The EQUUS Foundation Announces 2010 Grant Awards

WESTPORT, CT – August 31, 2010 – The Board of Directors of The EQUUS Foundation, Inc. is pleased to announce the award of its 2010 grants to 60 charitable organizations that use the horse to benefit the public; promote the horse’s health and welfare; and advance the equestrian sport.

The EQUUS Foundation is dedicated to securing homes and useful lives for horses, enhancing the lives of people who benefit from horses, and educating the public on the significant impact horses have in our every day lives.

Today, millions of people are involved with horses – recreationally, competitively, and therapeutically. Age is not a limitation – horses are helping children, adolescents, adults, and seniors. Therapeutically, our equine partners have long been helping individuals bear the burdens of disabilities and debilitating diseases as well as those coping with economic disadvantages and at-risk situations.

Most recently, horses are coming to the aid of children with autism. Autism represents perhaps the fastest growing population who can benefit from equine therapies. Based on Center for Disease Control (CDC) data, an average of 1 in 110 children have been diagnosed with autism, a 57% increase in the rate of diagnosis based on a 4-year CDC study conducted from 2002 to 2006. A U.S. Department of Education study determined that autism diagnosis is growing at a rate of 10-17% year.

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Isabell Werth – Rolex Diary for WEG (World Equestrian Games)

Isabell Werth is writing a diary for horsesinthesouth.com as she prepares for the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games from 25 September – 10 October. Here is Isabell’s third entry…

Preparations for the WEG since Aachen…

After Aachen, we had the German Championships (Münster) where I took Hannes, my second horse after Satchmo, to compete. He did very well, winning twice and then one week later, Satchmo competed in Cappeln in the Grand Prix. Unfortunately, we made too many mistakes in the Grand Prix but we had a good Grand Prix Special which was very encouraging.

I won’t be competing again until WEG, but from the 12–15 September we will have our last team training session, and on the 16th of September the horses will fly out to Kentucky via Cincinnati. This is a really important week for me as the time has come for me to decide which horse (Satchmo or Hannes) I’ll take to Kentucky. It’s quite exciting as both horses are in great shape, although to be honest, Hannes is more consistent at the moment. It’s a wonderful luxury to have as they were so good in Aachen but it will be a difficult decision to choose only one.

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Green Initiatives in Place for Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games

September 3, 2010 – LEXINGTON, KY – 21 Days to Go – The Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games is proud to announce plans for efficient recycling and waste reduction during the 16-day event, by partnering with Green Duck composting and recycling solutions company.

Using eco-stations and compostable products, the World Games 2010 Foundation is projected to recycle and compost over 360 tons of material that otherwise would have gone to the landfill.

Volunteers will be on hand at the eco-station sites to assist spectators in where to place their disposables.  These bins will be designated for recyclables, compostables and waste materials.

Additionally, Green Duck has partnered with Buona and Patina, the Games concession and catering vendors, to utilize certified compostable to-go food service packaging, including plates, cups, cutlery and food containers. With these compostable products in place, more than 90 percent of the packaging for foodservice will be diverted from the landfill, and instead be turned into nutrient-rich compost soil.

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Olympian Debbie McDonald Gives Clinic to World Equestrian Games Para-Equestrians

Debbie McDonald © 2010 Lauren Fisher/PMG.

Thousand Oaks, CA – September 2, 2010 – This spring Para-Equestrians were treated to a dressage clinic with Olympian Debbie McDonald. The clinic took place during the Dressage Affaire at the Del Mar Horse Park in Del Mar, California on March 15-16, 2010.  This informational clinic was a wonderful opportunity for riders that are preparing for the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games. For McDonald this clinic proved to be a learning experience not only for the participants but for herself as well.

McDonald noted, “This clinic was a learning experience not only for them but for me.  I have never had a rider that was paralyzed from the neck down.  At first I was not sure exactly on how to work on each of the riders but I developed a strategy to work on controlling the body.  These exercises included sitting up taller, increase stretching, and many other techniques to increase their strength.  I worked with the para-equestrians just as I would school my own riders.”

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Mary King Reigns at Burghley

Mary King and Apache Sauce have a two-point lead after the first day of Dressage at the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials. (Photo: Kit Houghton/FEI)

2 September 2010 – Mary King (GBR) showed all her experience to take the lead after an eventful first day of Dressage at the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials (GBR), the fourth leg of the HSBC FEI Classics.

King, 49, has been riding at Burghley for more than 20 years – she won it in 1996 on Star Appeal – but a momentary lapse in concentration which meant she had to correct an error of course will have cost her valuable marks.

Riding the 14-year-old white-faced chestnut Apache Sauce, fourth here in 2008, she missed part of the final canter work and, on arriving at halt, had to be interrupted by Ground Jury member Marilyn Payne (USA).

“I haven’t done that for years,” a smiling King said afterwards, confessing to a “blonde moment”.

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The Perfect Time to End the Slaughter of American Horses

September 1, 2010 – At the moment, the news is rife with stories about the level of equine neglect in the United States, with many of the articles blaming the “unintended consequences” of closing the US horse slaughter plants and calling for them to be reopened. But in reality, we are coming up on a once in a lifetime opportunity to get rid of this abominable practice once and for all. To understand this apparent paradox, one needs to get past unsubstantiated myths to the real forces at play in the market.

First, one needs to understand that it is completely impossible to blame the current glut of excess horses on the closing of the slaughter plants because the closings simply sent the horses over the Mexican and Canadian borders for slaughter. In 2006, the year before the closings, 142,740 American horses were slaughtered, and that number only dropped by 14% the year the plants were closed. By 2008, slaughter was back to the second highest level in almost ten years.

Next, it is necessary to understand what really causes neglect, and that is unemployment. After years of studying the relationship between neglect rates and slaughter volumes, I had concluded that there was no relationship whatever. Then I looked at the rates of neglect in Illinois in comparison with unemployment in the state. The correlation was striking.

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Arrest Announced for Failure to Report Horse Disease

September 1, 2010 – TALLAHASSEE — Florida Agriculture and Consumer Services Commissioner Charles H. Bronson today announced the arrest of an Indian River County woman who allegedly tried to conceal from authorities her two horses that were infected with Equine Infectious Anemia (EIA).

Arrested by Bronson’s Office of Agricultural Law Enforcement (OALE) was Regina Chesser, 56, of Fellsmere.  She was charged with failure to report a dangerous transmissible disease, which is a second-degree felony.

Authorities allege that Chesser brought her horse “Dolly” to a Vero Beach veterinary clinic to be tested for EIA.  When the test results were positive for EIA, authorities with the department’s Division of Animal Industry attempted to contact Chesser only to find that she had given the alias Cheryl Hearndon with a false address and phone number to the clinic and used a an email address registered to a friend.  The false information was given because Chesser believed “Dolly” was infected with the EIA virus.

The case was turned over to Bronson’s Office of Agricultural Law Enforcement to initiate a criminal investigation of the matter.  After an extensive search, Chesser’s true identity and location were discovered.  Authorities then learned that there were two horses on Chesser’s property and subsequent testing showed that both of the horses were carriers of EIA.

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As Study Begins, the Animal Welfare Institute Calls on BLM to Halt Wild Horse Roundups

Washington, DC (September 1, 2010) – While the Animal Welfare Institute (AWI) welcomes the recent news that the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has asked the National Academy of Sciences National Research Council (NAS/NRC) to review its National Wild Horse and Burro Program starting January 1, 2011, we are deeply disappointed with the agency’s blatant disregard for calls to halt wild horse roundups pending completion of the review.  AWI first recommended this outside review along with a moratorium on roundups over a year ago given the widespread problems being reported in the BLM’s management of wild horses.

“While we are grateful that the BLM has finally realized the urgent need for advice from scientific experts, we continue to be disappointed at their stubborn refusal to halt the massive wild horse roundups they are conducting at an alarming rate,” said Chris Heyde, deputy director of government and legal affairs for AWI.

In testimony to the House and Senate Interior Appropriations Subcommittees, AWI laid out its reasoning and criteria for an independent study by the NAS, a moratorium on all non-emergency roundups, and the critical importance of maintaining language preventing the BLM from killing tens of thousands of healthy wild horses.  In July, similar concerns were raised with the BLM in a bipartisan letter from House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Nick Rahall (D-WV), National Parks, Forests and Public Lands Subcommittee Chairman Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) and 52 of their colleagues.

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FEI Announces Detection Times for Methylprednisolone Acetate

1 September 2010 – The Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) has announced detection times for Methylprednisolone Acetate, a frontline treatment for lameness in the equine athlete. The findings from recently completed studies on the use of intra-articular Methylprednisolone Acetate show the detection times as 28 days for the 200mg dose and 14 days for the 100mg dose.

The FEI recognises that any strategy to reduce the level of doping and medication offences must contain an element of guidance and education. With this in mind there has been an increased effort to provide detection times for substances that are in common usage. The detection time is the time taken for an active substance administered to a horse by a specified route and dosage to fall below a level at which the FEI would declare a sample positive.

It is important to note that detection times may vary depending on dose and number of injection sites used. Please note that a detection time is not the same as a withdrawal time. The withdrawal time must be decided by the treating veterinarian and is likely to be based on the detection time plus an appropriate safety margin to allow for individual variation.

The full list of FEI detection times can be found here.

Media Contact:

Graeme Cooke

FEI Director Veterinary Department

Tel: +41 21 310 47 39

Email: Graeme.Cooke@fei.org

Hampton Green Farm to Host Dressage 4 Kids Fundraiser at Region 2 Championships

Maria Lithander at Dressage by the Bay. Photo © 2009 Diana Hadsall.

Traverse City, MI – August 31, 2010 – Horse Sports by the Bay is pleased to announce that Hampton Green Farm, known nation-wide for their dedication to dressage and to the development of the PRE Horse for Dressage in America, will be hosting a Dressage 4 Kids Fundraiser and exhibitor party during the Great American Insurance Group/Region 2 Dressage Championships on Saturday, September 11.  The Regional Championships are being held from September 9 – 12 at Flintfields Horse Park in Traverse City, MI, which is home to the prestigious Horse Shows by the Bay Equestrian Festival.

The fundraiser features a silent auction which will include riding helmets donated from English Riding Supply and other retail pieces donated by Sporthorse Saddlery and Equine Source among others.  Funds collected from the auction and from ticket sales to the exhibitor party will go directly back to Dressage 4 Kids’ extensive education campaign.  Donations are still being taken for the Auction; please email here for more information.

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