A foal's birth marks the start of something exciting: a new partner to train, a clean slate with which to begin, and potential just waiting to be tapped. But something exciting can quickly turn to something disappointing if that foal isn't healthy.
Injecting medication directly into a horse's joint might make some owners wary of complications. But British researchers have recently shown that, when careful aseptic techniques are used, the risks are actually very low.
Humans, other primates, and even dogs share a common feature: We express ourselves, including our physical pain, through our faces. Horses, maybe not so much. At least not in a way researchers have quantified until recently.
With the world watching, the Stark Ridge mare My Special Girl gave birth to a colt at 9:22 p.m. March 29 at Penn Vet's New Bolton Center. The gray foal weighed 104 pounds and measured 39.5 inches.
Keeping aging equids comfortable and sound is a top priority (and, often, a challenge) among senior horse owners. To help their older horses along, many owners reach for one or more of the available supplements designed to alleviate joint issues. But just how effective are these products?
When it comes to equine axillary wounds—those that damage the space between the inside of the upper limb and the body wall—the part you can see on your horse's skin might be the proverbial tip of the iceberg: Apparently minor wounds can cause some serious problems under the horse's skin. And veterinarians need to know what to look for ...
Does your performance horse need to pack on a few more pounds? Here are some tips to consider when managing a hard-keeping equine athlete.
Tying-up, or exertional rhabdomyolysis, is a frustrating problem that sport and racehorse trainers try diligently to prevent. Fortunately, there's some good news: Japanese researchers recently tested a supplement designed to alleviate both tying-up episodes and the muscle damage, with positive results.
When clouds start rolling in, it often means a storm is brewing. For horses with cloudy eyes, the source of that storm could be one of many. Fortunately, veterinarians are well-versed in the diagnostic and treatment options for cloudy-eyed horses.
Your veterinarian says your horse needs surgery, and there are two options to choose from—a tried-and-true but somewhat invasive procedure or a newer, less invasive method that lets them return to function quicker. While the latter option seems enticing, you might want to stick to tradition, depending on the procedure: Researchers recently learned t...
The Belmont Stakes Charity Celebration, which benefits the Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation and the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation (TRF), will return to Chef Bobby Flay's Bar Americain Thursday, June 5.
The typical stance of a laminitic horse exhibits just how painful the disease is: The affected horse rocks back onto his hind legs, trying to remove weight from painful front feet, and/or shifts his weight side-to-side.
Blasts of polar air across Kentucky made this winter one to remember for many, but experts say the Eastern tent caterpillars probably didn’t take notice.
There's a scary new disease out there that could potentially harm not only horses, but also humans. Less than two years ago a team of Florida-based veterinarians published a report of the first equine cutaneous (affecting the skin) leishmaniasis case diagnosed in the United States in a horse without history of international travel. And recently, Sarah...
Initial results of a study conducted by the University of Kentucky Gluck Equine Research Center suggest accepted dosage levels for several corticosteroids commonly used in racing should be examined.
The 1992 American Derby record setter The Name's Jimmy died March 7 at Old Friends Thoroughbred Retirement Center in Georgetown, Ky.
By now it's no secret that MRI is the gold standard in diagnosing pain in the rear (palmar) portion of horses' feet. However, many owners still choose to have less-reliable radiography performed on their heel-sore horses due to MRI's high cost and inconvenience.
The California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) has started evaluating cobalt levels in racehorses competing at tracks in that state and in certain necropsy scenarios, according to a March 4 memo from CHRB Equine Medical Director Rick Arthur, DVM.
Horse owners sometimes find it necessary to change their horse’s feeding program--fluctuations in temperature, season, and performance level are just some of the reasons. But with the known link between diet changes and health conditions such as colic or laminitis, how can owners safely transition their horse’s feed without negatively affectin...
Both sport and pleasure riders know how important saddle fit is to keeping their mounts healthy and comfortable. But what effects could considerably smaller and lighter racing saddles have on horses that are traveling considerably faster than the average reiner or jumper? Turns out these tiny pieces of tack can have a substantial impact.
Could something even smaller than a pea end a horse's athletic career? If that something is a cystic lesion in the stifle (or femoral condylar cyst), it's entirely possible. Fortunately, specific management approaches can help some horses return to their jobs in the arena or on the track with few, if any, lasting effects.
The Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation's board of directors announced Feb. 27 that the foundation will fund a slate of 19 research projects worth $1,003,580 in 2014.
Thoroughbreds are born to run. But to satisfy this need for speed, the horse must have a strong foundation on which to gallop—we're talking about his hooves.
Anyone who's ever managed an equine eye issue knows how challenging it can be to administer treatment. Horses have an uncanny ability to morph into giraffes when they'd rather not have their eyes touched, and an owner's inability to provide appropriate treatment can hinder a horse's recovery. Fortunately, there's an easier way: the sub...
The 2014 application for organizations seeking accreditation from the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance Foundation is now available online, with a deadline of May 15, 2014.
Equine placentitis is subtle in its onset, often causing the death of its victim—the unborn foal—before veterinarians can detect and treat it. Equipping veterinarians to identify these cases of placental infection early could help them prevent abortions, lost time on the breeding calendar, and the general heartbreak that can come with losing a...
Two barns at Parx Racing, in Bensalem, Pa., have been quarantined after a horse residing in one of the barns tested positive for equine herpesvirus-1 (EHV-1).
The old adage says "you don't know where you're going if you don't know where you've been."
With six bones articulating in close range and multiple tendons and ligaments controlling extension and flexion, the hock, or the horse equivalent of the human ankle, has many moving and shock-absorbing parts. Add to those the animal’s weight and the fact the joint is almost always in flexion, and you’ve got a recipe for a perplexing number of...
Tradition might reign supreme in some cases, but when it comes to equine pain control researchers are seeking different—and sometimes safer—drugs to use in a variety of circumstances.
While severe equine eye injuries or disorders can be gruesome in appearance, they generally aren't life-threatening. Thanks to medical and technological advances, veterinarians can now treat eye issues more effectively than they have in the past. But if treatment fails, veterinarians also have the option of removing the eye without the risks associate...
Equine coronavirus, or ECoV, has been on many veterinarians' radars lately: While they've long known the virus is commonly found in foals, it's recently been implicated in several outbreaks among adult horses. So to better understand the disease it causes and how to best diagnose and manage outbreaks, researchers recently completed a study on ...
Equine eye problems can be challenging for practitioners and owners to manage. They can be particularly difficult to treat when veterinarians are still just trying to determine problem's root cause. One such issue is eosinophilic keratoconjunctivitis (EK).
A broodmare's belly will undoubtedly grow as her fetus matures, but any rapid or unexpected expansion—particularly during the last trimester—is cause for concern. She might be suffering from one of two life-threatening conditions: hydrops allantois or hydrops amnion, characterized by excessive accumulations of allantoic or amnionic fluid i...
Clean legs? Check. Healthy heart? Check. Strong back? Check. But before you sign the papers for your new horse, don't forget to have your veterinarian look the horse in the eye.
Bloodhorse.com joins the longform revolution with this behind-the-scenes look at neonatal care. "A chilling rain fell when the mare was led to surgery...In the final moments between life and the unknown, all was well." Read more
You had high hopes for your Thoroughbred racing prospect until he sustained a suspensory ligament branch injury as a yearling. The question now is, after rehab, should you continue to pursue his racing career, or should you skip the track and point him down a different career path? Recent study results suggest the answer depends on the severity of the inj...
Although vaccination against infectious disease is a routine component of horse care, many owners still voice concerns about their horse's risk of having an adverse reaction to these injections. For this reason, veterinarians sometimes administer non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) before vaccinating horses to reduce the risk and severity of su...
Easy keepers—horses that remain rotund despite restricted diets and rigid exercise plans—must be managed carefully to prevent or minimize more serious health issues. Equine metabolic syndrome (EMS), one condition associated with obesity, can have a serious negative impact on horses' health. Fortunately, over the past few years, veterinaria...
When a racehorse breaks down on the track, you're not only faced with the devastating loss of a horse, but also economic loss and, potentially, an injured jockey. One of the most common sites of catastrophic injuries in Thoroughbred racehorses is the fetlock and its surrounding structures.
With focus on safety, presenters at the Jockeys' Guild assembly outlined the dangers of concussions, explained a new baseline testing initiative, and provided initial results from the U.S. Jockey Injury Database.
- By Frank Angst
- Racing, Health, Northeast Region, Midwest Region, West Region, Kentucky, Mid-Atlantic
Amid a changing landscape of funding sources in horse racing, the Jockeys' Guild has turned to state lobbyists to help ensure its interests are considered.
With more horses living to a ripe old age than in the past, veterinarians have become incredibly well-versed in managing senior equids. But there are still some points that researchers are working to understand. For instance, exactly what impact does aging have on the immune system?
If your horse is exhibiting signs of colic, weight loss, or diarrhea, your veterinarian might reach for an ultrasound probe to get a glimpse of what is going on inside the animal's abdomen. Some serious conditions, however, aren't easily visible on ultrasound.
Hoof sole penetration injuries are no small matter, though they might be nearly indiscernible to the eye and affect a small area. It’s more about what’s going on deep inside the hoof, where concealed damage to internal structures can be disastrous; the prognosis for horses injuring these structures to return to their prior athletic level is of...
Cribbing isn't just annoying for owners and destructive to property. It can also negatively impact your horse's health and is notoriously difficult to control. But there's a glimmer of hope for owners with cribbers: Researchers found that a surgical procedure intended to control cribbing is very effective.
The Jockey Club and Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation will conduct the fifth "Welfare and Safety of the Racehorse Summit" July 8-9 at the Keeneland sales pavilion in Lexington.
When it comes to healing horse wounds many owners will try any and everything to help the defect recover quickly—regardless of whether the product has scientific backing. Recently, researchers put some evidence behind one type of wound dressing: silver sodium zirconium phosphate polyurethane foam wound dressing, or, more simply, SPF dressing.
As if horses weren't prone to enough injuries and health issues, a new dental disease surfaced in 2004. It's literally a mouthful: equine odontoclastic tooth resorption and hypercementosis (EOTRH). And because it's so recently identified, Ann Pearson, MS, DVM, and her colleagues at Reata Equine Veterinary Group, in Tucson, Ariz., conducted a s...
The horse quarantined with a suspect case of equine herpesvirus-1 (EHV-1) at the Fair Hill Training Center, in Elkton, Md., will be retested next week, according to a statement from Kathleen Anderson, DVM, owner and manager of the Elkton-based Equine Veterinary Care, PC.
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