Video with step by step instructions on how to remove a horse shoe in an emergency:
Video with step by step instructions on how to remove a horse shoe in an emergency:
(via The Brooke an international animal welfare organisation committed to improving the lives of working horses, donkeys, mules and their owners.)
Most prevalent during August to October Equine Piroplasmosis is a potentially life threatening illness. Currently the UK is considered free of the disease but it is endemic in many countries, the tick population is increasing in the South East of England and imported equines from Europe and other countries that may be carriers of the disease do make the UK vunerable.
Because Equine Piroplasmosis is rare in the UK we may not be familiar with the symptoms and valuable time may be lost in beginning treatment, diagnosis is made via blood tests.
Once an infected tick has bitten the horse, it can take 7 to 22 days for
the babesia to incubate.
Urgent veterinary treatment is required, Equine Piroplasmosis affects the heart, liver and kidneys and because of similarity of the clinical signs it can be confused with laminitis, colic or azoturia so ask for blood tests.
Treatment is with anti-protozoan drugs combined with supportive drugs for any affected organs, a blood transfusion is necessary.
Sometimes horse appear to have recovered after treatment to have the symptoms re-appear after 7 – 10 days.
The following information on nursing has been gathered by Equine Rescue France to help owners:
Tabanidae flies are the largest of blood sucking flies, there are approximately 4,500 species found world wide, 30 of which can be found in the UK. Adult flies feed on nectar but as a haematophagous fly the female horsefly feeds on blood to obtain the necessary nutrients for the development of their eggs and they will attack a wide variety of animals including horses and their human handlers.
The horsefly (genus Tabanus) bite is very painful as the female horsefly cuts and rasps the skin with powerful mandibles and maxillae to create a feeding hole. The blood is sucked using a protruding hypopharynx which causes pain to the host.
Tabanids can take up to 300ml of blood a day from a host severely weakening the animal, they are also known vectors for blood- borne diseases such as Equine Infectious Anaemia. Horse fly bites are nasty resulting in lumps with a characteristic central ulcer. They can become infected.
Horsefly larvae inhabit moist areas feeding on invertebrates like snails and worms before they pupate. The adult horsefly emerges in June and July, the greatest horsefly activity occurs on warm, sunny days when there is little or no wind.
Insecticides containing pyrethroids (Permethrin or Cypermethrin) offer horses some protection against horse flies. Also consider stabling your horse on warm, sultry days when horse flies are active, horse flies don't like dark areas and will not go into the stable.
To avoid being bitten yourself, wear long sleeved tops, apply a repellent that contains diethyltoluamide (DEET) and wear light coloured clothing which apparently doesn't attract the flies like darker colours.
Image: Dennis Ray
All parts of the ranunculus species (buttercups, crowfoot, spearwort, marsh marigold) contain the glycoside ranunculin which forms protoanemonin an irritant substance. All domestic animals, including horses, are suscepitible to protoanemonin poisoning.
Buttercups do have a bitter burning taste which acts as a deterrant to horses eating them but when there are large quantities of buttercups in pasture it can become impossible for the horse to avoid them. The highest concentration of protoanemonin is present during flowering.
Symptoms of buttercup poisoning include:
Mouth ulcers and difficulty eating
Swelling of the face
Impaired hearing and sight
Although extremely rare, due to the symptoms stopping the horse or pony from eating, buttercup poisoning can result in death.
Buttercups in hay
Buttercups are non-toxic when dried so you don't need to worry if you find them in hay or haylage.
Removal of buttercups
Buttercups are obviously undesirable in your horses pasture and being an extremely invasive plant they need to be removed. Buttercups thrive in poor compacted soil, aerating and draining the soil will help reduce numbers. Harrowing breaks the runners and reduces numbers. They can be killed by the use of a suitable weed killer but you should note that buttercups appear to be more palatable to animals after the use of weed killers and there is a greater risk of poisoning. Treated pastures should not be grazed for at least 2 weeks after the use of herbicides.
Alder Buckthorn (Frangula alnus)
Annual Mercury (Mercurialis annua)
Arum Lily (Zantedeschia species)
Autumn Crocus (Colchicum autumnale)
Azalea (Rhododendron species)
Beech (Fagus sylvatica)
Birthwort (Aristolochia species)
Black Bryony (Tamus communis)
Bluebell (Hyacinthoides non-scripta)
Box (Buxus sempervirens)
Bracken (Pteridum aquilinum)
Buckthorn (Rhamnus carthartica)
Buttercup (Ranunculus species)
Cannabis (Cannabis sativa)
Castor Oil Plant (Ricinus communis)
Cheese Plant (Monstera deliciosa)
Cherry Laurel (Prunus laurocerasus)
Chickweed ( Stellaria species)
Columbine (Aquilegia species)
Corn Cockle (Agrostemma githago)
Cowbane (Cicuta virosa)
Crow Garlic (Allium vineale)
Cuckoo Pint (Arum maculatum)
Cypress (Cupressus species)
Daffodil (Narcissis species)
Deadly Nightshade (Atropa belladonna)
Delphinium, Larkspur (Delphinium species)
Dodder (Cuscuta species)
Dog's Mercury (Mercurialis perennis)False Hellebore (Veratrum species)
Fat Hen ( Chenopodium album)
Flamingo Flower (Anthurium species)
Foxglove (Digitalis purpurea)
Giant Hogweed (Heracleum mantegazzianum)
Greater Celandine (Chelidonium majus)
Ground Ivy (Glechoma hederacea)
Hydrangea (Hydrangea species)
Hemlock (Conium maculatum)
Hemlock Water Dropwort ( Oenanthe crocata)
Hemp Nettle (Galeopsis species)
Henbane (Hyoscyamus niger)
Holly (Ilex aquifolium)
Horse Chesnut ( Aesculus hippocastanum)
Horse Radish (Armoracia rusticana)
Horsetail (Equisetum species)
Iris (Iris species)
Ivy (Hedera helix)
Jonquil (Narcissus species)
Laburnum (Laburnum anagyroides)
Laurel (Prunus laurocerasus)
Lily of the Vally (Convallaria majalis)
Lupin (Lupinus species)?
Marsh Marigold (Caltha palustris)
Mezereon (Daphne mezereum)
Milk Vetch / Loco Weed (Astragalus species)
Mistletoe (Viscum album)
Monkshood (Aconitum napellus)
Morning Glory (Ipomoea species)
Narcissus (Narcissus species)
Oak (Quercus species)
Oleander (Nerium oleander)
Onion (Allium cepa)
Opium Poppy (Papaver somniferum)
Perforate St. John's Wort (Hypericum perforatum)
Petty Spurge (Euphorbia peplus)
Pieris (Pieris species)
Pokeweed (Phytolacca americana)
Poppy (Papaver species)
Potato (Solanum tuberosum)
Privet (Ligustrum species)
Purple Viper's Bugloss (Echium plantagineum)
Ragwort (Senecia jacobaea)
Ramsons (Allium ursinum)
Red Maple (Acer rubrum)
Rhododendron (Rhodendron ponticum)
Rhubarb (Rheum rhaponticum)
St. Baranaby's Thistle (Centaurea solstitialis)
St. John's Wort (Hypericum species)
Sandwort (Arenaria species)
Soapwort (Saponaria species)
Solomon's Seal (Polygonatum multiflorum)
Sorrel (Rumex acetosa)
Spindle (Euonymus europaeus)
Spurge Laurel (Daphne laureola)
Sun Spurge (Euphorbia helioscopia)
Thorn Apple (Datura straemonium)
Traveller's Joy (Clematis vitalba)
White Bryony (Bryonia dioica)
Wisteria (Wisteria species)
Wood Anemone (Anemone nemorosa)
Wood Sorrel (Oxalis acetosella)
Woody Nightshade (Solanum dulcamara)
Yellow Flag (Iris pseudacorus)
Yellow Star Thistle (Centaurea solstitialis)
Yew (Taxus baccata)
Understanding equine transport regulations can be a complicated task but the Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA) clarify regulations for horse owners in their free downloadable booklet A Guide for Horsebox and Trailer Owners.
and it addresses some basic questions to assist owners and operators of horseboxes.
Click HERE to download the PDF document. The download will start immediately.
EHV-1 is a virus, Equine Herpes Virus Type 1. It is also called the “rhino virus” or "rhinopneuomitis".
The EHV-1 virus is extremely contagious.
EHV-1 virus spreads via nasal secretions, through touch, through the air and through objects that have been in contact with infected horses this includes hands and clothing of people.
Equine Herpes Virus 1 (EHV-1) can cause respiratory disease, abortion, neonatal mortality and it can mutate to Equine Herpes Virus Myeloencephalopathy (EHM) a severe viral brain and spinal fluid infection.
All equines – horses, donkeys, mules, zebras can contract EHV-1 as can alpacas and llamas.
Symptoms of Equine Herpes Virus Type 1 (EHV-1) include high temperature, lethargy, clear runny nose, many horses only get the respiratory version and clear the virus after a few days however they should still be evaluated by a vet and isolated for at least 21 days or until any infectious disease has been ruled out.
Symptoms of Equine Herpes Virus Myeloencephalopathy (EHM) include high temperature, followed by a variety of possible neurologic signs which may include weakness, incoordination of the limbs, inability to urinate or pass manure, decreased tail tone. Signs are more apparent in the hindlimbs and in severe cases may progress to the inability to stand.
Prevention of EHV-1:
The best way to prevent EHV-1 exposure during suspected outbreaks is to quarantine your horses and yard / barn.
Practice bio-security in the yard see Minimising the risk of equine infectious diseases using biosecurity at the stable yard
If you think you may have been in contact with horses who have contracted EHV-1 start taking your horse's temperature twice a day, if your horse's temperature rises above normal (99-101°F (37.2-38.3°C) for an adult horse) contact your equine vet IMMEDIATELY.
There are several vaccines on the market to prevent the respiratory and abortion forms of the EHV-1 rhinovirus but there is currently no effective vaccine for the neurologic form of EHV-1. Your vet can advise you as to the best vaccine for your horse.
What are enteroliths?
Enteroliths are intestinal stones composed of magnesium ammonium phosphate salts, sometimes they form around a small foreign object eg. a pebble, or even a piece of baling twine in a similar manner to pearl in an oyster. Large enterolith stones in a horse's colon can cause an obstruction and result in colic.
What causes enteroliths?
Possible causes include:
Excessive minerals in the diet eg. magnesium, phosphate, or calcium.
Ingestion of foreign objects.
Lack of turnout
A diet of 50% + of Alfalfa hay
What are the symptoms of an enterolith?
Symptoms of an enterolith are similar to those of colic:
Lying down at unusual times
Kicking or biting at the belly
Increased pulse and respiration
Disinterest in eating
Yawning and teeth grinding
Mucous covered faeces
Lack of droppings
How are enteroliths diagnosed?
Enteroliths are usually diagnosed surgically during an impaction colic operation.
How are enteroliths treated?
Enteroliths are treated by surgical removal, there is a good prognosis for survival with a 95% survival rate.
Will enteroliths recur?
If dietary / turnout changes are not made there is a strong chance that further enteroliths will develop.
What type of horses are prone to enteroliths?
Enteroliths are more likely to develop in mares, they are more common in Arabs than other breeds and most commonly occur between the ages of 5 -10 years.
How to avoid your horse developing enteroliths?
If feeding alfalfa hay it should provide less than 50% of the horse's daily forage ration.
Reduce / eliminate the feeding of bran due to high levels of phosphorus
Avoid prolonged periods of confinement
Provide daily turnout
Split hard feeds into 3 / 4 meals a day
Prevent access to foriegn bodies
Adding vinegar to feed will reduce the PH in the intestine, high PH cancause minerals to attach to foreign bodies in the colon which may result in the formation of an enterolith.
The following information on vetting has been produced jointly by the British Equine Veterinary Association and the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons. It is intended to provide general guidance for both veterinary surgeons and prospective purchasers on what is to be expected of pre-purchase examinations of horses. The term “horse” is meant to include ponies and foals.
BEVA/RCVS Guidance Notes on the Examination of a Horse on Behalf of a Prospective Purchaser (amended 2011)
The aim of the pre-purchase examination is to carry out a thorough clinical examination on behalf of a potential purchaser to identify and assess factors of a veterinary nature that could prejudice the horse‟s suitability for its intended use. Each pre-purchase examination is carried out on behalf of a specific prospective purchaser so that the opinion can be based on that purchaser‟s individual needs and intended use of the horse. Examinations performed on behalf of a seller are not advised except in the case of a few specified auction sales.
Before performing a pre-purchase examination the veterinary surgeon should endeavour to ascertain who is selling the horse and the horse‟s identity. If, as a result of such information, the veterinary surgeon feels any conflict of interest, which means he/she cannot act wholly in the interests of the purchaser, the veterinary surgeon should decline to perform the examination. If the veterinary surgeon feels able to act without conflict, the fact that the seller is an existing client of the veterinary surgeon‟s practice should be declared to the purchaser in advance of the examination. Additionally, if the veterinary surgeon, or his/her practice, have any prior knowledge of the horse from any source, permission should be obtained from the seller for full disclosure to the purchaser of all such information that might be relevant. If this is not possible, for any reason, the veterinary surgeon should decline to perform the examination.
A standardised clinical examination is performed. Its findings will be assessed by the veterinary surgeon, who will form an opinion as to their significance and any possible adverse implications for the prospective purchaser‟s intended use of the horse. The findings and opinion may be reported to the purchaser verbally at the time of the examination or soon afterwards, as well as being documented in a certificate that is issued to the purchaser. If the purchase does not proceed a certificate may not be completed unless the purchaser requires one. Certificates are not transferable to another purchaser.
The pre-purchase examination provides an assessment of the horse at the time of examination to help inform the potential purchaser„s decision whether or not to continue with their purchase. It is not a guarantee of a horse‟s suitability for the intended purpose.
The standard examination is conducted in five stages, although the exact sequence of the examination may vary. The stages are:
Stage 1: Preliminary examination
This is a thorough external examination of the animal at rest using visual observation, palpation and manipulation to detect clinically apparent signs of injury, disease or physical abnormality. It includes an examination of the incisor teeth, a thorough examination of the horse‟s eyes in a darkened area and auscultation of the horse‟s heart and lungs at rest. Examination of the eyes does not include dilating the pupil but should include examination of internal and external structures.
The examination does not include examination of the inside of the prepuce (sheath), a detailed mouth examination with a speculum, a height measurement or any examination for pregnancy.
Stage 2: Walk and trot, in hand
The animal is walked and then trotted in hand to detect abnormalities of gait and action. Ideally this is carried out on firm, level ground. The horse is turned sharply each way and is backed for a few paces. Flexion tests of all four limbs and trotting in a circle on a firm surface may be carried out if the examining veterinary surgeon considers it safe and appropriate to do so.
Stage 3: Exercise phase
The horse is usually ridden and given sufficient exercise to:
1. Allow assessment of the horse when it has an increased breathing effort and an increased heart rate.
2. Allow assessment of the horse‟s gait at walk, trot, canter and, if appropriate, gallop.
3. Allow assessment of the horse for the purpose of stage five.
If ridden exercise is not possible for any reason then this stage may be conducted by exercising the horse on a lunge, but this fact should be made clear to the purchaser and on the certificate.
Stage 4: Period of rest and re-examination
The horse is allowed to stand quietly for a period. During this time the respiratory and cardiovascular systems may be monitored as they return to their resting levels.
Stage 5: Second trot up
The animal is trotted in hand again to look for any signs of strains or injuries made evident by the exercise and rest stages.
Flexion tests and trotting in a circle
Flexion tests and trotting in a circle on a firm surface are not mandatory parts of the standard procedure, but they can sometimes provide useful additional information about a horse. There may be circumstances when the examining veterinary surgeon concludes that it is unsafe or inappropriate to perform such tests.
A blood sample may be taken for storage (usually for 6 months) for possible future analysis to detect substances present in the horse‟s system at the time of the examination that might have masked any factors affecting the horse‟s suitability for the purchaser‟s intended use. If a blood sample is not taken then the reason should be noted on the certificate.
Identification of the horse
The horse should be identified by recording the horse‟s markings in the form of a diagram and written description as well as searching for a microchip and inspecting any available documentation. The diagram may be omitted if the presence of a microchip can be confirmed by scanner and the diagram of an accompanying passport matches the horse. In this instance, both microchip and passport numbers should be recorded on the certificate.
Variations from the standard examination
Whilst there is a recognised format for the examination, the examining veterinary surgeon may vary it where there are good practical or clinical reasons. In circumstances where it is not possible or appropriate to complete all the stages, or where the standard five-stage examination is limited to stages one and two at the specific request of the purchaser, the variations from the standard procedure should be made clear to the purchaser and on the certificate. The results of any additional procedures (e.g. radiography or endoscopy) carried out at the request of the purchaser should also be reported and recorded on the certificate or in an addendum to it. The original records of these procedures (such as radiographs, ultrasonographs, photographs) should be retained by the examining veterinary surgeon.
THE CERTIFICATE AND OPINION
The certificate should report the findings of the examination including all significant signs of disease, injury or physical abnormality. The certificate should also include the examining veterinary surgeon‟s opinion as to whether or not, on the balance of probabilities, those findings prejudice the horse‟s suitability for purchase for its intended use.
This opinion of the examining veterinary surgeon is given in the following format:
“In my opinion, on the balance of probabilities, the conditions reported above do / do not prejudice this horse’s suitability for purchase to be used for …”
This wording reflects the fact that there may be other reasonable interpretations of the findings, but it in no way reduces the responsibility of examining veterinary surgeons to examine and observe the horse carefully and to apply to the full their professional knowledge and experience.
If the examining veterinary surgeon considers that the clinical history represents a greater than normal risk of the horse developing future problems (i.e. recurrence or delayed consequences of a prior condition), or that it may do so, this should be indicated on the certificate along with an explanatory note. Despite such observations, the horse may nevertheless be suitable for purchase based on a risk/benefit analysis.
LIMITATIONS OF THE EXAMINATION
If any parts of the five stages are omitted for any reason, the opinion given is based purely upon those parts of the examination that were completed. The incomplete examination will not have identified any clinical signs of disease, injury or abnormality that could only have been revealed by a part of the standard procedure that was omitted.If the purchaser requests a limited (two-stage) examination, the examination will be limited in its scope and may not detect important clinical factors that could otherwise influence their decision to purchase the horse.
The horse may have received previous or concurrent veterinary treatment unknown to the examining veterinary surgeon. This may be so even where the examining veterinary surgeon is the seller‟s regular veterinary surgeon and has access to clinical records for the horse.
At the time of the examination the horse may have been subject to some previously administered drug or medicament having the effect of masking or concealing some disease, injury or physical abnormality that might otherwise have been clinically discoverable. A blood sample taken at the time of the examination may be used later to seek to determine this.
The certificate serves to identify the horse that was examined, but it is not the responsibility of the examining veterinary surgeon to ascertain that the declared seller has legal title in the horse. It is the responsibility of the purchaser to satisfy themselves as to the ownership of the horse before purchase and to verify the records of any microchip with the relevant database.
Without appropriate paper records from foalhood it is not possible to confirm the age of a horse with accuracy. Estimates of age based on a dental examination are imprecise and unreliable and exact ageing using dentition alone should be avoided. In the absence of documentary evidence, the term „aged‟ may be used to refer to a horse considered after examination to be over 15 years of age.
Vices are objectionable habits, but are not necessarily detectable during the examination. However, if vices, or evidence of vices, are observed during the examination they should be reported to the purchaser and recorded on the certificate and taken into account in the concluding opinion.
The opinion provides no assurances in respect of matters that can only be established by a seller‟s representations to the purchaser. A seller‟s warranty is a matter between the seller and the purchaser and is not the responsibility of the examining veterinary surgeon. The purchaser should consider obtaining a written warranty from the seller covering, for example, matters such as medical or surgical history, height, freedom from vices, temperament, non-administration of drugs prior to the examination and the horse‟s previous or existing uses and performance levels.
For the purposes of this examination, the height of a horse or pony is not the concern of the examining veterinary surgeon.
Where possible and if required, the prospective purchaser is advised to confirm that they are able to obtain suitable insurance cover before purchasing the horse.
NB. Pre-purchase examination certificates are suitable for submission to insurance companies with a proposal for insurance of the horse. Insurance examinations carried out for an existing owner of a horse may follow the same format as the five-stage pre-purchase examination, but they will not include an opinion and should not be interpreted as a pre-purchase examination. Insurance examinations should be recorded using the “Certificate of Examination of a Horse for Insurance Purposes”.