Horse Health

Horse Training for Longevity

October 23, 2014

A German trainer builds a reputation for safeguarding horse health. Preventing ulcers is a big part of that.

June-13-Merial-reining-horse-web

Sebastian Petroll keeps his horses at the top of their game for a long time by keeping them in peak health. Waltenberry photo.

From AQHA Corporate Partner Merial

Once Sebastian Petroll arrived in the United States from Germany in 2001, it didn’t take long for him to become a household name in reining circles.

In fact, since then, not only has he captured multiple titles and become a sought-after trainer, but he has also earned his National Reining Horse Association judge’s card.

What led to his arena success and the recognition by his peers? Sebastian trains his horses for longevity and has developed a reputation for having horses that last. Read the rest of this entry »

Sand Colic

October 16, 2014

Prevention is best when it comes to this horse health threat.

horses grazing

When a horse eats from the ground, he can ingest sand or dirt, which could cause sand colic. Journal photo

By Cynthia McFarland for AQHA Corporate Partner Farnam

If you don’t live in Florida or the desert Southwest, you probably think your horse isn’t at risk for sand colic. Think again.

When a horse grazes on short, sparse pasture or is fed hay on the ground, he can ingest sand or dirt. Some horses – especially foals – actually develop a fondness for eating soil, a behavior known as “geophagia.”

Depending on how much is consumed, the sand can accumulate in the horse’s ventral colon and cecum. In regions of the country where sandy soil is common, it’s not unusual for horses to have small amounts of sand in the intestinal tract. Read the rest of this entry »

Winter Care of the Broodmare

October 9, 2014

Follow these tips and help support cold weather horse health.

Retaining even a small piece of placenta can cause serious problems for your broodmare

It’s important to keep your broodmares healthy during the winter months so they can have healthy foals. Journal photo

From AQHA Corporate Partner Zoetis

Keeping mares healthy throughout pregnancy is important for the delivery of healthy, happy foals. For owners of American Quarter Horse mares waiting for the spring foaling season, it’s crucial to remember to take extra care of them during the cold winter months.

In winter, pregnant mares need to maintain healthy nutrients in their diets and sustain their body condition. They won’t have the benefit of lush grass to supplement their diets, so ensuring that they have a supply of quality hay can help them maintain optimal body condition. Read the rest of this entry »

The Oft-Forgotten Bot

October 2, 2014

A horse-health threat that can be lessened with proper management.

horse looking

Bot flies start as eggs “glued” to certain areas of your horse’s body, and end up going through his gastrointestinal tract. Journal photo.

By Cynthia McFarland for AQHA Corporate Partner Farnam

She may be doing a good imitation, but that hairy black-and-yellow insect buzzing around your horse’s front legs is not a bee. It’s a female horse bot fly, intent on “gluing” her eggs to the most advantageous spots.

Give that bot fly some credit. She’s no slacker. In fact, she can travel several miles in the quest for a host, and that host is your horse.

Life Cycle

There are three species of horse bots, and despite having similar life styles, the females oviposit (deposit using an organ at the end of the abdomen called an “ovipositor”) their eggs in different locations on the horse. Read the rest of this entry »

The Stomach to Win

September 25, 2014

Merial launches a “winning” video featuring AQHA members.

hunt seat horse

Two out of three nonracing competitive horses have been shown to have equine stomach ulcers.1 Journal photo.

From AQHA Corporate Partner Merial

Western pleasure. Showmanship. Reining.

AQHA Merial Regional Championships. The All American Quarter Horse Congress. AQHA world championship shows.

Texas. Florida. Virginia.

No matter the division, level of competition or geographic area, AQHA horse people have one thing in common – they want to win.

In a new video launched by Merial, makers of Ulcergard® (omeprazole), the message is all about what happens behind the scenes before competitive horses and riders ever enter a show pen, execute a pattern or slide to a stop. View the video at thestomachtowin.com. Read the rest of this entry »

The Science Behind Adequan

September 18, 2014

How and why these intramuscular injections help safeguard horse health.

Adequan photo

A healthy equine joint is in a constant state of “wear and repair.” Adequan photo.

From AQHA Corporate Partner Adequan

We have all heard how effective Adequan® i.m. (polysulfated glycosaminoglycan) is, however, most of us don’t really know why and how this therapy works. It is not as complicated as it might appear, and this article will shed some light on the subject.

Adequan® i.m. is a therapy to be used for equine noninfectious degenerative joint disease (DJD), often called osteoarthritis. Equine noninfectious DJD commonly affects the knees, hocks, ankles, stifles and coffin joints. Early recognition and treatment can limit the damage and restore the normal “wear and repair balance” in the joints before permanent cartilage or bone damage occurs. Read the rest of this entry »

Mount a Defense Against Equine Influenza

September 11, 2014

Vaccinations can help protect horse health heading into fall shows.

horses in stalls

At a show, your horse will be exposed to hundreds or even thousands of other horses, so he needs to be protected. Journal photo.

From AQHA Corporate Partner Zoetis

Traveling to events can put horse health to the test. Maybe it’s a trip to a training session or a big show like the upcoming All American Quarter Horse Congress. Unfortunately, this can be the time of year when upper respiratory disease, such as equine influenza, is all too common.

Whenever you expose your horse to other horses, you pose a risk to his health. But there are things you can do to help protect your horse from disease — most importantly, vaccination.

Without vaccination against equine influenza virus (EIV), horse owners can face a financial risk of up to $885, based on diagnostics, treatment and days of missed training.* Read the rest of this entry »

Stay Current With Horse Health Defense

September 4, 2014

Don’t let new strains of equine influenza make you doubt your horse’s disease protection.

prevent equine influenza with vaccine

You can protect your horse from equine influenza and other diseases by vaccinating your horse before he is ever exposed to the virus. Photo courtesy of Zoetis.

From AQHA Corporate Partner Zoetis

Equine influenza is a highly contagious respiratory disease that causes fever, coughing and nasal discharge.1 Treating it can cost you money. Recovery can cost you time away from training and competition.

The best method for helping to protect your horse against equine influenza virus is to vaccinate before exposure. But over time, new EIV strains can appear in circulation. So how can you trust that your horse is protected against the current EIV strains? Read the rest of this entry »

Hydration for Horse Health

August 21, 2014

Make sure your horses drink enough at home and on the road.

Encourage your horse to rehydrate after exercise by offering salted water as his first drink, followed by plain water a short while after. Journal photo

Encourage your horse to rehydrate after exercise by offering salted water as his first drink, followed by plain water a short while after. Journal photo

By Cynthia McFarland for AQHA Corporate Partner Farnam

If you could snap your fingers and remove all the water from your horse’s body, there wouldn’t be a whole lot left. The average adult horse’s body contains approximately 70 percent water. In other words, there are roughly 700 pounds of water in the average 1,000-pound horse.

This makes it obvious just how important it is that your horse has a consistent source of fresh, clean water to drink at all times. Read the rest of this entry »

Is Your Horse Ready for Peak Mosquito Season?

August 14, 2014

Learn how you can help protect your horses’ health from the threat of West Nile virus.

Vaccination is the most effective way to help protect horses against West Nile and other mosquito-borne diseases, such as eastern equine encephalomyelitis and western equine encephalomyelitis. Photo courtesy of Zoetis

Vaccination is the most effective way to help protect horses against West Nile and other mosquito-borne diseases, such as eastern equine encephalomyelitis and western equine encephalomyelitis. Photo courtesy of Zoetis

From AQHA Corporate Partner Zoetis

In the United States, July through October coincides with peak mosquito activity, which places your horse at the highest risk of contracting West Nile virus during this time of year.1 However, with the right vaccine and preventive measures, it’s not too late for horse owners to help protect their horses against this life-threatening disease. Zoetis offers the WEST NILE INNOVATOR® vaccine.

West Nile virus is transmitted by mosquitoes – which feed on infected birds – then infect horses, humans and other mammals. Last year, the United States reported 395 West Nile virus cases in horses.2 Texas and Oklahoma topped the charts with 69 and 41 cases, respectively.2 Read the rest of this entry »

Boosting Horse Health

August 7, 2014

A “one and done” spring approach might not be enough. Learn more about fall booster vaccinations.

Consult your veterinarian to learn more about which fall booster vaccinations are right for your horse. Photo courtesy of Zoetis

Consult your veterinarian to learn more about which fall booster vaccinations are right for your horse. Photo courtesy of Zoetis

From AQHA Corporate Partner Zoetis

A one-time sliding or backing lesson can help your horse in the short term, but it won’t make much of a difference in the long term. The same can be said for vaccinations. A once-a-year spring vaccination will help offer protection and can activate an immune response, but it might not be enough to combat the viral challenges of fall trips.

If your horse travels on and off the farm or boards with other horses who do, a second vaccination might be necessary to help boost immunity to acceptable levels. Protection against some diseases such as tetanus and rabies can be accomplished by boostering once a year. Others may require more frequent intervals to help provide adequate protection. Read the rest of this entry »

Tick-Borne Diseases Are on the Rise

July 31, 2014

Learn how to combat this horse health threat.

There are no vaccines for use in horses for tick-borne diseases so protecting your horse from ticks is the best way to prevent infection. Journal photo

There are no vaccines for use in horses for tick-borne diseases so protecting your horse from ticks is the best way to prevent infection. Journal photo

From AQHA Corporate Partner Farnam

If a film maker wanted to find a suitable villain for a horror movie, ticks would perfectly fit that description. Well-camouflaged and opportunistic, many ticks like to lurk in dark, wooded areas and climb up tall grass to find their victims. Although tiny in size, these highly adaptable creatures are capable of transmitting bacteria, viruses and blood parasites, some of which can be life-threatening, even deadly.

There are nearly 900 tick species in the world, and unfortunately, tick-borne disease is becoming more common. At least three of those diseases can affect horses. But before you lock your horse in the barn and swear off riding in the woods forever, take heart in the fact that you can take practical steps to protect your horse – and yourself – from ticks. Read the rest of this entry »