Erica Larson, News Editor

  • Choosing an Antibiotic for Use in Foals

    Treating bacterial diseases in horses—or really, in any species—is much easier when the causative agents are sensitive to available antibiotics. But unfortunately, this isn't always the case anymore: antibiotic-resistant bacteria are popping up all over the world.

  • Parasite Control Recommendations for Mares and Foals

    Times are changing when it comes to equine parasite control: Anthelmintic-resistant parasites have prompted new, more targeted deworming recommendations. Two important classes of horses that fall under this deworming protocol are broodmares and foals. At the 2013 Society for Theriogenology Conference, held Aug. 7-10 in Louisville, Ky., Wendy Vaala, VMD, D...

  • Could Intrauterine Marbles Cause Pyometra in Mares?

    Mares in estrus can be challenging—and even dangerous—to deal with. So some owners seek a veterinarians' help to control their mares' estrous cycles and reduce estrus-related behavior. One of those methods involves placing a marble in the mare's uterus, which essentially keeps the mare from cycling.

  • L. intracellularis Research Review

    Researchers around the world are always working to better understand a bevy of horse health problems. And while moving forward is the ultimate goal, sometimes it pays to look back at what previous research has revealed.

  • Oviduct Issues in Mares

    When many breeders consider mare fertility issues, most don't consider that the oviduct—the slender channel through which eggs travel from ovary to uterus—could be causing problems. While oviduct-related fertility issues are rare in horses, breeders should be aware of what can go wrong with this important structure.

  • Prostaglandins for Controlling Mares' Estrous Cycles

    Breeders always appreciate ways to help improve their mares' chances of becoming pregnant, and one way veterinarians can help is by administering prostaglandins. At the 2013 Society for Theriogenology Conference, held Aug. 7-10 in Louisville, Ky., Carlos R. F. Pinto, MedVet, PhD, Dipl. ACT, presented a lecture on using prostaglandin F2? (PGF) to contr...

  • Equine Placentitis Update

    What's the most common cause of late-term abortion in horses and remains challenging for veterinarians to diagnose and treat, despite ongoing research? If you said placentitis, you're right. To bring attendees of the 2013 Society for Theriogenology Conference, held Aug. 7-10 in Louisville, Ky., up to speed on the latest research on the complex top...

  • Top Foal-Related Studies of 2012-'13

    Even though they're small in stature, foals can have some big health problems. And researchers around the world are continually working to better understand these health problems and find more effective ways to treat them. At the 2013 Society for Theriogenology Conference, held Aug. 7-10 in Louisville, Ky., Chris Sanchez, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACVIM, associ...

  • Equine Immunodeficiencies Reviewed

    A strong immune system is crucial to a horse's overall health status, as a weakened immune system can leave the animal at increased disease risk. And although they're uncommon in horses, immunodeficiencies can have serious consequences for affected animals.

  • Researchers Study Abnormal Behavior Prevalence in Racehorses

    Many horse owners don't think about equine stereotypic behaviors until they own a cribber, a stall walker, a weaver, or a horse that passes his time with any abnormal behavior. But these stereotypies are more important than some might think: They could indicate compromised equine welfare. Recently, Chilean researchers set out to evaluate the prevalenc...

  • Fetal Consciousness' Impact on Equine Neonatal Health

    Somewhere between when the birthing process begins and when the long-legged foal takes his first wobbly steps, he transitions from an unconscious fetus to a conscious horse. And while owners might just be happy to see their new arrival waking up to the world, researchers now believe that the fetal consciousness transition could have a significant impact o...

  • Equine Postoperative Ileus Insights

    When an owner sends a horse under the knife for colic surgery, he or she is first and foremost hoping the horse survives the operation. But just because he makes it through the procedure doesn't mean he's out of the woods: Many horses develop a dangerous complication called postoperative ileus—a lack of gut motility after surgery.

  • Equine Collapse Reviewed

    There are few things more frightening for an owner than watching their horse collapse without warning or apparent cause. By the same token, unraveling the cause behind an equine collapse often presents veterinarians with a diagnostic challenge, and in many cases the root cause of a horse's collapse can't be determined.

  • Vitamin E Supplementation for Neurologic Disorders

    Veterinarians frequently suggest supplementing the diets of horses with certain neurologic disorders with vitamin E. But why? What disorders does it help? And which of the eight types of vitamin E supplement is most beneficial? Fortunately, it's not quite as complicated as it might seem.

  • Woodbine EHV-1: Some Restrictions Lifted

    The Ontario Racing Commission (ORC) has lifted restrictions placed on horses residing in Barn 3 at Woodbine Racetrack, and horses not stabled in Barn 1 are now permitted to leave the property, said ORC Manager of Veterinary Services Adam Chambers, BVMS.

  • Equine Muscle Matters Reviewed

    Most horse owners appreciate the sight of a well-muscled horse, along with the time and effort riders or trainers must commit to helping that animal fill out. But chances are, fewer owners consider the factors within a horse's body that allow him to build—or lose—muscle mass.

  • Equine Gastrointestinal Health Reviewed

    All horses'—from young to old, high-performance to sedentary, rescued to syndicated, and everywhere in between—gastrointestinal (GI) tracts function in the same manner. And owners of all types of horses should take the same steps to help keep their animals' GI systems functioning optimally.

  • Equine Castration Complications Reviewed

    Although castrations are routine procedures for many equine practitioners, the risk for complications remains. And while most complications are generally mild, some have life-threatening implications. To better understand these complications, a University of California, Davis (UC Davis), research team recently took a closer look at their prevalence and ou...

  • Stabilizing Equine Limb Fractures in the Field (AAEP 2012)

    Many fractures once deemed inoperable can now be surgically repaired successfully, but management approaches during the critical post-fracture window can have a major impact on outcomes. One equine practitioner reported that veterinarians must be prepared with the appropriate knowledge and equipment to help save these patients' lives.

  • Understanding Mare and Foal Behavior (AAEP 2012)

    Raising a child takes a village, notes one African proverb; the collective experiences of a community forming the individual person. Similarly, a growing foal takes its cues from his dam, surrounding herd, and handlers, and care approaches become particularly important when the foal is orphaned. One of the key aspects handlers must consider when raising a...

  • Bandages for Fracture Stabilization Evaluated (AAEP 2012)

    Fracture stabilization is one of the most important steps in addressing potentially catastrophic injuries in horses. One of the staples veterinarians use to stabilize equine limb fractures is the Robert Jones bandage, a layered and padded bandage, sometimes used in conjunction with a splint layered inside the wrap, designed to limit limb mobility.

  • How Horse Wounds Heal

    Whether large or small, serious or innocuous, all wounds follow a distinct and complex healing process. During the 2013 Western Veterinary Conference, held Feb. 17-21 in Las Vegas, Nev., one veterinarian reviewed how wounds heal and how owners can help facilitate healing.

  • AAEP, AHC Partner to Prevent Equine Disease Outbreaks

    When a horse contracts a disease, the owner or caretaker usually focuses solely on getting the horse healthy again and protecting others on the farm from illness. But in reality, certain ailments could have community-, region-, and even industry-wide effects. For instance, an equine viral arteritis or contagious equine metritis outbreak could shutter the ...

  • CFS Classification System Developed (AAEP 2012)

    Foals with contracted limbs, which can prevent them from standing or walking normally, often display a variety of other physical abnormalities that veterinarians haven’t directly tied to the contractures. Understanding correlations between these characteristics could help veterinarians build a bank of knowledge to help guide treatment down the most ...

  • Vestibular Disease in Horses Reviewed

    Although they don't tend to garner as much attention as infectious neurologic diseases, vestibular diseases (those that pertain to the balance mechanisms) are common and important causes of neurologic problems in horses. At the 2013 Western Veterinary Conference, held Feb. 17-21, Laurie Beard, DVM, MS, Dipl. ACVIM, associate clinical professor at Kans...

  • Study Evaluates Effects of Probiotics for Horses

    Nutritional supplements containing probiotics are popular purchases for some horse owners, even if not all of these products' label claims are backed by research. But some researchers are working to better understand these probiotics' effects on horses. At the 2013 Western Veterinary Conference, held Feb. 17-21, in Las Vegas, Nev., one veterinaria...

  • Current Diagnostic Options for PPID

    Veterinarians can typically diagnose a horse with late-stage pituitary pars intermedia dysfunction (PPID, or equine Cushing's disease) easily. Diagnosing early stage PPID and, thus, allowing treatment to begin earlier in the course of the disease, remains more challenging. Fortunately, research is ongoing and more reliable diagnostic tests are being d...

  • Handling Hyperthermia and Hypothermia in Horses

    They might be on opposite ends of the spectrum, but hyperthermia and hypothermia in horses are more alike than one might think. At the 2013 Western Veterinary Conference, held Feb. 17-21 in Las Vegas, Nev., Amelia S. Munsterman, DVM, MS, Dipl. ACVS, ACVECC, reviewed these two equine environmental emergencies and how to best manage affected horses.

  • Equine Field Anesthesia Considerations

    Have you ever observed or seen photos of a horse in a hospital undergoing surgery that requires general anesthesia? After he's anesthetized in a padded room he's hoisted onto a table where, while the surgeon takes care of the procedure at hand, numerous assistants monitor the patient's vital signs, ready to spring into action if any problems o...

  • Sample Handling's Effects on Plasma CO2 Levels (AAEP 2012)

    By its very nature the practice of “milkshaking,” or administering bicarbonate or other alkalinizing substances to racehorses as performance enhancers, can be tough to pinpoint—horses metabolize the substances quickly, and testing laboratories must look for elevated blood total carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations as evidence. So to prese...

  • Treating Head Injuries in Horses

    Anyone who's ever been inadvertently bumped by their horse's head knows just how heavy and solid these structures are. But horses' heads aren't invincible: They can suffer injuries ranging from harmless scratches to severe bone fractures.

  • Supplement to Support Post-Surgical Joint Health (AAEP 2012)

    A research team from the Nutraceutical Alliance Inc. shared some good news for owners of horses with osteoarthritis at the 2012 American Association of Equine Practitioners convention: A nutritional supplement fed immediately after osteochondral fragment removal surgery could help reduce the amount of post-surgical inflammation in the joint.

  • Wobbler Syndrome in Older Horses

    The neurologic condition cervical vertebral stenotic myopathy (CVSM, commonly known as wobbler syndrome) is much less common in older horses than it is in young, growing animals. But according to one clinician, this condition should be on all veterinarians' differential diagnoses list when evaluating an aged horse presenting with neurologic signs and/...

  • Blood Collection Tube Size and CO2 Concentration (AAEP 2012)

    Veterinarians screen racehorses regularly for evidence of performance enhancers, aiming to use sample collection methods that yield accurate and consistent results. Blood-draw supplies vary among veterinarians, however, and could conceivably impact test results, so a Purdue University research team recently evaluated how such variables impact a common mea...

  • Triaging Acute Equine Neurologic Emergencies

    A horse owner's day can go from great to horrific in a matter of seconds if he or she arrives at the barn to find their charge either staggering around the field or completely unable to rise. A prompt call to the veterinarian is warranted in these scenarios, but what should an owner expect when the veterinarian arrives?

  • Back to Basics: Equine Dental Terminology and Anatomy

    When discussing our dental health, we are familiar with commonly used terms such as plaque, cavity, or root canal. But discussing our horses' teeth can be a bit more confusing: Mesial. Occlusal surface. Interproximal space. What does it all mean? Fortunately, at the 2013 Western Veterinary Conference, held Feb. 17-21 in Las Vegas, Nev., Cleet Griffin,...

  • Medication Mishaps in Horses (AAEP 2012)

    Paracelsus, a 16th century Swiss physician and alchemist, once said, "Poison is in everything, and no thing is without poison. The dosage makes it either a poison or a remedy." Similarly in horses, determining what medication dose is therapeutic vs. detrimental, and knowing which drugs can poison some horses while helping others, are among the c...

  • Ultrasound for Arytenoid Chondritis Diagnosis? (AAEP 2012)

    Veterinarians often choose upper airway endoscopy when working to diagnose equine arytenoid chondritis--an uncommon but problematic respiratory condition--but in some cases a definitive diagnosis lies out of reach. Ultrasonography could offer a valuable adjunct tool for diagnosing this respiratory condition, however, especially in cases lacking a definiti...

  • Barn Fires: The Veterinarian's Role (AAEP 2012)

    A barn engulfed in flames, terrified whinnies coming from within the burning structure. Few scenarios are more frightening to owners of stable-kept horses. Veterinarians, with their regular trips to the barn, are in a unique position to advise horse owners on fire prevention. However, even with the best preventive measures, barn fires do happen, so it&#39...

  • CT for Equine Limb Fracture Diagnosis? (AAEP 2012)

    A fracture can put a horse's athletic future--sometimes even his life--on the line, and basing treatment on a complete and accurate diagnosis can make a major difference in the horse's recovery. A veterinarian in Belgium believes computed tomography (CT) offers a better option for imaging some lower limb fractures than radiography.

  • Managing Dehydration, Exhaustion in Horses (AAEP 2012)

    Horses can lose up to 15 liters of sweat per hour during strenuous exercise, leaving them in a precarious metabolic balance that cold water hosing alone can't touch. At the 2012 American Association of Equine Practitioners convention, held Dec. 1-5 in Anaheim, Calif., Emma Adam, BVetMed, Dipl. ACVIM, ACVS, an equine practitioner performing research at...

  • Navicular Bone Fragments' Effect on Lameness (AAEP 2012)

    Although researchers have been studying the equine navicular bone for years, many mysteries still surround it. For instance, advanced imaging techniques give veterinarians a clearer picture than ever of irregularities or damage to the navicular bone, but it's not always evident what such pathologies mean for a horse's soundness. Elizabeth Yorke, D...