GMO, genetically modified organism, involves the insertion or deletion of genes to create a certain outcome or purpose. Crops already induced are the following: canola, honey, cotton, rice, soybean, sugar cane, tomatoes, corn, sweet corn, potatoes, flax, papaya, squash, red-hearted chicory, peas and sugar beets. Now alfalfa is being added to the list thus spurring this tip.
Crops being genetically modified like corn, sugar beets, soybeans and rice are ingredients commonly found in equine grain mixes and pelleted feeds. Beet pulp may be found in processed feeds also but it is often used in addition to the ration for fiber and calories. The introduction of GM crops has had an impact on the equine diet but not quite as much as the genetically modified alfalfa will have.
Genetically modified crops are generally altered for chemical herbicide application. The crop may be sprayed with a plant killing chemical to eliminate weeds but will not kill the crop itself. For the farmer they need to purchase the seeds and purchase the correct chemical herbicide that the seed has been genetically modified for to withstand or survive its application. It’s much like having to purchase a specific bolt to fit a specific bicycle to match a specific bicycle tire. The company makes additional income without allowing customers to utilize a standardized item.
A farmer’s freedom is lost from there on. Once a GM seed has been grown in their soil, there is no turning back. Additionally, every farmer in the neighborhood will more than likely have GMO contamination in their crop whether they wanted it or not. This in itself is leading farmers into serious issues with the chemical company and/or any farmers attempting to grow organic.
Does your horse travel with his head tipped to one side? Will he bend his neck better to one direction than the other? Is he having trouble getting his hind legs underneath him to stop, turn, or back up? These are problems that could be diagnosed and treated using osteopathy.
We palpate and “read” the horse’s spine to tell us about problems in the horse’s body. An example of internal inflammation would be ovaries that are restricted, resulting in decreased mobility of the hind limbs. We could tell that the ovaries were restricted by finding a restriction at lumbar vertebrae L1 through L3.
Osteopathic manipulation of the problem ovaries will resolve the problem with the hind legs. The autonomic nervous system must be working for the immune system to be strong. Any restriction in the organs or joints will decrease the ability of the autonomic nervous system to function properly.
A horse that is sensitive when you touch his ears or try to bridle him could have a restriction in his temporal bone, a problem in his TMJ joint, his mastoid process, or his occiput. Once this restriction is removed, he will be much more willing to have his ears touched or his bridle put on.
A mare with a restriction of the ovary in the area of the fallopian tube may not get pregnant. Once this restriction is removed, using internal osteopathic manipulation, the egg will move down the fallopian tube and the mare would have a much better chance of getting pregnant. An osteopathic treatment can restore function, and therefore innervation and circulation to the body.
This tip was brought to you by Lu Ann Groves, DVM (www.thewholehorse.com) and KAM Animal Services, home of KAM’s “Equine Learning Circle” FREE webinars, which take place monthly. These webinars are an expansion of KAM’s weekly tips. Go to www.kamanimalservices.com to sign up for the next webinar. The FREE webinars will conclude with a question and answer session, so be ready with your nutrition questions.
Horse owners have several choices when it comes to bedding. The choice of bedding material is an important aspect of horse-barn management.
Bedding can increase dust levels that can pose respiratory problems in both horses and their handlers. In addition, bedding choice will have an impact on the cost of housing horses, the labor involved with stall cleaning, manure storage capacity and, ultimately, nutrient management.
Aesthetically, bedding type is important because material that clings to a horse’s coat can make a horse appear dirty. A good bedding material must absorb urine and excess water from the feces to keep the horses dry and comfortable.
Labor considerations and a happy barn staff are essential when considering choice of bedding, but let us not forget the horse. It is, after all, the horses that will be using the bedding. Horses seem to like straw and shavings equally, not preferring one over the other. Clean straw is preferred for mares and very young foals. Some horses will eat straw bedding – a problem if you are trying to keep your horse on a diet.
Spray, pump, wipe… repeat! Each year horses suffer at the onslaught of a winged, biting, egg laying and disease carrying army of insects. We walk into battle with our artillery of chemical, natural or organic wipes and sprays. We even feed fresh or dried garlic. The question is: do these work? What other choices do we have?
Thriving upon research, the arena of pest control provided an opportunity to experiment with several application products. Unsuccessfully, I even tried to make my own. The two topical application type products that really worked no longer were available. Unfortunately both lost the battle and had gone out of business. Do I have different flies than everyone else? When it comes to topical applications I look for products that are organic and there are many out there. The only way to find out if they work, try them.
What about garlic? Yes, I believe it helps with insect control; plus a healthy dietary supportive product to boot. What about Diatomaceous Earth? Yes, I’ve read studies and have tried using it myself. As a feed through it provides some fly control. To apply topically dries the skin and to coat the stall floor dries out the hoof so those are not good options. It has helped though when spread down the aisle of barns or in certain areas of the barn yard. What’s thrilling is Diatomaceous Earth is an inexpensive weapon for insect control. Make sure you purchase food grade and take the necessary precautions for eye and inhalation protection during application.
Anneka and Kristin Sutton will be the first ever sisters to both make it on a Junior/Young Rider Dressage Team, despite their mother’s early wish of never wanting to involve her daughters in riding.
The Suttons’ local paper, The Ayr News, recently reported their story and began the article noting, “When Blandford-Blenheim resident Gabriele Sutton came to Canada from Germany to marry Steve Sutton and start a family, she swore her children would never become serious horse riders.”
Now over 20+ years later they’ve done just that. Kristin, 19, Anneka, 17 and Mariah, 15 all began the season vying to make the Canadian National Team which will compete in Lexington, KY at the annual 2011 Adequan FEI North American Junior & Young Rider Championships. Presented by Gotham North, these Championships will be held July 25–31, 2011 at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, KY.
Mariah did her best but with a new horse and as the youngest of the sisters, she’ll be there to lend a helping hand and learn the ropes for when she accomplishes that same goal. “I’m proud of my sisters and their horses, and hope to be in Anneka’s position next year,” said the teenager.
Degenerative joint disease or osteoarthritis is one of the main causes of lameness in horses. DJD occurs when the joint cartilage is destroyed producing pain and inflammation. Typically therapy involves a combination of intra-articular medications such as hyaluronic acid and/or steroids, rest, oral pain medications, shockwave therapy, polysulfated glycosaminoglycans, intravenous hyaluronic acid, and oral supplements that contain glucosamine, avocado soy extracts, MSM and/or chondrotin sulfate.
Joint treatments with IRAP (Interleukin-1 Receptor Antagonist Protein) utilize progressive gene therapy to combat osteoarthritis. Interleukin-1 (IL-1) is a cellular protein that is secreted by many types of inflamed cells. These proteins signal the immune system to attack infected, damaged or dying cells. In the arthritic joint IL-1 plays an important role and accelerates the deterioration of tissues like joint cartilage. IRAP blocks IL-1 from binding to tissues and inhibits the damaging consequences of IL-1.
The process begins with 60 cc of blood from your horse in a special syringe. The syringe is specially prepared with glass beads that stimulate production of the antagonist protein (Il-1a) and an anticoagulant. The process of harvesting, incubating and centrifuging the blood to separate the IRAP abundant plasma from blood takes 24 hours. Thereafter, IRAP joint treatments are administered every 8-10 days for three treatments depending on the condition being treated.
This tip was brought to you by Chuck Maker, DVM (www.alpinehospital.com) and KAM Animal Services, home of KAM’s “Equine Learning Circle” FREE webinars, which take place monthly. These webinars are an expansion of KAM’s weekly tips. Go to www.kamanimalservices.com to sign up for the next webinar. The FREE webinars will conclude with a question and answer session, so be ready with your nutrition questions.
Win $750 Worth of KAM’s Healthy Horse Products and More
KAM’s Equine Learning Circle, a division of KAM Animal Services, has been providing healthy horse tips weekly for over a year now. Their “Tips of the Week” have been so well received that they now want to offer other equine experts the opportunity to be credited for their best healthy horse tip. Everyone who sends in a tip will be a winner so read on!
If you are a veterinarian, a farrier, an equine dentist, a nutritionist, or a specialist in some area related to horses then send us your best tip for a chance to win prizes. First place will win $750 worth of KAM Animal Services products, second place $500 worth of product and third place $250 worth of product.
Do you have a tip on the best way to deal with lameness, keep your horse free from flies or to give your friendly critter a shiny coat? Or maybe your tip is about cleaning your tack or quick and easy grooming tips, loading your horse into a trailer, or preparing your horse for the vet. Perhaps your tip is about teaching the adult or child rider or how to photograph your horse. If you feel you are an expert in some area and have a tip to offer, then we want to hear from you. Let your mind be your guide and in 250-350 words write down your tip and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
While there will be product prizes for first, second and third place, that doesn’t mean you won’t also be a winner. If we like what you have to say, you could also have your very own tip be included in KAM’s Equine Learning Circle’s Tip of the Week. Each tip will have a cartoon crafted to match the theme of your tip and you will be credited for your submission at the end of the tip. In addition KAM is creating a Healthy Horse Holiday e-Book of all its tips and yours could be included.
Does your horse continually fall short of obtaining good health and optimum performance? Have you reached beyond all means to find answers, yet battle consistent immune, digestive problems and more? Have you peered over the stall or gazed toward the horizon of the pasture at a horse wondering what else can I do? These questions are even more difficult as the spirit of the horse ceases to give up.
The answer might be right there on the ranch or at the boarding facility. The discovery may bring forth a simple solution or a costly one, but the impact can be huge.
Horse owners and feed companies spend copious amounts of time dissecting such a small portion of the horse’s diet. Supplements, grain mixes, etc. compared to the amount of hay they should eat or larger yet, the volume of water they should drink per day may never be addressed. At times these nutrients may never flow into the topic of conversation when discussing a horse’s health.
For your knowledge, a horse consumes 1.5% – 2% of their body weight in dry matter. Dry matter would include hay, grain mixes, pellets and supplements. When combined, these would total close to 20 pounds for a 1000 pound horse. Water requirements for this same horse exceeds by four times the amount of dry matter. Optimum consumption of water would be close to 90 pounds. This number does not take into consideration the loss of water through sweat, breathing, digestive or elimination processes. In fact, it has been researched that dehydration may be known as the new “silent killer.”
Whether your horse competes in FEI level dressage or national working cow horse competitions, few problems can be more worrisome as a sudden lameness of unknown origin. While a clinical exam and hoof tester application is often all that is needed to diagnose a routine sub solar abscess, many of today’s athletes are affected by more serious injuries.
Oftentimes with today’s equine athlete, multiple soft tissue conditions present affecting different limbs simultaneously, thereby confounding the diagnosis. Sequential regional anesthesia or nerve blocks and repeated gait analysis are often required to define and “un-couple” these conditions.
Once localized to a region or regions, the imagining methods used today to define the cause of lameness range from digital X-ray and ultrasound to nuclear medicine, computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Unequivocally defining the exact location and nature of your horse’s lameness issues with advanced imaging techniques better enables veterinarians to design the best treatment plan and quickest route back to the show ring.
This tip was brought to you by Chuck Maker DVM (www.alpinehospital.com) and KAM Animal Services, home of KAM’s “Equine Learning Circle” FREE webinars, which take place monthly. These webinars are an expansion of KAM’s weekly tips. Go to www.kamanimalservices.com to sign up for the next webinar. The FREE webinars will conclude with a question and answer session, so be ready with your nutrition questions.
Multi-Topic webinar will discuss: Electrolytes in summer, Detoxing from our toxic world, & Equine First Aid
When it’s time to sweat, Electrolytes must come to the rescue!
With record temperatures and high humidity plaguing our horses, care must be taken to keep your horse hydrated and healthy. That is when giving your horse Electrolytes is essential.
Sodium, chloride, potassium and magnesium are the primary electrolytes (ions) needed by a working horse. When ions are balanced, they promote water consumption and retention, which can eliminate dehydration and other health problems. Electrolytes will keep your horse well on those super hot days.
KAM Animal Services was often approached by clients asking if the company could create a product that would protect horses against environmental toxins. The combination of man-made pollutants, contaminated feeds and water, and natural stress, such as storms or draught, result in their bodies becoming toxic.