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Special: Horse Health Section Focusing on Prevention & Preparation

Rusty’s Story...

Saying goodbye is never easy

•Calendar of Events •Stable Spotlight •Young Rider Profile





McCrae Farm holds jousting clinic–March 1-3, 2013, Springfield, IL McCrae Farm’s, “Year of Education” series of seminars ended with a grand finale of horsemanship and history. A Jousting Clinic held on Dec 22, 2012 was well attended with eight pairs of riders and horses all of whom honed their riding skills while getting a brief history on armor and horsemanship . The day began with a short lecture and “show and tell”, by Leopoldo Lastre. Lastre is an expert in Medieval combat. He brought a whole line of armor and accessories and explained the history and purpose. He gave a short demonstration on the handling of swords and daggers and then donned the armor himself. The horse and riders then went on to do jousting exercises. These exercises included catching rings mid-air, targeting hanging rings and “fake” battle with hand-made wooden swords. All of these exercises were

great demonstrations on balance and grace atop a horse. Lastre and Patrick Bailey, another history buff and expert in Medieval combat, then demonstrated traditional combat tactics used by knights in armor. These battle tactics were mostly used astride a horse, unless one was purposefully dismounted by his opponent. Good balance and riding skills were imperative then. McCrae Farm, a French Classical Dressage facility in Grayslake, IL, has been home to many educational and informative seminars this past year. These seminars have been very diverse in topics, yet they all have the same foundation. McCrae Farm believes, “The goal of dressage is to have complete harmony with your steed. We are accomplishing that through the use of education, in an intelligent and compassionate manner.” Debra Rubel and Mack successfully capture their ring while cantering.

Brad Gosnell on Ivy and Lauren Schultz on Sansao practice their “combat” skills with their hand-made wooden swords. Jill McCrae, center, instructs.

Leopoldo Lastre and Patrick Bailey perform some traditional combat moves. The moves were originally done on horseback with the intent to dismount the rider.





Purina Animal Nutrition Launches New Hydrataion and Joint Health Products Purina Animal Nutrition is expanding its line to include three electrolyte supplements, a joint supplement and a hydration hay block product. The supplements have been developed through a partnership with U.K. based Science Supplements These products include · ElectroEase™ Electrolyte Supplement – Geared for performance horses with technology that helps maintain hydration without irritating the stomach, a common issue with other typically harsh electrolyte products on the market. · ElectroEase™ Electrolyte Paste Supplement – Developed for use right after strenuous exercise, competition or traveling, or during prolonged exercise. Contains twice the electrolytes of most paste electrolytes. · HydraSalt™ Salt Supplement – Provides horses of all classes with the sodium needed in proportion to what is typically lost in sweat to help maintain proper hydration. Convenient powder form with

UI Hosts Large Animal Emergency Response Training Earlier this winter 150 veterinary students, veterinarians, and first responders (such as firefighters) attended a two-day training session on how to deal with large animals involved in emergency situations, ranging from natural disasters such as Hurricane Katrina to barn fires to overturned transport vehicles. The Large Animal Emergency Rescue Training Program, held January 26 and 27 at the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine, was the first such program to be offered in Illinois. It was organized by veterinary student members of the Illinois Student Chapter of the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) and the Production Medicine Club (PMC). Veterinarians often play a key role in response to emergencies involving animals, but live training opportunities like this are rare. National consultant Rebecca Gimenez, of Technical Large Animal Emergency Rescue, was the key presenter in the awareness course. Topics covered included an introduction to emergencies with large animals, transportation incidents and other scenarios, supplies and equipment used in rescues, roles at the scene, emergency transport of animals, field euthanasia, and evacuation planning. Hands-on learning and demonstrations included: •

Approaches for maneuvering and rescuing injured large animals

Overview of cutting equipment, rescue rope and other equipment on fire & rescue trucks

Heavy rescue rope and mechanical advantage use in large animal rescue

Attendees included veterinary students from the University of Illinois and eight other U.S. veterinary schools; firefighters from departments in Urbana, Naperville, and Humboldt, in Illinois and Medina, Ohio; first responders from the Illinois Fire & Safety Institute, the Illinois Veterinary Emergency Response Team, and the Missouri Emergency Response Service Large Animal Rescue; personnel from the USDA-APHIS Veterinary Services; and area veterinarians, veterinary technicians and veterinary technician students. A grant from Pfizer Animal Health helped fund this training opportunity for veterinary students from Illinois and around the country.

minty flavor to ensure strong and consistent intake. · FreedomFlex™ Joint Health Product --- Provides performance, hardworking and senior horses with premium grade types and levels of ingredients to support joints and mobility. A double-blind, placebo-controlled crossover research study shows the fast-acting ingredients can help produce results in as little as 14 days. In addition to the supplement products, Purina Animal Nutrition has independently developed Hydration Hay™ Original Horse Hay Block, a forage product designed to keep horses hydrated after competition or strenuous exercise, and while on the road. Each two pound block soaks up five times its weight in water in about 10 minutes and masks the taste of foreign water sources, supplements and medications, helping ensure horses receive ample water and nutrition while on the road.  To learn more about these supplements, visit www.purinahorsesupplements. com or visit your Purina® feed retailer.





Features Features 6 Sustainable Trails for Equestrian Use Protection and Support for Joint Health 6

Proper design , construction, maintenance and use is imperative for horse trails. by Susan Stormer of S&S Trail Services, LLC and Deb Balliet, ELCR

7 8

Purina’s “Freedom Flex” aids in joint health. by David Marlin, Ph.D.



9 14 10 19


Rail Horse to Trail Horse Don’t let cabin fever ruin your rail horse...hit the trail! Are you listening to what your horse’s featuring Dan Grunewald, by Lisa Kucharski body is telling you? Behavioral problems can stem from a lack of flexibility. Se Habla Caballo? by Jim Masterson

An American student practices the universal language of the horse in Peru. by Lisa Kucharski

Unlucky 2013? Horse Health Section A series of articles focusing on various aspects of horse health: Water Worriers to Water Warriors


Midwest Horse Source Connecting all breeds and disciplines of the Midwest Horse Industry KucharskiPublishing Publishing ©©2012 2013 Kucharski Editor/Publisher Sandy Kucharski Associate Editor/Web Manager Lisa Kucharski Allied partner - Land o’ Lakes Purina Feed Paul Homb, Account Manager

Nine tips for stepping into water crossings. advice from Tracy Porter, by Lisa Kucharski

Published six times per year: January/February February/March March/April April/May May/June June/July July/August August/September September/October October/November November/December December/January

Equine 9-1-1

A rundown of common equine health problems and emergencies. by Dr. Chris Downs

‘True Love’ can turn you around. Vital Signs

An eye-opening natural horsemanship lesson. by Kindra Callahan Learn to recognize what normal TPR’s are for your horse. by Heather Smith Thomas

Class Act Local horsemen and a college student pair up to film a movie in Woodstock, IL. Stable Spotlight: photo and text Janice Fischer Visit Victory ReinsbyTherapeutic Riding Center. by Andrea Andres

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equine nutrition:

Protection and Support for Optimal Joint Health By David Marlin, Ph.D.

Daily exercise and the rigors of competition are some of the most common causes of joint injuries in horses, injuries which can lead to a considerable amount of lost training time. While a horse’s body has a tremendous capacity for repair, it is not uncommon for damage to exceed this capacity. In such instances, feeding a health and support supplement for joints is an ideal solution for protecting against joint damage and helping the horse’s body to repair ongoing damage. Wear and tear on the skeletal system of a performance horse, particularly the cartilage surfaces of

joints, may be an inevitable consequence of exercise or simply getting older. Degenerative joint disease (DJD) sometimes referred to as osteoarthritis (OA), is believed to increase with age and is often seen in active performance horses. Horses’ joints act as shock absorbers, providing a lubrication system to reduce the friction between the joint surfaces during movement. The articular surfaces (on the ends of bones within a joint where they meet) are protected by a layer of slippery, spongy cartilage. When properly lubricated, the cartilage allows for near-frictionless move-

ment of the joint along with the ability to absorb the shock being transmitted up the limb from the impact of the foot on the ground. The joint itself is contained within a joint capsule, which attaches to both bones and is stabilized by ligaments. An essential component of normal joint function and health is continued lubrication of the joint, which reduces the damaging effects of friction. If the fluid is absent, the joint will begin to grind itself away, in the same way a car engine without oil will quickly seize up. The risk of developing OA increases with intensity and duration of exercise, years in training, time spent on hard ground, and the amount of jumping exercise. Concussive forces, or violent shocks to a joint, involved in many equestrian sports leave the horse vulnerable over time. This has fueled an ongoing debate over the importance of volume of work versus quality of work in achieving the right balance between training and general wear and tear. Ultimately, a good training and qualification program should strive to minimize the amount of impact on the joint, while achieving optimum cardiovascular, respiratory, muscular, skeletal and psychological fitness for the task at hand.

Supporting Joints with Purina® FreedomFlex™ Joint Health Product Providing a health and support supplement for joints is often one of the best remedies for OA. Recently, Purina Animal Nutrition partnered with U.K.-based Science Supplements to launch a line of horse supplements that includes FreedomFlex™ Joint Health Product, which contains high quality ingredients tested against the stringent research standards that both Purina and Science Supplements are known for. This means that Purina Animal Nutrition products are proven to work before being released. Dietary joint supplements are intended to reduce inflammation and pain in joints. Several compounds are crucial in joint supplements for optimal support of joint structure and function. FreedomFlex™ Joint Health Product is a premium scientific formula that contains beneficial levels of chondroitin sulphate and glucosamine, which are crucial for the effectiveness of joint supplements. Key ingredients at ideal levels help stimulate the synthesis of collagen, necessary for joint support. Purina® FreedomFlex™ Joint Health Product includes effective levels of additional premium active ingredients such as MSM (methylsulphonylmethane) and omega-3 fatty acids, both of which possess antiinflammatory properties. Studies have shown omega-3 fatty acids are crucial to the normal synthesis of collagen. As a result of such high levels of premiumgrade active ingredients, results can be seen as soon as 14 days. The new line of supplements available in the United States can be found at your local Purina dealer. To learn more, visit or talk to your local equine specialist.



equine sports medicine:

Are you listening to what your horse’s body is telling you? provided by Jim Masterson, Equine Bodywork Therapist

How often have you overheard someone say something like, “My horse does just fine picking up the canter lead in one direction, but it’s more difficult going the other way. He throws his head when I first ask him, and it just feels a little rougher.” or, “My horse makes such a drama about putting on and off his bridle, and even his halter. He throws his head straight up and acts like like it’s the end of the world!” There are various levels of behavioral issues that come up in training or riding that may affect the performance of your horse. Some behavioral problems such as trailer loading, spookiness (high strunged-ness?) or bolting for the barn are simply that; behavioral issues that can be modified with training. Other, more subtle issues might have to do with differences in lateral movement such as bending, turning, spinning or lead changes. And others may have to do with ability to use the hind end in stopping or collection, resistance to the bit, or outright refusal when asked to do certain things. It’s important, though, to be aware of when the behavior might have to do with physical pain or discomfort, or the onset of this. A common, obvious example would be the head-shy drama queen/king described above. In my experience, head-shyness in the majority of cases is a result of pain and tension in the poll. This could have come from outside trauma such as hitting the head, or excessive pulling back against being hard-tied. However, pain in one part of the body can develop from a seemingly unrelated issue in another part, and head-shyness/pain in the poll is a good example. A a common source of pain in the poll in horses, especially working horses, in my experience, is soreness in a front foot or lower leg, although other problems such as dental issues, a sore back or excessive pain in the sacral area are also related to the poll. Not only is the horse telling you that something’s bothering him upstairs - and I don’t necessarily mean mentally - but it may also be a sign that there’s something else he’s been covering up, that you may want to know about. Not only may the poll itself be an issue, but what’s causing it, if gone unnoticed, may eventually become a problem requiring veterinary or long term treatment. A thorough veterinary or dental exam may uncover a hidden or chronic problem associated with the head-shyness. Once the primary - or causing - issue is taken care of, some type of bodywork or therapy to release tension in the poll, as well as the rest of the body would be a good next step. Following up with suppling exercises, the owner can help to keep the horse’s poll and neck flexible, his head down, and hopefully a smile on back his face. Horses do things for a reason, and it pays for the owner or trainer to understand what that might be. Whether it’s a subtle difference in movement or something that’s creating a training challenge, by paying attention to what your horse’s body is telling you, you may be able to avoid training and physical issues with your horse.

Jim Masterson, Equine Bodywork Therapist for the 2006, 2008, 2010 and 2012 USEF Endurance Teams, and for equine athletes competing in FEI World Cup, Pan American and World Equestrian Games competitions, teaches a unique method of equine bodywork to horse owners and therapists in which the practitioner learns to read and use the responses of the horse to touch, to release tension in key junctions of the body that most affect performance. This is an effective and rewarding method of bodywork that anyone can use to improve performance, while at the same time opening new levels of communication and trust with the horse.



Unlucky 2013?

Special Horse Health Issue: Preventative Measures If you’re even the least bit superstitious, the fact that we are heading into the year 2013 might be a bit unnerving. One of a horseman’s biggest fears is equine health emergencies. But, we can ease a lot of those fears if we take preventative measures such as vaccinations, regular wellness check-ups and doing our best to maintain a safe environment for our animals. We can also prepare for emergencies by educating ourselves. The more we know about equine health and first aid, the better we are equipping ourselves in the event we have to call on that knowledge to handle a situation. The importance of having an established relationship with a veterinarian or field service is imperative for every horse owner. We are also very fortunate that in our region, we have several outstanding equine veterinary hospitals and surgical facilities. Two such facilities are spotlighted here:

Merritt & Associates Equine Hospital is a state-of–the-art equine veterinary and surgery facility located in Wauconda, IL. They provide cutting edge technology to assist their skilled veterinarians, diagnose and treat your horse. For specialized services, routine or critical care at your barn or in their hospital 24/7, contact:

The Morrie Waud Equine Clinic is an advanced Equine Hospital in Delavan, WI. Three board certified Equine Surgeons are on staff to to provide top notch care for your horse. They specialize in equine lameness/ orthopedic conditions and provide 24/7 emergency care. Contact:


847-526-9550 26996 N. Darrell Rd Wauconda, IL 60084

N6255 Church Rd., Delavan, WI 53115

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E-q-u-i-n-e 9-1-1:

Knowledge = Emergency Preparedness by Dr. Chris Downs of Merritt & Associates Equine Hospital

The phrase “equine emergency� is very broad in its definition. It may be defined as any issue with your horse that might jeopardize its future quality of life or athletic soundness if left untreated immediately. Due to their size and unique anatomy, horses may present their owners with any number of emergency situations. The most important thing you can do as a guardian and advocate for your horse is to have a good relationship with your routine equine veterinarian and local referral veterinary hospital. They are, ultimately, the best resources for you to turn to in an emergency and should be able to direct you in your decision making process. The better able you are to communicate effectively with them, especially in stressful situations, the better care the horse gets which provides the best chances of a successful outcome. While the number of different types of emergencies horses can get themselves into is innumerable, I’d like to focus on some of the most common: colic, wounds, severe lameness, and ocular disease.


Colic is one of the most common emergencies and is very distressing for most horse owners. Common causes include spasmodic colic (cramping), gas colic, impactions (constipation), displacement of the intestines (malposition), and torsion/volvulous (twisting) of the intestines. Less common causes include liver disease, inflammation of the colon, severe dehydration, or abdominal hemorrhage. Fortunately the vast majority of horses that colic require minimal intervention if treated appropriately and rapidly. For this reason you should be able to recognize the common signs of colic in your horse early, as time is very critical. Keep in mind that these can range from very subtle clues such as being slightly off feed or laying down more than usual, to obvious signs like rolling, pawing, and kicking at the belly. Horses with severe signs of colic can be dangerous to handle because they may violently collapse, roll, paw or kick. Sometimes, the best thing you can do is leave them alone in a safe open place such as an arena until your veterinarian arrives or advises otherwise. Calling your veterinarian at the first sign of colic is highly recommended. This may not necessitate a visit, but it allows your veterinarian to help you offer your horse the best treatment possible. Colic may be broadly sub-divided into two categories; those requiring medical intervention and those requiring surgical intervention. Medical therapy includes administration of oral fluids/electrolytes, administration of anti-

inflammatory drugs, or administration of intravenous fluids. These may be accomplished at the farm or you may be referred to a hospital for increased monitoring and aggressive fluid therapy. Surgical therapy for colic is a daunting undertaking for the uninitiated horse owner and involves transporting the horse to a hospital with specialized facilities and personnel to perform emergency abdominal surgery to correct the issue. I strongly recommend is discussing colic and the options available to treat it with your primary care veterinarian or your local referral hospital BEFORE you need their services!


Wounds are also a very common equine veterinary emergency. Small wounds can actually become life threatening and conversely very large wounds may heal with minimal intervention due to the complex anatomy of the horse. Any wound that you are concerned with should be discussed with your veterinarian as soon as possible after it occurs. Time is an important factor in the effective management of wounds, primarily when related to the ability to suture wounds closed.

Knowing how to apply direct pressure to a wound is a critical skill. This does not mean applying a tourniquet. It means consistent, firm pressure focused right on a bleeding vessel or area. You can do this with a finger and a thick wad of gauze or a pressure bandage with a wad of gauze or towel focused only on the bleeding area.

Severe Lameness

Severe or non-weight bearing lameness is always an emergency and may represent fractures or severe tendon/ ligament injury. Mild lameness can often wait for a scheduled appointment. Severe lameness should always be taken seriously and when in doubt, you should call your veterinarian. When presented with severe lameness, always confine the horse in a stall or other quiet area that limits anxiety and mobility until the veterinarian can examine the horse. Often, digital radiographs may be performed on site for immediate answers. The most common cause of sudden severe lameness is sole abscess and sole bruise. However, fractures, infected tendon joints or tendon sheaths and other problems can also cause non-weight bearing lameness.

Eye Inuries

Disease affecting the eye should be thought of as an

The most important thing you can do as a guardian and advocate for your horse is to have a good relationship with your routine equine veterinarian and local referral veterinary hospital. The most important factor in assessing the severity of a wound is not how large the wound is, but where it is located in relation to critical structures such as tendons, ligaments, bone or especially a joint/tendon sheath. Any wound involving the eye is an emergency situation, as are most wounds involving the abdomen and chest. Blood loss is rarely encountered as a life threatening problem in horses. Some exceptions are immediately after foaling, severe nasal hemorrhage arising from the guttural pouch in the throat latch area, or deep lacerations to the neck or groin involving the major vessels (carotid artery, jugular vein, or femoral artery and vein). The vast majority of severe wounds stop bleeding before enough blood is lost to be life threatening. It is important to be able to control bleeding.

emergency as well. The eye is a vulnerable, sensitive, complex and vital organ. Disease processes of the eye can progress quickly, resulting in irreversible damage and potentially permanent blindness. The most common cause of emergencies involving the eye relates directly or indirectly to trauma. Call your veterinarian immediately when your horse has an eye problem. Use a quiet, darkened stall and/ or a fly mask to protect it until your veterinarian arrives. I have briefly touched on some of the common emergencies that we assist clients and their horses with in our practice at Merritt & Associates Equine Hospital. We invite you to contact us for information on how to handle future emergencies that may arise with your horse and if you are in our area stop by and pick up your free emergency poster.



Vital Signs: Know

What’s Normal for Your Horse

by Heather Smith Thomas A horse’s temperature, pulse, and respiration (TPR) can give a good indication of whether he is healthy or sick. Fever and pain elevate temperature, breathing, and heart rate. A quick check can tell you if he might be suffering from illness, colic, or some other problem. Check each horse when at rest and not exerting. “Normal” rates are averages, such as a pulse of 36 or a temperature of 100.5. If you take each horse’s pulse, temperature, and respiration rates a few times at rest, you will know what is “normal” for that horse, and it is good practice in case you have to check him in an emergency. If you know what a certain horse’s normal temperature, pulse, and respiration (TPR) are at rest, you have a better idea whether they’re abnormal when you suspect he’s sick. This information, coupled with your description of other symptoms, helps the veterinarian determine the seriousness of the problem. TEMPERATURE: Normal body temperature for a horse ranges from 99° to 100.5°F on average. It is generally lowest in the cool of early morning and a little higher in the evening after he’s been active, especially if the day has been warm. A horse might have a

temperature of 98°F on a cold December morning and 10l.8°F on a hot August afternoon. For taking temperature there are some new devices that are much easier to use than the old rectal thermometers, but in a pinch any rectal thermometer will do. If you don’t have an animal thermometer, attach a string to the end of a human rectal thermometer with masking tape or duct tape. When taking the rectal temperature of a horse that’s not used to the procedure, stay relaxed and work close--with your body against his hip and stifle, left arm over his rump. Gently rub his tail area until he relaxes, raising his tail a little instead of clamping it down. Then you can slide a lubricated thermometer into the rectum. Shake down the thermometer to below 96°F so you can get an accurate reading. Have the end well lubricated with petroleum jelly or your own saliva (a little spit works fine) so it will slip in easily and not cause discomfort. Aim the thermometer slightly upward, rotating it a little as you go. The twisting motion helps the thermometer go in more easily. If the horse tries to clamp his tail down, gently hold the tail to one side. If you insert the thermometer properly, without poking the sides of the rectum or causing any discomfort, he won’t fret.

Insert the thermometer all the way in, leaving only the very end (with string attached) visible. For accurate reading, the thermometer must rest against the rectal wall. If it’s stuck in a fecal ball the reading will be low, which can be deceptive when you’re trying to determine if he has a fever. If the thermometer doesn’t go in easily or gets stuck in manure hard to push in), take it out and try again. Leave it in for 3 minutes. PULSE: The pulse, or heart rate, of a healthy horse is 36 to 40 beats per minute, on average. Every horse’s normal is different. One may have a normal resting pulse of 28, and another’s normal may be 44. Foals are a little higher. Athletic, fit horses tend to have lower resting pulses than horses who have never been in top physical shape. Take your horse’s pulse when he is resting to find out his normal rate. It’s easiest with a stethoscope (placed at the heart girth behind the left elbow) but not difficult with your hand if you know where to feel. A good place is along the lower jaw where the big artery runs across under the bone. Move your fingers along the bottom of the jawbone until you find the artery. It feels like a small, firm cord. Press lightly on it with your finger to feel

the pulsing blood. Another place you can feel the pulse is at the fetlock joint— pressing your finger against the artery that runs just under the joint on either side of the foot. An easy way to determine pulse is to count for 15 seconds if you have a watch with second hand, then multiply by 4. This is quick and handy, especially if the horse doesn’t want to stand still for a whole minute. If you wish, you can do it a couple of times (15 seconds each) to double-check your figure. You can also check pulse directly over the heart, just inside the left elbow, by feeling with the flat of your hand against the ribcage. The actual heartbeat is two beats in one — easy to distinguish if you are listening with a stethoscope. Count each lub-dub as one beat. The pulse can become elevated with exertion, excitement, nervousness, pain, fever, or other serious problems. RESPIRATION RATE: Respiration is easy to determine — just watch the movements of the horse’s nostrils or flanks. Count as he inhales or exhales, but not both. Just as in taking the pulse, it is easiest to count for 15 seconds, and then multiply by 4. Normal respiration rate in the average horse at rest is 8 to 10 breaths per minute, if weather is cool and he’s not excited.

Normal Vital Signs for a Horse at Rest

Temperature: 99°–100.5°F (37.2°–38°C)

Pulse: 36-40 beats per minute

Taking a rectal reading

Pulse can be taken with a stethoscope...

Respiration: 8-10 breaths per minute ...or along the lower jaw.


Better Safe Than Sorry... provided by

Lessons in Equine Emergencies Mistakes are lessons of wisdom. Thankfully for our readers, we have a personal story they may cash in on without having to make this mistake themselves. In the early days of our farm, we would home make our cross ties with rope, tape, and snap hooks. The flaw in our design came with removing the snap hooks once they were damaged, for the whole system had to be undone to remove the rope from the eye of the snap hook. The easier path was to simply clasp a new carabineer on the cross tie loop, leaving the broken snap hook in place. Enter Milos, that is, two time Circuit Champion Milos. On a routine day, Milos was hooked into such a cross tie with a damaged snap hook. Milos’ natural curiosities lead him to try and figure out what exactly this extra piece of hardware was doing on his cross tie. Through bobbing and shaking his head, Milos unexpectedly landed the broken hook into the corner of his eye. Naturally, Milos had a flight response and attempted to pull back from the cross tie. The damage was done. The hook ripped a gash in Milos’ face that would need immediate, professional medical attention; in addition, Milos was at risk of losing his eye, an injury that would undoubtedly end his show jumping career.

The factors leading up to our medical emergency include characteristics of horse farms every equestrian should be aware of. Many accidents are caused by the horse’s environment. Removing potential hazards from your farm is the best preventative measure you can take to ensuring your horse’s safety. If there is one place Murphy’s Law holds true, it’s the horse world; if you see a hazard, remove it immediately. How many broken snap hooks do you think we have on our cross ties today? The other factor in our emergency comes from the behavioral traits of horses. Not only are our four-legged friends naturally curious of all things, they also have an instinctive flight-or-fight response. Such behaviors make our horses extremely accident prone, as seen in the case of Milos. Fortunately for Milos, panic was not in the lexicon of our staff that day. An experienced groom immediately noticed the injury and jumped into action, calling it to the attention of everyone in the barn. The groom knew exactly where the first aid kit was and called for a woman’s brazier to aid him in forming an absorbent bandage. The bra, being fashioned over Milos’ eye and around his ears, would not only help the bandage stay in place but would also apply steady, even pressure to the wound. Meanwhile, other members of the farm readied the trailer. Milos was soon on his way to the closest Equine Emergency Center. Having been notified in advance of our arrival, Milos was immediately treated by Emergency Veterinarians. The doctors’ skill and knowledge prevented any further damage to the injury, and Milos was able to make a full recovery.

Although our farm had shortcomings in preventing this accident from happening, the response was executed promptly leading to minimal consequences. Most of life is defined by how we react to situations. Having an emergency plan in place facilitates mental rehearsal that prevents panic. Here are the actions that we used and you should too in the event of an emergency. · Calm the horse to prevent further injury, providing hay can be a good distraction. · Get help and delegate responsibilities. Keep your veterinarian’s phone number in a visible location. · Prepare a first aid kit and store it in an accessible place that everyone is aware of. · Stop the bleeding with a sterile absorbent pad by applying firm pressure to the wound. · Do not medicate or tranquilize the horse unless specifically directed by your veterinarian. · Know in advance the most direct route to an equine emergency center; call them ahead of time so they know you’re coming. · Make sure your horse is current on their tetanus vaccine. · Keep medical horse records handy

Keeping this emergency action plan in mind, the importance of preventative safety remains paramount. Daily inspections of the environment your horses live in goes a long way in preventing emergencies. We at Safety Check Inc. are trained in hazard analysis and accident prevention. For an equine safety consultation or barn walkthrough, please feel free to contact us at (815) 475-9991. Happy trails everyone! Works Cited: Barrett, Jennifer G., DVM, PHD, and Marion DuPont Scott Equine Medical Center.

“Equine Emergencies and First Aid.” N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Jan. 2013. “Guidelines to Follow During Equine Emergencies.” American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP). Bayer Animal Health, Feb. 2011. Web. 16 Jan. 2013. Orsini, James A., and Thomas J. Divers. Equine Emergencies: Treatment and Procedures. St. Louis, MO: Saunders/Elsevier, 2008. Print.




The Winning Edge ©2013 by Jennifer Lindgren

Wish your horse came with an owner’s manual just like your car? Horse ownership seems to be a never-ending learning process. The more you think you know, the more you realize you have to learn. Each day with horses can be quite different from the day before, presenting challenges to make us become better horsemen. Most horse knowledge comes from years of experience and countless hours of advice from top trainers, veterinarians, and farriers. Many of us had to live it to learn it. Here is my list of the 13 most important things that I tell every horse owner to never forget. How many do you know?

1. How to identify and treat colic. Colic

is one of the most common and serious ailments that horses suffer from. It is a general term referring to stomach distress. Even the most carefully monitored horses can suffer a colic attack. A mild colic can quickly turn life threatening if not treated quickly and properly. Mineral Oil and banamine are must haves in every tack box. Learn the signs and symptoms and seek expert help when needed.

2. Change all feed slowly.

Most horsemen know that grain must be changed slowly to prevent stomach distress. What they don’t realize is that changing hay rapidly can also cause colic. Since hay is the majority staple in most horse’s diets, hay changes have a huge effect upon the digestive system. Buying hay from the same farmer is smart business and good horse sense. Purchasing from an auction based upon price alone often costs more in the long run.

3. How to identify and treat founder.

Founder is a chemical or metabolic imbalance in the horse that affects the blood flow into the hoof.

13 Things Smart Horse Owners Know

There are varied causes of founder, the most common being too much grain, obesity, adverse reactions to chemicals and emotional upset. Founder often begins days before you see its symptoms. Immediate action and veterinary care is necessary to prevent further damage. Eliminating grain from the diet and administering Bute are often recommended for treatment.

4. How to analyze hay. All hay is not created equal. Be a smart consumer. The nutrient quality of your hay or pasture is more important than that of your grain! A horse’s hay needs vary according to their body type, breed and discipline. A racing thoroughbred eats differently than does a weekend trail mount. One farmer’s grass hay may be a lush grass mixture while another’s might be roadside grass. Protein and nutrient contents can vary widely. Most universities with agricultural programs will analyze your hay for you. 5. How to give a shot.

Accidents and emergencies are never planned. If the vet is miles away, you may need to act quickly, especially during colic. Ask your vet to teach you the proper way to give an injection and keep the needles safely on hand.

6. How to remove a shoe. Waiting on a farrier

to remove a twisted or loose shoe may lead to serious problems. It is better to take a bad shoe off, than to leave it, risking tendon or ligament damage. Removing the shoe is easier than you may think and your horse shoer will be happy to teach you how to do so safely

7. How to clean a horse’s eye. Even though

the horse’s eye is designed with a third eyelid to help keep out debris, sand, dirt, shavings, and dust can get inside and cause irritation. Clean, damp, washcloths

should be used to wipe the exterior of the eye on a daily basis. An irritated eye can be flushed with sterile eye wash (available at drug stores) not saline solution.

8. Horses are grazers. Lots of small feedings are better than a few large ones. Horses should be fed in a natural, head down position. They are not giraffes. Minimize parasite exposure by feeding in a clean, dry area. 9. Water is critical to health. Very cold water can cause stomach distress and lead to colic. Never give cold water directly after a hot workout, instead allow small sips of warm water. Horse’s prefer their water temperature to be between 45°F and 65°F. Many horses will drink less water in the winter, become dehydrated, and risk impaction colic. 10. Footing matters.

You don’t want to stand on concrete all day, step on rocks, stand in water, or run through sand that is too deep. Why should your horse? Bad footing leads to long-term injuries and poor movement. Maintain your arenas, stalls and pastures for sound, happy legs.

11. How to make an emergency halter.

A horse without a halter isn’t easy to catch. It isn’t unusual to attend a show or trail ride where a horse has escaped from his stall or trailer, without his halter. Using a lead rope or belt to temporarily lead a horse to safety is an important skill.

12. How to tie a quick release knot. This is the only knot you should ever use when tying a horse. It allows you to quickly release it in an emergency but makes it difficult for the horse to untie himself.

13. Your horse does speak,

language. Learn how to listen to him.

in his own

Tack & Craft Sale Saturday, March 23, 2013 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission $3

Over 20 vendors Great deals on tack Tour the Farm Hooved Animal Humane Society 10804 McConnell Rd. Woodstock, IL 815-337-5563


Checkerboard Carrying on the brand

Mark Johnson joins the Purina team as Animal Nutrition Sales Specialist.

Purina Animal Nutrition would like to welcome Mark Johnson to the team of industry professionals that serve Purina customers and retailers in the Upper Midwest Region. Mark comes to Purina after having spent over 17 years as the Agricultural Specialist at Kline Creek Farm in Winfield, IL. There, Mark worked extensively with draft horses, as well as cattle, sheep and chickens. Mark developed and implemented educational programing for Kline Creek Farm staff, volunteers and the public about equine and livestock training, nutrition and management. He was for the selection, management and training of all of the horses at the Farm. Mark will be glad to share stories about the countless hours working behind “the business end” of a team of Percheron horses. Mark, his wife Amy and daughter Emily live in Sandwich, IL on A&M Ranch. There they board a few horses and Amy is a passionate horseman and actively involved with reining horses. Emily is a recent 4-H alumnus, where she was active in horse and sheep projects, and is currently a college student in Oklahoma. Mark is a graduate of Oklahoma State University with a degree in Animal Science. The family works together on their A&M Ranch Southdown flock. Teaching and sharing information is one of Mark Johnson’s greatest passions. Regardless of whether it is helping young 4-H members or working with groups of veteran owners or producers, Mark brings a unique blend of technical expertise and entertainment to the program. “I had the good fortune of working with a lot of talented folks growing up. My parents, in- laws and industry mentors did a really great job building a solid foundation of fundamentals in nutrition and management. Not everyone is that lucky! Shows aren’t just won in the ring, they are won doing the everyday stuff right, every day.” You can anticipate seeing Mark Johnson, Sales Specialist, Purina Animal, Nutrition, at many horse activities in the area. He has been getting out and becoming familiar with many of the Purina retailers in the area. Mark is looking forward to meeting those folks that share his passion for horses, livestock and spending time with those folks who do the same. Interested in learning more about Purina Animal Nutrition, our feeding programs and a way to save money on your feed bill? Contact Mark.





Living the dream... SPOTLIGHT ON HORSE KIDS Name:

Allison Nimick Age:

16 Home: St. Charles, IL

How long have you been involved with horses and how did you get started?

I have been riding for about four years. I got started at my friend’s neighbor’s house. She had a small barn with two horses and we worked in exchange for lessons.

What are your favorite horse activities/ disciplines?

My favorite is hunter jumper because I like the slow, flowing look of the horse.

Tell us about the horse(s) in your life-

I lease and ride/show a large helicon pony mare, name Jayney. Last summer was my first season with her doing pony equitation and pony hunter divisions. She is a bossy pony who loves to jump. She also enjoys dropping her head after the jumps to try to get you off. The second horse in my life is a seven-year-old Thoroughbred, named Ava. She is my first horse, and was my Christmas present this year. I was rehabbing her from and injury for about a year and she has now been sound for a good year, so now we are working under saddle.

What horse-related clubs/organizations do you belong to?

Illinois Hunter Jumper Association

What would be a perfect day for you? My perfect day would be getting up early and riding the pony I lease during sunrise. Then, riding my new horse, Ava for a while and teaching her something new. Then at about lunch time to make them both soupy bran mashes with electrolytes and apple juice. And then end the day with a nice long trail ride with my friend, Becca.  What

is your biggest challenge with your horse?

My biggest challenge would be finding the time to ride consistently. With all the school work it is hard to find time to ride everyday.

What is your most memorable horserelated moment (so far)?

Falling off three times in one day at a horse show, twice in the ring being judged, and once in the schooling ring.

Who do you look up to in the horse world?

My trainer Liz Debeir-Berkos because she is so supportive and makes every experience a learning one.

What have horses taught you?

Horses have taught me to be patient; when you fall down you have to get back up and that has given me a strong work ethic.

What other activities/interests do you have aside from horses?

I like to play viola in the school orchestra, as well as babysit about once a week for my neighbors.

What grade are you in and what are your plans for the future?

I am a sophomore and I plan to work in the horse world, maybe being a trainer or owning a barn. I would also possibly like to study journalism and build my writing ability.






MARCH 1-3 – Illinois Horse Fair. Illinois State Fairgrounds, Springfield, IL. Contact or 217/5296503. Visit http://www.horsemenscouncil. org/HorseFair/.

Adding a flying lead change


I bought a short stirrup large pony for my daughter but he has not been trained to do flying changes of lead on course. Can he still be trained to do this?  Can we be competitive at shows without the flying changes?  Thank you.  Roxanne; Racine, WI


A horse or pony can be trained at any age to do a flying lead change. Of course, with a pony you have the added issue of trying to find a small enough trainer to ride a pony, but sometimes a very good junior or child rider will suffice and can assist in the «training». Remember those flying changes once «installed» should be very easy, or fairly easy for your daughter to do. Basically automatic. You don’t want a situation where your young daughter is learning to negotiate a course at a horse show complicated by trying to school, or worse, train the animal.  I’m not saying there aren’t kids who do this, however, it can sure put a damper on learning.   Additionally, you DO need a flying change of lead in short stirrup to be competitive at any horse show.  Actually, it is important for any jumping horse at any level to be successful in any jumping discipline.  Could you go and compete? Absolutely. Could you get a placing if everyone else in the class is not up to par? Possibly.  However, for your daughter›s confidence I don›t think it is a good idea to approach it that way for very long.  When an amateur rider goes to a horse show, the horse and rider should at least meet the basic requirements of the class that you are entering.  From there, you can start to finesse your rides and riding and become competitive, but without a basic fundamental that is required it is quite difficult.  It would be the same as entering an under saddle equitation class and not knowing how to post the trot.  The good news is that if your pony is healthy and sound then he can be trained to perform this task.   Thank you for the excellent question. 

Send in your questions... ...pertaining to hunters, equitation and jumpers for The Perfect Round column. Email to:

MARCH 2 – (Rain Date March 9) Heartland Horse Show Series Show, Valley Water Mill Park Equestrian Center, Springfield, MO. Visit MARCH 3 – Lake County Mounted Posse Tack Sale, VFW Hall, Antioch, IL. Contact Vickie Wancho 847/542-4243. MARCH 11 – McHenry County Horse Club general meeting, Speaker MCCD, HAHS, Woodstock, IL. Visit MARCH 15-17 – Missouri All Arabian Show & Lois Kemper Memorial Dressage Show, Region XI Trail & Western Riding, National Equestrian Center, Lake St. Louis, MO. Contact Pamela Scoggins 217/363-7753. MARCH 16 – Basic Horse Mechanics 1 Clinic, Four Winds Equestrian Center, Salem, WI. Contact Teri 262/537-2262 or Visit MARCH 17 – FVSA Spring Auction, Fox Valley Saddle Assoc., Hampshire, IL. Contact Remmer Schuetz 815/732-4090. Visit MARCH 22-25– Trail Ride with Chad Kelly, Monett, MO. Contact or 815/210-1309. MARCH 23 – Tack & Craft Sale, Hooved Animal Humane Society, Woodstock, IL. Contact 815/337-5563 or visit MARCH 23-24 – USDF Instructor Certification: Riding Workshop, Sunflower Farms, Bristol, WI. Contact 262/857-8555. Visit


APRIL 21-22 – Brighton Spring Competitive Trail Ride, Howell, MI. Contact Lisa Germann APRIL 27 – FVSA Spring Warm-up Show, Fox Valley Saddle Assoc., Hampshire, IL. Contact Laurel Bradley 847/464-4355. Visit APRIL 27-28 – USDF Instructor Certification: Teaching Workshop, Sunflower Farms, Bristol, WI. Contact 262/857-8555. Visit APRIL 28 – Educational Open House, McCrae Farm, Grayslake, IL. Contact 847/546-5164 or visit APRIL 28 – FVSA Open Show, Fox Valley Saddle Assoc., Hampshire, IL. Contact Sandy Kucharski 815/568-6772. Visit


MAY 4 – (Rain Date May 11) Heartland Horse Show Series Show, Valley Water Mill Park Equestrian Center, Springfield, MO. Visit MAY 4 – Paws N Hooves Tack Sale, McHenry County Fairgrounds, Building D, Woodstock, IL. Contact Suzanne Langan 815/790-4460 or MAY 4-5 – Beyond Horse Massage: The Masterson Method 2-day workshop/ seminar, Hobart, Indiana. Visit http:// cat_listevents/-.html. MAY 4-5 – Melanie Michalak musical freestyle clinic, Kelly’s on 41 Equestrian Center, Wadsworth, IL. Contact Linda Kelly, Barn: 847/662-5144 or Cell: 847/9510670 or Email Visit MAY 4-5 – Jake Biernbaum Worshop, 3 Star Parelli trainer, Diamond Acres, Woodstock, IL. Contact holistichorse1@, 815/210-1309 or visit

APRIL 6 – (Rain Date April 13) Heartland Horse Show Series Show, Valley Water Mill Park Equestrian Center, Springfield, MO. Visit

MAY 5 – Open Horse Show Buckle Series, Four Winds Equestrian Center, Salem, WI. Contact Teri at 262/537-2262. Visit

APRIL 8 – Mchenry County Horse Club meeting, Speaker Dr. John Byrd DVM Fecal testing and parasite management, HAHS Woodstock, IL. Visit www.

MAY 5-6 – Minnesota Distance Riding Association Competitive and Endurance Ride. Sand Dunes State Forest, Sherburne County, MN near Orrock. Contact Theresa Meyer

APRIL 13-14 – Introductory Cow Clinic, with Chad Kelly, Diamond Acres, Woodstock, IL. Contact holistichorse1@, 815/210-1309 or visit

MAY 5-6 – White River Spring Endurance and Competitive Distance Rides. Little Manistee National Forest, Hesperia, MI. Contact Wayne Gastfield 231/924-2605 or 231/250-4242. MAY 5-11 – Cross Country Trail Ride, Eminence, MO Contact carolyndyer67@ or 573/226-3492.

APRIL 21 – McHenry County Horse Club Trail Ride, Lakewood Forest Preserve, Wauconda, IL. Visit APRIL 21 – McHenry County Horse Club Trail Ride, Lakewood Forest Preserve, Wauconda, IL. Visit

MAY 11 – Mid-West Foundation Quarter Horse Association Mother’s “Neigh!” Day Open Horse & Pony Show Benefiting St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Diamond G Ranch & Western Store, Rochelle, IL. Contact Judy Thompson 608/934-5459 or






by Kandee Haertel

From the Side of the Trail

Staying in the Saddle Both January 12th and April 22nd have become very significant dates in my life with horses. The first is the anniversary of day when I lost my first real riding buddy and therapist when The Lady, a/k/a/ Mare and Nostalgia que ce, passed away very suddenly. That day left me feeling, not just sad, but lost. For the first time in almost three decades, I did not have a horse in my life. The Lady had such a profound impact on my life that it really was only days before I began considering how my life with horses would continue and a very few weeks before I began shopping for “my new horse” in earnest.

you like to ride a Paso Fino?” horse, I was extremely comfortable that I did not have to begin her training. I did know, for certain, that she really did not know me from the Man in the Moon, and that we had zero as the starting point of our relationship. I also knew we were in for a long haul together. Why on earth is 67-year old woman, who also qualifies as overweight and skittish about her knees, hips, and balance decide to build a relationship with a very sensitive, brio laden Paso Fino mare? Because 20+ years have turned this woman into a Paso Fino person. The Lady’s gait was not

“Tuesday lunches also lead to plans to ride together other times during the week. This relationship also provides discussion on tips about ‘my horse does…,’ which have proved extremely valuable over the years.” I also credit my continuing horse life with the group of us that meets Tuesday morning at the barn to ride and have lunch together. Some of us ride in drill team practice; some of us just ride, but all of us have lunch together. Tuesday lunches also lead to plans to ride together other times during the week. This relationship also provides discussion on tips about “my horse does….”, which have proved extremely valuable over the years. Their anticipation of Suzannah’s arrival was almost as great as mine! April 22nd is the anniversary day of when Suzannah was delivered to Horsepower Farm. The almost one month wait for my new horse to be delivered felt like years. The videos we took of her delivery may not have been the best of either Suzannah or me, but my constant grin certainly reflected my feelings of sheer joy at having such a wonderful horse in my life. The last however many years that The Lady was my partner, she really was my riding partner and buddy. I said many times that I could walk out to the pasture, call her, and then tell you what that day’s ride was going to be like. We both definitely had our opinions on things and situations, but we had worked them out so many times that we really understood each other as only “partners” can. Riding her in a rope halter and lead, while sitting on a bareback pad, was not unusual the last few years of our time together. I generally only used the saddle (getting very heavy for me to hoist around) when we went for a long trail ride and would be negotiating the serious hills we have here in Jo Daviess county. Life with Suzannah has been very different. As a then 12-year old mare who had been shown all over the country, taken on many, many trail rides and numerous camping trips, as well has having been a brood mare and, most recently, the go-to “would

the best, but she definitely had the Paso Fino gait. I not only loved it, but had probably ridden it for 1000’s of miles. To me, this was how a trail horse should move. This time around, I wanted a Paso Fino with solid gait. Suzannah has that in spades. Suzannah is a very friendly horse. Even before and after our test rides in Missouri, she indicated that she was interested in me with the way her eyes and ears followed me and with an unexplainable friendliness she showed me. I call it “the click” and I firmly believe that I felt it with Suzannah. Suzannah has continued to exhibit her is sweetness and proved that she is extremely well-mannered on the ground, as both the farrier and the vet will testify. The Lady had good ground manners – unless you were the farrier. Here, Suzannah received more points that The Lady right away! Suzannah and I are forging a bond, but I cannot call it a partnership yet. Most of the time, when I call her, she will meet me at the gate. Unless our most recent ride was not to her liking – and there can be any number of reasons for her negative opinion that I will not even begin to try to explain here. While The Lady taught me that it does absolutely no good to lose your temper when you are working with your horse, Suzannah is so sensitive that she has taught me absolute calm is a requirement. I have actually taken riding lessons, for me, not her, so that my communication is clearer to her. In all honesty, I really do believe that my partnership with Suzannah will happen. It is the “when” I cannot predict. But isn’t that part of enjoying your horse? I think it is. As our journey continues, I will share my experiences. Of course, the best part of all this is that I most likely really will see you on the trail!


MAY 12-13 – Glacier Trails Endurance and Competitive Distance Rides. Palmyra, WI. Contact Romona Radtke MAY 14 – McHenry County Horse Club Meeting, Speaker Dr. Heather Case DVM Disaster preparedness for horse and facility, HAHS, Woodstock, IL. MAY 16-18 – Bettina Drummond Clinic, Sunflower Farms, Bristol, WI. Contact 262/857-8555. Visit

JUNE 9-10 – White River Summer Endurance and Competitive Distance Rides. Little Manistee National Forest, Hesperia, MI. Contact Wayne Gastfield 231/924-2605 or 231/250-4242. JUNE 9-15 – Cross Country Trail Ride, Eminence, MO. Contact carolyndyer67@ or 573/226-3492. JUNE 14-17 – Buster McLaury Clinic, Sunflower Farms, Bristol, WI. Contact 262/857-8555. Visit

MAY 18 – Mchenry County Horse Club Trail ride Hickory Grove Highlands, Cary, IL. Visit

JUNE 15 – Boone County 4-H Annual Fundraising Open Horse & Pony Show, Boone County Fairgrounds, Belvidere, IL. Contact Kim Davis 815/737-8102 or Nancy Saunders 815/509-7002.

MAY 18 – The Mid States Morgan Horse Club Open Horse Show, Fox Valley Saddle Assoc., Hampshire,IL. Contact Kris Breyer

JUNE 22 – IDCTA Schooling Show, Judge: Caryn Vesperman, Sunflower Farms, Bristol, WI. Contact 262/857-8555. Visit

MAY 18-19 – Jamie price Eventing clinic, Kelly’s on 41 Equestrian Center, Wadsworth, IL. Contact Linda Kelly, Barn: 847/662-5144 or Cell: 847/951-0670 or Email Visit

JUNE 22-23 – Jambalaya Miniature Horse Show. Hoosier Horse Park, Edinburgy, IN. Contact Kimberly Sullivan 869/494-8473.

MAY 18-19 – Parelli Horse & Soul Tour, Pioneer Pavilion, Iowa State Fairgrounds, Des Moines, IA. Visit MAY 19 – B-Bar-C Interstate Horse Promoters Annual Open Horse & Pony Spring Show, Boone County Fairgrounds, Belvidere, IL. Contact 815/547-5629 or MAY 19 – B-Bar-C Interstate Horse Promoters Open Show, Boone County Fairgrounds, Belvidere, IL. Contact DeLynn Erboe 815/547-5626 or Fran Vinik 815/ 569-2072.

JUNE 23 – 40 and Over Open Horse Show, Four Winds Equestrian Center, Salem, WI. Contact Teri at 262/537-2262. Visit JUNE 29 – Open Horse Show, McHenry County Fairgrounds, Woodstock, IL. Contact Suzanne 815/790-4460 or qtr.horse8@ JUNE 29 – HUB Club Fun Driving Show, Fox Valley Saddle Assoc., Hampshire,IL. Contact Kris Breyer JUNE 30 – FVSA Open Show, Fox Valley Saddle Assoc., Hampshire, IL. Contact Sandy Kucharski 815/568-6772. Visit

MAY 19 – FVSA Open Show, Fox Valley Saddle Assoc., Hampshire, IL. Contact Sandy Kucharski 815/568-6772. Visit

JULY 3-6 – Cross Country Trail Ride, Eminence, MO. Contact carolyndyer67@, or 573/226-3492.

MAY 19-20 – Run for the Border Endurance and Competitive Distance Rides. St Cois Falls, WI. Contact Lynn Reichert

JULY 6 – Boone County 4-H Open Driving show, Boone County Fairgrounds, Belvidere, IL. Contact Kris Hall 815/871-1470 or

MAY 24-27 – Cross Country Trail Ride, Eminence, MO. Contact carolyndyer67@ or 573/226-3492. MAY 26-27 – Grand Island Endurance and Competitive Distance Rides, Rapid River, MI. Contact Kathi Macki MAY 30 – Mini Event Schooling (IDTCA Approved), Fox Valley Saddle Assoc., Hampshire, IL. Contact 847/464-4355. Visit JUNE 2-3 – Maplewood West Endurance and Competitive Distance Ride, Pelican Rapids, MI. Contact Char Tuhy

JULY 7 – B-Bar-C Interstate Horse Promoters Open Show. Boone County Fairgrounds, Belvidere, IL. Contact DeLynn Erboe 815/547-5626 or Fran Vinik 815/569-2072. JULY 7 – B-Bar-C Interstate Horse Promoters Annual Open Horse & Pony Summer Show, Boone County Fairgrounds, Belvidere, IL. Contact 815/547-5629 or bcihp. JULY14 – Hunter/Jumper Schooling Show, Sunflower Farms, Bristol, WI. Contact 262/857-8555. Visit www.sunflowerfarms. com.

Get you events listed for FREE! Visit



Stable Spotlight: by Andrea Andres Victory Reins Therapeutic Riding Center 11900 W. Offner Rd. Peotone, IL 60468 (815) 478-4879

Sandy Michalewicz

Owner: Sandy Michalewicz Mission Statement:

Our mission is to provide therapeutic equine recreational activities for children and adults to experience the bond that is created between horse and rider empowering them to be victorious in all areas of life and reach their fullest God-given potential

How long have you been open? since 2007

How many students do you serve? about 50

What made you decide to open this facility? God. A lot of things came together to point me in this direction. I got my first horse at 30 years old and I promised God that I would share horses with other people. I started volunteering at the Hanson

2013 Illlinois Horse Fair March 1, 2 & 3 Illinois State Fairgrounds, Springfield, IL

Horses through History: Past, Present & Future

Center in Burr Ridge and just started trying to learn everything I could about therapeutic riding. I got my NARHA (now PATH - Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship) certification and taught at the Hanson Center before opening Victory Reins in October of 2007.

Where did you start out with horses?

I shareboarded a horse named Malibu at Kopping Farm! Malibu and I went through a learning curve together since her owner didn’t do too much with her, but she really became a fun horse to ride in the end. Then my husband bought a Paint gelding for me and I started bringing kids home from church to share my horse with them.

Who was your first therapy horse?

Rasha, who is still with us. She’s a 29 year old, grey, Arabian mare who just loves helping people. We take her to all our public appearances and she does great! She just loves it.

What is different about your lessons compared to a non-therapeutic lesson barn? The horses don’t even feel like it’s work! They love it. We play games and use lots of props. Everything is for fun and based on the rider’s needs. We play guessing games, learn colors, practice motor skills like ring toss and throwing bean bags, which is something that the horses have to get used to... rings on their ears, balls being thrown from their backs... We practice with the volunteers and slowly work the horses up to being able to handle it in the lessons.

Do you work in cooperation with other therapies?

Some of the kids’ therapists do come to watch their lessons and they love what we are doing. We function as recreational therapy only at this point, but just playing games does so much for the kids. I might say, “Show me the yellow ball.” Or “Find the yellow on the wall.” A higher-functioning child might be asked to say another word that starts with Y after touching a yellow object. Games are hard work for them and help to build confidence and social skills.

How can others help or participate?

Friday night: Ranch Rodeo Also featuring for the weekend: Saturday night: Ranch Rodeo, Guy McLean, Anita Howe - Gaited Clinician Percheron Thunder and more! Terry Myers -From Ohio, Balanced Riding Indi O’Conner with Agape Natural Horsemanship For a full schedule of events and clinicians, Young Riders for our future horseman tickets and orders go to: Second Annual Miss Illinois Horse Fair Contest 140+ Vendors, Youth Judging Trials, and so much MORE

Hours: Friday 9:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. Evening Show 7:30 p.m. - Coliseum Saturday 9:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. Evening Show 7:30 p.m. - Coliseum Sunday 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Tickets are now available! Children under 8 years of age FREE when accompanied by adult. Daily pass $10.00 per day and weekend pass $25.00.

Great for giving as a gift for the holidays! Our Sponsors:

We are a 501(c)3 organization so donations are taxdeductible. We accept donations of cash, volunteer time, equipment, or an appropriate horse who can mentally and physically take part in up to four sessions per day. We are more than happy to have people who just want to be around the horses and kids. We will train anyone who would like to help out! Remember that horses are 24/7 and year-round, so we always have something to work on!

What do people experience at Victory Reins?

A feeling of acceptance, of love... Of belonging... The joy of helping others!

What are your plans for the future?

We would love to expand the facility and our services to include Hippotherapy and Equine-Assisted Activities and Therapies. I would like to have an indoor bathrooom and be able to enlarge our tack room area to have a classroom and an office. We are also working to include a petting zoo to expose the kids to more animals.

What do you want people to know about Victory Reins?

It’s a great place to start! It’s amazing to see the differences in the kids as they improve and grow. The people here get to build such great relationships and it’s a safe, caring environment to learn in and enjoy being around the horses.





Do you have a horse property for sale?

Realtor’s Corral

Ask your realtor to list it

here where it will be seen by nearly 10,000

equine enthusiasts!

If you’re looking to buy or sell a HORSE PROPERTY, you’ll want to call me first!

Coming Soon!! Several “Farmette” type properties 10 acres and less with a variety of horse amenities and home sizes. Most will be priced between $400,000 to $600,000! A few vacant parcels as well. Three large, multi-functional horse properties in Kenosha County, McHenry County and Kane County. All are incredible opportunities for the true horseman! Upper bracket, call Kay for details.

Kay Feldmar Office: 847/557-1626 Cell: 847/557-5311 Licensed in IL & WI

Visit my website: Email me at:

IOWA DEALERS 1. Horse and Hound Country Store Ltd. Burlington, IA 319/752-6611 WISCONSIN DEALERS 1. Premier Cooperative Lancaster, WI 608/723-7023 2. Premier Cooperative Mineral Point, WI 608/987-3100 3. Premier Cooperative Mt. Horeb, WI 608/437-5536 4. Oregon Farm Center Oregon, WI 608/7251-9657 5. Claws 2 Paws Animal Supply LLC Stoughton, WI 608/873-8014 6. Frontier FS Cooperative Ixonia, WI 920/261-1718 7. Horn Bros. Inc. Muskigo, WI 262/679-1717 8. Landmark Services Co-op Elkhorn, WI 262/723-3150 9. Landmark Services Co-op Burlington, WI 800/800-3521 10. Landmark Services Co-op Union Grove, WI 262/878-5720 11. Main Street Country Store Walworth, WI 262/275-0620 12. Horn Trevor Feeds Inc. Trevor, WI 262/862-2616 ILLINOIS DEALERS 1. M and W Feed Service Ltd. Elizabeth, IL 815/858-2412 2. Cherry Valley Feed and Supplies Inc. Cherry Valley, IL 815/332-7665 3. 4. 5. 6.

Woodstock Farm & Lawn Woodstock, IL 815/338-4200 Leader Ace Hardware Fox River Grove, IL 847-639-4431 Grayslake Feed Sales Inc. Grayslake, IL 847/223-4855 Animal Feed and Needs Arlington Heights, IL 847/437-4738

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9. Sublette Farmers Elevator Company Sublette, IL 815/849-5222 10. Northern Partners Cooperative Mendota/Triumph, IL 815/539-1085 11. Brothers Country Supply Ottawa, IL 815/433-3775

19. Earlybird Feed & Fertilizer Goodfield, IL 888/893-3450

12. Midland Crossing Merantile Newark, IL 815/695-1130 13. Tri-county Stockdale Co. Joliet, IL 815/436-8600 14. Ludwigs Feed Store Lemont, IL 630/257-3097 15. Capital Pet Food & Supply Country Club Hills, IL 708/798-4800

22. Sandbur Tack & Western Wear Kewanee, IL 877/726-3287 23. Reynolds Feed & Supply Reynolds, IL 309/372-4414 24. H&H Feeds Stronghurst, IL 30/924-2421

16. Most Feeds and Gardens Crete, IL 708672-8181

7. Trellis Farm and Garden LLC St. Charles, IL 630/584-2024

17. Andres & Wilton Farmers Grain & Supply Peotone, IL 708/258-3268

8. Elburn Co-op Feed Store Elburn, IL 630/365-1424

18. Feed n Time Chebanse, IL 815/697-3231


Get farther with your hay this winter from Tri County Stockdale!


Horseman’s Edge: A GREAT product at a GREAT value.

Take the Edge with Tri Co. Stockdale. Horseman’s Edge Pel 12:6+L or Horseman’s Edge TXT 12:6+L

20. Paws Claws and Exotics Too Pekin, IL 309/925-3111 21. Country Feed & Supplies Princeville, IL 309/385-3333

INDIANA DEALERS 1. Crown Feed & Supply, Inc. Crown Point, IN 219/663-0139 2. Leo’s Feed and Garden Cedar Lake, IN 219/374-6757 3. Karp’s Garden and Feed Hobart, IN 219/942-2033


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March 2013 Midwest Horse Source  

All breed, al discipline regional horse publication reaching n. Illinois, s. Wisconsin, IN, IA.

March 2013 Midwest Horse Source  

All breed, al discipline regional horse publication reaching n. Illinois, s. Wisconsin, IN, IA.