.
educates others and is
a writer and public speaker on the topic.
is also instrumental in reuniting
stolen and missing horses, tack and trailers with their owners.
Read more Horse Theft, Been There – Done That, available through www.NetPosse.com. in
A guide to the most common problems
Each horse is unique and may experience different dental problems. There are, however, some common issues you should be aware of. 72
excessive table angles and lengths, and other irregularities. These can:
1 2 3 4 5
Create lack of occlusion of the cheek teeth.
sharp canines puncture, lacerate and bruise the tongue; the resulting discomfort causes poor attitude and performance.
Inhibit rostral/caudal movement. Restrict lateral excursion and temporomandibular joint function.
These are razor-sharp edges that develop on the cheek side of the upper molars and the tongue side of the lowers. They can cut into the cheek and tongue and result in lacerations, while any headgear, either bridle or halter, forces the soft tissue of the cheeks into the points, causing pain. This condition also interferes with chewing and can trap food particles.
Cause mastication dysfunction. Create other biomechanical stresses to all parts of the head.
Hooks and ramps
Hooks can become so protuberant that they damage soft tissue and bone and limit proper mastication. Ramps, the sloping table surface of the first and last cheek teeth, can inhibit food entry into the tooth battery, lateral excursion, and rostral/caudal or anterior/posterior movement of the mandible. Both hooks and ramps can be limiting factors when it comes to performance.
Crests and valleys occurring on the table surfaces of the cheek teeth create a wave-like appearance when viewed from the side. The high teeth of the wave over-wear the opposing ones, inhibiting lateral excursion and rostral/caudal movement. Waves also restrict the axial flow of food, TMJ function, and good performance, and shorten the lives of the over-worn cheek teeth.
Canine teeth When deciduous teeth do not shed properly, they can prevent the permanent ones from erupting into their correct position. At times this can be very painful. Often, dental practitioners remove these retained caps. Horses start losing the caps around two-and-ahalf years of age, so itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s important they be checked frequently.
Long or uneven incisors
Incisors that lack abrasion develop
These are small teeth located in front of the first premolars. They are normally present in the upper jaw, and occasionally the lower. Wolf teeth can interfere with bitting and mastication and can be easily broken off. They are normally removed between one and two years of age. Blind or un-erupted wolf teeth are not visible but can be extremely painful for the horse. Rather than coming through the gum, they remain below the tissue and may be irritated by pressure while feeding or bitting.
Located behind the incisors, these tusk-like teeth are for fighting, and are rudimentary in females. Canines that are excessively long can interfere with the mastication process by limiting lateral excursion. In a limited number of cases,
Good dentistry is vital to your horseâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s health, comfort and performance. He should be seen by an equine dentist on a regular basis to correct any abnormalities and prevent future problems. equine wellness
book reviews Title: One
With the Herd
When Liz Mitten Ryan took a leap of faith seven years ago to leave her job and relocate with her husband and herd of horses to a remote 320-acre ranch, she had no idea where it would lead. One With the Herd: A Spiritual Journey describes her new life and what she has learned by living with her 11 horses and communing with nature. Without the restraints of human dominance, her horses are permitted to roam and lead the life of a wild herd. Riding is done with harmony, both horse and rider enjoying a mutually rewarding relationship without force and fear. By recognizing these animals as spiritual equals, Liz has been granted access to a very special relationship in which the herd shares deep wisdom and powerful messages. Woven throughout this amazing book are Liz’s own color photographs and original paintings. This is a must-read for anyone wanting a special relationship with their own herd, no matter what its size. Publisher: Communications/Creativity
Pony Massage for Kids
If you had a horse when you were a child, you’ll know how rewarding the relationship between kids and equines can be. And like many of today’s adult equestrians, young riders are becoming even more aware of their horses’ health and happiness, performance and attitude. Pony Massage for Kids can help strengthen that special bond even further. This DVD is presented by Mike Scott, an equine therapist and saddle fitter, and Katie, who at ten years old is already experienced at riding and showing hunters. With the willing assistance of Daisy the driving pony, Mike and Katie demonstrate a variety of simple massage techniques that can be used to enhance the bonding process and show young riders how to identify muscle tightness and other potential issues. This half-hour DVD is easy to follow and provides children with a good basic introduction to equine massage. Publisher: Equine Massage/Muscle Therapy Productions
horsemanship tips Photo: Mariola Gomez
“Riding from the ground”
by Anna Twinney
Long-lining is a wonderful tool to introduce young horses to pressure on the bit and prepare them for their first ride or harness. It teaches them the basic aids of slow down, stop, speed up, change direction and backing up. It helps them become more comfortable with movement on their backs and around their sides, while gaining confidence and not having to be exposed to the rider at the same time. In the highly sensitive and vulnerable area known as the mouth he will begin to learn to receive aids from your hands rather than taking each cue from your body language on the ground. Long-lining allows you to work your horse on both sides while keeping the same rhythm. You can alter the size of the circle, incorporate trotting poles, jumps or other obstacles such as the tarpaulin. It’s a wonderful way to bring a horse back into work after he’s had time off either with an injury or a holiday. It’s also a valuable tool to build muscle, increase fitness, or purely get the “edge” off your horse in order to ride By applying equal pressure or adapting it when needed, you keep your horse balanced and have extra control in times of need. Anna Twinney is an internationally respected Equine Specialist, Natural Horsemanship Clinician, Animal Communicator and Intuitive Healer. She has recently launched the DVD series Reach Out to Natural Horsemanship (her latest is Demystifying the Round Pen) and conducts clinics in Europe, Australia, Canada and the USA. www.reachouttohorses.com
WONDERING WHAT YOUR ANIMAL IS THINKING or feeling, experiencing behavior or emotional problems with them? Have concerns about their death or dying? To request a telepathic communication go to www.komfortkonnections.com.
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JANET DOBBS – WORKSHOPS AND CONSULTATIONS. Animal communication, Animal/ human Reiki. Deepening the bond between animals and humans. For information about hosting a workshop in your area. email@example.com, (703) 648-1866 or www.animalparadisecommunication.com
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Health NANNOSIL LIQUID COLLOIDAL SILVER &SILVER GEL – One of natures best natural anti-bacterial, anti-fungal & general germ fighter available for all living things. 800-567-4812 or email@example.com BREAK THROUGH! - StemEquine™ and StemEnhance™ naturally supports stem cell release from the bone marrow. Startling results! Listen to 1-800-722-3155 or call 1-888-538-8944. www.patgory.com.
Homeopathy HOMEOPATHY, REIKI – Safe, gentle, non-invasive treatments for your animal companions. Effective treatment for acute, chronic and first-aid conditions. Call Marilyn at 416-697-7122, or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
ASSISI INTERNATIONAL ANIMAL INSTITUTE – Offers basic and advanced animal communication workshops and a Professional Animal Communicator Certification Program. You and a friend can attend our Skills Development Workshop for free by sponsoring it in your local area. Education@AssisiAnimals.org; AssisiAnimals.org; 510-532-5800. OFFERING EQUINE MASSAGE WORKSHOPS taught in small, hands-on classes by an LMT with over 15 years experience. Educational materials and certificate included. Lodging available. Free brochure: 1-800-251-0007, email@example.com www.integratedtouchtherapy.com
ORDER YOUR CLASSIFIED AD 1-866-764-1212 or firstname.lastname@example.org Equine Wellness Magazine reserves the right to refuse any advertising submitted, make stylistic changes or cancel any advertising accepted upon refund of payment made.
If you would like to advertise in Marketplace, please call: 1-866-764-1212 Categories: •natural products •educational
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A web site for those that care about their horses!
Dr. Valeria Wyckoff, NMD, RD www.DrValeria.net
Dr. Valeria Wyckoff is a healer, teacher and radio personality in the Phoenix area. She has a practice in Chandler, Arizona where she specializes in classical homeopathy, nutrition, herbs and listening closely. She is a licensed Naturopathic Medical Doctor and Registered Dietitian. Her down to earth style integrates her multiple life experiences.
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events August 10-29 – San Francisco, CA Fort Mason Center Animals: Compassionate Skills & Support This series of workshops has been designed to assist participants in making a difference by bringing awareness of the role of animals as teachers, companions, healers, and as equal travelers on life’s journey. It has been designed to prepare participants to understand animals culturally as well as behaviorally, and to support others through their grief over the loss of their beloved companions. It has been designed to prepare participants through these understandings to help others get closer to their animals, and to enhance their relationships on a deeper, more satisfying level.
like and how it flows. You will receive the level I Reiki Attunements and then practice giving and receiving Reiki in a full Reiki treatment. Upon completion of day one students receive a certificate certifying them as a Reiki level I practitioner.
Finally, this series has been designed to prepare participants to be professional animal communicators, and to enhance people’s understanding of the animals, so their understanding and comfort with this work can be advanced.
October 13-14 – Reston, VA Animal Communication Workshop Reawaken and acknowledge your ability to communicate with animals. Janet will lead you through the basic steps with guided meditations, enlightening discussion and telepathic exercises.
All workshops may be taken individually, as a series, or as part of the training for Assisi’s Professional Animal Communicator Certification. 88.5 hours. No prerequisites. For more information contact: Education@AssisiAnimals.org August 11-12 – Reston, VA Reiki I This Reiki Level I class is for animal people who want to deepen their relationships with animals and learn ways to heal the animals in their lives as well as themselves. This class will give you an overview of animal Reiki and you will learn the differences and similarities between Reiki for humans and Reiki for animals. Through lecture, enlightening discussion, exercises, observation and practice, Janet will lead you through the basic steps. Students will experience Reiki energy and learn different ways that Reiki can be used as a healing tool for both humans and animals. Day 1 Reiki Level I for humans is the first level of Reiki. Participants will learn the history of Reiki and what it is. You will learn what energy feels
Day 2 Reiki for animals Level I. Students will learn the difference between Reiki for humans and animals. There will be practice sending Reiki to animals. Upon completion, students will receive a certificate of completion. For more information: Janet Dobbs, 703-648-1866, email@example.com, www.animalparadisecommunication.com
This two-day workshop will give you an overview of what animal communication is and will teach you how you already communicate with your animal companions, animal friends and even wild animals. Your understanding of animals will deepen as you discover how they view the world. You will learn how to quiet and focus your mind, opening the channel between you and the animals as you send information and receive back from them their thoughts, images, feelings, messages, etc. This is an amazing heart to heart, mind to mind and soul to soul connection. Animals can touch our hearts like nothing else. They have the ability to give unconditional love and compassion. Animals are amazing and wonderful teachers. At the completion of the workshop you are likely to see and understand animals in a very different way. Day 1 You will be introduced to the basics of telepathic communication with animals. Learn how you already communicate with animals telepathically. Learn how to experience the animals’ perspective and see through their eyes. Enjoy meditations and interactive exercises that will show you how to open your heart and connect to an animal heart to heart as you learn how to send and receive communication. Deepen your communion with all of life.
Day 2 Learn how to quiet and focus your mind when being with animals. Practice opening the channel to get across to animals and to receive what they communicate telepathically in thoughts, images, impressions, feelings, messages and other ways that one may receive. For more information contact: Janet Dobbs, 703-648-1866, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.animalparadisecommunication.com October 31-November 4 – Glen Rose, TX Fossil Rim Wildlife Center Communicating with the Wild Ones This workshop is held at the Fossil Rim Wildlife Center in Glen Rose, Texas (www.fossilrim.org). This beautiful sanctuary provides the opportunity to communicate with a wide variety of plants and animals – white and black rhinos, giraffes, cheetahs, ocelots, zebras, red and Mexican wolves and gazelles, among others – over 1,100 exotic, threatened and endangered animals of 60 species from around the world. White-tailed deer, wild turkeys, roadrunners, jackrabbits, vultures and armadillos are among the indigenous animals that peacefully co-exist on expansive pastures with non-native species on 2,700 acres. You will spend time amongst the wild animals in their home at Fossil Rim and participate in spiritual ceremonial preparation for communicating with animals, plants, trees, flowers and grasses. Learn to establish rapport with the wild ones and bring your own interests for conversing with them. Develop topics of interest to be addressed, from basic tangible survival issues to animal politics to deep philosophical perspectives. Communications are shared with Fossil Rim caretakers to benefit the animals. Facilitated by Dr. Jeri Ryan. Prerequisite of Assisi’s Skills Development Workshop or a basic animal communication workshop with any teacher. Part of Assisi’s Professional Animal Communication Certification Program. May be taken for edification purposes without pursuing certification. For more information contact: Education@AssisiAnimals.org, AssisiAnimals.org
Post your event online at: www.equinewellnessmagazine.com/events equine wellness
by Lida Sideris
When my friend Alison called, she didn’t exactly ask me if I wanted to go riding.
she exuded patience and gentleness, traits the Icelandic are well known for.
Climbing up was a cinch. Suddenly I was eight feet tall.
“I’ll be over in 15 minutes with my horse.” Those were her exact words.
“She’s a good girl,” Alison said. “But she isn’t really used to being ridden much yet.”
“Have fun!” Alison said as she gave Lilia a light tap on the rump.
I had mentioned to her that I was considering a horse of my own. Never mind that I hadn’t sat in a saddle since I was 16. Hoof steps echoed in my memory. Fear mingled with exhilaration. My kids would be watching. Could I still do it? Isn’t it said that riding a horse is like riding a bike? Then again, bikes don’t have different personalities. Thank goodness Lilia was a small horse (less space between me and the hard, unyielding ground). At about 14 hands tall, she resembled a large pony. A beautiful, golden-toned Icelandic with a flowing brown mane,
Great! I thought I’m really not used to riding much yet. First, my ten-year-old, Michael, got atop, and Alison led him around at a walk. A wide smile never left his face. This gave me time to review my knowledge of riding skills. Climb up on horse’s left, feet lightly resting in stirrups, hold on with inner thighs, sit straight and tall and don’t look down. Oh yes, and don’t hold on to the saddle horn, a surefire sign of an inexperienced rider. Unless no one is watching, of course. “Your turn!”
Lilia started walking. I sat a bit wobbly on the saddle at first, but soon found my balance. Lilia had a sturdy, sure gait, front legs lifted as if marching. With her head slightly turned to one side, she kept one soulful, brown eye on me and one on the road. She was sizing me up. Was I to be taken seriously or should she just pretend I wasn’t there? Gradually, I began to relax and so did she. We rounded a corner of the road where no one could see us. Lilia had stopped eyeing me. I had a choice: continue at this leisurely pace and have a fair time, one that would barely be recalled in the future. Or I could test the waters I once swam in to see how they felt today. With a tap of my heels, Lilia broke into a faster gait that sent me bouncing up and down on the saddle like a runaway ping pong ball. One more tap and she was at a gallop. What a blast! We were flying. Suddenly I had sipped from the fountain of youth and was 16 again. When I returned, Alison and the kids were eagerly waiting. I didn’t say a word. My wide grin said it all.
If you have a heartwarming or humorous equine story you’d like to share, send it to email@example.com