Tag: equine

Plants and Foods Toxic to Horses

13 January, 2021

There are quite a lot of plants that are toxic to horses, so it is important to ensure you know that is growing in your paddocks. The list is too long to include here but I will list a few common foods, herbs and grasses that should be avoided for horses Many garden plants and fruit trees are toxic to horses so it is a good idea to avoid throwing prunings or garden waste into paddocks to avoid accidentally allowing them access to something toxic Grass Clippings (from mowing) should never be given to horses as the mall particle size…

Equine Heat Stress – How to avoid

10 November, 2019

During Summer with scorching temperatures it is important to avoid equine heat stress. It is all about your horse being able to maintain his core body temperature close to 37.5C. This he can efficiently do on his own under most environmental conditions provided he has choices, for example access to shade and a clean trough that dispenses nice, cool water. Heat stress is the result of a build-up of heat in the horse’s body, usually due to some impediment to the normal sweating process.  In the horse, sweating is the most important means of reducing core body temperature. It works…

Horse Diet – Feeding Naturally

28 February, 2017

Horse Diet – Feeding Naturally. A natural diet for horses can vary considerably depending on the individual horse and their regular workload. A racehorse’s nutritional requirement differs greatly from a weekend leisure pony for example. The following is provided as a basic guideline and will need to be varied according to your horse’s breed, workload and nutritional needs. Horses are grazing animals and in the wild, they would travel over great distances to obtain food and water. Wild horses graze for approximately 18-20 hours per day on native grasses which are low in nutrition. Horses have a fairly small stomach…

Grass Affected Horse? How do you know if it is the grass?

17 May, 2016

If its Autumn or Spring, the risk is highest but certain grasses, supplements and feeds can affect some horses all year long.A ‘Grass affected horse’ is one where one or multiple aspects of their diet are adversely affecting their health and behavior. This usually originates from the forage (grass) but can be further exacerbated by the addition of other potassium rich feeds to their diet. The fastest way to create a ‘Grass Affected’ horse is to graze them on dairy pasture or other pasture that has been fertilized with potash, super-phosphate, DAP, Urea, NPK etc. This is enough to create a ‘Grass Affected’ horse within…

Autumn Grass Issues for Horses

10 May, 2016

Autumn grass growth can adversely affect some horses! Autumn and (Spring) grass can cause a lot of problems for horses when they eat these short green shoots. After testing some grass in a paddock with short green growing grass recently the results came back as: 1. High potassium (3.4%) low sodium (0.138%) Translates to a stress on the horse to excrete the excess potassium and conserve sodium (as this is not enough to run the metabolism of the horse). Hence the recommendation to add salt to feeds. 2. High Nitrates (nearly 1700 mgs/kg which translates for a LOT when the horse…

Laminitis and Founder – What to watch out for

6 April, 2016

There is a difference between laminitis and founder – Laminitis is inflammation of the laminae (which is the tissue that attaches the coffin bone to the hoof wall). Founder, is where the laminae have let go allowing the coffin bone to ‘sink’ within the hoof capsule. Laminitis nearly always precedes founder. Laminitis is a CHEMISTRY problem, which is relatively easy to rectify if action is taken early enough. However, once the laminae have ‘let go’, it is now a PHYSICAL injury or a mechanical problem which is a whole different kettle of fish to recover from. To rehabilitate a foundered…

Cool Energy Feeding for Horses

10 March, 2016

How do you know if a feed is going to be ‘heating’ for your horse? It is actually quite easy when you understand the following information on how the horse’s digestive system works. Food that is first chewed and thereby mixed with saliva passes into the stomach which has a very acidic environment because it is expecting to have to start the breakdown process of high fibre forage. This material then moves into the small intestine (which is actually quite long and narrow) where the ‘simple’ sugars (for example from growing grass or molasses) are quickly absorbed into the bloodstream….

Big Head disease recovery

30 September, 2015

Nutritional Secondary Hyperparathyroidism Recovery In December 2010 my horse was diagnosed with signs of big head disease. The swellings on each side of her head were extremely large and appeared over a matter of weeks. She was reluctant to go forward and spent hours each day standing around with an extremely depressed look in her eye. Her coat was dull. When she was ridden it was almost impossible to get her to canter and when she did she had very short, choppy strides. Apart from the facial swellings the other signs I mentioned appeared twelve months before she was diagnosed,…

Suspected Fractured Pelvis Recovery

24 September, 2015

Our 15 year old stock horse developed what we thought was arthritis around 3 months after we purchased him (he had been fully vet checked prior to purchase and passed with flying colors). He was intermittently lame which would come and go randomly and he would often drag his hind feet when walking and struggled walking down steep hills. Flash was a successful show jumper with his previous owner and we eventually had to retire him from jumping a year later as we didn’t want to put any more strain on his joints and he was struggling to lift his legs high enough to clear…

Spooking and Shying Violently

24 September, 2015

I have been using the whole ProvideIt Plan for over a year now with amazing results and would like to share the experience. I had searched for the right horse for months and a friend found him in the Eastern States for me and I was assured that he was very quiet and would suit me well. He had come from fairly drought conditions, and he was fine for a short while until my green pasture hit his system. He then became unmanageable for me, both to handle and ride, shying violently and becoming highly reactive to stimuli in his…

Sore Back and Nipping

24 September, 2015

I bought Duke in early January, 2010. When I went to try him he was a calm, unflappable horse who seemed to take everything in his stride. My mother and I brought him home and put him in a large paddock with lots of feed because he was a little skinny. The first few times I rode him, he was just as good as when I looked at him but he soon deteriorated and every time I caught him, he would try to bite me. One time he even reared up and started lashing out at me with his front…

Leg Splints Disappeared

24 September, 2015

Barry was broken-in in March, 2009, at four years of age and quietly worked through the winter, attending some winter clinics. After shedding the winter woollies and going from the ugly duck to a beautiful swan, he was shown three times in August for a promising start with three Champions and one Supreme. Things looked good for his newcomer season. On the 1st of September things started to crash with Barry starting to get a bit scratchy, a subtle lameness that would seem worse on corners and not real evident which leg it was. We decided to put a set…

Suspected Fractured Pelvis or Sacroiliac Injury

24 September, 2015

Great news! The horse with the suspected fractured pelvis is back to normal! I know a lot of people will bethinking ‘How can this be?’ Actually it is not at all difficult to understand when you realise how much mineral balances have to do with nerve and muscle function. When Susan bought ‘Millie’, a Sir Tristram bred TB in March of 2007 for her daughter Carmel, she was everything she was wanting for her next horse. Calm and quiet, with a fantastic temperament, she had already proven herself as a Show Hunter finishing 6th nationally on the 2006 Circuit. She took to…

Sacro-illiac and Saddle-fit Problems

24 September, 2015

These are so common and more often than not are NOT the result of an injury. They can easily be just another manifestation of a serious mineral imbalance, that of excess potassium relative to sodium, chloride, calcium and magnesium! Often this goes along with the other symptoms of being touchy, not wanting to be groomed, saddled etc. If you put your horse on the lunge, at the walk they may appear normal, the trot may be normal or they may appear stiff or tight behind, not tracking up. Where it really shows up is at the canter especially the first few…

Calm Healthy Horses Plan

8 September, 2015

Tick off any symptoms that you find from the Horse Symptom Checklist. Make the recommended diet changes in the CalmHealthyHorses Plan for one month, then, revisit the Checklist. If necessary continue the process for another month or until your horse is completely back to normal. This may take several months for more serious problems such as Head-Flicking. The CalmHealthyHorses Plan will help eliminate digestive flora problems, mineral imbalances, myco-toxin overload and correct the natural buffering system. Your horse will be calm and healthy and riding will be enjoyable again. Introduce any new feeds or supplements slowly, over a period of one to…

Equine Cushings Disease

8 September, 2015

Cushings disease is primarily a hormonal disorder caused by malfunction of the pituitary gland, located at the base of the brain. The pituitary is often referred to as the ‘master gland’ as it produces various hormones and substances which control body functions via other glands including the adrenal glands. Overactivity (over-working) of the pituitary causes enlargement of the part of the gland called the ‘pars intermedia’ which then presses on the ‘Hypothalamus’ gland interfering with control of body temperature, and production of endorphins and dopamine. Abnormal sweat patterns and depression are characteristic of Cushing’s horses and ponies. Over-activity of the…

Head Flicking (Horses)

8 September, 2015

Have You Diagnosed Correctly? Head flicking or shaking is characterized by some or all of the following: Sudden, involuntary jerking up and down of the nose (exactly like a bug has flown up his nose) Sometimes it is more a violent shaking of the ears Hanging the ears out to the side (aeroplane ears) Urgent rubbing of their nose on their leg, or dragging it along the ground, (sometimes forgetting they were cantering at the time!) Leaping around trying to ‘box’ their nose with their front feet Pressing their head into you General distress and agitation Urine pH over 8…

Laminitis Solutions

8 September, 2015

Equine Laminitis Solutions – Click here for information about the difference between laminitis and founder. There are several potential causes of laminitis: Any major infection such as a retained placenta Some medications Any injury which causes constant weight-bearing on the other ‘good’ limb Standing on poisonous substances Gorging on grain from the feed bin Fructans in cool season grasses like rye-grass The sort of laminitis we are talking about here is that which is most common, especially in spring and autumn, and is caused by the mineral imbalances inherent in the grass the horse is consuming, referred to here as ‘Grass-Induced…