SUNDAY 12TH APRIL, 2015
Hi Folks. How are You all? Hope You had a great Week.
We did.....got 45mm of Rain, just in time for Mrs. HP Dad and Lady from Holland,
to have Showers
It came two Days before their arrival so we were lucky as we were basically out.
BREAKER AND TEETH
I hadn't ridden the lovely Girl since the ride on the Beach over a Week ago,
because I could feel things were not right on the RIGHT REIN. I asked the Owner
to get a second opinion on them and sure enough, Greg Rodder announced and
fixed, that she was sharp on the RIGHT and that the last Dentist must have
missed the fact.
Anyhow, Yesterday, prior to Her first ride out on the Roads, I quickly re-tuned
Her in the Round Pen and away we went.
THE MOUTH RESISTANCE HAD GONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Now normally, the Breaker on the first ride out should always follow other quiet
Horses, to gain confidence, but that depends upon the Boldness Score of the
Young Horse and the Boldness Score of the Rider.
This lovely Filly is high on the score and so she hit the front before getting
out the front Gate and basically led the ride for it's entirety, including Bush
It never ceases to amaze me how much Horses can learn in such a short time and
how intelligent they really are.....if You allow them.
Job done. She's an Old Hand
Incidentally, see the
Neck Carriage on the Horse with CORRECT front end conformation!!! That's why
Dressage is easy to these one's!!.....as against .......
and meanwhile, Mrs. HP was teaching the Young Bloke on his Event Horse.
SOUTHERN VALES DRESSAGE CLUB
Mrs HP has been Judging there Today, as part of Her duties as a Member. The
South Vales Dressage Club has steadily risen up to be now the BEST Club in the
State. Well done to Gerry Wellington, Ray Waller and all the Committee People
STATE DRESSAGE CHAMPIONSHIPS
These are on this Frid, Sat and Sunday and Mrs. HP has been working Hard with
Cappo and Snip. Cappo is in the Freestyle, Intermediate 2 and Grand Prix and
Snip Elementary and Medium, after which he goes to Advanced :)
I have been mentoring Dave Garland again. On two Horses this Week.
GOSSIP OF THE DAY
A Victorian Horse Dealer that had taken advantage of a number of my Clients
over the Years, has died, apparently falling off a Roof.
YARN OF THE DAY
"Looked at a Clydie Cross for sale, as a educated 7yr. Advertised by a Dressage
Rider, After it tried to chuck me off I noticed the hind end wasn't right. Asked
the owner anywhere els to ride it other than this round yard. No all paddocks
are slippery and limestone drive way to hard for her feet..(smooth limestone)
The horse had hind end problems. The owner sounded suss to me, only had a strip
of 20mtrs to ride her on.. Got home and googled there property and wam, nice big
arena behind the house, the other end were we couldnt see.. So tried to sell me
a horse that uneducated, lame, and had a arena but didn't want me to ride horse
in it?? So maybe google properties before viewing.. "
TIP OF THE DAY
Google Map a Property that You are going to look at a Horse. You never know what
You may find" :)
PHOTO OF THE DAY
LEAD EM BY THE BEARD
Mr. Van Dort from WA, in the Anzac Day Parade. "Hang onto
This one is a bit different......
I was asked by a Client, to assess a Two Year Old Warmblood for Sale, for
$10,000, near where we live. I looked at the Vids and Photos etc and recommended
the Horse to Her.
She rang the Seller and booked a Vet check with Greg Rodder, for the following
Day. Meanwhile, the Seller contacted Her to say that she had such a lot of
interest in the Horse and that she wanted to let others look at it, mainly
I don't know how many paid for Airfares, Taxi's and so on but I do know of one
other who did just that, thinking that she could buy the Horse. She came but was
told she couldn't have it because others were looking.
Meanwhile, I advised my first Client to cancel the Vet Check, which she did. A
few Days later, she got a call from the Owner, asking Her to Vet check the Horse
and if she didn't get the Horse, she would refund the money, so she in fact did
have the Vet check done and the Horse passed, although the Vet couldn't properly
handle the back Legs of the Horse due to a lack of training.
Then, I guess all got an email to say that she had decided to sell the Horse to
an F.E.I. Rider in New Zealand and indeed refunded the Vet Check money to my
However, a couple of Days ago, my Client got a Phone Call from THE BUYER of the
Horse and she WASN'T from New Zealand either. She was from Melbourne, asking to
be given privi to the results o the Vet Check, which she graciously was,
together with the proviso that the Vet couldn't check the back Legs due to
kicking, to which the Buyer indicated she may now not even buy the Horse.
Anyhow, the point about this is, apart from the lack of integrity shown, the
ruthlessness to People who wasted hard earned Money, is the Law on the Matter
and of course is "Contract Law' and whether or not the Horse was in fact sold to
the first Client, verbally, due to the acceptance of price, a willingness to
sell, a willingness to buy and a Vet Check booked. The Court would decide.
Meanwhile, at least one of the potential Buyers has written an demanded
compensation for expenses as the Seller was really running a Dutch Auction.
So the advice is......if You are flying to look at an InterState Horse, demand a
$50 deposit be direct Banked into their account, subject to Vet Check. That way
you won't be caught out by Ruthless Sellers who lack integrity.
Have gone to Number One Hit in Google UK, just a few Weeks after launch of
Here is the above, on a FIRST RIDE on a "Breaker' by the Owner Kim Van Dort
I'll have to get Lessons from Her I reckon :)
HOW MUCH DO YOU WANT TO LEARN?
In the search for knowledge, there is one pre-requisite that sets one
percentage of the Industry, from the other. That is.......whether You lay the
Blame at Your own Feet or that of the Horse.
Those Folk who first 'Blame Horses" can never reach the Goals they may
passionately hope and dream for.
NEWS OF THE DAY
A RIVER OF BLOOD
Carl Chapman said he rushed out after hearing a “loud bang” near the home he was
working on near Shifnal.
He told a jury at Shrewsbury Crown Court he saw
a white Fiat embedded in a hedge and a horse in the middle of the road.
The court had
earlier heard the Fiat had been driven by Armands Ozolins, who lost control on a
bend on Stump Lane.
He was killed in the crash along with the horse.
Horse rider Wendy Garrett was seriously injured.
Eyewitnesses say Ozolins
was taking part in a “high-speed race” on rural roads with disqualified motorist
Mr Ozolins, 26, of Great Chatwell near Newport, hit
Mrs Garrett and her horse and sent them both flying, prosecutor Mr Hugh O’Brien
Quinn said. The court heard how Mr Ozolins crashed into the grass verge and a
hedge by Damson Lane and suffered severe injuries. He died in hospital the next
Punovskis claims he was not driving on the day of the smash. The
31-year-old, of Turreff Avenue in Donnington, is accused of one count of death
by dangerous driving and another of causing serious injury by dangerous driving.
He denies both charges.
Mr Chapman told the court: “I heard a loud bang,
and somebody came in and said there had been a serious accident. I went out.
“On half the road there was almost a river of blood running down it. There
was a horse in the middle of the road, and I noticed there was a car embedded in
Mr Chapman said when he got to the car Mr Ozolins was
conscious but not speaking, and Punovskis was also in the car cradling his head
and trying to take his pulse.
“He (Punovskis) seemed very shook up, he
seemed in shock,” Mr Chapman said. “Me and a colleague were able to take over so
we pointed out the stables and suggested he go and clean himself up, as he was
covered in blood.”
Mr Chapman said “less than a minute” later he heard a
car wheel spinning and “screeching” and looked to see Punovskis speeding off
into the distance in a green Volkswagen Passat.
Punovskis was later
discovered nearby at Chadwell Farm by police after Mr Chapman pointed out the
car to them, the jury heard.
A woman – Liga Jaskova – with a
one-month-old baby was seen sitting in the driver’s seat. Punovskis claims it
was Jaskova who had been driving. The trial continues.
BOLTING HORSE IN COUNTY DURHAM
A runaway horse almost caused chaos at a fast food restaurant. Police in Consett were
flagged down by a motorist at around 1.30pm on Thursday after a man was thrown
from a horse in the town. The man was left with minor injuries and his horse
Police were told the horse was on the loose in the McDonalds area. Police,
responding to a separate call, headed to the scene where the found the horse had
been caught and tied up by another driver. A spokesman for Durham police said
the rider did not require medical treatment.
THE MADNESS OF THE GRAND NATIONAL
We English like to think that the other nations are watching in breathless
admiration, but they're actually doing so in spirit of Asterix the Gaul, whose
friend Obelix so often points out: "Ils sont fous, ces anglais [They are crazy,
Trenton Oldfield was right. Oldfield was the
attention-seeker in the wet-suit who plunged into the Thames to halt the 2012
Boat Race because he objected to elitism. Of course the Boat Race is about
elitism: there would be no point in watching them suffer if they were just like
you and me. They used to sacrifice the king to ensure a good harvest: now it's
enough to make elite students suffer.
"There's something wonderful and
something dreadful about both events. There's something deeply cruel about them,
and also something oddly defiant and life-affirming."
Boat Race was famously described by the magistrates in one of PG Wodehouse's
Jeeves stories as "The annual aquatic contest between the universities of Oxford
and Cambridge". Essentially aristocrats and rich foreigners, then. Even if the
demographics have changed a bit over the years, it's still about elitism. And
every time spring comes the English put these people through hell.
Olympic rowing events they race two kilometres over about six minutes and at the
finish they look close to death. In the Boat Race they row flat out for 6.8km
and damn near 20 minutes. What's more they do it on the crazy wind-lashed Thames
which winds its demented way through London, with a flooding tide behind them
and Lord knows what waves ahead.
Only last week the Oxford women's boat
sank in the Thames when caught by a mild tsunami. They were rescued by a
lifeboat. Their boat was rescued as well, so they too will race on that lethal
course at the weekend. What a race.
It's bad enough for the winners: once
they cross the line they collapse into eight heaps of mortal agony, showing no
hint of pleasure. The only way you can tell who won is that the losers look even
worse. And of course, there's no money it: just a terrible all-consuming
distraction from the studies that are supposed to shape their lives.
a great atavistic challenge for those who do the rowing: and a glorious
spectacle of lunatic suffering for everyone else. In 2012 one of the losing
Oxford rowers collapsed in the boat and went to hospital. He later apologised to
Cambridge for spoiling their celebrations. That's the spirit.
Grand National is similarly mad in conception, but it has been forced to embrace
at least comparative sanity in recent years. In its heyday it was a massive
cavalry charge featuring any amount of horses, mounted by riders who believed
they had a spare neck in their pockets, flinging themselves at an unending
series of vast and complex obstacles.
The tradition of ritual license
continued deep into the television era, but over the last couple of decades
things have changed. The number of dead horses became something of an issue.
True, horses die in plenty of other events in jump-racing but the Grand
National, being a rite of spring as well as a horse race, must cope with the
fascination of the non-racing public.
As a result, the number of runners
has been restricted, they are required to have proven jumping ability, the
obstacles have been made safer. The most dangerous fence, Becher's Brook, in
particular, has been changed: the drop and steep slope on the landing side have
been levelled. But still horses fall in great numbers and jockeys are still
catapulted across the grass as if their horses were equipped with a Martin-Baker
Last year no horse died; 22 of the 40 starters failed to
finish, either falling or being pulled up. For all the reforms the Grand
National is still a terrifying spectacle. It begins with the madness of the
40-strong gallop at the first fence: every year the jockeys are told to take it
easy - after all there are four and a half miles to go - and every year they
head for the first as if it was the Olympic 100 metres.
Horses get in
each other's way and bring each other down. Some horses lose their riders and
gallop gallantly along with the rest, causing yet more mayhem. And the people of
England dip into their pockets and fling money at the race, not so much in hope
of vast gains as in the compulsion to be a part of the great madness of the
Grand National and the greater madness of the English spring.
something wonderful and something dreadful about both events. There's something
deeply cruel about them, and also something oddly defiant and life-affirming.
It's all about the mad contradictions of being English: so let's finish with
another bit of French. Here's a French general, Pierre Bosquet, on the charge of
the Light Brigade. Though I've tweaked it a bit. "Cest magnifique, mais ce n'est
pas le sport. C'est de la folie [This is beautiful, but it is not sport. This is
But that's spring for you.
YOUNG RIDER TO HOSPITAL
AN 11-year-old Blayney girl remains in The Children's Hospital at Westmead in
Sydney with serious head injuries after she fell from a horse yesterday morning.
Paramedics were called to a private property in Blayney at 10am after the girl
fell from a horse. Ambulance Service of NSW duty officer Inspector Ron Gavin has
praised the quick-thinking actions of her 13-year-old brother who witnessed her
"He went to her aid and then called for help and then directed the
ambulance [when it arrived]," he said. Inspector Gavin said it was a "relatively
minor fall" however it did render her unconscious for a short period of time.
The girl was treated by paramedics at the scene and then airlifted by rescue
helicopter to The Children's Hospital at Westmead in a serious but stable
A woman has been airlifted to hospital with serious injuries following a horse
riding accident in Luddenden Foot. The incident, in which the woman suffered
chest and spinal injuries, happened before 12.30pm today (Wednesday).
The woman, who is in her 30s, was taken to Leeds General Infirmary by a
Yorkshire Air Ambulance and is said to have suffered serious injuries. Ambulance
crews were also in attendance.
DEATH OF HACK
The death of a popular show hunter pony (SHP) cast a shadow over the British
Show Pony Society (BSPS) Winter Championship show at Arena UK, Grantham, at the
weekend (Sunday 4 April).
The Elliott-Grooby family’s prolific-winning
153cm contender Vaguely Venture is believed to have suffered a heart attack,
triggered by a ruptured aneurysm.
The nine-year-old became unwell while
competing in the ring and was taken back to the lorry park. Despite prompt
veterinary attention, he collapsed and died 10 minutes later.
“We are all
devastated,” said Leicestershire-based Charlotte Elliott-Grooby, 15, who
campaigned him mostly in 153cm SHP ranks but had recently started to contest
intermediate show hunter classes.
“We were told it was probably an
aneurysm in his brain which triggered the heart attack. It could have formed at
any stage in his life — possibly even as a result of worm damage when he was a
youngster — but we cannot be 100 per cent sure as we have not had an autopsy.
“We only had him for one season but I have never known a kinder, more
stunning horse and I was so lucky to have owned him. He took every show in his
stride and I am heartbroken.”
Working at speed calls for a healthy,
well-trained heart. Andrea Oakes discovers how technology can help us track
heart performance …Continue reading »
The Grooby family acquired Vaguely
Venture from Katie White after he competed at the Horse of the Year Show (HOYS)
in 2013 — where he was fifth — and he was produced by Katy Carter.
joining Charlotte, he was seventh at the Royal International (RIHS) and
qualified for HOYS last year, winning at Lincoln County and The Great Yorkshire
He was third with Charlotte in his RIHS qualifier at Arena UK the
previous day, and had booked his return ticket to Hickstead.
Venture was also fifth at HOYS in 2011 with Katie, who campaigned him for three
“We qualified and were placed at RIHS and HOYS every year, as
well as standing champion at BSPS championships, Ponies (UK), Kent County, Three
Counties and Suffolk,” said Katie. “He’s the horse that will always be my
favourite and the bond I had with him was so special.”
2ND DEATH IN A WEEK OF EVENTING
Jordan McDonald riding Glencento at Belton 2014
On a harrowing day for
the sport of eventing, it has been confirmed that a 2nd rider has died.
Jordan McDonald (pictured riding Glencento at Belton earlier this year), a
30-year-old Canadian based in Leicestershire, was riding in a novice section at
Nunney International Horse Trials in Somerset when he suffered a fatal accident.
His horse, Only Me, a 7-year-old gelding, was not injured. No information
has been released about the exact circumstances surrounding the accident which
lead to the rider’s death.
The rest of the day’s competition was
abandoned, although tomorrow’s classes are expected to go ahead.
Eventing released the following statement:
“It is with the deepest regret
that we announce that Mr Jordan McDonald died today as a result of a fatal
accident whilst competing at Nunney British Eventing Affiliated One Day Event in
Somerset at 13.29pm on Saturday 14th June 2014.
“Jordan was aged 30 and
based in Leicestershire, but is Canadian by nationality. He had been married to
Shandiss for one year.”
Earlier today it was confirmed that German rider
Benjamin Winter had also been killed. He suffered a rotational fall in the CCI4*
cross-country in Luhmuhlen.
SCIENTIFIC LIGHT BULB MOMENTS OF THE WEEK
Is your horse cleverer than you think? New research suggests we might have
been underestimating our horses’ brainpower. Researchers from the University of
Pisa, Italy, have found that horses can read human actions and change the way
they respond. In a study recently published in the journal Applied Animal
Behaviour Science, 24 horses were trained to overturn a bucket to find a carrot
hidden under it. The horses were then split into two groups — those in the first
had to find the carrot under one of three buckets after watching a person hide
it; those in the second were left to their own devices.
The study was designed to “analyse the ability of horses to understand, remember
and use human-given cues in a delayed (10 seconds) three-choice task”. The first
group of horses more frequently found the carrot on a first attempt, although
they took more time to do so. When the test was repeated without either group of
horses seeing the carrots being hidden, the first group was less accurate at
finding the carrot on the first attempt, but found it faster.
They initially returned to the buckets under which they had seen human place the
carrot, suggesting they can remember where the food was hidden. “Our findings
indicate that horses are capable of remembering the location of food hidden by
the experimenter after a delay,” states the study. “The same horses are also
capable of changing their decision-making strategy by shifting from the accuracy
inferred from human-given cues, to speed.” Horses therefore can choose to use
human cues or not — depending on time, cost, experience and reward. H&H vet
Karen Coumbe said this was “very interesting work, which merits further
investigation”. “My feeling is that ponies in particular are more intelligent
than many larger horses, and are much more knowing than many people would
think,” she added.
ALL PHD STUDENS SHOULD BECOME PEN FRIENDS WITH HORSE
NEW STUDY FROM UK
Most owners quickly learn that horses communicate through body language: the
warning lift of a hoof or chomp of the teeth that says, “I don’t like that,” for
instance. And now, a study from the United Kingdom is offering insight into how
horses also use their faces to communicate with herdmates.
Wathan, a PhD student, and Karen McComb, BCs, PhD, a professor of animal
behavior and cognition at the University of Sussex, in England, designed a study
in which horses viewed life-sized photos of two different “model” horses. The
model horses were pictured with their heads turned toward food with either their
eyes covered, their ears covered, or nothing covered. Researchers then studied
which facial features appeared to direct the study horses' food choices.
The team found that study horses chose the bucket that the models with uncovered
faces were looking at 75% of the time. The researchers said that when the model
horses' eyes or ears were covered, the study horses' bucket choices were random.
Wathan said that because of the side placement of the equine eye, her team
was surprised to find that gaze was important. More surprising was that horses
were using their ears to communicate, she said.
“We found that in horses,
their ear position was a crucial visual signal that other horses respond to,”
she explained. “In fact, horses needed to see the detailed facial features of
both eyes and ears before they would use another horse’s head direction to guide
“Sensitivity to the attentional state of others is one of
the fundamental skills in communication,” Wathan added. “Being quick to pick up
on what another individual is paying attention to can give you advantages that
might improve your chances of survival.”
This is just the basic
foundation to more complex communication and socialization.
So what does
this mean for domestic horses? Wathan said owners could be affecting equine
communication when they put on equipment that covers the horse's face.
“It is worth taking this into consideration when making management decisions,”
said Wathan. “For example, how bad is the horse's allergy to flies, and do they
really need the mask? In future it will be interesting to further investigate
the extent to which these masks might have any influence on their ability to
communicate with other horses in the field, or even humans.”
Sarah Evers Conrad has a bachelor’s of arts in journalism and equine science
from Western Kentucky University. As a lifelong horse lover and equestrian,
Conrad started her career at The Horse: Your Guide to Equine Health Care
magazine. She has also worked for the United States Equestrian Federation as the
managing editor of Equestrian magazine and director of e-communications and
served as content manager/travel writer for a Caribbean travel agency. When she
isn’t freelancing, Conrad spends her free time enjoying her family, reading,
practicing photography, traveling, crocheting, and being around animals in her
Lexington, Kentucky, home.
NEW LAW TO TACKLE ILLEGAL GRAZING
NEW laws to tackle the 'fly-grazing' of horses on grassland without
permission have been welcomed in East Lancashire., The Briercliffe-based Horses
and Ponies Protection Association (HAPPA) said the new legislation, due to get
Royal Assent before the May 7 General Election, was 'a huge step forward'.
Tony Bork of Bacup's 'Animal Quackers' petting zoo said the move would help
tackle and growing problem.
Darwen regeneration and highways boss Maureen Bateson also welcomed the new
powers and said there had been problems with fly-grazing in the Ewood ward she
is fighting to retain for Labour in the local council elections, also on May 7.
The Control of Horses Bill aims to deter and help to swiftly resolve
cases of ‘fly-grazing’, placing horses on private and public land without
It was a Private Members’ Bill tabled by Julian Sturdy MP for
York Outer and makes changes to the Animals Act 1971 The updated law will
require landowners to keep any horses placed on their land for only four working
days, as opposed to the current two weeks.
It will allow more options to
dispose of the horses besides public sale, such as gifting them to a charity,
selling them privately or humane euthanasia.
JUMPS RACE PROTESTS CONTINUE IN VICTORIA
Protesters claim the Victorian government refuses to address animal cruelty in
the jumps racing industry.
Debate over the sport has been reignited after
two horses were put down following serious falls during race trials in
Cranbourne on Wednesday.
for the Protection of Racehorses say the state government has acted on puppy
farms and greyhound racing but refuses to acknowledge jumps racing as animal
"The government rode to victory with animal welfare policies but
are being selective about the battles they choose," spokesman Ward Young told
AAP on Friday.
"They flatly ignore jumps racing because it's only a small
The group says the failure to act has resulted in the death of
two horses, and more will follow unless the sport is banned.
More than 50
demonstrators gathered in central Melbourne on Friday, chanting that one in 30
horses die on the racetrack while jumps racing, and calling on Racing Minister
Martin Pakula to take immediate action.
Jumps racing is illegal in NSW
and has been discontinued in most states except Victoria and South Australia.
"South Australia is looking into banning jumps racing, so Victoria could
very well be the last state to be holding on to the cruel tradition for no
reason," Mr Young said.
4 YEARS JAIL
“The defendant systematically starved those 17 horses,” prosecutor Rosie Semnar
Deutsch, however, blamed the weight loss on illness and accused
authorities of bullying her. Defense attorney Joshua Hanks said Deutsch had
spent her life around horses and was a licensed trainer.
was charged with one count of felony animal cruelty but a previous judge reduced
the charge to a misdemeanor. Before Deutsch’s trial began, prosecutors filed 16
additional misdemeanor animal cruelty counts.
Animal Services spokesman John
Welsh said the horses were in the county’s care for a year and fully recovered.
After a ruling from the court, 16 of the 17 horses were adopted or rescued. One
horse was claimed by a former business partner of Deutsch.
Deutsch has been
in custody in connection with a separate criminal case.
In Oct. 2012, Deutsch
was charged with felony elder abuse against her mother, then 86. She was
sentenced in May 2014 to seven years in prison.
Deutsch had brought her
mother, covered in urine and feces, to a hospital in Mission Viejo in September
2012. The woman had bleeding bedsores and her legs were locked in a bent
position, according to arrest warrant documents. The mother also was dehydrated,
sunburned and had feces under her fingernails, court records stated.
Block ordered that Deutsch begin serving her sentence in the animal cruelty case
after she completes her state prison term in the elder abuse case.
speaking at the sentencing, drew a parallel between the two cases.
clear that the defendant preys on the vulnerable,” she said.
LONG DISTANCE TRAVEL DISEASE IN HORSES
Most owners ensure that their horses are protected for a journey by
bandaging limbs, supplying haynets, making sure they are safely tied up and
checking that the lorry is roadworthy. Yet few think about the potential danger
to the horse’s lungs, which is probably the most crucial point. Transporting
horses for long distances is recognised as an important contributing factor in
the development of respiratory disease, which can be a major, and potentially
fatal, problem. Shipping fever (pleuropneumonia), is essentially a combined
infection involving the lungs (pneumonia) and the pleural cavity (pleuritis).
There is minimal danger involved in a short trip to a local show, but
increasingly large numbers of animals are now transported worldwide. Competition
horses, family cobs and ponies are being flown across continents, while lorry
loads regularly go back and forth between the UK and Europe.
There are also animals doing lengthy domestic journeys. The risk of the horse
suffering from shipping fever increases with the duration of transport, but the
length of the journey is not the only contributing factor. Horses are trickle
feeders and need to nibble continuously. When travelling they will consume less
hay and water, so on a lengthy journey they run a risk of becoming dehydrated.
Dehydration will impair lung defence mechanisms that normally help to clear
infectious material. If ventilation is inadequate, the horse may also be exposed
to a higher concentration of irritants or allergens from the hay and bedding. In
addition, ammonia from urine acts as an irritant to the airways, as do
temperature extremes and overcrowding. One of the biggest problems is that by
being tied-up for the duration of the journey, the horse is stuck in an
unnatural, head-high posture.
Unable to put their head down, this will affect the clearance of mucus from the
airways and cause bacteria to spread to the lower airways, causing infection.
The stress of travel also contributes to disease. Cortisol, the hormone produced
by the body under stress, decreases immunity and the ability to combat
infection, making the horse more susceptible to the bugs heading into the lungs.
Preventing problems It may help to drain mucus from the airways by encouraging
horses to lower their heads occasionally during travel, for example by feeding
them titbits at floor level. This is one reason why it is important to ensure
that the horses have rest breaks and are unloaded and allowed to move.
The air quality when travelling by road can be improved by good
ventilation, but this is not so simple on a plane, where windows cannot be
opened or dirty bedding easily offloaded. It will help to use a low-dust bedding
material such as paper or cardboard on rubber matting and feed well-soaked hay
or haylage. It is important to ensure that horses are fit for the journey and do
not have any ongoing respiratory problems. It is also advisable to check their
temperatures before they travel. Consider delaying the trip if they have a high
temperature before they start, as they could already be incubating an infection.
Warning signs Signs of shipping fever include: Lethargy, depression and loss of
appetite Cough A nasal discharge, which may smell foul A high temperature If the
pneumonia is severe, it is very painful for horses to breathe, so they take
shallow breaths The chest may be so sore that they do not want to move, pass
dung or lie down.
This can be mistaken for laminitis, colic or other illness Diagnosis
relies on the clinical signs, especially if recent travelling is reported, with
an ultrasound scan used to detect fluid in the chest. If significant amounts of
fluid are found, this may need to be drained and analysed to ensure appropriate
treatment is prescribed. Chest drains may be inserted and washing through
sterile saline (pleural lavage) may help remove infection. Occasionally, the
chest has to be opened to drain abscesses. The likelihood of any affected horse
returning to normal function depends on the severity of the disease. Survival
rates range from 30% to more than 90%, and the chance of a full recovery is
improved with early diagnosis and prompt and aggressive therapy.
Any case is likely to need lengthy antibiotic therapy. Other causes While
the majority of cases are associated with the stress of long-distance transport,
pleuropneumonia can also occur: After strenuous exercise, particularly in
racehorses After general anaesthesia and surgery After infections such as
strangles As a follow on from inhalation pneumonia due to choke or other
INNOCULATE FOR STREANGLES
Owners, riders and trainers are warned to be extra vigilant with biosecurity
after several high-profile cases of strangles during the past few weeks.
Vets told H&H “anecdotally” there often “seems to be an increase in cases
towards the end of winter”.
The highly contagious respiratory infection
is spread easily by direct contact, or passed on through handling and
The incubation period varies from three to 14
days — but may be longer — and the disease is diagnosed through clinical signs
together with swabs, scopes and blood tests.
Last week the owner of The
Cabin EC in Aberdeenshire told H&H she was “devastated” after being forced to
cancel all events in April following a strangles outbreak.
said she immediately called off all April shows — which included British
Dressage and British Showjumping events.
“We had one case of strangles
confirmed and immediately afterwards put the yard into temporary shut down. We
have taken vets’ advice and can assure everyone we will not reopen until we are
clear,” she said.
Strangles was also a focus of national media attention last week when an unnamed
horse trained by Newmarket trainer Marco Botti returned from the Dubai World Cup
Carnival with the infection.
The horse didn’t enter Mr Botti’s main yard,
and was taken to a pre-training yard outside the town, which was placed into
It was the first reported case in Newmarket since 2009.
On 3 April the trainer said all horses had returned clear tests and they
were able to “return to a normal routine”.
“We have high biosecurity
measures in place. All staff are vigilant and we will continue to keep a close
eye on all horses within the yard,” he added.
Although strangles is not a
notifiable disease, if it is detected in racing yards trainers must report it to
the British Horseracing Authority.
Newmarket Equine Hospital has
reassured owners: “While there is no cause for alarm it is prudent for all
owners to be vigilant for the clinical signs of the disease.”
LETTER OF THE DAY
STABLE INNIATED SEPERATION ANXIETY
Hi John, Right I’ve got a problem and any advice would be greatly appreciated.
Leo has quite bad separation anxiety at times, when he is left in his stable in
the morning and his friends go out he gets very wound up, shouting, rearing in
stable even if there is are horses in stables near him (in perfect view, just a
metre or so away). I thought he was over this until this morning when a stable
staff member told me he was going crazy. He used to get out his stable as a
weanling by jumping the door so obviously he has memories of successful escape I
am thinking that, I have the next 2 weeks off so if I go to the yard each
morning and hobble leo in his stable (now that he is hobble trained) when his
friends go out, will this help to ‘put him back in his box’ physically and
mentally? Any advice would be great, as I fear he will also turn into a
nightmare at shows when left by his travelling companion etc. Best wishes, Katy
First of all Katy, Stables cause all sorts of problems like this. They are BAD
IDEA and they are also not natural to Horses. They are Herd Animals and Grazers.
Given that You are stuck with what you have got perhaps, that doesn't mean You
don't always be a pro-active Owner. I would have changed the settings and
arrangements on DAY ONE. I am an EXTREME reactionary when it comes to perceived
Dangers for Horse Comfort, including having the whole top off a Horse Float
inside 5 Minutes, when Donner Bella Hit Her Head as a two Year old.
I don't know what You do but You have to do something. Ok, yes, hobble training,
properly used in an "Advanced and Retreat" way may assist but the bottom line is
'Psychological Measures" are best. Alter Paddock Friends, alter exit of various
horses, work out who the Horse is besotted with and leave that one in until he
is ready and much much more.
Yes, given this, it is highly likely You will have Holes dug at Shows but this
is the nature of Stables LIfe. It is a pain in the Ass to me. Best of Luck
Thank you it is his pal next door he is in love with, ive been working away with
him and some days are better than others, I appreciate your advice! Katy x
Split the Pals
LETTERS OF THE DAY
I have moved to a leased property that has a neglected
60m x20 m snad and rubber crumb arena.
We have it to rideable now but the arena has quite a
camber that is hard as the cover has washed to the sides but that could be
because it was not maintained for over two years and had knee high weeds
all over it.
We would like to re top as it is hard in the middle _
we cant do much in the way of anything structural. Would straight sand be ok on
top of the existing cover which is a coarse sand and rubber bit or do we mix it
with something? . We have to work with what we have. Water issues
Straight washed Sand with low CLAY CONTENT IS FINE. Pity You couldn't push half
of it across and lift the camber. Plant Hedge to stop Wind
I brought a 4yr old standardbred gelding who I have had under saddle since
January 2015. He didn’t race as his trainers were unable to get him to pace
so he didn’t make it to trials. The owner decided to sell him on then.
My problem is when I load him on the float he stands quietly while I put up
the ramp and then tie him but the moment I close the little door to leave on
our journey he starts pawing, serious enough that I have now bolted the mat
to the floor. When tied up to a hitching post he can stand for 45 to 60 mins
then may have a little paw to which I ignore and carry on with my business
when he is relaxed and standing quiet I will then untie him. I float him by
himself, and consider myself to be a very careful driver especially slow
around corners so I feel confident that I’m giving him a good ride. So there
is a big difference in his pawing behaviour in the float than when he is
tied to the hitching post. He is obviously more fearful while travelling or
just being in the float.
May I have suggestions for training this little horse to get a lid on his
pawing. Should I use your pawing chain and have you had good results with
them?. Or should I look at the ‘general use hobbles’ I don’t really want to
use hobbles in the float but would like to try and get on top of this
problem quick smart.
I am looking at your Barrel snaffle bits and would appreciate your
suggestion as to whether to go for the loose ring, eggbutt or dring.
Thanking you for your time.
Hi there Ruth,
I would be going for the Stockmens
hobbles (fence walkers) It is always better to add training to Horses, via
the 'reward and relief' systems, than just shoving a "Dummy in the Mouth of
the Baby" You can always go to Plan B later.
You would then get other
add on effects, like making the Horse more safe in Fences, etc.
key however, is that the Clinician, uses absolute tact, in removing them for
a try, a job well done, ceasing pawing and then only putting them back on
for regression. The Dummy always gets spat in the end.
Bits, it is just personal preference. It is the Centres that count.
Hope you and Mrs HP are well :)
used your mouthing system to mouth my mare, as well as your running reins system
to build up her muscles to prepare her for breaking into harness.
her home from the breaker for a few weeks now and she is an absolute star with a
fantastic set of brakes and barely needs any rein pressure to get her to turn!
Stops on voice 90% of the time, but the 10% when I've needed to use the reins
she is super responsive and if I'm not careful we end up backing up :)
I've included a couple of pictures of her, one the day I picked her up from the
breakers and the other one of us practicing our halt and wait at home.
surprises me how people can not notice when their horse/pony isn't right. My
mare, Trinny was difficult with her hinds when being shod and also was pinning
her ears at me when I was doing up her leg straps, something she has never ever
done before. Got the vet out and it turns out she has strained the muscles on
the inside of her hind legs, the vet thinks she may have done the splits in the
paddock while hooning around. Trinny wasn't off her food, still cantered up to
the gate when I got the cart out, was keen as mustard to work and didn't show
any signs of lameness - and isn't lame, but possibly could have become quite
sore if I had of ignored what she was trying to tell me.
A week later of
treatment and she's no longer pinning her ears and couldn't care less about her
leg straps being done up :)
Lisa and Trinny.
Well done to both of You!!!!
Problem Horse World
horseproblems at horseproblems.com.au